Is ``what has been cared for'' necessarily good? Further evidence for the negative impact of cosmetics use on impression formation


  • Huguet P
  • Croizet Jc
  • Richetin J

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The effects of cosmetics on impression formation were tested with students from either psychology or business and aesthetic schools. They were presented photographs of young and older female targets wearing or not wearing facial makeup and rated them for both physical attractiveness and a number of personality traits. In contrast with Graham and Jouhar's (1981) idea of a positive cosmetic stereotype, makeup had a negative impact on impression formation, especially for the young targets. More consistent with these authors' perspective, this impact was not mediated by attribution of physical attractiveness (PA), suggesting the existence of a separate cosmetic stereotype (relative to the PA stereotype). The influence of makeup was also stronger on the psychology undergraduates than on the other participants, suggesting that the way cosmetic users are perceived also depends on perceivers' group membership.

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