TODAY   |  April 16, 2013

Dove to women: You look better than you think

Dove is kicking off a new beauty campaign to dramatize how women often see themselves as less attractive than an objective observer would deem. Psychiatrist Dr. Janet Taylor discusses why women’s self-esteem tends to be low.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> describe your looks, what would you say, hoda? it turns out you are your toughest critic.

>> their ongoing movement for self-esteem the folks at dove have come up with a fascinating experiment which is how women struggle with recognizing their own beauty. take a look.

>> i didn't know what he was doing, but then i could tell after several questions that he was drawing me.

>> dell me about your chin.

>> kind of pore truprotrude as little bit.

>> ist a fat, rounder face. a big forehead.

>> it's a sketch that you helped me create and that's a sketch that somebody described of you. do you think you're more beautiful than you say?

>> yes.

>> wow.

>> kayla and florence are real women who are moms, paid by dove to appear in their social experiment. they're with us today.

>> and dr. janet taylor is always with us, a mom and psychiatrist here in new york city , welcome, ladies.

>> what a fascinating experiment. so did you -- did you expect when you described yourself to this forensic artist, was that your picture up there. was that how you see yourself?

>> well, i was just, the facts, ma'am.

>> just being totally honest.

>> totally neutral. i thought i was giving him very straightforward description. i had no idea that it would turn out like that.

>> and when a stranger described you to the same man and he drew based on that person's description and you saw the other you, what did you, what did you think?

>> i was shocked. how could they be more accurate? i had no idea that what i was describing was a person that looked so sad and -- and heavy and -- this other person, is complete stranger described me as beautiful and light and happy.

>> well if it makes you feel any better, you're far more beautiful than either one of them.

>> let's talk about florence for a second.

>> florence -- you used to be a member of the mansion family, right?

>> i know.

>> look at the picture on the left. you do not see yourself that way.

>> if i had to do it over again, that's not how i would describe myself. but as kayla was saying, i was trying to give him the details so he could get it right. clearly i learned i have a microscope up next to my face and it's not necessary.

>> we have mirrors all around, it's not as if we can't actually see our reflection.

>> it's light-hearted but serious, we struggle with our lifespan, with how we see ourselves on the outside and also on the inside. it highlights that beauty is not just on the outside, it is inner beauty . but sometimes you need to flip the script and highlight, question how you see yourself before you can see the real you. because it's only one you. that's the light-hearted, beautiful you.

>> and your daughters are watching.

>> what i would do differently now with cass.

>> your daughters pay attention to the media. they pay attention to what we say about ourselves and they're always listening.

>> how do you stop the momentum -- we all go, i feel fat. and someone says, you look great in your outfit.

>> can you believe what people say. a lot of people like you, you want to be kind to somebody when you --

>> you know what i'm saying? you'll say, oh, no, you don't look fat. when i know you're thinking -- maybe a little.

>> no, i don't. but anyway, should you believe what people tell you?

>> minus what hoda said.

>> it was people who noticed the butdty of kayla and florence , so absolutely as women we need to say thank you and accept compliments.

>> are you going to change the way you feel about yourself now as a result of the dove experiment?

>> i'm not going to list ton that critic inside any more.

>> don't listen to the sounds in the kitchen, any more.

>> listen to the people who are making the compliments instead of the critic in my head.