What are Skyline’s thoughts on Pretty Privilege?

What are Skylines thoughts on Pretty Privilege?

Reporter l Emma Croxford 


What is “pretty privilege”? The term “pretty privilege” has increasingly become more frequently used in society today, and is mainly used on social media platforms, such as Instagram and TikTok. The term pretty privilege refers to the act of one being treated differently based on their looks, such as people who are considered pretty based on society’s beauty standards being treated better or having the upper hand in life. It is said that they have more opportunities and more advantages than someone who is deemed less pretty. Pretty privilege suggests that life is easier for pretty people. This has become a controversial topic among peers, as some believe pretty privilege doesn’t exist, that all people are treated equally, and a person’s looks do not define how they are treated. On the other hand, some people strongly agree with the term “pretty privilege” and think that people are treated unfairly based upon their looks.


There are many examples of pretty privilege being used in our world today. As a student, I have noticed examples of pretty privilege at school. Teachers treating students differently based on looks is a recurring situation I often find myself observing, whether this is the teacher giving a student a better grade than another or just a teacher’s tone of voice towards different students. Other examples are gaining or losing more friends based on how you look; for example, when I was in middle school, I didn’t give much thought to my appearance. My everyday look would be a plain t-shirt, no makeup, braces, and questionable hairstyles. Because of this, I only had around 2-3 friends, and I was only close to one of them. This year I became a freshman in high school, and I have experienced an increase in friends and attention from others around me. I don’t look the same as I did last year, and over the summer I dyed my hair and developed a good sense of style and overall look. These two simple things put me at an advantage to getting more friends. It is sad that this is the world people must live in and that we are overall treated differently based on our looks and appearances.


I have asked a majority of Skyline High School students four questions, such as: Do you know what pretty privilege is? Do you believe pretty privilege is real? Why do you think or not think that it’s real? Also, Have you ever had an experience with pretty privilege? Various responses were given by the students, with many saying that they believed pretty privilege is real. One student shared with me her thoughts on the topic and brought up an interesting point: She said that others who may not have enough money to help themselves look better and fit in are treated differently. “I’ve seen the way some treat others who wear the same outfit frequently and it is in no way kind”, the student said. To my surprise, many students agreed that pretty privilege was real. On occasion, there were even students who started out saying they believed it to be fake and changed their minds by the end of our conversation. 


After my interviews with the students, I began to be curious about why our minds are like this. Why do we treat people with greater beauty differently than others? Coming to a conclusion I realize that people have created the idea in our world that “Pretty is better.” This mindset is the reason we have people being more trustworthy and understanding towards conventionally attractive people.