Lee, J. A., Lee, S. Y., Ryoo, Y., Kim, W., & Sung, Y. (2022).
The Psychological Consequences of Envying Influencers on Instagram.
Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking.
This study examines how being envious toward social media influencers (SMIs) relates to users' affective well-being. An online survey was conducted in which 305 U.S. participants viewed to 20 posts of an SMI and subsequently measured their affective well-being, envy, and inspiration toward the SMI, and self-esteem levels. The results revealed a direct negative relationship between envy and affective well-being, but a positive indirect effect through inspiration. Furthermore, individuals' self-esteem moderates the relationship such that the positive relationship between envy and affective well-being through inspiration is stronger among those with high levels of self-esteem. Moreover, inspiration varies between different influencer categories, that is, participants who viewed fitness influencers reported the greatest amount of inspiration, followed by fashion, beauty, and entertainment influencers.