Why You Shouldn't be Ashamed of Your Acne

Let's talk about the dreaded A word: Acne. We all get it, and most of us hate it. In middle school, when a pimple showed up on your forehead, you steal your mother’s concealer and pray no one would notice.

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At the age of 10, I noticed a few marks on my face and I was panicked. I started scrubbing the first acne product I could find, and it gave me scars that are still on my face to this day. Soon, because of the amount of stress I faced in school throughout middle and high school, it got incredibly worse. Most of my face was covered in acne scars and I had accumulated rosacea.

I would have anxiety attacks every day before school for the constant bullying just crippled me to think anything other than the fact that I was considered ‘ugly.’ So, I started clinging to makeup, just so maybe no one would call me ugly.

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The panic attacks stopped, but the bullying didn’t. I was still made fun of for my appearance: I did my makeup “wrong”, I looked “bumpy”, and that I looked like a “hooker.”

I didn’t care though because, for some reason, the thought of going bare-faced was more frightening than being ridiculed for my acne. I’d wake up at 5:00 am every day to do so, anything for people to not see what I looked underneath it all. It became an obsession. I only focused on the makeup, not actually taking care of my skin or wellbeing.

It didn’t hit me until college to look in the mirror, bare-faced, to realize, “Why do I hate my face so much?”

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It hit me that I wasn’t putting on makeup because I loved it, I was truly trying to hide my face. So, I decided to take care of my face and work on my self-love, but it wasn’t easy. I still had panic attacks when I would go outside without makeup, but little by little, I grew okay with it.

No one stared, no one cared anymore, and the better thing was, neither did I.

I grew confident in myself when I’d leave the house. I wasn’t going to let a few scars deter me from going outside. It’s natural.

I realize there’s this huge unnamed pressure that we all have to look IG-worthy every minute of every day, but let’s face it, that’s crazy standards to put yourself to.

When it comes down to it,  no one cares if you have acne, we all can relate to it. The people who make fun of it aren’t people you need to even acknowledge or allow to affect your wellbeing.

You’re not alone. Half of adult women have acne, and a quarter of adult men have acne as well- 50 million Americans have acne and there’s no problem with that. If you’re taking care of your skin and your body, don’t be ashamed that you don’t have perfectly clear skin. Don’t be ashamed of your acne. It doesn’t detract from your beauty, it doesn’t make you any less of a person, the truth is, it’s a natural occurrence.

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Cover Photo by Autumn Goodman on Unsplash