Black women are more confident than other female groups, survey says, which may seem surprising given their history of discrimination.
The Prestige Magazine teamed up with several affiliated beauty brands to conduct a survey of over 10,000 women in all 50 states.
The purpose of the survey was for us to be able to take an in-depth look at the factors that discourage or undermine our confidence.
Survey Finds Black Women Are More Confident
Our random survey of 10,000 women of different races and cultures living within America’s 50 States breaks down some surprising findings and explores the issues that connect and divide us as women in 2022.
During survey question after survey question, a pattern emerged:
Black women consistently reported higher self-esteem than white or Hispanic women and, among other things, they were far more likely to describe themselves as successful (44 percent said so, compared with 30 percent of white women and 21 percent of Hispanic) and beautiful (59 percent, versus 25 and 32 percent).
These results are consistent with other studies, says Jean Twenge, Ph.D., who examines the effect of race on self-confidence.
“Research shows black women score higher on self-esteem than women of other races and ethnicities, which may seem surprising, given the long history of prejudice and discrimination they have faced,” she said.
Why Black Women Are More Confident
Jasmine Zapata, African American, 30 and a pediatrician from Madison, Wisconsin, understands this phenomenon and says her family helped build her self-confidence.
“I was brought up to be resilient and tough and to make it work despite your circumstances,” she says. “That definitely raised my confidence and optimism.”
Black women also think more positively about themselves and their bodies when they look in the mirror:
56 percent say “I am proud of the person I am becoming,” and 47 percent say “I am happy the way that I am.” (For white women, those figures are just 37 and 34 percent).
“Growing up, black women are taught you’re strong, you’re beautiful, you’re smart, you’re enough and that mind-set is passed down from generation to generation as a defense mechanism against discrimination,” says Twenge.
“The more confident you are, the better equipped you’ll be to deal with racism.”
Black Women Celebrate Their Curves
That may also explain why black women celebrated their curves long before body acceptance became a fashionable marketing campaign or empowering hashtag.
“In the black community, curves are admired,” says Kosolu Ananti, 34, a fitness instructor from Dallas.
And Alicia White, an African American, 30-year-old executive director of a nonprofit in New York City, says that in her experience:
“no one’s judging you based on your weight or anything else. My mother instilled in me that I should feel beautiful and confident and be proud of my features because they were passed down by my ancestors”.
That internal confidence, African American women say, can be a powerful antidote to a culture that sometimes feels hostile.
“Based on what we go through as a minority group,” Ananti says, “we have insecurities, but we try not to let them damage our overall self-esteem”.
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Written by Sophia Lenore
Photographer: Phil Halfmann
Creative Director: Sophia Lenore
Wardrobe Stylist: Sophia Lenore
Hair & Makeup Artist: Sophia Lenore
Makeup products by Charlotte Tilbury Makeup
Hair products by L’Oreal
Nail products by USLU Airlines
Sunscreen by IceCream Sunscreen