We're no strangers to the body-image issues facing many women (and men) in America. But, we know less about how different beauty standards affect body image around the world. Now, the results of a new survey reveal how women and men from many different countries see their bodies — and how those of us in the U.S. compare.
For the PsychGuides survey, about 1,000 respondents (500 from the U.S. and 500 from outside the U.S.) were asked to rate their features on a scale of one to 10. They were also asked to describe their bodies and answer a few other questions about body-image perceptions in general. The results showed that, on average, American women tended to rate themselves as a 6.09; non-Americans rated themselves a 7.44. Which means that U.S. ladies scored 18% lower than those outside the U.S. And, when asked specifically whether they felt they had a positive body image, only 52% of American women said yes (compared to 89% of non-American women).
As for men, both those in and outside of the U.S. scored slightly lower overall than their female counterparts (averaging at 6 and 7.21, respectively). But, the gap between those American guys who said they had a positive body image and those who didn't was much smaller than the gap for women.
So, even though we don't know the nationality breakdown of the non-American respondents, it seems like we're not doing so great when it comes to encouraging positive body image stateside. But, the more we become aware of how crazy our standards are (and how crazy they're making us), the easier it will be to let them go. To see the survey's full results, check out the infographic below.