Kali Kushner is a 22-year-old woman who is helping beat the stigma of adult acne, one Instagram post at a time.
According to Business Insider, Kushner had always had clear skin up until her 20s when she suddenly developed an onslaught of cystic acne that covered roughly 75% of her face.
Not knowing what to do, the young woman attempted a number of skin regimens (from the famous Asian oil cleansing method, to the caveman method, as well as a number of different skin creams and lotions), but nothing seemed to work.
After trying to battle her cystic acne for about a year, Kushner finally decided to visit a dermatologist who prescribed her 6 months of isotretinoin medication. Within only a few weeks she began noticing a shocking difference and decided to chronicle her skin journey on Instagram.
She tells Marie Claire, “I honestly didn’t start the account with any idea or goal of getting noticed. I was just trying to keep track of my progress as I went through my 6-month prescription of Accutane.”
Kali began posting before and after pictures on her Instagram account alongside a bunch of skin-related hashtags. In the end, her content must have resonated with her audiences, as the young woman has quickly gone viral, with the myfacestory Instagram account garnering over 29, 600 followers.
“I used to think it was odd because I really didn’t do anything magical,” she tells Marie Claire. “I just took Accutane and a bunch of selfies.
“Now I realize that the reason people are so dedicated to following my story is because nobody actually posts stuff like this.”
According to The Dermatologist, acne can be the source of a number of negative psychological effects for the person experiencing it. The article states that while most cases develop in adolescence, more and more adults are being referred to dermatologists for acne care, with one study (via The Dermatologist) stating that roughly 18% of women develop acne after the age of 25.
In the interview with Marie Claire, Kushner says, “Acne is so hush-hush and shamed in society, and having clean skin is the epitome of beauty, so if you dare have a zit or a breakout— and if you dare take a picture of it— it’s almost like something’s wrong with you, which is so false.”
And she’s right. Oftentimes people misunderstand the causes of acne, assuming sufferers are dirty or inconsistent with washing their face. Realistically, it’s more so a mixture of hormones, blood sugar, and genetics.
“Yet,” she says, “people look down upon it as if it’s something you’re not trying hard enough to fix, which is what I try to dispel in my Instagram.”
More women should be willing to show the world their breakouts. Despite what models and advertising try to tell us, nobody is perfect and acne is nothing to be ashamed of. Although society isn’t quite at that point yet, I’d just like to give a shoutout to all the courageous women like Kali who have finally learned to love the skin they’re in.
The world needs more of you.
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