Nicolas Guéguen and Céline Jacob, both of the Université de Bretagne-Sud, published “Clothing Color and Tipping: Gentlemen Patrons Give More Tips to Waitresses With Red Clothes” on April 18, 2012, in the Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Research. To view other OnlineFirst articles, please click here.
Recent research conducted with humans demonstrated that red, relative to other achromatic or chromatic colors, led men to view women presented on a photograph as more attractive. The effect of color on behavior was tested in a tipping context. Eleven waitresses in five restaurants were instructed to wear the same tee shirt with different colors (black, white, red, blue, green, or yellow). The effect of color on tipping according to patron’s gender was measured. It was found that waitresses wearing red received more tips but only with male patrons. Waitresses color had no effect on female patrons’ tipping behavior. The relation between red and sexual attractiveness are used to explain the results. Managerial interests related with clothing appearance were discussed.