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Type: Journal article
Title: Australian young adults' tanning behaviour: the role of ideal skin tone and sociocultural norms
Author: Day, A.
Wilson, C.
Hutchinson, A.
Roberts, R.
Citation: Australian Journal of Psychology, 2017; 69(2):86-94
Publisher: Wiley
Issue Date: 2017
ISSN: 0004-9530
Statement of
Ashley K. Day, Carlene J. Wilson, Amanda D. Hutchinson, andRachel M. Roberts
Abstract: Objective: Decreasing intentional tanning behaviour is a critical area of skin cancer prevention. Research evidence that tanning behaviour is significantly influenced by appearance motivations exists. The Tripartite Influence Model posits that internalisation of ideals about body image mediates the relationship between sociocultural norms and appearance-related behaviour and has been demonstrated primarily in the domain of weight. This study aimed to assess whether ideal skin tone (internalisation of a tanned ideal) mediated the endorsement of sociocultural norms about attractiveness of tanned skin and 12-month tanning behaviour. Method: Young adult participants (N = 514) from the university (removed for blind review) were surveyed regarding their ideal skin tone and sociocultural norm endorsement. Results: At 12-month follow-up, 246 participants reported their tanning behaviour over the previous year. Results indicated that the internalisation of a tanned ideal mediated the relationship between sociocultural norms and tanning behaviour for females but not males. Young adult males also desired a tanned appearance, and peer sociocultural perceptions were associated with male tanning behaviour. Conclusions: This research lends support to the proposition that the Tripartite Influence Model has explanatory power for tanning behaviour. We recommend that future research involving young adults incorporate skin tone and tanning as a component of body image alongside body shape and eating behaviours.
Keywords: gender differences; skin cancer; sociocultural norms; sun behaviour; tanning
Rights: © 2016 The Australian Psychological Society
DOI: 10.1111/ajpy.12121
Appears in Collections:Aurora harvest 7
Psychology publications

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