Narcissists pursue superiority and status at frequent costs to their relationships, and social comparisons seem central to these pursuits. Critically, these comparison tendencies should distinguish narcissism from healthy self-esteem. We tested this hypothesis in a study examining individual differences in everyday comparison activity. Narcissists, relative to those with high self-esteem, (1) made more frequent social comparisons, particularly downward ones, (2) were more likely to think they were better-off than other important individuals in their lives, and (3) perceived themselves superior to these important individuals on agentic traits. However, narcissists' positive emotional reactions to these self-flattering comparisons were based on their high self-esteem. These results suggest that comparison processes play an important role in narcissists' endless pursuit of status and admiration. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.