Is Beauty Actually Just “Skin Deep”?

Bailey Pruitt, Editor

Many people would argue that beauty is only “skin deep”; However, this is far from the truth. Psychologists have found the stunning habit of the brain to make quick, inaccurate judgements based on first impressions so that are often a result of an emotion or feeling in the moment. When the brain uses emotion or attractive to draw perceptions about an individual it is called the affect heuristic. This method lead to the something psychologists call the “halo effect”. The halo effect is the tendency to attribute positive qualities to match the attractiveness of an individual. As humans, we have a tendency to assume that the external qualities equal the internal qualities; thus, we are more likely to assume an attractive individual is a better parent, more intelligent, and a harder worker. These perceptions are mostly inaccurate because they are not made with coherent thoughts, instead because of raw emotion. Consider this for yourself: how did you treat the last attractive person you encountered in comparison to the last unattractive person you encountered? Were you more attentive? More forgiving? Kinder? The halo effects works to people that are considered “more attractive” to their advantage; they are more likely to get a job, get out of a speeding ticket, or have a higher social status. On the back end of it, this creates a downhill slide for our society. Because of the heavily valued beauty advantages in our society, we are in a generation of people with extremely low or high self-esteem. The extremes are dangerous to our mental health, from narcissism to the lows of depression, we are all trying to meet the beauty standards. In conclusion, and because of all of these reasons, beauty is so much more than skin deep. The affects of beauty alters our behaviors and determines how we perceive on another and ourselves.