How Quarantine Helped Me Get Comfortable In My Own Skin

The opinions expressed in this article are the author's own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

With the COVID-19 pandemic changing a lot of things for us over the last few months, I’ve made it my personal mantra to find the silver lining where I can. That being said, by no means am I in denial or perpetuating toxic positivity. Rather, I’ve found that looking for the good in things is what helps me to cope.

One of the biggest silver linings I’ve found has been getting comfortable in my own skin. In a pre-pandemic world, I’d often put on makeup regardless of if I was stepping into a 15-minute meeting or was running late for class. I’d make it a point to look “presentable,” and while the notion of seeing people barefaced was something I’d have loved to partake in, unfortunately — I just couldn’t bring myself to. Instead, on those days, I’d just opt for a no-makeup makeup look. Ironic, right?

But once I began quarantining — out of choice, thankfully, not because I caught the virus — and my world moved online, I found myself having to change a lot of facets of my daily routine. For starters, since I moved back home, the classes I once had at 11 a.m. were now at 8 p.m. I was living in a virtual world that was set in Toronto, but I had to navigate it from Dubai. And in the midst of trying to make it to every meeting and class on time, I had to forfeit the face full of makeup. But over time I found that even on the occasions where I had some time on my hands before my Zoom gatherings, I chose not to put any on.

Perhaps it was the fact that there were bigger things going on, or maybe the realization that I didn’t need a full face of makeup to look presentable or, in fact, pretty. Either way, as the days passed and the Zoom meetings increased, I found myself getting more and more comfortable with the way that I looked barefaced.

And when it was safe enough to make small trips outside like day trips to the beach or socially distant hangouts in the park, I was able to not fret about needing an hour to get ready; I could just be. 

That attitude extended even further. I’m someone who used to routinely visit the salon for my grooming needs: to get my nails and hair done, get my monthly facial and get my eyebrows primed. But once it got unsafe to visit the salon, I found a way to take care of myself on my own without needing to go anywhere else. That’s not to say that I won’t go running back once it’s safe to. It’s just that now if I give myself a manicure or pedicure a week later than I normally would have it done, it’s not a big deal. 

I’ve learned that it’s not always about how you look to the world, but rather how you feel when you look in the mirror. And chances are, most people aren’t going to notice the things we think stick out like sore thumbs.

It might not seem like a lot, but a small win is still a win. And in all seriousness, while it may seem like a small change to the outside eye, it feels like a pretty big triumph to me. Because I now know that going forward when things are normal again and all is right in the world: I’ll be more comfortable in my skin than ever before.