Cultural standards for physical attractivenss impact apparel sizing in terms of choices made all along the pipeline from designer to consumer. Individual reactions to available assortments become components of self-esteem.

Alley, T. R., & Hall, D. L. (1989). Adults' responses to the physical appearance of children with growth disorders. Child Study Journal, 19(2), 117-131.

ABSTRACT: The study examined adults reactions to some abnormalities of physical appearance associated with growth disorders. There was a mean tendency for the normal child to evoke more favorable ratings. Ratings of defense provokingness were correlated with perceived age and specific physical characteristics like height and weight, but did not differ overall for normal vs. abnormal children. Significant correlations were also found between perceived and actual size and certain physical attractiveness.

KEYWORDS: Body size

Alley, T. R., & Scully, K. M. (1994). The impact of actual and perceived changes in body weight on women's physical attractiveness. Basic and Applied Social Psychology, 15(4), 535-542.

ABSTRACT: The study attempted to determine whether small changes in body weight are likely to alter women's physical attractiveness (PHA), asking 100 undergraduates to select the more attractive photograph of 33 young women. Lighter targets were not consistently selected as more attractive, even though 66% of the pairs of photographs differed in perceived PHA. Photographs did tend to receive higher PHA ratings when the targets were perceived as weighing less.

KEYWORDS: Physical attractiveness; Body weight

Anonymous. (1980). The politics of body size: Fear of fat. (Cassette Recording No. AZ0470). Los Angeles: Pacific Tape Library.

ABSTRACT: The medical perspective on body size, the ideology of individualism/self-control, the weight and diet foods industry, and feelings that fatness arouse are examined through interviews with overweight and thin people.

KEYWORDS: Body image; Body size; Obesity

Anonymous. (1992). The men's guide to building self-esteem and dressing for excellence. (Videocassette). Dallas: Terri Ives Presentations.

A discussion on how to fine tune your appearance for that first impression that will achieve positive responses and credibility.

KEYWORDS: Body image; Self-perception; Clothing and dress

Anonymous. (1995). The myth of the perfect body accepting your physical self. (Videocassette). Lake Zurich, Illinois: Learning Seed.


KEYWORDS: Body weight; Self-acceptance; Body image; Anorexia

Anonymous. (1995). Deciding who is fat, and who is not. The CQ researcher, 5(14), 326.

ABSTRACT: (None)The Metlife Weight table and the Body Mass Index are popular measures.


Arnold, C. (1984). Too fat, too thin: Do you have a choice. New York: US Imprint.

ABSTRACT: (None)The problem of weight control, why it is sometimes difficult, and what can realistically be done about altering body size are the subjects of this reference guide for teenagers. The importance of a positive and realistic attitude toward personal body size is emphasized. Guidelines are provided for determining if one is too fat, too thin, and/or too obsessed with body size.

KEYWORDS: Body size; Body fat; Weight reduction

Avery, M. W. (1995). What is beautiful. Berkeley: Tricycle Press.

ABSTRACT: (None)The book encourages children to recognize different forms of beauty in various individuals and to see what is beautiful about themselves in the attached mirror.

KEYWORDS: Self-esteem; Body image

Bangs, K. J. (1994). Body weight and physical challenge: Possible effects on attractive and responsibility attributions. College of William and Mary.


KEYWORDS: Body weight

Budge, H. S. (1981). Dimensions of physical attractiveness: How others see us. Dissertation Abstracts International, 41(11), 4281B, The University of Utah.

ABSTRACT: The study explored the dimensions of physical attractiveness used by male and female judges when evaluating stimulus persons of both sexes. The study tested two hypotheses: (a) All body dimensions are equally significant in contributing to physical attractiveness ratings given to stimulus persons of both sexes, and (b) sexual and ideal stereotyped body images exist for each sex. Results support both hypotheses. Based on 44 physical dimensions, similarities and differences between male and female judges of male and female stimulus persons are compared.

KEYWORDS: Body cathexis; Physical attractiveness

Cash, T. F. (1990). The psychology of physical appearance: Aesthetics, attributes, and images. New York: Guilford Press.

ABSTRACT: The book provides an overview of the psychology of physical appearance - the scientific study of how our physical aesthetics and our bodily attributes, including our somatic self-perceptions, affect our lives; focuses largely upon physical attributes that fall within the normal range of appearance; overall appearance: social images (appearance-cued stereotyping, social consequences of appearance stereotyping), bodily attributes: social images and self-images (body weight: obesity, social stigma, and self-stigma, male pattern hair loss); aesthetic self-management of physical appearance.

KEYWORDS: Body weight; Physical appearance; Body image; Self-concept

Channon, S., de-Silva, P., & Hemsley, D. (1990). Body size perception and preferences in stable weight and improved weight anorexic patients. The International Journal of Eating Disorders, 9(4), 403-408.

ABSTRACT: The study compared attitudes to body size in female anorexic (AN) patients and sex-matched controls using a series of drawing of female figure in a paired comparison task. Results indicate that while the AN participants rated themselves as thinner than the controls, both groups were found to prefer a thinner than average body size. The dissatisfaction degree with body size was related to the severity of the illness.

KEYWORDS: Body size

Chocron, N. N. (1990). The relationship between self-esteem, satisfaction with physical appearance, locus-of-control, and career aspirations among high school and college female students. Dissertation Abstracts International, 51(10), 5071B, California School of Professional Psychology, Los Angeles.

ABSTRACT: The study attempted to explore the extent to which levels of perceived satisfaction with physical appearance, mediated by locus of control orientation, would predict levels of self-esteem, which would, in turn, be reflected in women's career behaviors. Results did not confirm the entirety of the predicted relationship between perceived satisfaction with physical appearance, locus of control, and their combined contribution to the prediction of self-esteem and career behavior. The study suggests that the social demand for beauty may be deleterious, and affect women's self-esteem, their career behavior and choices only to the extent that it is perceived as important to their sense of self-worth.

KEYWORDS: Self-esteem; Locus-of-control; Physical appearance

Clayton, R., Lennon, S. J., & Larkin, J. (1987). Perceived fashionability of a garment as inferred from the age and body type of the wearer. Home Economics Research Journal, 15(4), 237-246.


KEYWORDS: Body type

Cohn, L. D., Adler, N. E., Irwin, C. E., & Millstein, S. G. (1987). Body figure preferences in male and female adolescents. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 96(3), 276-279.

ABSTRACT: The study replicated the procedure used by Fallon and Rozin (1985) to assess body-size preferences in a sample of 288 female and 283 male adolescents aged ten to fifteen years. Both sexes revealed a small degree of body figure dissatisfaction relative to their chosen ideal, but neither sex rated their own figure as significantly different from the size considered most attractive to the opposite sex. Both male and female adolescents held distorted perceptions of opposite-sex preferences.

KEYWORDS: Body size; Adolescence

Cooke, K. (1995). Real gorgeous: The truth about body and beauty. New York: W.W. Norton.


KEYWORDS: Self-esteem; Body image; Feminine beauty (aesthetics)

Cunningham, M. R., Roberts, A. R., Barbee, A. P., & Druen, P. B. (1995). Their ideas of beauty are, on the whole, the same as ours: Consistency and variability in the cross-cultural perception of female physical attractiveness. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 68(2), 261-279.

ABSTRACT: The consistency of physical attractiveness ratings across cultural groups was examined among Asian, Hispanic, Black, and White female students. The results revealed high correlation in attractiveness ratings that were equally influenced by many facial features, whereas exposure to Western media did not influence attractiveness ratings. The physical attractiveness of Asians were less influenced by some sexual maturity and expressive features. The facial attractiveness ratings on Black female were highly correlated. Black and White American men rated the attractiveness of Black female based on facial photos and body types.

KEYWORDS: Body image; Physical attractiveness; Cross-cultural perception

Dutton, K. R., & Laura, R. S. (1994, September). The perfect body-conclusion. Joe Weider's Muscle and Fitness, 55, 142.

ABSTRACT: The Greek conception of the ideal human figure has been captured by 20th-century bodybuilders.


Franzoi, S. L., & Herzog, M. E. (1987). Judging physical attractiveness: What body aspects do we use. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 13(1), 19-33.

ABSTRACT: The study examined what body parts and functions young adults use in judging physical attractiveness and how these body items are related to different dimensions of body esteem. Subjects, who were 193 female and 150 male college students, completed a body esteem scale and rated the importance of body items in determining same- and opposite-sex attractiveness. Results indicate a good deal of congruence in men's and women's judgments of physical attractiveness. Aspects of male body esteem dealing with upper body strength and aspects of female body esteem dealing with weight concern figured prominently in these judgments. Findings further indicate that men had more positive attitudes toward their bodies than did women.

KEYWORDS: Body esteem; Physical attractiveness

Freeman, D. (1984). Beautiful bodies. (1 American ed.). New York: P. bedrick books.


KEYWORDS: Body image; Body type

Gitter, A. G. (1982). Factors affecting perceived attractiveness of male physiques by American and Israeli students. Journal of Social Psychology, 118(2), 167-175.

ABSTRACT: The study recruited 75 male and 102 female students from universities in both the US and Israel to evaluate 32 drawings of male physiques. The drawings systematically manipulated five somatic and postural dimensions of appearance (abdomen, shoulder, neck, head, and body shape). Results show that the presence of a protruding abdomen resulted in the most negative ratings, while its absence yielded the most positive ratings. Results indicated that no significant differences were found between subjects from the two cultures and only minor differences were obtained between ratings of male and female subjects.

KEYWORDS: Body cathexis; Physical attractiveness

Gordon, M. (1995, January). Thirty ways to reshape your body (no diets, exercise or surgery). Self, 17, 124.

ABSTRACT: Today's body shapers can resculpt your physique with no sweat.


Greider, K. (1995, May 01). The shape of things to come. In these times, 19, 14.

ABSTRACT: A discussion on how the fashion industry plans to redesign the female body from top to bottom


Houlihan, M. M., & Dickson-Parnell, B. E. (1987). Appearance changes associated with participation in a behavioral weight control program. Addictive Behaviors, 12(2), 157-163.

ABSTRACT: The relationships among objectively-measured weight changes, perceived changes in weight, and perceived changes in attractiveness were investigated among 16 women (19-38 years) in a behavioral weight control program. Subjects were weighed and photographed before and after treatment and at a 6-month follow-up session. Correlational analyses indicated little correspondence between objectively-measured weight change and perceived weight changes or between objectively-measured weight change and perceived change in attractiveness. Perceptions of weight change and perceptions of attractiveness change were strongly related.

KEYWORDS: Body weight

Irving, L. M. (1987). Mirror images: Effects of the standard of beauty on women's self and body esteem. Unpublished master's thesis, University of Kansas.


KEYWORDS: Body esteem

Irving, L. M. (1990). Mirror images: Effects of the standard of beauty on the self and body-esteem of women exhibiting varying levels of bulimic symptoms. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 9(2), 230-242.

ABSTRACT: The study used a social comparison theory paradigm to examine the impact of exposure to slides of thin, average, and oversize models on the self-evaluations of 162 university women exhibiting various level of self-reported bulimic symptoms. The results indicate that subjects with high levels of bulimic symptoms were reported to have a greater amount of pressure to be thin from media, peers, and family.

KEYWORDS: Body esteem; Pictorial stimuli; Self-esteem; Body image; Body size; Self-evaluation

Johnston, J. E. (1994). Appearance obsession: Learning to love the way you look. Deerfield Beach: Health Communications, Inc.

ABSTRACT: Topic discussions include the beauty culture club, when clothes hide too much, setting the stage: family beauty messages, breaking the cycle: beyond ourselves, etc.

KEYWORDS: Self-esteem; Body image; Self-concept

Katch, F. I. (1993). The body profile analysis system (BPAS) to estimate ideal body size and shape: Application to ballet dancers and gymnasts. World Review of Nutrition and Dietetics, 71, 69-83.


KEYWORDS: Body shape; Body measurements; Somatotype

Kowner, R., & Ogawa, T. (1993). The contrast effect of physical attractiveness in Japan. Journal of Psychology, 127(1), 51-64.

ABSTRACT: The study examined contextual effects on the judgment of others' attractiveness and self-evaluation among 213 female and 124 male Japanese college students who rated their body satisfaction and self-esteem following exposure to various attractiveness stimuli. Results showed the existence of a contrast effect of attractiveness stimuli on the judgment of target stimuli in men and women. A gender difference was evident in the contextual effect of physical attractiveness stimuli.

KEYWORDS: Self-esteem; Physical attractiveness; Self-evaluation; Body image; Body satisfaction

Kummen, M. E. (1985). The effects of body build and clothing on the perception of female figures. Unpublished master's thesis, University of Manitoba, Ottawa.


KEYWORDS: Body build

Makkar, J. K., & Strube, M. J. (1995). Black women's self-perceptions of attractiveness following exposure to White versus Black beauty standards: The moderating role of racial identity and self-esteem. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 25(17), 1547-1566.

ABSTRACT: The study examines racial identity, self-esteem, and Black vs. White beauty standards as moderators of body image perceptions among 60 Black female undergraduates. Results suggest that explicit beauty standards engage a comparison process. Black respondents with high self-esteem or with high African self-consciousness resulted in self-evaluations that are significantly higher than the attractiveness attributed to White standard of beauty.

KEYWORDS: Body esteem; Ethnic-identity; Self-esteem; Body image ; Physical-attractiveness

Marantz Henig, R. (1994, August). Your ideal body weight: How to measure it, how to reach it. Self, 16, 62.

ABSTRACT: Today, doctors realize that there is more to consider than mere pounds

KEYWORDS: Body; Body weight

Pedersen, E. L., Markee, N. L., & Salusso, C. J. (1994). Gender differences in characteristics reported to be important features of physical attractiveness. Perceptual and Motor Skills, 79(3, Pt. 2), 1539-1544.

ABSTRACT: The study examined whether characteristics of physical attractiveness, named by respondents as important, would differ from those attributes previously examined by researchers. Gender differences related to the identification of important characteristics of physical attractiveness were also explored. A total of 230 male and 240 female undergraduates completed a questionnaire designed to collect descriptive data on physical characteristics related to each subjects' perceptions of the ideal male and ideal female. Subjects agreed that body build was the characteristic of greatest importance for both physically attractive male and female subjects.

KEYWORDS: Body build

Portnoy, E. J. (1993). The impact of body type on perceptions of attractiveness by older individuals. Communication Reports, 6(2), 101-108.


KEYWORDS: Body type; Elderly

Powell, A., & Kahn, A. S. (1995). Racial differences in women's desires to be thin. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 17(2), 191-195.

ABSTRACT: The study investigated cultural and racial reasons why White women are more prone to develop eating disorders than Black women and the female physique preferences of White vs. Black males. Results suggest that Black women experience eating disorders less than White women in part because they experience less perceived social pressure to be thin.

KEYWORDS: Body weight; Racial and ethnic differences; Social influences

Safranek, L. A. (1992). Women and weight in popular magazines. Honors Thesis, University of Nebraska, Omaha.


KEYWORDS: Body mass; Body image; Self-acceptance

Sakuma, S. M. (1990). Fat or fit: Is there a correlation. Carlisle Barracks: US Army War College.

ABSTRACT: Subjects include: body composition, physical fitness, army weight control program.

KEYWORDS: Body weight

Sena, R. E. (1992). The development of body weight and shape preferences and dieting. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Indiana University.

ABSTRACT: This study investigated the development of body weight and shape preferences and dieting, children's concepts of attractiveness, body image, knowledge of dieting, and self-reported dieting behavior. The study was comprised of three tasks: silhouette questions and attractiveness judgments, knowledge of dieting, and self-report of weight loss and weight gain. Results showed that the majority of children express body dissatisfaction by five years of age. The nature of body dissatisfaction, however, seems to change with age. Children reported attempts at weight loss more than weight gain. Girls were more likely to report attempts at weight loss than were boys.

KEYWORDS: Body weight; Dieting

Singh, D. (1993). Adaptive significance of female physical attractiveness: Role of waist-to-hip ratio. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 65(2), 293-307.

ABSTRACT: The study is attended to examine how WHR influences female attractiveness and its role in male selection. Evidence is presented showing that body fat distribution as measured by waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) is correlated with youthfulness, reproductive endocrinologic status, and long-term health risk in women.

KEYWORDS: Body weight; Physical attractiveness; Social Perception

Singh, D. (1993). Body shape and women's attractiveness: The critical role of waist-to-hip ratio. Human Nature, 4(3), 297-321.

ABSTRACT: The role of body fat distribution as measured by waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) on the judgment of women's physical attractiveness was examined in three studies. These studies investigated whether humans have perceptual and cognitive mechanisms to utilize the WHR to infer attributes of women's health, youthfulness, attractiveness, and reproductive capacity. WHR appears to be correlated with a woman's reproductive endocrinological status and long term health risk.

KEYWORDS: Body size; Body shape

Singh, D. (1994). Body fat distribution and perception of desirable female body shape by young black men and women. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 16(3), 289-294.

ABSTRACT: The relation between body fat distribution as measured by waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) and perception of desirable female body shape was investigated in 87 undergraduate Black men and women (aged 18-23 yrs). Subjects judged attractiveness, various personal qualities, and desirability for long-term relationships of 12 line drawings of female figures that represented 3 body weight categories and 4 levels of WHRs. Findings do not support the notion that Black young men and women find overweight female figures as desirable and attractive.

KEYWORDS: Body weight; Body image; Physical attractiveness; Body size; Body shape

Singh, D. (1994). Waist-to-hip ratio and judgment of attractiveness and healthiness of female figures by male and female physicians. International Journal of Obesity and Related Metabolic Disorders: Journal of The International Association for The Study of Obesity, 18(11), 731-737.

ABSTRACT: This study investigated whether physicians would be influenced by body size or waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) in assessing health, youthfulness, and reproductive capability of a woman.

KEYWORDS: Body measurement; Body fat; Body image; Body size

Singh, D. (1994). Is thin really beautiful and good: Relationship between waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) and female attractiveness. Personality and Individual Differences, 16(1), 123-132.

ABSTRACT: Two studies involving a total of 188 subjects (aged 18-22 yrs) were conducted to determine the relative role played by overall body fat and body fat distribution as indicated by the measure of WHR in determining female perceived attractiveness and associated personality attributes. Contrary to popular belief, thin female figures were neither perceived as most attractive or assigned many desirable personality traits, except youthfulness. The measure of body fat distribution, the WHR, was found to be the critical variable associated with attractiveness. Normal weight female figures with low WHR were judged to be the most attractive and were assigned many desirable qualities.

KEYWORDS: Body size

Singh, D. (1994). Ideal female body shape: Role of body weight and waist-to-hip ratio. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 16(3), 283-288.

ABSTRACT: The study investigated female body fat distribution as measured by the waist-to-hip ratio (WHR), overall body size, perceived attractiveness, youthfulness, health, and need to lose weight. Drawings showing thin females with high WHRs and heavier females with low WHRs were presented to 147 college-age women with low and high scores on the Restrained Eating Scale and to 64 men who ranked figures for various attributes. Results indicate that female attractiveness and ideal female shape may be more influenced by WHR than overall body size.

KEYWORDS: Body weight; body image; Perceived attractiveness & youthfulness; Body shape

Singh, D. (1995). Female judgment of male attractiveness and desirability for relationships: Role of waist-to-hip ratio and financial status. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 69(6), 1089-1101.

ABSTRACT: Two studies were conducted to examine the role of male body shape (as defined by waist-to-hip ratio/WHR) in female mate choice. In study 1, college-age women judged normal-weight male figures with WHR in the typical male range as most attractive, healthy, and possessing many positive personal qualities. In study 2, 18-69 year old women rated normal-weight male figures with differing WHRs and purported income for casual (having coffee) to most-committed (marriage) relationships.

KEYWORDS: Body shape; Waist-to-hip ratio

Spitzack, C. J. (1985). The subjects of weight consciousness: A discursive analysis of experiential unity. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale.

ABSTRACT: The study explored the issue of weight consciousness for women in American culture by analyzing the speech of women as they talk about their experience of cultural weight standards. This study attempts to show that the notion of fulfillment via weight loss is problematic for women, not because they lack will power, but because their bodily experience does not fit comfortably in the boundaries of desirable identities and self-definitions offered by the weight loss. This study offers a description of female experience which unveils the tactics which subjugate and limit female possibilities under the guise of liberation and freedom.

KEYWORDS: Body weight; Body image

Trollope, A., & Caton, S. G. T. (1995). Mr. Atlas speaks: Fashion ideals for men. Canadian Home Economics Journal, 45(1), 11-14.

ABSTRACT: This paper describes the concepts of body image, body cathexis, and somatotype, and defines the ideal body type for North American men as tall, muscular and mesomorphic.

KEYWORDS: Body type; Men; Body image; Somatotype; Self esteem; Fashion

Tucker, L. A. (1984). Physical attractiveness, somatotype, and the male personality: A dynamic interactional perspective. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 40(5), 1226-1234.

ABSTRACT: The study investigated whether measures of personality considered compositely and individually differ significantly among groups differentiated according to self-perceived somatotype (SPS). The Body Cathexis Scale, Eysenck Personality Inventory, and Tennessee Self-Concept Scale were employed to assess personality in 285 male undergraduates, and the indices of somatotype were measured using a perceived somatotype scale. Results indicate that the male personality is partly a function of the body build perceived as self, the image viewed as ideal, and whether a discrepancy exists between the figures perceived as self and ideal.

KEYWORDS: Body cathexis; Somatotype; Physical attractiveness

Villarosa, L. (1994, June). Ageless body. Essence, 25, 82.

ABSTRACT: Advice on how to keep time from taking a toll on your body


Worsley, A. (1981). In the eye of the beholder: Social and personal characteristics of teenagers and their impressions of themselves and fat and slim people. British Journal of Medical Psychology, 54(3), 231-242.

ABSTRACT: A total of 59 female and 79 male secondary students were selected to complete the Eysenck Personality Inventory and rated 6 stimulus figures (self, ideal self, fat, young man/woman, slim young man/woman) on 28 personal rating scales. Results show that subjects' sex, ethnicity, and perceived weight status were related to perceptions of the stimulus figures. Findings indicate that obesity has relevance for social and psychological processes as well as for medical issues.

KEYWORDS: Body weight; Body image

Wyse, C. S. (1976). Person perception as a function of body weight. Unpublished master's thesis, Austin Peay State University.


KEYWORDS: Body weight; Obesity

Young, S. M. (1992). Sex-role ideology and body esteem among women. Unpublished master's thesis, Ball State University.


KEYWORDS: Body satisfaction; Self-esteem; Sex-role