Title: Appearance self-attitudes of African American and European American women: Media comparisons and internalization of beauty ideals
Journal / Publication: Psychology of Women Quarterly
Pages: 396 – 409
Jefferson, Deana L.
Stake, Jayne E.
African American (AA) women have reported less body image disturbance than European American (EA) women, but questions remain about the nature and extent of this difference. This study examined differences in the body image of 80 AA women and 89 EA women with an improved methodology that controlled for body size, distinguished between satisfaction with and importance of body features, and included nonweight (e.g., hair texture, skin color) as well as weight-related features. Results provide evidence that, in contrast to AA women, EA women (a) were more dissatisfied with both weight and specific appearance features, (b) compared themselves more often to media beauty figures and internalized Western beauty standards more, and (c) showed a significant relation between media comparisons and body dissatisfaction. Internalization of Western beauty ideals was related to body dissatisfaction in both groups of women.