Female Porn Stars Have More Self-esteem, Better Quality of Life, Contrary to Popular Belief

Former porn star Sasha Gray. Female porn stars have higher self-esteem and a more positive outlook on life than most women, according to a recent study by the Journal for Sex Research. Apparently having sex on film for a living is more fun than it looks!

"Porn Actresses: The Damaged Goods Hypothesis" polled 177 female porn stars aged 18 to 50, and a group of women the same age who were not in the adult industry. Researchers asked for information on sexual behavior, quality of life, self-esteem, and drug use.

The title of the study comes from the assumption that female porn-stars in particular are "damaged" individuals and victims of childhood sex abuse. But the results show there is no difference in the incidence of childhood sex abuse between the two groups.

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Deconstruction of a powerful stereotype is certainly a good thing, but the rest of the results of the study were equally fascinating. Female porn stars had "higher levels of self-esteem, positive feelings, social support, sexual satisfaction, and spirituality compared to the matched group," according to the Journal for Sex Research. Porn stars are, after all, in a niche industry, so perhaps the "social support" comes from that tight-knit community. But spirituality?

The actresses were more likely to identify as bisexual, and were more likely to have become sexually active at a younger age. One stereotype, that those in the adult industry are more likely to use drugs, held true.

Traci Lords77 percent of the porn actresses said they had a good sex life, compared to 33 percent in the non-porn-actress group. (Granted, the porn stars had plenty of opportunity to get it right through a smorgasbord of sexual partners, many more than reported by the control group.)

Overall, female porn stars reported an overall better quality of life due to better sex, more sleep, and more energy than the control group.

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Could it be that a career our society labels as misogynist and exploitative actually promotes self-esteem and positivity? The study doesn't speculate, but perhaps porn stars have more to teach other women than the occasional sex tip or juicy memoir.

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