What Do Your Makeup Products Say About You?

by Jami Wilkinson, Sydni Nardino and Phillip Matthews

Cosmetic products are a part of many women’s daily lives. When it comes to choosing specific makeup products, there are a number of factors that must be considered, one of which is the slogans used by marketers. One tactic some marketers use is to brand makeup products as empowering to women, through the use of slogans such as “look good, feel good, do good,” and “because you’re worth it”. In the present study, we examined whether the extent to which women conflated their personal identity with physical appearance impacted their preferences for makeup slogans that were more traditional or those that appeared empowering. Participants (N=76) were shown 10 pairs of slogans accompanied by an image of a makeup product. Of the paired slogans, one was non-empowering while the other marketed the makeup as empowering. They rated how likely each slogan was to get them to buy the product pictured. Participants’ self-perceptions did not have a significant impact on the types of slogans they preferred. However, participants who held benevolently sexists’ beliefs were more likely to favor the non-empowering slogans.

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