Alexia Vitellaro

Research Project

How the Body is Presented on Social Media: Unveiling its Influence on the Mental Well-being of Young Adults


Alexia is a fourth-year Professional Communications major, completing a minor in Public Relations. She will graduate in April and begin her Master’s of Professional Communication in September. With over a year’s worth of experience in Communication & Marketing internships working for PokerStars, Markham Stouffville Hospital Foundation and Choice Properties this upcoming summer, Alexia has demonstrated a strong interest in communication planning, effective marketing strategies, professional writing, social media, and both internal and external communications. She prides herself on being creative, organized, responsible, and able to work in a team. In addition, she has experience using and operating Adobe Creative Cloud, Microsoft Office, Canva, Figma, and WordPress. Alexia is excited for her upcoming future post-graduation and to develop her skills further throughout her education and professional journey.

Research Summary

In today’s digital age, social media platforms play a significant role in shaping perceptions of the body and influencing the mental well-being of young adults. This capstone project delves into the influence of social media on body image and self-esteem among teenagers and young adults. Through a social media analysis encompassing 55 links from influencer platforms like TikTok, Instagram, and others, we examined how the body is portrayed in the media. Posts from influencers specializing in various topics, including body image, fitness, fashion, cosmetics, and nutrition, were meticulously analyzed for speech, body language, clothing, eye contact, setting, and engagement. Our study aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of individuals’ attitudes and perspectives regarding body image across diverse social media platforms. The research question guiding our investigation is: To what extent has exposure to idealized standards through social media affected the self-esteem of teenagers and young adults, considering factors such as comparison, peer feedback, and the use of filters and editing tools? Through this exploration, we aim to shed light on the complex interplay between social media, body image, and mental well-being, ultimately contributing to discussions surrounding digital literacy and mental health awareness.

Research Poster

Lightning Talk

Scroll to Top