A study led by researchers from Swinburne’s Center for Mental Health (CMH) has found that while most people reported spending less time investing in their appearance since COVID-19 began, individuals with high dysmorphic concern (excessive preoccupation with a flaw in their appearance) continued to feel self-conscious about their appearance.
The study, which was published in the International Journal of Eating Disorders was conducted as part of the COVID-19 and you: mental health in Australia now survey (COLLATE) online survey.
Beauty services as a coping mechanism
As a precautionary measure against COVID-19, Australia implemented a widespread temporary closure of beauty and cosmetic services. Given that beauty services are widely used for stress relief and to enhance confidence, the study was conducted to explore the relationship between the closure of these services, distress, and engagement in other appearance-focused behaviors.
Participants with high and low levels of dysmorphic concern