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The Influence of Culture, Gender, and Relational Status on Appearance Management

The Influence of Culture, Gender, and Relational Status on Appearance Management


The appearance management behavior of 253 African-American, Caucasian-American, and Asian-American subjects was assessed in a field study. Consistent with prior research, appearance management was found to vary according to gender and relational status. A main effect for culture was found, and culture was found to interact with both gender and relational status. African-American men engaged the longest in appearance management among the men, whereas African-American women engaged least among the women. Asian-Americans showed little difference in their dating and non dating appearance management relative to Caucmsian-Americans, who showed greater difference between the two conditions. Differences between dating and non dating appearance management were more complex for African-Americans: The women showed the most difference of all culture types between dating and non dating appearance management, whereas their male counterparts showed practically no difference. Appearance management variance across cultures, social situations, and relational levels is attributed to cultural differences in general impression management and perceptions of social situations.
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