‘Sexy’ underwear is not the only way to feel feminine on Valentine’s Day

TV makeover shows and glossy magazines can leave women feeling guilty for not wearing “sexy” lingerie – especially on Valentine’s Day.But in fact, many different types of underwear could make them feel feminine, according to an expert on underwear consumption.Dr Christiana Tsaousi, a lecturer in marketing and consumption at the University of Leicester’s School of Management, believes underwear choices are hugely affected by personal taste influenced by social background, professional status and upbringing, and why every woman’s underwear needs are individual.Her research on the subject is published today by SAGE in the Journal of Consumer Culture.The ‘shaping’ underwear, for example, prescribed by reality TV shows, such as How To Look Good Naked and 10 Years Younger, is an unhelpful way of thinking about how women should choose what they wear, Dr Tsaousi has concluded.”On Valentine’s Day, some women may feel the only way to feel feminine is to wear the “sexy” underwear promoted by the media in general. But this is really not the case.”“Reality makeover shows and media in general have one purpose – to make women look feminine in line with western ideals,” she said.“They present femininity as this thing where you feel nice about yourself because you have a body that needs to be expressed. Having that as an aim, participants on the shows are given underwear that’s going to mould the body in a certain way.”But Dr Tsaousi, who has conducted extensive research into the consumption of underwear, says that women think very carefully about choosing the right underwear for the right situation – and that comfort is often as important as “sexiness”.“Women learn to choose underwear for the right situation. In an ideal world, it would be good if reality shows acknowledge that women can feel feminine by wearing different underwear.“Some women don’t like these shows because they always show a specific type of femininity, which is not the reality in most cases. They can make you feel guilty about the way you look and the way you feel about your body if you aren’t wearing underwear considered sexy.“When partners are looking to buy underwear as Valentine’s gifts for their wives or girlfriends, they should choose underwear which will fit their partners well and will make them feel comfortable – rather than the stereotypical tiny, uncomfortable types. This will ultimately lead to them feeling nice about themselves.”In her new paper for the Journal of Consumer Culture, Dr Tsaousi interviewed women from a wide range of groups and backgrounds, including university lecturers, young mums, and female rugby players. She looked at the influence of women’s upbringing, profession, age, and social status on their underwear choices.She found that some groups such as the young rugby girls favoured “cute” underwear while for others such as academics something that supports their professional dress was the main priority.“The paper indicates that women’s choices in underwear are determined by factors such as our ways of thinking, up-bringing, taste and status in society,” Dr Tsaousi said. “The paper also suggests that women make similar judgements about their underwear as they would their outerwear.”For many women another big influence on their taste in underwear is their mother.“We can’t forget that the mother normally buys the first bra for her daughter. It is the first act of being feminine, and introduces girls to the idea that they are becoming a woman,” Dr Tsaousi said.Dr Tsaousi added that the study of the consumption of underwear is an area which has not been explored in detail by academics – but is very important to the market.“Obviously women’s outer dress is visible so it is under scrutiny by others. Underwear on the other hand is hidden but people make similar judgements.“Other forms of dress have been widely discussed in consumption studies, but underwear is an area that hasn’t been fully researched. …

Read more

Love is good for the heart, cardiologist says

With Valentine’s Day just one day away, Vanderbilt Heart and Vascular Institute cardiologist Julie Damp, M.D., says being involved in a healthy, loving relationship is good for the heart.”There are different theories behind why that might be,” Damp said.Most of the theories seem to be related to the fact that people who are married or who are in close, healthy relationships tend to be less likely to smoke, are more physically active and are more likely to have a well-developed social structure. Along with that, they may have lower levels of stress and anxiety in their day-to-day lives, may seek medical attention more quickly, and may be more likely to take preventive medications.A recent study from Finland showed that married men and women had a significantly lower risk of both having heart attacks and dying from a heart attack compared to people who were single.”There is also a theory that people who are in loving relationships may experience neuro-hormonal changes that have positive effects on the body, including the cardiovascular system,” she said, explaining that there are certain hormone levels in the body that vary depending on the level of an individual’s stress and anxiety.”This has not been proven, but the idea is that being in a relationship that is positive may have positive effects on your cardiovascular system over long periods of time,” Damp said. In fact, studies have shown that relationships that involve conflict or negativity are associated with an increase in risk for coronary artery disease.Giving your loved one a box of dark chocolates and a bottle of red wine won’t hurt either. Studies suggest they are good for the heart, as well.Dark chocolate contains flavonoids, which are antioxidants. Antioxidants have positive effects on many different body systems including the cardiovascular system. The high concentration of cocoa in dark chocolate appears to be what offers the flavonoid benefit.”Dark chocolate has been shown to be associated with lower blood pressure, lower blood sugar levels and improvement in the way your blood vessels dilate and relax,” Damp said.Story Source:The above story is based on materials provided by Vanderbilt University Medical Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.

Read more

Matchmaking this Valentine’s Day: How it can bring you the most happiness

With Valentine’s Day around the corner, you may be thinking of pairing up two friends for a date. If you follow your instinct to play Cupid, it’ll pay off in happiness — not necessarily for the new couple, but definitely for you.According to new research, matchmaking, a time-honored tradition, brings intrinsic happiness to the matchmaker. To maximize the psychological benefits of matchmaking, you should take care to introduce two people who not only seem compatible but who would be unlikely to meet otherwise, researchers say.”At some point, most people have made matches between others — like grabbing two strangers by the arm at a party and introducing them to each other — or can think of a friend notorious for their efforts to make introductions,” says Lalin Anik, a postdoctoral fellow at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business. She notes that the rising popularity of social networking websites such as Facebook and LinkedIn has made matchmaking effortless and central to social life.Anik, with her colleague Michael Norton of the Harvard Business School, conducted an in-depth investigation of modern-day matchmaking, examining what motivates us to match others — even when it often goes wrong — and how we can reap the emotional benefits of socially linking others. In four studies, to be presented this week at the Society for Personality and Social Psychology (SPSP) annual conference in Austin, they used surveys, computer games, and in-lab social interactions to show when and why making matches between others boosts happiness.In one study, the researchers asked groups of participants to engage in a brief “get acquainted” task in the laboratory. They then asked participants to pair others in the group: One group of participants had to match pairs that they thought would get along; another group tried to match pairs that they thought would not get along; and a third group matched people on the basis of a random characteristic — their social security numbers. Participants who selected pairs of people who they thought would bond became happier as a result of their matchmaking. Those in the other two groups felt the same as they did before the task.In another study, the researchers created a simple computer game in which participants saw a target face and selected one of three other faces with whom they thought the target would best or worst get along. Once again, the matchmakers had the best experience and were willing to play the game much longer than participants asked to pair people on the basis of mutual dislike.Some participants received monetary rewards for each match made, while others did not. Interestingly, the researchers found that paying people diminished their interest in the game. …

Read more

Utilizzando il sito, accetti l'utilizzo dei cookie da parte nostra. maggiori informazioni

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.

Close