The list of things to be aware of seems to grow longer every day. First, we’re told that a particular thing about our skin is a “problem,” and then we’re sold a product to “fix” it. Completely normal things about our skin are suddenly seen as a problem that we are told to expend energy and money on fixing. It took too long and went too far.
There are skin “problems” that aren’t really problems in reality and are normal in almost all human beings. But, they were stigmatized. Let’s accept them, own them and stop seeing them as problems to be ashamed of.
Stigmatized skin characteristics that need to be normalized
1. Strawberry skin
Strawberry peel is when hair follicles in the skin are visible after shaving. You’ll see plenty of advice online on how to “get rid of” strawberry legs. But the truth is, for most of us with dark hair, visibility of our hair follicles is unavoidable unless we have laser hair removal.
It is not a sign that something is wrong with the skin and it is completely normal. Why should we be aware of this?
2. Stretch marks
Image credit: Instagram.com/rytash
Stretch marks occur for many reasons, when the skin expands or contracts very quickly, whether due to weight fluctuations, growth spurts or pregnancy. While the advice to help soothe the itchiness on stretch marks that might be dry is good, the obsession to get rid of them is unrealistic.
It’s completely normal to have stretch marks, and most people do. It’s time we all owned and flaunted them!
Image credit: Instagram.com/aliaabhatt
Freckles have recently become fetishized with many people recreating them with makeup. Several brands have launched “freckle pens” and “freckle markers” to help draw them. So why do we stigmatize them? Many people have freckles due to genetics, and despite using sunscreen, they can appear.
It’s time to normalize freckles instead of oscillating between fetishizing and stigmatizing them.
4. Visible pores
Image credit: Instagram.com/kareenakapoorkhan
Every human being has pores because the largest organ in our body, the skin, needs pores to function properly. No matter what brands try to sell you “poreless” skin, that’s not a reality. Skin can’t be poreless, no matter how bad it may seem when looking at the airbrushed photos of celebrities online.
It’s high time we stopped obsessing over this unachievable and unrealistic standard of beauty!
5. Wrinkles or fine lines
Wrinkles are proof that you’ve aged, and getting old, even if the beauty marks stigmatize it, is a privilege, especially when you think of the alternative. All the lines on our faces are proof of the feelings we’ve had, the times we’ve smiled, and the fulfilled lives we’ve lived. These are not things to avoid or be ashamed of. Why not kiss them, then?
Why waste brain space dwelling on the negativity surrounding these normal human traits? It’s time to stop seeing these things as flaws and love the skin we’re in.
Main image credit: Instagram.com/aliaabhatt, Instagram.com/kareenakapoorkhan
Read iDiva for the latest Bollywood news, fashion looks, beauty and lifestyle.