The vast majority of people will suffer from acne at some point in their lives and teenagers are particularly susceptible to it. The blemishes and spots it causes can have a devastating effect on their confidence, which puts some sufferers at a higher risk of anxiety and depression.
In fact, acne is the most common skin condition in the United States, affecting 50 million Americans a year. When I suffered from mild acne as a teenager, I unknowingly worsened the condition by incessantly attempting to cover my spots with cheap makeup. Thankfully, it went away in my late teens, but some people suffer well into adulthood. Eighty percent of adult acne suffers are women, who are unfortunately more at risk of the condition because of fluctuating hormone levels. People with the condition are also at risk of suffering from the self-confidence issues which acne can cause. This is because of the media’s portrayal of the models and celebrities immaculate skin. However, one teen from Colorado decided that she’d had enough of trying to cover her acne. She is pictured below before revealing what her skin looks like without makeup. Seventeen-year-old Hailey Wait recently opened up about her struggle with acne on Instagram, revealing that she had suffered from the condition since she was 11 or 12 years old, which was when she began puberty, and horrifyingly, she was bullied because of it. “People would tell me everything from ‘pizza face’ to death threats, saying that anyone with as much acne as I had didn’t deserve to be alive,” she said in an email, Cosmpolitian reported. “It started with my cheeks and then it went to my chin and then my forehead and then it kind of went all over the place. It’s difficult because you can’t get rid of it right away and it always feels like there is a little monster egg in your face, but you can’t get rid of it.”
“I felt so insecure about myself that I couldn’t leave the house without makeup on,” she revealed in an interview with Barcroft TV. “Sometimes I wouldn’t even go anywhere but still put on makeup just so I didn’t feel gross. And that’s definitely changed.”
Now, she has shared a particularly inspiring Instagram message in the hope of helping other acne sufferers. It was a close up of her makeup-free face that said, “Reminder that acne doesn’t make you ugly. A heart full of hate does.” “Since being more open about my skin imperfections, SO MANY of you have opened up to me about your own struggles and I want to say that I’m truly moved, and incredibly thankful to be supported by so many genuine human beings,” she wrote in the caption.
“I decided to post selfies showing my acne because I just was so exhausted of hiding it all the time,” she revealed, again over email. “I figured it would help my followers to know that they weren’t alone.” After suffering from acne for a number of years, Wait said that she is now adept at dealing with bullies who criticize her for a condition that’s completely out of her control.
“At the end of the day, it helps to realize that most people who bully others have their own insecurities as well, and a lot of times they’re only projecting that onto you. There’s so much more to a person than their appearance, and it’s honestly so shallow to bully someone over their appearance.” While Wait’s decision to post makeup-free selfies on Instagram is a testament to her confidence, she’s said that she’s found even more comfort in knowing that she’s not alone in her struggle
“I started surrounding myself with people who were a lot more loving and supportive, and my confidence sort of sprung up from that.” Wait’s decision to post her makeup-free selfies inspired countless other people to share stories about their acne struggles on her page. “I had horrible acne in my teens and early 20s, I always felt like I had to hide my face to feel beautiful and to be accepted by other people,” one Instagram user wrote. “It was one of the hardest things I ever went through in my life. To just see you putting it on display for the whole world to see is absolutely amazing!” “I hope my story regarding acne really helps people to realize that just because you have these imperfections doesn’t mean you’re not amazing, doesn’t mean you can’t be successful, doesn’t mean you can’t be glamorous,” she said in her interview with Barcroft TV. “Beauty is so much more than your face.”
We hope that Wait’s story inspires others to be confident in their own skin. You can keep up with Wait’s journey by following her Instagram account.