Appearance-based interventions to reduce ultraviolet exposure and/or increase sun protection intentions and behaviours: A systematic review and meta-analyses

Authors


Correspondence should be addressed to Alison L. Williams, R343, The Science Centre, Staffordshire University, Leek Road, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire ST4 2DF, UK (e-mail: alison.williams@staffs.ac.uk).

Abstract

Objectives

A systematic review and meta-analyses were conducted to identify and review research examining the impact of appearance-based interventions on sun protection intentions and/or ultraviolet (UV) exposure behaviour.

Methods

A search of 16 databases including PsycARTICLES, Cochrane Library and Web of Knowledge was conducted to identify studies examining the impact of appearance-based interventions on reducing UV exposure and/or increasing sun protection intentions and behaviours. A total of 21 articles met the inclusion criteria, and these studies were subjected to a systematic review and meta-analyses to determine the effectiveness of the interventions.

Results

Interventions used a variety of techniques including UV technology and photoaging information. Study design and outcome measures varied. The research indicated that appearance-based interventions have a positive effect on UV exposure and sun protection intentions and behaviour.

Conclusions

Findings suggest that interventions based on the appearance-damaging effects of UV exposure, and the positive effects of sun protection, may have a role in health promotion. It is concluded that there is a need for further research incorporating a wider range of participants, and using qualitative and mixed methods designs.

Statement of contribution

What is already known on the subject? Recreational exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation, are the primary causes of all melanomas, leading to skin cancer. A previous systematic review (Dodd & Forshaw, 2010) looking at the efficacy of appearance-focussed interventions in skin cancer prevention, suggested that there were significant effects for UV protection behaviour after such interventions.

What does this study add? An up-to-date systematic review of studies that has carried out appearance-based interventions to reduce UV exposure and/or increase sun protection intentions and behaviours. A meta-analysis of data providing statistical evidence indicating that appearance-based interventions have a positive effect on UV exposure and sun protection intentions and behaviour.

Ancillary