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J Clin Child Adolesc Psychol. 2010;39(5):627-37. doi: 10.1080/15374416.2010.501292.

Facial attractiveness and self-esteem in adolescence.

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  • 1Behavioural Science Institute, Radboud University Nijmegen, The Netherlands.


Facial attractiveness has been associated with many (social) advantages in life, like greater popularity, acceptance, and social competence. Because social evaluations and acceptance are important factors contributing to self-esteem (SE), we hypothesized that high levels of attractiveness would be related to increased levels of SE. To test this assumption, 230 adolescents from two age groups (13 and 15 years) were surveyed annually for 5 years. A latent growth curve model was used to model the influence of facial attractiveness on the development of SE over time. Results showed that younger adolescents with higher levels of attractiveness had lower levels of SE at baseline. Attractiveness was not found to be a significant predictor in explaining the development of SE over time. These findings indicate that attractive children are more likely to have lower levels of SE when they enter early adolescence compared to their less attractive counterparts.

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