A couple of readers of our blog post yesterday relating to employer dress and grooming policies helpfully added a couple of points about an employer’s legitimate health and safety concerns, which we publish below.

Marc Brenman, a university instructor in Olympia, WA:

“There are also issues of mutable characteristics, and safety. And issues

The title above is from an article some time ago in Time entitled “People Who Were Pretty In High School Make More Money Because Life Isn’t Fair.

The article began: “A new research paper confirms that everything that your mother told you growing up is a lie because the pretty people always win.”

We read a great comment in response to our post “Weight Bias Is Alive And Well.”    Maria Hanna Joseph, an attorney/mediator in the Boston area, addressing the issue of weight and appearance bias, has carefully written a very succinct and balanced statement of the very purposes of employment anti-discrimination laws.

But

Tattoos, body piercings, dreadlocks – can an employer prohibit such bodily adornments?  Can an employer require a “look policy?”

Depends.

We just read about a woman in Edmonton, Canada who has 22 visible body piercings and claims that employer dress codes discriminate against her, and that “one prospective employer threw out her résumé in front

Sylvia Dahlby, a “purveyor of talent acquisition, staffing management and recruiting business solutions” in Hawaii, commented below on our posts about “lookism,” beauty bias, appearance bias, and obesity.

Does appearance matter in hiring?

“Thanks for sharing this. In my opinion age and weight, and overall appearance are always a factor in hiring decisions

We have done a lot of posts on beauty bias, or “lookism” – workplace bias based upon appearance.  See our posts on lookism, appearance or beauty bias, and weight and height discrimination: October 16, 2013; July 9, 2012; February 11, 2011).  Some call this “aesthetic labor” – or “looking good.”

In