Thursday, April 2, 2009

Physical Attractiveness and Access to Alcohol: What Is Beautiful Does Not Get Carded

This research focuses on the halo effect in attractiveness. This effect has been related to favorable social situations, positive personalities, higher salaries, and higher GPA’s. Overall, the advantages of being perceived as good looking. Much like the research I did last week with clothing and attractiveness, people attributed better personality traits to people that were good looking.

Researchers also found that individuals that work with someone that is physically attractive create a benefit to both the individuals that were working together. Also, by reversing this researchers saw that individuals perceived the other much differently in many aspects of their personality. Also within that article attractive male graduates had higher salaries even after controlling the initial salaries of their jobs.

These concepts are then narrowed down to giving alcohol to underage individuals. Researchers used the anchoring effect by using older and younger photographs of individuals and saw that they perceived the individuals much closer to the previous stimulus. These tests were used on store clerks, which scored similar results. An interesting aspect of this research was the environment also stimulated people in their beliefs upon someone’s age. If an individual had an infant they perceived the person to be 2.5 years older than their actual age!

Researchers then used these observations in an experiment which manipulated how likely you would ask for identification when it came to alcohol consumption. From the results they received that attractive individuals had a much lower chance of being carded.

Personally, I thought this was an extremely interesting article. The reason that researchers believe they allow them to buy alcohol is to increase the chance of interactions with the individual.

I would have liked to see what images these researchers used. Personally since I am a college student I can’t perceive the age that well between girls. This is why I would have loved to be a test like this. I want to see how bad/good I could possibly do.


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