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Readers Respond: How Has Acne Affected Your Life?

Responses: 112


Updated March 25, 2013

From the article: Acne and Your Self Esteem

Not all acne scars are ones you can see. Although acne is a skin problem, the effects of acne can extend much deeper. For many, acne negatively influences their self-esteem and self-image.

How has having acne affected you?

Are you less confident and more reserved? Do you spend more time (and money) on makeup, or run from family photo-ops? Or has acne not changed the way you feel about yourself at all? Share your thoughts, feelings, and what you do to boost your self-esteem.

Share Your Thoughts

I feel ugly and hopeless.

I'm going to be a freshman, and already I'm dreading it. I feel like I'll just be known as "pimple face girl" or whatever. All those inspirational messages I read about loving my body for what it is go out the window when I look in the mirror. All I see are whiteheads. My sister successfully treated her acne with creams, and I can't understand why I'm not getting the same results. Acne has stolen my self-confidence because whenever I see a picture of myself with or without makeup, I automatically see all those little bumps all over my face and nothing else. I am the only person in my group of friends that has acne. I'm frustrated at nothing working to control it. I broke down in my dermatologist's office a few months ago when I was prescribed yet ANOTHER cream/pill combo. I'm terrified that everyone thinks I'm a fake and ugly because of all the makeup I wear to hide it. I just want my acne to go away so I can get my self-confidence and life back. Is that really too much to ask? :(
—Guest M

No One Understands

Hi. I'm 38 years old and struggled with BAD acne since the 7th grade. It would get so bad that there were days that I wouldn't go to school because I didn't want to be looked at. My cousins would call me names and make fun of me and it was just very hurtful. It wasn't until after I was about 20 years old that the pimples went away but left me with HORRIBLE deep scarring! As if pimples weren't bad enough! This has consumed me and hurts every single day! I hate looking at myself in the mirror and at people for that matter. I feel like they are staring at my scarring and thinking.."omg...look at her skin!" My self esteem is really bad and even though I have support from my family... it still doesn't take away the pain of what it is like to be like this every single day. Oh and did I mention that on top of this I have oily skin? Well, yes I do!! Any tips on how to try to improve this??
—Guest So Emotional

It's worse when it's sometimes good

I'm also 34 and have struggled with hormonal acne since puberty. I've had clear periods, even being flattered for my pretty skin and modeling semi-professionally. Having trained as an esthetician in my 20's I know what products, nutrition, and antibiotics/hormonal prescriptions to request. After several bad relationships and career false starts, 90% due to acne flareups and feeling suddenly socially crippled until I fixed again, and a particularly bad year of major life crises happening in rapid succession, I find myself sagging and wrinkled having lost facial volume with age and from crying and afraid of the world (and the sun, and cosmetics, from my education) all my old scars and wide pores re-emerging , plus new hormonal breakouts/weight gain-loss from trying antidepressants and tranquilizers. I've abandoned dating, as I can only be seen/photograph myself on good days. Beauty gone, no career or social life, emotionally broken.
—Guest Hi Guest Sad

Honest, it gets better

It pains me to see these young people feeling so badly. Please know that as you age, the severity of the scarring decreases; mine has, and it did rule my life for years. I was one of 6 girls in my family and I am the only one who has scarring over 70% of my face. Try whatever helps you and PLEASE know that as you get older, it will soften, and so will the sadness. I felt awful about myself, too; felt I looked abnormal, unloveable, etc. and it just isn't true! As I tell myself now (with age behind me), It is what it is! Please don't give up on yourself because of it. You're a worthwhile person, even if you don't feel that way today. I have been where you are - all of you, and I can tell you, you are NOT your skin...You are so much more.
—Guest Suzeeee

My feelings too!

I also had a bad scars on my face and tried everything, everything (homemade masks, chemicals, all things). I feel bad and no one can imagine how it is painful for me. I feel ugly and all my friends are better and beautiful. And also I cannot tell any one about my feeling coz no body will know how it means. Sometimes I cry at night. I also cannot find words to explain how I feel but you speak well about that, finally we should inspire our selves and stay strong and optimistic and hope that there will be a cure for that.
—Guest mona

Acne has ruined my life

I had acne since the 6th grade. My mom decided to give me a remedy that only worsened my acne. She saw how much it bothered me and decided to take me to a dermatologist so I started taking a drug to stop acne, which already was dominating my face. The drug began to show results and I was excited, but I did not know what was coming: the scars. I think this is the worst part because it will stay with you forever. I'm doing some treatments to solve this but I'm not seeing good results and I'm worried because it spends too much money and I'm leaving my parents in cramped conditions. Besides I hate myself so much for these scars, I can not leave the house because I fear what people will think of me. I pretend I don't care but I do. I avoid everything possible to look myself in the mirror because whenever that happens I feel bad. The even worse is that I get compared myself to the other girls, I never feel confident enough to be happy again, that's so unfair.
—Guest Gabby


Everyone read this pleasee!!!! I used to have terrible cystic acne! I started getting acne around 5th grade. It got worse and worse as the years went on. It wasnt regular acne. I had these huge cyst like things all over my face. It was so painful. It hurt to smile or laugh or eat or move my face, depending where the pimples were. I never went a day without acne. I couldnt leave the house without a face caked with makeup. I was seld concious and felt so ugly. No matter what i tried, nothing worked. Nothing. It was in my genetics. My mom suffers from the same problem i did. I had no self confidence and depression. I just wanted normal skin like everyone else. When i was 18 i heard of accutane. Listen to me, you might of heard accutane horror stories or the negative side effects, but TRUST ME, It is 100% worth it. You take pills for 4-6 months that give you dry lips and skin and you have to get blood work once a month... But after thats all over...You have perfectly CLEAR skin.
—Guest Sara

I wish I looked normal

I've had acne since I was 12. It didn't start out bad maybe a few pimples here or there. Only when I turned 15 has it been a daily thing. I'm 24 years old and acne is daily and controls my life. I stopped going to college, hanging out with friends, even talking to my family. Because all people notice is my face and the million scars/pimples. I can't go a day without my mom making a comment about it. Like "gee maybe you should try this, not doing that, try this, don't wear makeup...." It kills me. Can't she understand it doesn't matter what I do or not do. I will continue to look like this big fat freak. Pizza face. I mean I cry myself to sleep, barley look in the mirror unless I'm covering up with a ton of makeup. I hate myself, and sometimes wish I wasn't born. What did I do to deserve looking this way forever? I don't even talk to boys and my sister had the nerve to tell me look for someone with low standards.
—Guest Dylan

Acne and scarring ruining my life

I'm a 17 year old girl that has been battling acne since the beginning of my sophomore year in high school. I am currently ending my junior year and now I'm on my last month of accutane after trying EVERYTHING. The acne is gone but now I have been obsessing over my deep scarring and red scarring. I cry myself to sleep every night because I feel like people are judging me and no guy is going to be interested in me with my scarring. Acne has ruined my life completely I just feel like people are just judging my skin. I always tell myself I will never be good enough for anyone to date. I used to be outgoing and now I seclude myself from my friends. I would do ANYTHING to be able to look in the mirror and have flawless skin. No one knows how painful it is to have imperfections in a society like today that is forced to want us to be and look perfect.
—Guest Elaina

Acne had ruined me.

Hi, I'm a 15 year old girl with a month left in my freshmen year of highschool. I started getting acne in the 5th grade, I remember my friends (at the time) saying things like "ew look at that huge pimple" it really hurt my confidence. When I entered middle school my acne got worse by the middle of my 8th grade year my acne was all over my cheeks & forhead. Now I have really bad scarring all over and I still breakout regularly. My face is also covered in black heads, I'm very good at washing my face twice a day and using acne creams and moisterising.. I have zero confidence. All my friends are more pretty then me. I feel ugly and worthless. I look in the mirror, then cry my self to sleep it hurts so bad I just want to be able to love myself.
—Guest Hanna

I can barely look in the mirror

I'm in 9th grade and I'm 15. I started getting acne since I was in the 4th grade. I was 10 at the time and I had a clear face before then... Until I got my first few pimples and they were on my forehead and I remember my best friend at the time was laughing at me and she was like "What's that on your face!?" And she started laughing and pointing. That was the first time I ever got made fun of for my acne and it felt horrible. From there it just kept getting worse Every year. In 5th or 6th grade I used to pop my zits. I regret popping them so much I should have just left them alone. I feel like nobody really wanted to talk to me cause of all my acne and they just stared at my face. In the 7th grade these boys would always tell me I needed proactiv and laughed at me. It hurt so bad because I tried so many products and I didn't know if it would ever get better. Girls would make fun of me too for my face and it made me have no confidence. I eventually started wearing make up to cover up my acne.
—Guest Grace

Battle Scars

Hi I'm Truman and I'm fifteen years old. I've been battling acne for 3 1/2 years since the summer before sixth grade. I always break out when I'm stressed and I was the first to get acne in my class. In fact a lot of the kids in my grade haven't even broken out yet. It's been very emotionally demanding over the last years. Thankfully, my face has actually gotten better this year. Unfortunately, years of cystic acne has left me with little pink marks on my cheeks. No bumps or holes, just weird pigmentation. I really don't want to wear makeup and it's very heartbreaking that even after years of battling acne, it's still left me with marks on my face.
—Guest Truman

I hate God for cursing me!

Hi everyone I'm Carl! I had acne when I was 14 years it was very terrible huge reddish & painful. I hate my self & God! All my friends have clear skin! I struggle a lot when I want to take a picture! I've got to apply make up all over my bad face! Sometimes it still shows even though I used make up! Its been 6 years now! My face still popping more of it each day! They come out like an Army on my face! Dark spots every where I look like a monster! I'm not attractive! I don't have dreams hope & happiness! I feel different from other girls! They look nice their face is spotless & healthy! Boys always tells them how cute they are! They always post cute pictures on facebook with their pretty face! They look happy & stress free! But I'm NOT!
—Guest Carl

My acne struggle so far

I am currently 19 years old and have suffered from acne ever since around 9th grade. I can honestly say it has emotionally crippled me. I avoid social situations like parties and gatherings. I wouldn't even know how to start talking to a girl now despite having multiple girlfriends in the past. I honestly felt like I was going to be doomed to sit around my house and watch movies of other people living life for the rest of my days. After discovering this site and hearing everyone else's struggle as well it gives me hope because for every acne story out there there's another story about someone who miraculously healed their acne. So speaking from experience not just in the past but now as well I have to say don't give up on yourself or your idea of happiness. Don't let acne hold you back as I have for so long. You realize that you miss out on so many fun things in life that you simply regret the time you waste. Make the best with what you have and pray for the rest. Peace.
—Guest lifesagift

My acne teenage years

Acne is one thing i have known almost all my life. I remember that I used to get few pimples around an age of 11/12 years. It wasnt really bad but it was quite embarrassing in comparing to my pimples free faced friends. Throughout the years my acne got better, I still get some pimples here and there, but I have left mainly with this ugly scaring all over my face. I can honestly say that acne ruined my teenage years, right now I am 17 years old girl with zero confidence and self-esteem. I used to get terrible looks on my face and also few ugly comments. Everyday I compare myself to my friends with clear skins and I am ashamed of myself. I am taking birth control because that is only thing that is helping me. So I gained a few pounds. I am not obese or anything but it put my confidence even lower. I can relate to anyone in this article, hopefully there will be someone one day who can cure this disease and future generations wont have to struggle with this problem...
—Guest Acne suffering teenager

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How Has Acne Affected Your Life?

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  1. About.com
  2. Health
  3. Acne
  4. Living with Acne
  5. Your Self-Esteem
  6. Acne Scars - Emotional Acne Scars

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