Control my appearance, control my social standing: Appearance control beliefs influence American women's (not men's) social mobility perception

Xue WANG, Fei TENG, Zhansheng CHEN, Kai Tak POON

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The present research examined the influence of perceived control over one's body appearance on expected social standing among women. With participants recruited from the United States, we measured (Study 1 and 2) and manipulated (Study 3) appearance control beliefs, and consistently found that women (but not men) with higher control beliefs expected higher possibility of upward social mobility. Moreover, women's awareness and endorsement of social attitude toward appearance moderated the effect (Study 2 and 3), such that the positive association between appearance control beliefs and social mobility perception was only observed among women who believed that appearance is valued by society and important for success but not among women who did not have such beliefs. These findings contribute to the literature by highlighting women's control beliefs of physical body appearance may predict their perception of the social world. Implications on women's social behaviors, as well as their physical and mental health are discussed. Copyright © 2019 Published by Elsevier Ltd.
Original languageEnglish
Article number109629
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Volume155
Early online dateNov 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2020

Citation

Wang, X., Teng, F., Chen, Z., & Poon, K.-T. (2020). Control my appearance, control my social standing: Appearance control beliefs influence American women's (not men's) social mobility perception. Personality and Individual Differences, 155. Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.1016/j.paid.2019.109629

Keywords

  • Appearance control beliefs
  • Social mobility
  • Awareness of social attitude toward appearance
  • Gender difference

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Control my appearance, control my social standing: Appearance control beliefs influence American women's (not men's) social mobility perception'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.