Can going from blond to brunette really improve your career?
byMar 19th 2009 8:00AM
Blondes may have more fun, but apparently they don't always get promoted. A study by U.K. retailer Superdrug found that 62% of people think brunettes look more professional at work.
About a third of the 2,500 women polled had changed their hair color from blond to brunette in an effort to be viewed as more intelligent on the job. Many of them said that darkening their locks resulted in them being taken more seriously by bosses. Also, 38% of blondes felt they had been held back at some point by their hair color.
The shift in hair color is being linked to the recession and mounting layoffs by the folks who commissioned the study. "The current economic climate is obviously making women take more care with their appearance at work, even down to their hair colour," Superdrug's Dan Hadley told the Daily Mail.
I'm not convinced that going from blonde to brunette is really going to result in more job promotions or keep anyone from being laid off, and that this study isn't just a way to get women to buy more bottles of hair color. But I do think that people have a certain perception of blondes that could keep them from being taken seriously in their career.
A classic example of this is the Elle Woods character in "Legally Blonde." When she went to Harvard Law School everyone underestimated her abilities based on her looks. However, it was those very looks that got her into law school in the first place.