Image-conscious women post more photographs on facebook
The study, led by Michael Stefanone from the University of Buffalo, found that women who base their self-worth on their appearance take the help of social networking sites to feel good and gain attention.
Perhaps, they identify more strongly with their image and appearance than men, said the researchers.
"The results suggest persistent differences in the behaviour of men and women that result from a cultural focus on female image and appearance," Dr Stefanone was quoted as saying by the Daily Mail.
Dr Stefanone and his team- Dr Derek Lackaff from the University of Texas and Dr Devan Rosen from the University of Hawaii- examined specific online behaviour on social network sites.
They surveyed 311 volunteers and studied both how each participant used Facebook and what factors they base their self-esteem on.
They looked at the amount of time men and women spent managing profiles, the number of photos they shared, the size of their online networks and how promiscuous they were in terms of "friending" behaviour.
Dr Stefanone said: "Those whose self-esteem is based on public-based contingencies- such as others`approval, physical appearance and outdoing others in competition- were more involved in online photo sharing.
"And those whose self-worth is most contingent on appearance have a higher intensity of online photo sharing."
However, for people whose self-worth is defined by family life and behaving in a morally upstanding manner "spent less time online".
Although it`s stereotypical, Dr Stefanone said, it is disappointing that so many young women continue to assert their self-worth via their physical appearance by "posting photos of themselves on Facebook as a form of advertisement".
"Perhaps this reflects the distorted value pegged to women`s looks throughout the popular culture and in reality television," he added.