Beauty or Business Queen: How Young Women Select Media to Reinforce Possible Future Selves

Silvia Knobloch-Westerwick, Melissa J. Robinson, Laura E. Willis, Kate Tran Luong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (SciVal)


Dynamic management and maintenance of self-concepts shape everyday selective media use. The present work examines related processes per the Selective Exposure Self and Affect Management model with a focus on young women’s magazine use. In a prolonged selective exposure study with seven online sessions, women (N = 181, 18-25 years, all Caucasian) completed a signup and a baseline session, four daily sessions with selective browsing of magazine pages (from beauty, parenting, business, and current affairs magazines), and 3 days later, a follow-up. Participants made 16 selections and viewed 80 pages in total. The online application logged magazine content selections and length of exposure. Participants’ possible future selves as romantic partner, parent, and professional at baseline affected the extent to which beauty, parenting, and business pages were viewed. In turn, possible future selves as romantic partner and professional were reinforced through selective exposure to beauty and business magazines.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)323-345
Number of pages23
JournalCommunication Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 1 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Communication
  • Linguistics and Language


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