What Do Women’s Shoes Have to Do With Brain Training?
A Dutch study has found that watching a celebrity wearing a pair of shoes alters a woman’s brain activity – even if she is not that keen on designer’s footwear.
The research team scanned the brains of 24 women as they looked at photos of celebrities and attractive non-famous women wearing certain shoes.
As celebrity endorsement is spreading wider in recent years the research concluded advertisers have picked up on a trend.
When confronted with a celebrity, the team registered heightened activity in a certain part of the brain – the medial oribitofrontal cortex. The effect was different when pictures of an attractive non-celebrity were presented.
This activity associates the celebrity with the product in a part of the brain related to feeling affection. Moreover this link could be brought to mind quickly.
“The enhanced memory performance for items that were encoded in the context of a famous person cannot be explained by increased attractiveness of the celebrity or by a higher level of perceived expertise, but only by the persuasiveness of fame itself,” wrote lead author Mirre Stallen of Erasmus University.
However, the number of women saying they would purchase these shoes was similar among celebrity and non-celebrity photographs.
But the researchers insisted there could be a longer term impact, even if it was not expressed as an immediate desire to buy.
A future study will examine the influence of celebrities’ footwear on men.
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