A picture is worth a thousand words: The effect of viewing celebrity Instagram images with disclaimer and body positive captions on women's body image

Zoe Brown, Marika Tiggemann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Research has shown that exposure to Instagram images is harmful for women's body image. Although Instagram consists of photos of both peers and celebrities, the top followed Instagram accounts are held by thin and attractive female celebrities. The present study aimed to experimentally investigate whether two forms of Instagram caption could mitigate the detrimental effect of celebrity images on women's body image. Participants were 256 female undergraduate students who were assigned to view a set of celebrity images with either no caption, a disclaimer caption, or a body positive caption, or a control set of travel images. Results showed that exposure to celebrity images, in comparison to travel images, increased body dissatisfaction and decreased body appreciation. However, there was no significant effect of either form of caption. The effect of celebrity images was mediated by state appearance comparison and moderated by trait appearance comparison. It was concluded that the addition of disclaimer or body positive captions by attractive celebrities does not serve to improve women's body image.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)190-198
Number of pages9
JournalBody Image
Volume33
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020

Keywords

  • Body appreciation
  • Body image
  • Body positive captions
  • Celebrity
  • Disclaimer captions
  • Instagram

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