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People Who Think They're Attractive Are Less Likely To Wear Masks, A Study Shows

An open air bus has the word Hollywood in white letters with prink outline. Some in a diverse group of people sitting in bus wear masks and others do not.
Tourists look on at the TCL Chinese Theatre in August 2021 when an indoor mask mandate was back in place. A new study finds people who think of themselves as attractive are less likely to wear masks.
(Patrick T. Fallon
AFP via Getty Images)
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People are less likely to wear masks to prevent COVID-19 if they see themselves as good-looking, according to a study published earlier this year.

Researchers asked 1,030 participants to self-evaluate how attractive they deemed themselves, how likely they were to wear a mask and if certain situations, such as a job interview or walking the dog, impacted their willingness to wear one.

The more attractive a person perceives themselves, the less likely they were to wear a mask because they thought the mask made them less attractive. Inversely, the less attractive someone found themselves, the more likely they were to wear a mask, according to the study in the Frontiers of Psychology journal published in late January.

The former group was less likely to hypothetically wear a mask for a job interview, while the latter group was more likely to wear a mask in that circumstance.

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"Our findings suggest that mask-wearing can shift from being a self-protection measure during the COVID-19 pandemic to a self-presentation tactic in the post-pandemic era."

For mundane activities such as walking a dog, people were less likely to care about their looks and thus, were less motivated to wear a mask. But those who see themselves as attractive were still more likely to feel the need to make a good impression.

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