NUREMBERG, Germany - With summer fast approaching the northern hemisphere and consumers preparing to be 'beach ready', GfK has released findings on how satisfied people internationally are with their personal looks.
Across all 22 countries surveyed, over half (55 per cent) of consumers aged 15 and over say they are satisfied with their looks, which includes over one in ten (12 per cent) who go as far as saying that they are completely satisfied. In contrast, only 16 per cent claim any dissatisfaction with how they look, including three per cent who state that they are not at all satisfied. The remaining 29 per cent are neutral.
Latin American countries are happiest with their looks
Complete satisfaction with personal looks is highest in Latin America , with Mexico , Brazil and Argentina all appearing in the top five for the percentage of population claiming this. When we widen this to include those who say they are fairly satisfied, as well as those who are completely satisfied, Mexico remains on top, standing at nearly three quarters (74 per cent), closely followed by Turkey at 71 per cent.
Brazilians and Ukrainians come next at 65 per cent each, then the Spanish at 64 per cent, with Germans and Argentinians tying at 62 per cent. The Japanese are the most critical of their own looks, with 38 per cent not too satisfied or not at all satisfied, followed by the British at 20 per cent, then Russians, South Koreans, Swedes and Australians all at 19 per cent.
These findings are key for businesses in the fashion, beauty and personal grooming sectors in identifying how messaging can be refined to resonate more strongly with specific markets or target groups. In countries like Japan , UK and Russia , significant numbers will respond to marketing based around 'improve or change your look', while consumers in Mexico and Turkey are more likely to respond to offers around 'refine and maintain your look'.
Teenagers only slightly more critical about their looks While there is some lean towards teenagers being most self-critical about their looks, it is not as heavy as might be expected - and comes almost wholly from those who are a little bit dissatisfied rather than entirely so.
Overall, 16 per cent of 15-19 year olds say they are "not too satisfied" with their looks, compared to 12-13 per cent for the age groups between 20 and 59 years old. And this difference disappears almost completely when we look at those saying they are not at all satisfied with their looks. Here, all the different age groups stand at either 3 or 4 per cent.
Overall, people aged 60 and over are least self-critical, with just nine per cent being not too satisfied with their looks and three per cent not at all satisfied.
Men and women are almost equal
Comparison of the male and female responses also sheds new light on the assumption that women are more critical of their looks than men.
Both genders run equal in the percentage that are happy with their looks - each standing at 43 per cent saying they are fairly satisfied and 12 per cent completely satisfied.
However, men are more likely to be neutral about this question than women (31 per cent versus 27 per cent).
When it comes to being dissatisfied with their looks, women creep ahead of the men, but only by a few points - 14 per cent being not too satisfied, compared to 11 per cent of men, and 4 per cent being not at all satisfied, compared to 3 per cent of men.