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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


OPINION: Acne is nothing to be ashamed of

Emilie Marie Cuevas
An illustration of a person with acne looking into a mirror by Emilie Cuevas

Since I was 13, I have struggled with hormonal and cystic acne; now, at 19, I am still suffering. I hated my face during high school and was deeply ashamed of having people see me. I used makeup to hide the acne, but it did not work. I have gone to dermatologists and other doctors, and nothing they have prescribed has been effective. 

Coming to college, I have found myself and have been less insecure because I feel less judged. I grew up in the same town for most of my life, so everyone knew everything about everyone. My peers knew I had acne and couldn’t cure it, and I felt like they were judging my face. Wearing a mask during COVID-19 helped me become less ashamed of my acne because most of my acne is on my cheeks, which are covered when I wear a mask. I was able to stop being scared of what people thought of my acne and started living my life like I wanted to. 

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Acne is nothing to be ashamed of. Almost 80% of people between the ages of 11 and 30 will suffer acne breakouts. Since we are in the age of Facetune and filters, it is overwhelming to see people with seemingly perfect skin, and it is easy to become less confident when it seems like no one else is suffering from breakouts. 

Celebrities seem to have clear skin and never suffer from breakouts, but stars like Kendall Jenner have spoken about their acne-prone skin. It is hard not to compare yourself to those on social media, but it is something one must learn to do; so many apps contort people’s faces and blur blemishes that people do not see when they see the final product. 

Acne can also negatively impact one’s mental health. Having acne has been linked to decreased self-esteem, anxiety and depression. Acne can cause bullying among peers, which causes self-esteem to plummet. Acne is mainly seen between ages 11 and 30 due to androgen hormones, which help start puberty and peak during the teenage years. It is often a misconception that acne will disappear as soon as somebody graduates high school, and around 15% of adult women struggle with acne. 

Acne makes people feel alone, but nearly everyone has struggled with acne. Seeing celebrities and people in movies and books with acne made me feel I was not going through the struggles of acne alone, and seeing others go through the same issues made it easier to live with. 

Acne is very common, and one should not feel ashamed of it because one can think that no one else suffers from it. It does not make someone less attractive or less of a person if they have it. 

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Kelly Marry
Kelly Marry

Kelly Marry (she/her) is a sophomore majoring in journalism and public relations. She loves to read and travel in her free time.

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