Acne is an annoying part of growing up. But what’s even more annoying is the fact that it doesn’t always go away once you do. Although mine started in ninth grade (when it almost looked fitting on my prepubescent face with the braces and all), I am almost 20 now and it shows no signs of slowing down. While I spent many years feeling powerless and despondent over this issue however, I am starting to realize that having long term acne is not entirely as bad as it may seem.
Resenting yourself for a problem that you may not be able to fix is exhausting. That’s why, I figured, it was time to find reasons why acne can actually be a blessing in disguise.
Sure, I will probably never love looking at myself in the mirror after taking my makeup off. Or hearing girls complaining about ‘breaking out’ when they just have a couple whiteheads on their forehead. But having fought with my acne for so many years, I think the best thing to do now is embrace all the qualities it has to offer, and to ultimately look on the bright side of things—however cliché that may be!
1. Makeup is practically made for us.
Have you ever watched a makeup tutorial video, only to wonder why the girl with the perfect skin even needs any foundation? Like, what exactly is there to cover up, besides already natural, smooth skin? It can be infuriating, until you realize that that foundation actually makes the world of a difference on your own skin.
Suddenly, your face goes from looking like a constellation of red dots to a blank, skin colored canvas. The effect makeup actually has on the acne prone is 10 times more amazing than its effect on normal people.
2. There are a million and one products catered to us.
Google “acne treatment” and you will be overwhelmed by the sheer amount of acne remedying products out there. There are whole systems that claim to clear your skin in days (i.e., Proactiv. It sure has its share of haters, but many find success with it), and you can even look up subsections like “sensitive”, “oily”, “dry”, to narrow down your search. Once you think you’ve found the perfect one, and managed to convince yourself that the bad reviews are exceptions to the rule, you can buy it off amazon and the day it arrives will make you feel like a kid on Christmas.
3.…And once you buy some, your outlook on life will change drastically
When you finally get to try that new acne clearing system that promises to revolutionize your life via better skin, or that new spot treatment which will zap your zit in thirty minutes (or so it claims, obviously), your life will never be the same. Not because those products are definitively going to follow up on their promises, but because now you have a new reason to live. You can go to sleep at night excited about waking up the next day because you know that your acne creams will be kicking some acne butt all night long.
And even when that system promises you better skin only after three long months, you will find that the prospect of eventually having perfect skin can get you through your worst days.
4. You will have some really good motivation to be healthy.
Normal people just don’t understand this, but with bad skin, literally every morsel of food that goes into your system can either wreak havoc on or soothe your skin. So while your friend might binge on junk food and McDonald’s on the daily and still retain that peachy soft skin, you break out like mad all over your jawline from just a couple. But look at it from the bright side—you have 10 times more motivation to stay healthy! And when that friend gets diabetes, she’ll be sorry she didn’t have a bit of acne to keep her unhealthy habits under control too.
5. You can appreciate the struggle.
If nothing else, acne gives you one very important trait that can benefit you in the future: humility. You know what it’s like to feel insecure, insufficient in the eyes of others. Low self-esteem issues aside, having acne allows you to appreciate the struggles that others are going through, whether it be due to their skin, weight, sexuality, or any other issue that makes us question our self-worth and struggle to define what it means to be beautiful. You learn to look beyond what’s on the surface, and see a person for who they really are on the inside, long before any of your clear-skinned friends do.