Biggest Isn't Always Best: The Effect of Breast Size on Perceptions of Women1

Authors

  • Stacey Tantleff-Dunn

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    1. University of Central Florida
      Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Stacey Tantleff-Dunn, Department of Psychology, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL 32816-1390. E-mail: sdunn@pegasus.cc.ucf.edu
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    I thank David Abbott for his statistical consultation; Sandra Sellin-Wolters for her work on the video production; and our actor, Jackie, for appearing in the video.

Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Stacey Tantleff-Dunn, Department of Psychology, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL 32816-1390. E-mail: sdunn@pegasus.cc.ucf.edu

Abstract

Research has demonstrated preferences for medium and large breasts and a tendency to associate positive attributes with larger breasts. Findings have been limited, however, by use of stimuli that do not depict women realistically or in a credible context. In the current study, a female actor's breast size was manipulated to create four videotapes (bra cup sizes A, B, C, and D) in which she delivered a speech. Participants viewed one of the four videotapes and rated the actor on social and professional characteristics. Males perceived the actor more favorably on both professional and social characteristics when she had a medium breast size, whereas females were generally not influenced by breast size. Findings are related to the popularity of methods to enhance breast size and the need for awareness of the potential impact of breast size on how women are perceived.

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