Monday, 5 September 2016

Loving Your Skin: Are Freckles A Sign of Beauty?

The skin is the largest organ of the body and one of the most sensitive subjects to talk about. Intuitive issues such as confidence or the lack of it, self esteem and self image do emanate from how people feel about their skin colour, skin type or a certain type of skin condition they may have.

Loving Your Skin: A Case Study
Some time ago, I came across Brock Elbank's project on freckles which I found really interesting. Elbank, a British photographer, launched his project in 2012 whilst in Sydney Australia. He attended a soccer match and asked to take a picture of his friend’s freckled son, Eddie. His portraits have now become viral but the message has not been lost in the frenzy!





What are Freckles? 

Freckles sit on the top layer of our skin which is called the epidermis. They could be said to be an abnormal collection of melanin pigment, packaged in a different way than a normal melanin pigment is packaged as in dark skin.  Melanin is a substance that gives our hair and skin its natural colour. Simply explained, the more melanin a person has, the darker their skin will be. 

Freckles, particularly common in people with fair skin are flat, tanned circular spots typically the size of the head of a common nail and are commonly found on the face. They can also be found on the neck, shoulders, chest, arms and back. Sometimes having freckles is just hereditary. People with red hair and green eyes are said to be prone to this skin condition. 

Loving Your Skin Can Be Tough
Where Is the Beauty in Having Spots? This, no doubt, is a tough question to answer. I'm a woman with even, dark skin so I have no idea of what it feels like to be freckled. However, when I write from the position of being a skin care specialist and beauty consultant, then I have some understanding. 

Due to the work I do, I have seen, first-hand, how people feel about their skin especially when they have a serious skin condition. I believe, having freckles is not dissimilar to the feelings of low self-image and low self-esteem experienced by some of my clients. Infact, Elbank did mention that "Ninety-nine percent of the people documented so far have struggled with their freckles, felt different, alienated. Many received teasing, bullying and verbal abuse". (Source: www.Today.com)

The First Step to Loving Your Skin 

Self Acceptance is the first step to loving your skin and it starts from within. Indeed, Elbank did mention (in the same article) that many of the people he photographed who hated their freckles as a child, have now found peace to embrace the skin their in, as they've grown older. This is not an easy decision.

However, the reason why I love Brock Elbank's project is the fact that it looks at beauty from a different angle. "Every human has beauty in their appearance in some shape or form," he told Today.com via email.

This leaves me to say that beauty is unique. Beauty is different and there is some beauty in having spots. It's a tough one!

The Other Side of Love

If you are really struggling to accept your freckles, I will suggest you speak to a psychologist or counselor or see a skin therapist. There are some things you can do to lessen the appearance of freckles such as laser treatment. 

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Radiance and love,

Wumi
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