• Appearances May Be Revealing

    by Annet King

    The great British wit Oscar Wilde wrote that “Only truly superficial people do not judge on appearances.” Yes, you read that correctly.

    On the one hand, we all know that what’s on the inside—someone’s character—is what matters most. But what Wilde understood and what we as a generation and society have apparently forgotten is that the exterior reflects the interior.

    I am not supporting “looks-ism”, in the sense that I realize that not everyone is born a natural raving beauty. Your genes may not allow you to have long legs, your DNA may have placed your eyes a bit too close together. Male-pattern baldness may make you more of a George Costanza than a George Clooney, and so on.

    This is different from not giving a damn. The antihero culture which began in the 1960s with James Dean and Marlon Brando has taken too many of us from snobs to slobs. Which is worse? At least snobs practiced good hygiene.

    Whether or not you give two hoots about the red carpet, I mention it because the venue requires movie stars to look like movie stars. This gets at the basic point: our appearance sends strong messages. This is especially significant when in the professional skin & spa setting, where in less than 2 seconds a client makes a snap unconscious judgment about you.

    Our appearance sends powerful visual messages that are more than skin-deep. The tabloids report that Victoria Beckham has told her hubby to curb his urge for more ink.

    Every so often, in my work as an educator I’ll encounter a skilled skin therapist who is inked from scalp to toenails in tattoos, is wearing more goth make up than a sales girl at MAC, and is pierced in so many (immediately visible) spots that I’m surprised all of the body fluids haven’t leaked out. Sorry. Though these statements seemed like a good idea at the time now that you’re looking for a job in the skin service sector, your appearance is going to diminish your ability to get hired and build relationships with clients. Why? Because you’ll have to undo that crucial first impression to demonstrate who you are on the inside and convince employers and clients that you are passionate about skin (although you choose to cover yours with ink). The bigger question is will they give you the time to change their impressions, or move right onto the next person?

    Bottom line: you can do what you want, wear what you want. But in today’s highly competitive market place where every job and client is fought over like a trophy, up your chances and reconsider the message you are visually communicating. If your hair is greasy, your nails are nasty, your breath is ciggy, and your clothes aren’t fresh, you’re telling me that you don’t care enough to make an effort. In which case, I don’t care to hire you or become your client.

    1 Comment

    • Adriah Says:

      You could try out Sculptisse. I just started using it after a fnierd of mine introduced it to me. With kids running around it’s hard to find time to look your best but this stuff really helps. Check out the website some time and see if it’s what you are looking for. Best of luck!

      May 9, 2012 at 3:41 pm

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