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Women with acne are beautiful

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Women with acne are beautiful.

I know, this sounds very provocative. Don't be too much angry right now, and let me explain myself:

I believe that beauty canons are very cultural. They are stereotypes. Look at painting from the 17th-18th century: women represented as beauty models in these would all be without any second thought considered as overweight today. In the same vein, there are african civilisations where scarring is considered beautiful and women even practice voluntary, ritual, scarring. Whereas we "modern" western people view acne scars for instance as "ugly".

So think about it considering this background: why would acne on a woman be ugly, while, for instance, freckles, who look very much the same, are considered charming (although ot be everyone).

Personally, I find girls with freckles charming. And I also find girls with acne charming, just the same. And I know many other men that think similarly, even if they would rarely dare to say it because it is hard to go against stereotypes.

So, ladies with acne, don't be shy!

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I know what you are saying but just look at all the magazines, vogue, cosmo, teen, shape, prevention the list goes on and on. Have you ever seen a SI model with acne, or overweight? What about cosmo? they have articles about skin, diet and health, but the models they show don't have acne, aren't overweight. I know that a lot of them are photoshopped but they aren't in the business of selling acne or being overweight. They are in the business of selling perfection. It sends a dangerous message to young girls and some of us older ones that if you don't look like the models there is something wrong with you. Just my opnion but I even hate Victorries Secert stores, mags and models. Seems like all they ever hire is slim, acne free women. If you can change the way society portrays images of perfection, then you will do a good deed. Elf

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I know what you are saying but just look at all the magazines, vogue, cosmo, teen, shape, prevention the list goes on and on. Have you ever seen a SI model with acne, or overweight? What about cosmo? they have articles about skin, diet and health, but the models they show don't have acne, aren't overweight. I know that a lot of them are photoshopped but they aren't in the business of selling acne or being overweight. They are in the business of selling perfection. It sends a dangerous message to young girls and some of us older ones that if you don't look like the models there is something wrong with you. Just my opnion but I even hate Victorries Secert stores, mags and models. Seems like all they ever hire is slim, acne free women. If you can change the way society portrays images of perfection, then you will do a good deed. Elf

Believe it or not, guys are sold this lie too.


Without fear there cannot be courage...


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I know what you are saying but just look at all the magazines, vogue, cosmo, teen, shape, prevention the list goes on and on. Have you ever seen a SI model with acne, or overweight?

I fully agree. But in fact, how often does on meet women looking like the models on the cover on these magazines? Very very rarely, if ever. And when one meets one of these, one realises that their "perfection" is nota match to the beauty of many "imperfect" girls, including ladies with acne.

(but the way I am pretty sure that some of these models do have acne, but it is covered up or photoshopped.)

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Frank, are you trying to get a date on here? LOL!

I think it's very sweet of you to say that some guys dont care about bad skin in women.

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Frank, are you trying to get a date on here? LOL!

I think it's very sweet of you to say that some guys dont care about bad skin in women.

Thank you for your kind words, UKLady.

It' funny because the way you write it shows that you are yourself very much into thinking that acne is necessarily ugly: why write "bad skin in women". This is already pejorative and it should not be. The "some guys" in question don't find that acke skin in women is "bad skin" in women. It's skin, full stop. I even sometimes find it charming skin.

I hope you don't think I am crazy (but I am a bit verbise, I grant you).

Do you have acne, and if so is it really the first time someone tells you this?

I could not believe it.

(about "trying to get a date", LOL indeed. Actually, I'm not looking -and if I were, I may not start with this forum for this. Or, who knowns, this could create a trendy fashion. I should think about it).

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Hm, well I suppose I say 'bad skin' because acne is a skin disease...so it's not healthy skin.

The laws of the Darwinian jungle dictate that animals tend to look for the healthiest partner with which to reproduce, so from that POV, the unhealthy aspect of acne would put people off acne sufferers.

Though of course, not everyone is that bothered about looks and signs of outward health & there could be compensating factors, like a nice personality!

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Hm, well I suppose I say 'bad skin' because acne is a skin disease...so it's not healthy skin.

The laws of the Darwinian jungle dictate that animals tend to look for the healthiest partner with which to reproduce, so from that POV, the unhealthy aspect of acne would put people off acne sufferers.

Though of course, not everyone is that bothered about looks and signs of outward health & there could be compensating factors, like a nice personality!

I see. I guess that mankind has evolved a bit away from the radical "look for the healthiest partner" criterion, hasn't it?

Also, there are signs of non darwinian healthiness which are considered as cute, at times. Moles, for instance. Also, in our western culture of this time, the beauty canon is more towards women the (extremely low) weight of which is probably not optimal in reproduction terms.

I don't know: do you really view yourself as a non partner fit person because of your acne (assuming that you have acne, which I guess you do)?

I personally have my own "non healthy" probme too (I stutter). I guess the same applies to it.

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Yeah, I do have moderate acne that flares up bad sometimes -almost clears off at other times.

When having a bad breakout, I don't feel at all attractive or sociable, I would be lying if I said otherwise!

I don't find signs of disease in men attractive, though I do get the point that a very beautiful person who has some flaw (like acne, or a mole or something) can still be considered beautiful. Though probably not if it was a severe physical flaw, like having black rotten teeth or terrible BO or similar!

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This back and forth is inspiring!

I wanted to add a few words: cultural norms are so ingrained and so subtly reinforced sometimes that it is hard to distinguish what is imposed and what comes from the heart.

Thank you for your thoughts, both of you. I certainly hope people will always notice first my eyes and my smile - these are truer reflections of beauty and health.

UKLady, I can totally empathize with your anti-social feelings when your pimples flare up. I too seem to have these (almost nauseating) waves in skin condition - from nearly flawless to totally horrific!

And believe me, I barely turn the lights on in my house because the fear of being seen in stark relief is so deep in me.

Why is it that we imagine we are so unloveable unless we have gorgeous, glowing, smooth skin?

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UKLady, I fully understand that you do not feel attractive when you are having a bad break out. But not feeling attractive is a different thing from not being attractive.

I don't feel attractive when I stutter. But you would be surprised how many time I was told that the stutter gives me a charm. At first when I was told this I thought "this is just pity, they don't believe one word they say". But in the end I realised it could be me being bling to people's sincerity.

Does it surprise you that someone could think that stuttering is cute (sometimes)? Have you ever met with someone with this issue if I may ask?

I reckon it is not strictly speaking a "disease", but this is only because it cannot be cured!

I get your point that a very beautiful person that has a flaw can remain beautiful despite a flaw. But I think it is fair to go one step further: a person (not necessarily very beautiful) can be made more beautiful if he or she has a charming flaw. For instance, personally, I find that Sarah Wayne Callies is made more beautiful by her slight strabism.

sprygypsy, you are perfectly correct: cultural norms are indeed so embedded in our mind that it takes a lot of work to work them out. What is worse, even when people get to realise that what they think is a cultural stereotype, they hardly even dare to say it by fear of looking stupid.

I'm sure that more people than you would think look at your eyes and smile first, even when you have acne. Or if they look at the acne, they don't think it fades the beauty of your eyes and smile (and/or anything else beautiful in you).

And I sense that it would be even more the case if you were not yourself frightned of being seen. I know it is very hard (having been myself thought the pain of accepting the image others have of my problem). But the more you do it, the easier it gets.

May I ask you what you meant by "fear of being seen in stark relief". Sorry but becasue of my poor English I did not understand the meaning of this.

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Thanks for your generous words, FrankPlk.

What I mean when I say "stark relief" is out there in the open, under light, completely unhidden, and especially if it's during the day, totally vulnerable to unsympathetic eyes (including mine if I catch a glimpse of myself in some reflective surface).

I know it sounds harsh - we are told, after all, that we are our own worst critics, though I wonder about that - and it seems I do hold myself to higher standards than others.

But my confidence in myself is so wavering partly b/c many people (both strangers and friends) have said subtly disparaging things to me about my skin.

I once dated a person who stuttered. He was a remarkable human being. His "charm" was, as you say, only enhanced by his condition. I don't want to undermine the difficulties he had throughout his life b/c of others' insensitivity, but the main difference I think is in aesthetics. A bad case of stuttering does not look bad - red, inflamed, scabby, whatever - and you could still always put your "best face forward."

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I wish this was true but it's not.

One of my best mates always comments on girls skin, 'she's lovely and all, but has horrible skin'. Normally they have 2 or 3 minor spots that's all and I would completely look past that. I suppose it's different when you have clear skin though.

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sprygypsy, judging from what you say about the person who stutter who you dated once (and the mere fact that you did date with him), you seem a very sensitive and understanding person. It's all the more sad that your confidence in yourself has been affected by certain person's remarks.

May I ask you what can of subtle (or not so subtle) remarks?

I know what you mean about feeling vulnerable to unsympathetic eyes. But why is it more when you are in your house then. Because after all this is probably where you get to met the less unsympathetic persons, isn't it? (unless you live in a wide forest with noone around you house miles away).

I don't necessarily agree that the difference is aesthetics. I can't speak for your ex date, but I personally stutter quite hard, and when I do, I tend to also contort my mouth, close my eyes, jerk my head etc. I know this sounds freaky. I can assure you it is not aesthetical at all. I don't mean to start a competition of flaws, not at all. I just mean that this unaesthetical aspect did not prevent people from finding at times my stutter cute. Not all things are equal, I completely agree.

I guess I could tell you a lot about how I struggle to build up my own self confidence and not fear to be "it stark relief", but I don't want to bore you too much.

Sheefa, I take your point, but are you sure that you best mate in question really thinks what he is saying. I mean, we know how we men are between ourselves: we would more than often say have these offending comments about women which in reality we find attractive. I'm sure your mate also says "she's lovely and all but she has too little breast", "she's lovely and all but she has braces", "she's lovely and all but she's too short" etc etc... Doesn't he?

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Lol yea it angers me when I open up a magazine and read a "clear skin article" with some fresh faced model with no acne what so ever with her face all refeshed and dewy with a towel around her nexk leading the readers to believe she just washed her face. Ugh.

And I'm not over weight or anything but the same goes for weight loss articles. It has some fit women doing push ups with skin tight pants and she looks incerdible. At the top of the page there is another model smiling about to put a celery stick in her mouth. total bs

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Lol yea it angers me when I open up a magazine and read a "clear skin article" with some fresh faced model with no acne what so ever with her face all refeshed and dewy with a towel around her nexk leading the readers to believe she just washed her face. Ugh.

Yes this is plainly ridiculous. In reality, you can be sure that the models in question wear tons of makeup for these photos. After the photo session, then only she washes her face (and the towel) and ... I'm sure than in 80% of the cases it reveals that she has acne. I would really prefer that the photo be taken at this last moment, and I am sure this would not be detrimental to the sales of the magazines. What do you think?

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Women with acne are beautiful.

I know, this sounds very provocative. Don't be too much angry right now, and let me explain myself:

I believe that beauty canons are very cultural. They are stereotypes. Look at painting from the 17th-18th century: women represented as beauty models in these would all be without any second thought considered as overweight today. In the same vein, there are african civilisations where scarring is considered beautiful and women even practice voluntary, ritual, scarring. Whereas we "modern" western people view acne scars for instance as "ugly".

So think about it considering this background: why would acne on a woman be ugly, while, for instance, freckles, who look very much the same, are considered charming (although ot be everyone).

Personally, I find girls with freckles charming. And I also find girls with acne charming, just the same. And I know many other men that think similarly, even if they would rarely dare to say it because it is hard to go against stereotypes.

So, ladies with acne, don't be shy!

Well, freckles are simply a case of unique skin pigmentation. And voluntary scarring is similar to getting a tattoo, or body piercing. It's a fashion statement.

Acne is a case of sores/infection on the skin. It indicates a health problem, and I don't believe that humans are so far removed from animals that we would find illness or disease attractive in a potential mate.

The comparisons and logic behind your argument don't really make sense.


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lol, they look "perfect" because they put a shitload of makeup on their faces, and whatever blemishes they can't hide with makeup, they use photoshop to erase. they even use photoshop to change FACIAL FEATURES, like the size of eyes and lips.. etc.

the fact of the matter is this: no one on this planet has completely clear skin except for babies and children, and imperfections make humans even more beautiful. perfection is boringly arrogant, in my opinion.

edit: even newborn babies have whiteheads and enlarged oil glands on the upper parts of their bodies, the purpose of which is to lubricate their passage through the birth canal.

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Women with acne are beautiful.

I know, this sounds very provocative. Don't be too much angry right now, and let me explain myself:

I believe that beauty canons are very cultural. They are stereotypes. Look at painting from the 17th-18th century: women represented as beauty models in these would all be without any second thought considered as overweight today. In the same vein, there are african civilisations where scarring is considered beautiful and women even practice voluntary, ritual, scarring. Whereas we "modern" western people view acne scars for instance as "ugly".

So think about it considering this background: why would acne on a woman be ugly, while, for instance, freckles, who look very much the same, are considered charming (although ot be everyone).

Personally, I find girls with freckles charming. And I also find girls with acne charming, just the same. And I know many other men that think similarly, even if they would rarely dare to say it because it is hard to go against stereotypes.

So, ladies with acne, don't be shy!

Well, freckles are simply a case of unique skin pigmentation. And voluntary scarring is similar to getting a tattoo, or body piercing. It's a fashion statement.

Acne is a case of sores/infection on the skin. It indicates a health problem, and I don't believe that humans are so far removed from animals that we would find illness or disease attractive in a potential mate.

The comparisons and logic behind your argument don't really make sense.

what? acne is a health problem?

for crying out loud, get real. even the smartest, most active, most athletic, healthiest people can be prone to acne. just because they eat a lot of bread, consume a lot of dairy products, and sweat a lot does not mean they are by any means unhealthy.

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I understand your desire to make acne more socially acceptable, but you're going at it the wrong (and false) way. This post-modernist rewriting of what some things are (big is beautiful, no it's not, obesity is a disease) is doing more harm then good.

Acne is universally considered non attractive in all cultures. While some part of attractibility can be influenced by culture (from rubenesque, to skinny minnie, from pale to tanned, etc) some are universal (T&A for women, wide hips and firm breasts and delineated waist, clear skin).

Acne represents lesions in the skin, inflammation, random patterned scars, and the collection of pus under a plug of sebum. Saying skin is bad because it has acne isn't some culturally brainwashed fact. It's simply biology. While in the 18th century having a tan meant you were a lowly brute, and now it means you're hot, in all centuries acne was considered a flaw.

Now, do people still recognise beauty in others despite acne? Of course! It may be harder, or easier, on a non-issue, or even a deal breaker for some, but it's another marker that can up or lower your general attractivity level. Thankfully you can raise it by stuff you can control, and that you're responsible for - like how funny, smart, educated, and pleasant you are.

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I understand your desire to make acne more socially acceptable, but you're going at it the wrong (and false) way. This post-modernist rewriting of what some things are (big is beautiful, no it's not, obesity is a disease) is doing more harm then good.

Acne is universally considered non attractive in all cultures. While some part of attractibility can be influenced by culture (from rubenesque, to skinny minnie, from pale to tanned, etc) some are universal (T&A for women, wide hips and firm breasts and delineated waist, clear skin).

Acne represents lesions in the skin, inflammation, random patterned scars, and the collection of pus under a plug of sebum. Saying skin is bad because it has acne isn't some culturally brainwashed fact. It's simply biology. While in the 18th century having a tan meant you were a lowly brute, and now it means you're hot, in all centuries acne was considered a flaw.

Now, do people still recognise beauty in others despite acne? Of course! It may be harder, or easier, on a non-issue, or even a deal breaker for some, but it's another marker that can up or lower your general attractivity level. Thankfully you can raise it by stuff you can control, and that you're responsible for - like how funny, smart, educated, and pleasant you are.

Wow. This is probably the first time I am "accused" of being post-modern. I don't quite know whether I should feel honoured or dishonoured/

More seriously, suzushii, allow me to humbly disagree. I like your argumentation. It is solid and respectful (and obviously you are quite a cultivated person). But, still, you don't convince me.

First, I should reiterate my point: I personally find acne attractive, at times. This is not the consequence of my (post modern?) reasoning, but the what triggers it.

I do agree with you that there are certain points which are more universal when it comes attraction. I could even agree that maybe some aspects are fully universal. But I don't agree with you list. Acne is not one of them, and underlining it in your list will not make it more of it.

Yes, of course, acne is a lesion of the skin, and all other things in you description. All these name from biology which you use sound uggly -like most scientific terms. You would make Nefertiti look uggly if you described her face with these terms. As to the notion that, ni all centuries, acne has been considered as a flaw, I fail to see what facts you bring in support to it.

Don't take me bad: I don't mean to be mean with you. Once again, I fully respect your reasonning, and I appreciate that you took time to reply to me. And it's good to be able to argue with an intelligent person. I also see where you come from: I am sure you suffer from acne, and you can be resenting my personal opinion on it as some sort of denial of your sincere opinions about it. I fully respect this. But that will not change the fact that I find acne to be sometimes attractive.

F.

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First, I should reiterate my point: I personally find acne attractive, at times. This is not the consequence of my (post modern?) reasoning, but the what triggers it.

People can become attracted by many different things, especially if they came into contact with them during their childhood (where imprinting is so much stronger). I know during my childhood I had a crush on this older guy with blue eyes, brown hair, and who was overweight. Since then I've always preffered men with those features, and who did *not* have a six pack, indeed who had a bit of a belly :D . Does this go counter to what medicine tells us of the presence of abdominal fat and its impact to the cardiovascular system and a host of other things? Yep. But attraction is a mix between what's deeply imprinted in us (our genetic make-up, our hardwired stuff) and enviromental factors (culture, events in childhood, dramatic events during our lives etc.).

See - the liking of pudginess may be an *aquired* taste of mine, but because I'm *born* heterosexual, no awesome female in my past could have possibly have made me like them. This is an example of a hardwired thing.

So, you may be attracted to people with acne, but the big picture the immense majority of people will preffer clear skin. And we know this because countless anthropologists asked themselves these questions? What is universally attractive. What is universally repelled. For example, incest is universally considered repulsive. Now, someone might say - but I am in love with my first cousin, and I'm attracted to her - culture has brainwashed us into telling us incest is bad. Here - some royalty did it, incest is okay. And see - your argument is similar. The fact that one person finds incest acceptable, the fact that one person finds acne attractive, does not take away from the general picture. Most cultures find clear skin prefferable and incest a tabu. You may say that you don't agree with it, but I'm not stating an opinion, I'm stating a fact.

Yes, of course, acne is a lesion of the skin, and all other things in you description. All these name from biology which you use sound uggly -like most scientific terms. You would make Nefertiti look uggly if you described her face with these terms. As to the notion that, ni all centuries, acne has been considered as a flaw, I fail to see what facts you bring in support to it.

I did not list the names because they sound ugly (which is pretty subjective, as I find them interesting, considering I'm a biochemist). I listed them because they describe pathological or at least malignant processes. They do not happen unless something is *wrong*. The skin's physiological function (normal) is among other things a barrier to outside bacteria, viruses and toxins. A breach in that barrier - a lesion, means that all those bad things have a way of coming in. That's why a lesion is bad. Inflammation means something foreign has been detected in the normal layers of tissue - the body riles up many cells and substances to contain the foreign agents, as most are viruses, bacteria, toxins, or simply cells which have died when they shouldn't have, in the wrong way (right being apoptosis) and shouldn't be there as they might do damage. The problem with inflammation is that despite being a reaction of a tissue to help with something, in and of itself it has bad consequences. Inflammation is at the basis of atheroma formation, and that's the stuff that clogs your arteries and gives you heart attacks.

Acne cannot be redefined as something good, as the visible aspect of acne is simply your body's way of fighting stuff that shouldn't be there. Pustules are present not only in acne, they're also there in stuff like pox. Will you say pox is beautiful? I doubt it.

So is acne beautiful? It is for you. But in the general picture, it can be anything from a mild detterent to a deal breaker. You are definitely out of the ordinary here.

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Well, this certainly does pertain to the actual title of the post, but I happen to find men with acne more appealing the men with flawless skin. One might think this is because I feel like an equivalent to him in a sense, or I feel "grounded" that way. But based on pure looks alone, acne gives a man character. BUT it does depend on the type of lesions, in my case. If I could choose where my guy had acne, it would be on the cheeks. It looks very masculine for some reason. I tend to do a double take (it an attracted way) when i see a man with far from perfect cheeks. This might sound weird, in addition to all of the rest, but my dad has really bad acne scarring on his cheeks. Isn't it true that daughters look for their father's traits in the guys they like? Or would that just be too weird.....

as for girls with acne. I am attracted to girls (though I'm not lez) who have acne in certain places. it shows that they are totally real and can offer you those little quirks we often seek in a mate. I am not particularly fond of seeing girls with forehead acne, or acne around the mouth. A little is okay. But AGAIN i have to mention the cheek area. For some reason, I could let acne go to town on any pretty girl and I would find her even more feminine.


Current Regimen:

AM: Blot or maybe rinse with water

Skin Gel by Aloe Life on pimples

Sometimes everyday minerals to cover up

PM: cleanse with jojoba oil, steam face with wash cloth and gently exfoliate (if I'm not lazy)

Skin Gel....like a mask all over my face :)

I have discovered that my acne isn't better when I am always trying to medicate it... When i wash my face every night and use specific acne solutions, my acne is no better. I once went 5 days without washing (out of pure laziness actually) I even wore makeup and all that jazz haha ew, and my skin didn't get worse. I find I have less big pimples, and whatever I do have there is dried up fantastically by the aloe gel.

I'm pretty sure the root cause of my acne is completely internal...hormonal most likely.


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what? acne is a health problem?

for crying out loud, get real. even the smartest, most active, most athletic, healthiest people can be prone to acne. just because they eat a lot of bread, consume a lot of dairy products, and sweat a lot does not mean they are by any means unhealthy.

Um, yes. Acne IS a health problem. It's classified as a disease, and I believe that diseases count as "health problems" unless medical terminology has radically changed its definitions. Your assumption that acne is only caused by eating the wrong foods or "sweating a lot" is absolutely hysterical. Thanks for giving me a giggle today. ;)

This thread is pointless. It's fine to say that you individually find acne attractive, but society does not. Comparing it to things like fashionable scarification or freckles is ridiculous. This isn't even a debate, it's just an opinion that was dressed up like one.


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Tygersjyn, I don't really see your point. You say the thread is pointless, that I'm just giving my opinion. But what can be the point of a post if not giving one's opinion?

suzushii I don't think were are so far apart. The point is: some people like acne. We probably disagree on how many. You would say one me -but then look at the post from Katt99, that's two of us. I would say, more than just the two of us, but of course a minority. When does the opinion of minority stop being an exception to become a minority feature within a culture? I don't know. This is up for discussion.

But the point is that some people like acne. Then, I'd like to ask you: did you know that? And if not, is it not true that people with acne should know this as it may change (be it in a minor way) their perspective?

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