Facebook use and negative body image among U.S. college women

Petya Eckler, Yusuf Kalyango Jr. , Ellen Paasch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Citations (Scopus)
559 Downloads (Pure)


Young women increasingly spend time with social media, but the relationship of this exposure to body image is still in the initial stages of exploration. This study used social comparison theory to examine the relationship between time spent on Facebook and body image. A survey of 881 U.S. college women was conducted in April-May 2013. Findings showed that 10.1% had posted about weight, body image, exercise or dieting, and 27.4% had commented on friends’ posts or photos. More time on Facebook related to more frequent body and weight comparisons, more attention to the physical appearance of others, and more negative feelings about their bodies for all women. For women who wanted to lose weight, more time on Facebook also related to more disordered eating symptoms.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)249-267
Number of pages19
JournalWomen & Health
Issue number2
Early online date2 Mar 2016
Publication statusPublished - 28 Feb 2017


  • social media
  • Facebook
  • body image
  • social comparison theory


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