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Low Beauty Confidence Driving 8 in 10 Girls to Opt Out of Future Opportunities, Survey Finds

More than half of 10-17-year-old girls around the world do not have high body esteem….

  • October 28, 2017

More than half of 10-17-year-old girls around the world do not have high body esteem. That’s the sad finding from a new report from soap brand Dove.

It gets worse: girls with higher body esteem have higher life satisfaction, confidence and are therefore putting themselves forward more often for opportunities.

Seven in 10 girls now think there is too much importance placed on beauty as a source of happiness.

That’s hopeful.

Dove said it is running self-esteem programs to help 40 million young people tackle low self-esteem issues and reach their full potential.

It’s needed, because more than half of all girls (54%) do not have high body esteem and are missing out on key opportunities in life.

The 2017 Dove Global Girls Beauty and Confidence Report, which interviewed 5,165 girls aged 10-17 across 14 countries, also found that higher levels of body esteem have a lasting impact on a girl’s confidence, resilience and life satisfaction.

Globally, 5 in 10 girls (55%) will not spend time with friends and family, participate in activities outside the house, or try out for a team or club if they aren’t happy with the way they look.

This number significantly increases to 8 in 10 (80%) for girls with low body esteem, but actually drops to 4 in 10 (41%) for girls with high body esteem.

While girls show increasing awareness of the media’s role in driving unattainable beauty ideals, only those with high body esteem seem equipped to respond to these pressures, with 8 in 10 (78%) saying they think they are beautiful even if they are different from what they see in the media.

This is compared to only 1 in 10 (12%) girls with low body esteem.

There is Hope

However, the research also uncovered pockets of hope, with 7 in 10 (70%) girls saying there is too much importance on beauty as a source of happiness, and 7 in 10 (68%) saying they wish the media did a better job of portraying women of diverse physical attractiveness, age, ethnicity, shape and size.

And girls are using social media as a platform to confidently express their individuality, with half (51%) saying they feel more confident interacting with people online.

The report also encouragingly shows that 8 in 10 (82%) girls think they have something about them that is beautiful, and nearly all (80%) feel more confident after taking time to do things that make them feel happy about themselves, their bodies and their health, such as reading or exercising.

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