Hannah Leonard


Malignant melanoma and mercury poisoning have been found to be direct effects of skin tone alteration methods, a practice currently trending in the United States. Thirty-six Seventh-day Adventist college-aged adults were studied in regards to this issue. Self-report surveys were administered and analyzed to access the frequency of alteration method use, the attitudes toward these methods, the dependence of frequency of use on self-esteem level, and gender difference in regard to attitude. Findings were inconclusive, but showed trends that indicated this population plans to use tanning methods more in the future, that women feel more positively toward alteration methods than men, and that tanning is viewed as more acceptable than whitening. More research is necessary to reach significant results.

Keywords: skin tone perceptions, tanning tendencies, colorism, bleaching, self-esteem, whitening