Pathways from sociocultural and objectification constructs to body satisfaction among women: The U.S. Body Project I

David A. Frederick, Tracy L. Tylka, Rachel F. Rodgers, Jamie Lee Pennesi, Lexie Convertino, Michael C. Parent, Tiffany A. Brown, Emilio J. Compte, Catherine P. Cook-Cottone, Canice E. Crerand, Vanessa L. Malcarne, Jason M. Nagata, Marisol Perez, Eva Pila, Lauren M. Schaefer, J. Kevin Thompson, Stuart B. Murray

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Objectification theory proposes that widespread sexualization causes women to engage in surveillance of their appearance. We integrated this concept into a model with constructs from the tripartite influence model, which proposes that body dissatisfaction is a result of internalizing cultural notions of thin ideal beauty that stem from family, peer, and media appearance-related pressures. We tested this model with an online sample of 6327 adult women. Specifically, we tested whether these pressures predicted increased thin-ideal and muscular-ideal internalization, leading to greater body surveillance, and in turn lower appearance evaluation and body image quality of life. Structural equation modeling supported many aspects of the model. Family, peer, and media pressures related to higher thin-ideal internalization, which related to higher body surveillance and lower appearance evaluation. Peer and media pressures related to higher muscular-ideal internalization, which related to lower appearance evaluation. However, muscular-ideal internalization was not related to body image quality of life. An indirect relationship emerged between thin-ideal internalization and body image outcomes via body surveillance. Body mass index (BMI) moderated several of these model paths. Findings highlight the value of this integrated sociocultural model, and of BMI as an important moderating factor when examining objectification and tripartite influence models.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)195-208
Number of pages14
JournalBody Image
StatePublished - Jun 2022


  • Appearance evaluation
  • Body image quality of life
  • Body mass index
  • Objectification theory
  • Tripartite influence model

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Applied Psychology
  • Psychology(all)


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