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The Need to Present a Perfect Body Image: Development of a New Measure of Perfectionistic Self-Presentation

Ferreira, Cláudia, Duarte, Cristiana ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-6566-273X, Pinto-Gouveia, José and Lopes, Catarina (2018) The Need to Present a Perfect Body Image: Development of a New Measure of Perfectionistic Self-Presentation. Current Psychology, 37 (3). pp. 559-567.

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Abstract

Perfectionistic self-presentation is linked to different clinical conditions and specially to eating disorders. In fact, the role that the drive to reach “perfection” and display it to others plays on eating and body image-related symptoms has long been the target of theoretical and empirical interest. However, an instrument that specifically assessed the need to present a perfect body image to others did not exist. The current study presents the development and validation of the Perfectionistic Self-Presentation Scale – Body Image (PSPS-BI), a measure designed to assess the need to present a perfect body image to others by displaying a flawless physical appearance and by occulting perceived imperfections in a public context. Three studies that included a total of 364 males and 541 females with ages between 18 to 38 years, were used to examine the structure and psychometric properties of the scale. Results showed that PSPS-BI presents two factors that measure the concealment of body imperfections and the display of body perfection. PSPS-BI revealed good internal reliability and temporal stability. Also, the PSPS-BI revealed good concurrent validity, tested with measures of perfectionism, body image flexibility, and general and eating psychopathology. Furthermore, a mediational analysis indicated that the need to present a perfect body image to others fully mediates the relationship between a general measure of perfectionistic self-presentation and drive for thinness, in both men and women. PSPS-BI showed good preliminary evidence as a reliable and accurate measure that seems to offer new possibilities to the research field of body image and eating-related difficulties.

Item Type: Article
Status: Published
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12144-016-9537-9
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
School/Department: School of Education, Language and Psychology
URI: http://ray.yorksj.ac.uk/id/eprint/5769

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