I was that little girl who always hated her skin and never felt beautiful in it. I never wore anything that would expose my legs because of how insecure I was and sometimes still am about their imperfections. In my mind everyone was staring and to this day, my skin affects my confidence.
My face was no better but there wasn't much I could do to cover it up until I got old enough to wear a full face of makeup to cover up my acne, hyper-pigmentation and scars.
The SKIN DOCUMENTARY I spoke about in a previous post focused more on skin bleaching and how women were resorting to peeling off their natural hues and shades because they felt ugly in them. The bottom line of this brilliantly documented struggle of the black/Nigerian woman chasing what is considered to be perceived beauty and acceptance through manipulating the color of her skin with creams, scrubs and peels just made me recall my own skin journey. Although I never entertained the idea of bleaching or 'toning' my skin, I always felt extremely insecure about it. Because I have very sensitive skin, it makes it problematic to manage and no amount of skincare products, routines or regimens I've tried has helped. I break out often, have scarring and a texture I find to be unappealing.
My skin affects my confidence because I never believe that I look as good as other women unless I'm made up and even then I still do not feel pretty majority of the time. I'm constantly touching up my make-up just to avoid my skin peeking through and people seeing the real me. It has taken and still takes a lot of mental work to be confident enough to go out without makeup and see myself as beautiful. I tell myself that I'm beautiful on the inside and that hopefully carries through on the outside. I probably would never readily admit this anywhere else but my skin insecurity has been a major factor in relationships. I've 'settled' a few times because I never truly believed that anyone would love me with my natural looks.
I'm older now and know better. I know my worth is not measured by what I look like and should never be. So if there's any young girls or women out there who have the same skin struggles and telling themselves they are ugly, please stop! You are beautiful and you need to know that, believe that and never doubt it. God doesn't make ugly things or people therefore that word should never be used to describe you...not by anyone and certainly not by you!
This was a raw, vulnerable and personal struggle to share but I hope it helps someone who may be going through the same and feeling alone.