Even an extra five pounds can hurt your job chances

“These results affirm that even a marginal increase in weight appears to have a negative impact on the hirability ratings of female job applicants,” the authors wrote. “For women, it seems, even seemingly minute changes to the shape, size and weight of the body are important.”

Co-author Dennis Nickson, a business professor at University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, said women tend to be judged more harshly for their appearances because of unfair societal expectations. Thin women who wear modest makeup appear more competent in the workplace and even take home higher earnings than their similarly skilled colleagues who weigh more or spurn cosmetics, studies have shown. (Other work has found that men, regardless of beauty, simply look more inherently skilled, and indeed the respondents in this study rated male faces, on average, a full point more employable than female ones.)