Objective: This study sought to examine the effects of media images on men's attitudes toward their body appearance.
Method: A group of college men viewed advertisements showing muscular men, whereas a control group viewed neutral advertisements. Immediately thereafter, participants performed a computerized test of body image perception while unaware of the hypotheses being tested in the study.
Results: The students exposed to the muscular images showed a significantly greater discrepancy between their own perceived muscularity and the level of muscularity that they ideally wanted to have.
Discussion: These findings suggest that media images, even in a brief presentation, can affect men's views of their bodies.
Copyright 2002 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.