How I've Learned to Embrace My Natural Skin

I feel like if you asked me in high school what I thought about my natural skin, I would probably respond with "I have to wear concealer every day" or "I can't go without powdering it in the morning". My skin over the years has gone through a lot of phases: it was very acne-prone and oily, to the point that I had to get prescribed meds to control my hormones for it. While this is fairly common with a lot of my friends, I've always felt like there's an insecurity to walk around in public bare-faced. 

When I first got into makeup, I made it a point to find products that would hide my acne bumps and redness, to rid all of the oil and pubescent stress that lived in the pores of my face (gross I know). I have this distinct memory of me putting on loose face powder that was three shades darker and oranger than my normal skin tone and still preceding to cover up my T-zone with it. No one told me it looked bad until I realized that you weren't supposed to look like an Oompa Loompa. 

Whether or not that traumatized me from using a lot of face makeup, or the fact that I just didn't have time to put on a full-face of makeup, covering all of my impurities just wasn't ideal for me. Caking on a ton of makeup didn't make me feel better, of course I still wear makeup, but not the way I used to. 

Social norms and the internet tell us that having acne or "problem areas" should be covered up. I'd like to believe that this norm has been gradually dismantled, while the trend of "natural beauty" is making its way to the forefront. Flaws, insecurities, and stereotypes lead us to believe that the only way we can be accepted is through self-validating beauty norms that drive us to Sephora and emptying our wallets. 

My story is that I've come to realize that it's all bullshit. Finding confidence and acceptance of your insecurities takes strength. I'm not quite sure when I came to realize this, but it must have started my senior year of high school going into college. I was done putting on a mask and as I continue to enjoy using makeup, I've reevaluated its purpose in my own terms, to feel good about myself and not for anyone else to decide how it makes me feel. 

Accepting ourselves is a constant, life-long struggle—we all have things we wish we could change, alter, or modify our physical selves. Resisting these norms, saying "I don't need makeup today," and at least considering more broadly how the things we're exposed to online affects us internally. It's something I've managed to ignore and inspire others to do the same. 

1 comment

  1. Gorgeous photos! A very relatable post.
    Amber | www.amberatlanta.blogspot.co.uk


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