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Dove conducted a survey internationally called ‘The Real Truth About Beauty: Revisited’ in which they asked women from 20 different countries about their perceptions of beauty. The results of this latest global Dove survey were released in 2010 and showed that 54% of women agreed that they are their own worst critic when it comes to their beauty. This survey sparked a global discussion about women and how they see themselves in terms of beauty.


South Africa was not one of the countries surveyed and so, Dove conducted a local survey consisting of 470 women. It was an online survey that was conducted over a two week period in September 2013. The results revealed that South African women have very similar perceptions with regards to how their see themselves in terms of beauty. 45% of the women surveyed considered themselves as their own worst beauty critic, which shows a slightly better outlook that their international counterparts.

In addition to this, 53% of the 470 South African women who participated in the survey considered themselves beautiful, compared to a shocking 4% from the global survey. However, as the survey dug deeper into the perceptions of beauty, the South African women still indicated that they experience the same pressures as their international counterparts.

Despite their confidence in their beauty, the survey showed that 32% of South African women feel pressured to be beautiful all the time, while 49% feel pressure occasionally.

real beauty dove

In addition, the South African Survey showed that the country was on par with the global results with regards to how 80% of women are able to see the unique qualities and beauty in others, but not in themselves. At the same time, 43% admitted that they easily accept a compliment and 47% stated that the one aspect they criticise themselves about is their looks.

The results of this survey have led to Dove encouraging South African women to join the international conversation and to start a local one with the aim of changing how they see beauty and to be less critical of themselves.


Take a look at the summary of the South African Dove Survey results below.
dove real beauty survey results

Go to the Dove South Africa Facebook Page and join in the conversation.

Also, watch the Dove local television adverts and videos on international campaigns on the perceptions of beauty by ordinary women on the Dove YouTube Channel.

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