I see and hear a lot of people hating on skin. And sometimes, this makes me very upset. Maybe, as my mother reminds me, I’m just a little bit sensitive or maybe it’s because I see skin and person as the same being and hating on skin means hating on you. Don’t hate on you, show love, show skin love.
One of the reasons I love working in, around and about skin is that I see when skin goes wrong, when skin misbehaves, when skin needs a treat. But it also gives me a sense of what people know about skin and importantly, how they treat or mistreat their skin.
Believe me, I understand. I spent years in what felt like an epic battle of skin supremacy. I hated that my skin was not like others. I hated that my skin stopped me from leaving the house. I hated that my skin made me feel so bad about myself. That my skin, being the way it was, made me not want to look at myself in the mirror for a very long time.
But we have to see skin in another way, really we do.
It might help to think of skin as your shadow – it’s still part of you, always there but always different, at a different angle.
Sometimes I like to think of it as the housemate you’ll forever live with. Sometimes it’s great, sometimes it’s lazy, sometimes it’s just so annoying you wish it would tidy up after itself and sometimes you wish it would just leave you alone, quit you forever.
But you know what, it’s you, so it can’t.
And at the end of the day its main job is to protect you. Protect your insides from your outsides. And that really is something to love.
It’s working for you, it’s on your side, it’s just trying to do its job – and that’s to be your armour against the outside world.
When you can start to think of it in those terms you realise how bloody wonderful it actually is. And that can mean sometimes it needs a hug, a little space, a little understanding – just like you. Every skin needs a little TLC, a little thank you for working so hard and for dealing with everything from a pesky immune system to a roller coaster barrage of hormones.
Your skin has got your back – in fact, is it your back and your everything.
The reason we get so emotional about it in the first place is because it’s our ‘face’, our skin that we show to the world and very often the world can be a cruel place. We are judged by this skin, in this skin and that is not fair on our skin or the being living inside, us. But remember, every day you lose old skins cells and gain new skin cells which means you have plenty of chances to start over with your biggest bodyguard – and the relationship you have with it is the one that counts.
So stop the skin hate, start loving and appreciating skin.
It’s part of you, it’s your everything, on the outside, and deserves just as much love and respect as everything on the inside.
Look at your skin, say thank you skin, give it a hug (or go get someone to hug it for you with their incredible skin).
Now, doesn’t that feel better?