Why men who ditch their hair are most likely to succeed
Author Jacqueline Detwiler
SIR, WE’VE REVIEWED YOUR qualifications for this promotion and we’ve found you to be lacking. Actually, the problem is more that we’ve found you to be having—that is, having too much hair. You see, a recent study from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School found that people consider men with shaved heads to be more dominant, confident and masculine (as well as nearly an inch taller, four years older and 13 percent stronger) than those with full heads of hair. This is true even when hair is digitally manipulated: In pictures where their hair had been removed by Photoshop, men were rated taller and stronger than they were in photos of their real selves.
Researchers believe the effect may have to do with the number of bald action heroes in American cinema, the prevalence of shaved heads among those in traditionally masculine professions, and the nonverbal communication of confidence. Unfortunately, they also found that men with shaved heads were thought to be considerably less attractive. Ah, well. You can’t have everything.