For decades, society has criticized the media for instigating many of the physical, social, and psychological maladies that affect females of all ages. However, recent advertising approaches, namely the Dove Campaign for Real Beauty, endeavor to sell products by responsibly endorsing attainable beauty ideals. The present study seeks to empirically evaluate whether campaign efforts like Dove’s are successful at reducing negative female body image, or whether they are instead counterproductive to their goal due to what social psychologists term “sleeper effect” processes. 102 female undergraduates were either exposed to the Dove commercial Evolution in its entirety, Evolution in part, or a control commercial. These women then reported both implicit and explicit body image-related beauty perceptions of both self and others immediately following the commercial and again one week later. Results indicated that the commercial viewed influenced several explicit body-image related attitudes, but that it had no effect on implicit attitudes or perceptions of beauty in others. The “sleeper effect” cannot be attributed to ineffectiveness of Evolution, as the pattern of results remained stable over time.
Dremonas, Vanessa, "The “Evolution” of Media: The Influence of a Media Literacy Campaign" (2008). 2007-2008. Paper 2.