Despite full-on public service campaigns educating youth about the dangers of tanning and the importance of sun protection, the percentage of young people who reported wearing sunscreen declined from 67.7% in 2001 to 56.1% in 2011, new research shows.

The findings appear in the August 2014 issue of the journal Preventing Chronic Disease.

Researchers led by Corey H. Basch, EdD, MPH, an associate professor of public health at William Paterson University in Wayne, NJ, examined the use of sunscreen and indoor tanning among a nationally representative sample of high school students during a 10-year period (2001–2011) using data from the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System.

The study found no great decline in the use of tanning devices among adolescents. In addition, females were more likely to use indoor tanning devices (20.9% for females vs. 6.16% for males), and the use of such devices was highest among white females (29.3%), the study showed.