"Only a few months ago, I finally felt able to leave the house without make-up”
Gabi, 29, from Leeds shares her story.
I started getting acne when I was about 14.
It began with hormonal breakouts, which didn’t seem too bad at first, but then they started spreading rapidly, until they covered most of my face and back.
I didn’t know what to do. It seemed almost like a pointless battle. One spot would go but another would appear in its place.
I tried a few over the counter washes and treatments, but nothing seemed to work. The doctor prescribed me medication, which helped to calm the worst of it, but I still felt really self-conscious.
Almost as soon as my breakouts started, I turned to make-up.
I used to get the thickest foundation I could find and cake on 2-3 layers every day.
I was paranoid about anyone seeing me without make-up, even my friends and family and would take my concealer everywhere with me, topping up throughout the day.
I just so desperately wanted the flawless skin that so many people around me seemed to have, so I made sure there wasn’t even a tiny speck of my real skin showing.
I just hated looking at my skin without make-up on.
When I was around 18, my acne started to calm down a bit. My back was pretty much healed and I’d still get breakouts on my face, but not to the extent I had before.
But the paranoia around my skin was still there and I was addicted to my foundation.
I would apply it in my room at Uni every morning, so my flatmates wouldn’t see me without it.
I always used to feel guilty, like I should be doing things differently. I’d read articles that would say you have to cut out dairy or drink more water or never fall asleep without taking your make-up off.
People would sometimes say to me, ‘maybe if you just stop wearing so much foundation, your skin would clear up’ so it just felt like it was all my fault, but the fear of leaving the house without it was too much.
Throughout my twenties, my breakouts died down a little, but I still had a lot of redness and blemishes. I still felt chained to my foundation and would always wear full make-up, even if I was just going to the shops.
It was only in the last few months that I’ve felt able to go out without make-up. I started using 47 Skin’s anti-blemish serum after seeing an ad online. I thought it looked good because it had such great reviews.
I also liked the fact you could wear the serum as a primer under make-up and it would create an anti-bacterial barrier over your skin, so it seemed ideal for me.
After just a few days wearing it at night and applying it under my make-up, my skin began to improve. It felt amazing to see my natural skin looking so clear and I felt less and less of a need to pile on foundation. I’ve always struggled with patchy, red skin in places and it’s even managed to even that out.
I’ve started going to the shops and doing Zoom calls without make-up on, which I would never have done before.
I also really love 47 Skin’s skin positivity message. As someone who used to feel so self-conscious and down about my skin, I think how you feel about your skin is so important.
I’ve learned now that my acne wasn’t my fault, and that it’s fine to wear make-up if it makes you feel better, and you should never feel guilty about that.
My skin’s not flawless, but I’ve realised that nobody has perfect skin and that my real skin is beautiful, even though I never thought it could be.