Health Promot Perspect. 2015;5(4): 261-268.
doi: 10.15171/hpp.2015.031
PMID: 26933645
PMCID: PMC4772796
  Abstract View: 1568
  PDF Download: 1472

Original Research

An Advertisement and Article Analysis of Skin Products and Topics in Popular Women’s Magazines: Implications for Skin Cancer Prevention

Corey Basch 1*, Jennifer Mongiovi 2, Grace C Hillyer 2, MD Fullwood 3, Danna Ethan 4, Rodney Hammond 5

1 Department of Public Health, William Paterson University, Wayne, NJ 07470, USA
2 Department of Epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University NY, NY 10032, USA
3 Health and Behavior Studies, Teachers College, Columbia University, NY, NY 10027, USA
4 Department of Health Sciences, Lehman College, The City University of New York, USA
5 Department of Health and Nutrition Sciences, Montclair State University, USA


Background: In the United States, skin cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer, with an esti­mated 5 million people treated per year and annual medical treatment expenditures that exceed 8 billion dollars. The purpose of this study was two-fold: 1) to enumerate the number of advertisements for skin products with and without Sun Protection Factor (SPF) and to further analyze the specific advertise­ments for sunblock to determine if models, when present, depict sun safe behaviors and 2) to enumer­ate the number of articles related to the skin for content. Both aims include an assessment for differ­ences in age and in magazines targeting a Black or Latina population. 
Methods: The sample for this cross sectional study was comprised of 99 issues of 14 popular United States magazines marketed to women, four of which market to a Black or Latina audience.  
Results: There were 6,142 advertisements, of which 1,215 (19.8%, 95% CI: 18.8-20.8%) were related to skin products. Among the skin product advertisements, 1,145 (93.8%, 95% CI: 93.9-96.3%) depicted skin products without SPF. The majority of skin articles (91.2%, 95% CI: 91.7-100.0%), skin product advertisements (89.9%, 95% CI: 88.2-91.6%), and sunblock advertisements featuring models (were found in magazines aimed at the older (>24 yr) audience.  
Conclusion: Future research on this topic could focus on the extent to which images in these maga­zines translate into risky health behaviors, such as sun seeking, or excessive other harmful effects of UV radiation.
Keywords: Advertisement, Skin, Female, USA
Advertisement, Skin, Female, USA
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Submitted: 19 Aug 2015
Accepted: 22 Nov 2015
ePublished: 30 Jan 2016
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