Objective To assess the differences in facial proportions between African American
and Caucasian women. Differences within the African American population are
Design Anthropometric survey.
Participants Volunteer sample of African American women (N = 108), aged 18 through
30 years, with African American parents and no previous facial surgery or
Intervention Photographs and 16 standard anthropometric measurements were taken in
concordance with the 9 neoclassical canons. Results were compared with the
North American white standard and the neoclassical canons, and an intragroup
evaluation was performed. One-way analysis of variance, 99.7% confidence intervals,
and t tests were used to test differences for significance.
Main Outcome Measures Anthropometric measures.
Results Compared with white women, the following measurements were found to
be significantly different (P<.003) in African
American women: special head height was shorter; forehead height II was longer;
nose length was shorter; lower face height was longer; height of the calva
was shorter; forehead height I was longer; and ear length was shorter. In
addition, most horizontal measures were wider, ie, eye-fissure width, nasal
width, mouth width, and facial width. The nose and ear have greater angles
of inclination. Of the 9 neoclassical canons, the orbital proportion was found
to include the most proportional subjects (30.6%), followed by the nasoaural
proportion (13.0%) and the nasofacial proportion (9.3%). Subcategorization
based on nasal dorsal height yielded the most significantly different measures.
Conclusions African American female facial anthropometric measures, especially those
of the horizontal dimension, differ significantly from those of young white
subjects. The average African American woman does not fit the neoclassical
standard of facial proportion.