Introduction and objective:
Various types of social media (SM) have recently played a huge role in shaping the world and one’s self-esteem. Previous research on this issue has shown that frequent use of MS leads to the creation of unrealistic body image ideals. Time spent on SM is sometimes associated with increased body dissatisfaction, which could negatively affect sex life.

The aim of this STROBE (Strengthening the Reporting of Observational Studies)-compliant cross-sectional and web-based study was to determine the relationship between MS use by young women in Poland and various aspects of their sexuality, such as self-perception, self-esteem, and satisfaction with their sex lives.

Material and methods:
A group of 1,258 young women aged 18–35 who use SM completed an online survey containing questions about socio-demographic data, SM use and questionnaires: Self-Esteem and Appearance Scale (BESAA), Self-Awareness of Own Body Scale (BISC) Women’s Sexual Satisfaction Scale (SSS-W).

There was a significant relationship between time spent in SM and women’s self-perception (p<0.001). The longer the time spent on SM, the lower the evaluation of one’s own body, as well as lower satisfaction with sexual life (p=0.013). Comparing oneself and being compared to those seen on SM, significantly predicts the level of satisfaction with body evaluation and appearance (p<0.001), body image disturbance (p<0.001), and sexual satisfaction (p<0.001), significantly explains the final score of the BESAA (20%), BISC (16.2%) and SSS-W (4%) scales.

The study revealed the need to raise awareness among young women about the negative impact of SM on self-esteem and body image. It is necessary to educate how much self-esteem and sexual satisfaction are affected by the phenomenon of comparing oneself to influencers seen on SM, as well as being compared by others.

Dong G, Potenza MN. A cognitive-behavioral model of Internet gaming disorder: Theoretical underpinnings and clinical implications. J Psychiatr Res. 2014;58:7–11. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2014.07.005.
Dixon SJ. Social Media Use during COVID-19 Worldwide—Statistics & Facts. Available online: (access: 2023.07.20).
Ahlgren M. Ponad 25 statystyk, faktów i trendów w mediach społecznościowych na rok 2023. Website Rating. (access: 2023.07.20).
Roser M, Ritchie H, Ortiz-Ospina E. Internet. Available online: (access: 2023.07.20).
Smith HG, et al. The Body Esteem Scale for Adults and Adolescents: Translation, adaptation and psychometric validation among Brazilian adolescents. Body Image. 2022;42:213–221. doi: 10.1016/j.bodyim.2022.05.012.
Słowińska A. Skala Samooceny Ciała dla Adolescentów i Dorosłych (BESAA) – polska adaptacja metody. Pol J Appl Psychol. 2019;17(1):21–31.
Kiss MJ, Morrison TG, McDonagh LK. Male Body Image Self-Consciousness During Physical Intimacy (M-BISC): Validating the M-BISC With Gay Men. J Sex Med. 2019;16(2):307–315. doi:10.1016/j.jsxm.2018.12.004.
Szymańska-Pytlińska M. Adaptation of the Body Image Self-Consciousness Scale (BISC-PL) in Polish females. Psychiatr Pol. 2019;53(5):1087–1101. English, Polish. doi: 10.12740/PP/95085.
Andac T, Aslan E. Sexual life of women in the climacterium: A community-based study. Health Care Women Int. 2017;38(12):1344–1355. doi:10.1080/07399332.2017.1352588.
Ilska M, Przybyła-Basista H, Brandt A. Skala satysfakcji seksualnej kobiet Cindy Meston i Paula Trapnella – właściwości psychometryczne polskiej wersji narzędzia. Polskie Forum Psychol. 2017;22(3):440–458.doi:10.14656/PFP20170306.
Cuschieri S. The STROBE guidelines. Saudi J Anaesth. 2019;13(1):31–34. doi:10.4103/sja.SJA_543_18.
Carrotte ER, Prichard I, Lim MSC. “Fitspiration” on Social Media: A Content Analysis of Gendered Images, J Med Internet Res. 2017;19(3):95.doi:10.2196/jmir.6368.
Laughter MR, Anderson JB, Maymone MBC, et al. Psychology of aesthetics: Beauty, social media, and body dysmorphic disorder. Clin Dermatol. 2023;41(1):28–32. doi:10.1016/j.clindermatol.2023.03.002.
Vandenbosch L, Fardouly J, Tiggemann M. Social media and body image: Recent trends and future directions. Curr Opin Psychol. 2022 Jun;45:101289. doi:10.1016/j.copsyc.2021.12.002.
Homan K. Athletic-ideal and thin-ideal internalization as prospective predictors of body dissatisfaction, dieting, and compulsive exercise. Body Image. 2010;7(3):240–245.
Aparicio-Martinez P, Perea-Moreno AJ, et al. Social Media, Thin-Ideal, Body Dissatisfaction and Disordered Eating Attitudes: An Exploratory Analysis. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2019;16(21):4177. doi:10.3390/ijerph16214177.
de Vries DA, et al. Social Media and Body Dissatisfaction: Investigating the Attenuating Role of Positive Parent–Adolescent Relationships. J Youth Adolesc. 2019;48:527–536.
Jiotsa B, Naccache B, Duval M, et al. Social Media Use and Body Image Disorders: Association between Frequency of Comparing One’s Own Physical Appearance to That of People Being Followed on Social Media and Body Dissatisfaction and Drive for Thinness. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2021;18(6):2880. doi:10.3390/ijerph18062880.
Blowers LC, Loxton NJ, et al. The relationship between sociocultural pressure to be thin and body dissatisfaction in preadolescent girls. Eat Behav. 2003;4(3):229–244.
Alimoradi Z, Lin CY, Imani V, et al. Social media addiction and sexual dysfunction among Iranian women: The mediating role of intimacy and social support. J Behav Addict. 2019;8(2):318–325. doi:10.1556/2006.8.2019.24.
Reddy RM, et al. Sexual Dysfunction in Women with Depression: A Hospital-Based Cross-sectional Comparative Study. Indian J Psychol Med. 2020;42(1):46–51. doi:10.4103/IJPSYM.IJPSYM_321_19.
Pawlikowska A, Szuster E, Kostrzewska P, et al. Internet Addiction and Polish Women’s Sexual Functioning: The Role of Social Media, Online Pornography, and Game Use during the COVID-19 Pandemic—Online Surveys Based on FSFI and BSMAS Questionnaires. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2022;19:8193.
Barrada JR, Castro Á. Tinder Users: Sociodemographic, Psychological, and Psychosexual Characteristics. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2020;17(21):8047.doi:10.3390/ijerph17218047.
Zheng WJ, et al. Sociosexuality in mainland China. Arch Sex Behav. 2014;43(3):621–629. doi:10.1007/s10508-013-0097-x.
Zawada K, Skurzyńska W. Uzależnienie od Facebooka a satysfakcja ze statusu związku. J Mod Sci. 2021;46:111–122.
Werner-Wilson RJ, Fitzharris JL, Morrissey KM. Adolescent and parent perceptions of media influence on adolescent sexuality. Adolescence. 2004;39(154):303–313.
Cookingham LM, Ryan GL. The impact of social media on the sexual and social wellness of adolescents. J Pediatr Adolesc Gynecol. 2015;28(1):2–5. doi: 10.1016/j.jpag.2014.03.001.
Hosseini SA, Padhy RK. Body Image Distortion. In: StatPearls. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.go....
Anixiadis E, et al. Effects of thin-ideal instagram images: The roles of appearance comparisons, internalization of the thin ideal and critical media processing. Body Image. 2019;31:181–190.
Bury B, et al. The effect of digital alteration disclaimer labels on social comparison and body image: Instructions and individual differences. Body Image. 2016;17:136–142.