The Sideshow

Good-looking teens more likely to get good grades: Study

The Sideshow

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Students taking an exam (Thinkstock)

The "A" is for attractive.

If you have a symmetrical face. If you have nice teeth. If you can be accurately described as "pretty darn good-looking, all things considered," then good news — you have yet another advantage you might not have known about, according to a recently published study.

In the report, titled "Physical Attractiveness and the Accumulation of Social and Human Capital in Adolescence and Young Adulthood," sociologist Rachel Gordon explains that good-looking kids get better grades in high school, and she has the data to back it up.

And the advantages continue into adulthood. As a grownup with a job, a good-looking person is more likely to earn a higher salary.

The research took into account a national survey of nearly 9,000 high school students from the class of 1994-95. The study followed the students into their 20s and 30s. The interviewers were responsible for rating the students' attractiveness, Inc.com explains. It's like "Mean Girls" in real life.

Gordon spoke with USA Today about her findings. She said teens blessed with extraordinary good looks (think your typical Disney Channel star) don't necessarily have an extra advantage over teens who are merely above average in appearance. Also important to note: Those perceived as being below average in looks were more likely to suffer from depression, the research found.

But it isn't all good news for the good-looking. Gordon told USA Today that teens who are more attractive are also more likely to drink heavily and have a higher number of sexual partners.

Caroline Heldman, an associate professor of politics at Occidental College in Los Angeles, told USA Today, "Attractive women will get a benefit overall in occupations, but when you're talking about leadership positions, being sexually attractive actually works against you."

Follow Mike Krumboltz on Twitter at @mikekrumboltz.


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