The effects of social norms on male hygiene.

Nalbone, D. P., Lee, K. P., Suroviak, A. R., & Lannon, J. M. (2005). The effects of social norms on male hygiene. Individual Differences Research, 3(3), 171-176.

Numerous studies have found that individuals are more likely to comply with social norms when in the presence of others. To test the hypothesis that restroom hygiene norms would be influenced by the presence or absence of others, 93 male participants were observed in a restroom to see if there were any differences in their hand-washing behavior when someone else versus no one else was present. While 90% of the men washed their hands while in the presence of others, only 44% did so when alone; thus, the evidence supported our hypothesis. The implications of these results are discussed. 

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