Would you believe that is one of the most googled questions about acne? There is a long answer to this question, but the short answer is NO. Acne can never make you ugly, yet it can make you feel insecure and self-conscious about your skin.
As the #FreeThePimple movement progresses, a healthier attitude toward blemished-prone skin is emerging, helping us separate who we are from the acne we have. The truth is, acne doesn’t have to last, and it definitely doesn’t define us!
That sounds encouraging and uplifting, right? We agree! But what happens when you’re feeling overwhelmed and disheartened about your skin? What happens when striving for a healthy attitude towards your acne isn’t working? You’re left feeling hopeless, helpless, and ugly. What then?
If you have been with us for a while, you know we view acne holistically, from your skincare regime to how you process your acne emotionally. We believe that dealing with your emotions around acne can bring you one step closer to your healing. Let’s look at your emotional triggers when it comes to your skin.
Being triggered can be defined as a distressed emotional state you experience, revealing an underlying negative core belief. Most of the time, you develop the feeling of being ugly from a painful experience in your youth: like being mocked or comparing yourself to someone else. When you struggle with acne, you can form a negative belief about your appearance without knowing it. It could be that you are worthless, people don’t want to be around you, or ugly. These beliefs and emotions will lead you to think negatively about yourself.
Questions to ask yourself to help reveal an underlying core belief:
These questions are based on a study done by Patrick Keelan, a registered psychologist.
- In your journal, please do the following. Think of the last time you were triggered with feeling ugly and write down the whole situation from start to finish. This process is called consecutive writing and assists with emotional healing.
Once you have written down your experience, reread it and look for negative patterns. Explore what your negative thoughts were without blaming others. It is essential to take responsibility for your own emotions and thought processes. After all, no one can be in charge of your healing except YOU.
- Once you have identified your negative views, look back and see where else you have believed them. You’ll notice that this way of thinking is repetitive, and can leave you feeling overwhelmed.
- Now that you have acknowledged your negative views around feeling ugly, write down your goal for how you want to heal.
For example, feeling ugly could be the paramount emotion you are experiencing, but worthlessness is the cause. You must decide that you no longer want to feel this way. You want to be more positive and self-assured. The next step for you would be to create a goal to reframe your mindset by telling someone you trust how you feel and trying your best in situations going forward to think positively about yourself.
We believe in you. We know you can reach emotional and physical healing. We are here to help you.
But acne makes me feel dirty too!
Over the many care consultations we have done, we have noticed that acne sufferers tend to over-cleanse their skin because they feel dirty. Your skin should not feel tight or dry after you cleanse your face. If this is the case, it could be from the below reasons:
- You are washing your face too often or for too long. You don’t need to spend three minutes washing your face. The aim is to cleanse your whole face, not remove all your oils.
- Your skin feels sensitive. If this is the case, you don’t need to wash your face in the morning. Sensitive skin is not a condition or type of skin problem. It is purely based on how you interact with your skin.
- You are using skincare products that are too strong or using them in the incorrect areas.
For example, Benzoyl peroxide is a powerful active ingredient, so be sure to use it correctly. If you are prone to having dry skin, using it everywhere will damage your skin barrier. You will only need to place it either in infected areas or on the pimple itself.
We want to remind you that having acne doesn’t make you dirty. So if you’re struggling with acne right now and it is making you feel dirty, remember it is just a fleeting feeling, and not every feeling is the truth! You are beautiful and wonderfully made. You have the potential to be your harshest critic or your strongest encourager – choose which role you want to play for yourself wisely!
Remember, you are not alone! We are a company formed to assist you in your skin struggles, and we are excited to come alongside you on your journey!
Here at Acne.org.za, we believe that the best approach to healing your acne is a holistic approach. We focus on internal and external issues. To help you with the physical side of having acne, we have created a three-step protocol that leaves your skin cleansed from debris and excess oils.
We encourage you to eat well and exercise alongside using scientific-focused products for your skin. Healing is a circular process involving your mind, body, and soul. Focusing on only one aspect can leave you unbalanced.
- Looking after the body with good food and joyful movement will help you feel less stressed and balance your emotions.
- Looking after your emotions with trigger therapy can help you view situations in your life in a more positive light, especially your acne, and can have lasting results.
Let your mind, body, and soul work together to bring you physical and emotional healing.
To book a care consultation, find out more about our products, or about how we can assist teens and adults with acne, please contact us here.
What is being triggered?
Core beliefs by Psychologist Dr. Patrick Keelan