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A Yale University Study Concluded:

 "BAD HAIR DAYS" AFFECT MORE THAN YOUR APPEARANCE
 It Impacts Performance, Self-Esteem, Social Insecurity and Self-Criticism


New Haven, CT, January 26, 2000 - Everyone has had them - the term has even become part of the vernacular for a bad day. According to a study conducted at Yale University, "bad hair days" are real - the perception of bad hair actually produces negative consequences beyond not feeling good about how one looks.

According to the study, directed by Dr. Marianne LaFrance, Professor of Psychology and Professor of Women's and Gender Studies at Yale University, "bad hair days" affect individuals' self-esteem increasing self-doubt, intensifying social insecurities, and becoming more self-critical in general.

"Interestingly, both women and men are negatively affected by the phenomenon of bad hair days," says Professor LaFrance. "Even more fascinating is our finding that individuals perceive their capabilities to be significantly lower than others when experiencing bad hair."

Bad Hair Lowers Self-Esteem Regarding Performance A person with positive performance self-esteem is an individual who is confident and optimistic that he or she is on top of things, understands what needs to be done and feels capable about being able to pull it off. According to the study, the perception of bad hair leads to a reduced sense of performance self-esteem, such that men and women doubt their capabilities and may ultimately perform below their level of competence when experiencing a bad hair day. Most notably, just the thought of a bad hair day caused both men and women to feel they are not as smart as others. Surprisingly, the impact on performance self-esteem was more pronounced among men.

Bad Hair Increases Social Insecurity The study further found that bad hair intensifies feelings of social insecurity and self-consciousness. However, the psychological reactions differed among women and men. Women tend to feel more disgraced, embarrassed, ashamed or self-conscious when experiencing bad hair. Men on the other hand, feel more nervous, less confident and are more inclined to be unsociable.

Bad Hair Intensifies Self-Criticism Evidence shows that bad hair causes one to be more negative about oneself. Specifically, results indicate that a 'bad hair' day leads individuals to find more personal character flaws that go beyond their appearance. When asked to complete a list of statement about who they are, "bad hair" caused people to mention significantly more negative traits and attributes.

"The Psychological, Interpersonal and Social Effects of Bad Hair" study was conducted at Yale University in the Gender Communications Laboratory, and led by Professor Marianne LaFrance, in December 1999. Research was designed to test the possible cause and effect relationship between having bad hair and experiencing negative psychological consequences. An ethnically diverse group of research participants was recruited from in and around Yale University campus, and were equally divided by sex. All subjects were randomly assigned to experimental conditions.  The study was commissioned by the team launching Physique®, a new hair care line introduced by Procter & Gamble.

 


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