imPERFECTions, teen’s view on acne


Graphic by Madeline Slusher

Acne is a big source of insecurity for teens. This graphic highlights the face of many throughout our school.

SKIN is the thin layer of tissue forming the natural outer covering of the body of a person,” but what if, he wonders, the skin is immersed with acne. He stares at the definition of wondering, Is he weird? Is he normal? Is he ugly?

Most teens are accustomed to acne, insecurities, and anxieties about themselves, due to one or more imperfections.

“Acne is a normal thing, but people can get really self-conscious,” freshman Jasmine Wigger said.  “They shouldn’t feel self-conscious because people need to understand and know it’s normal for people our age to have acne.”

According to (American Academy of Dermatology), ‘acne is the most common skin condition in the United States, affecting up to 50 million Americans annually’. Among that number, ‘More than 85% of teenagers have acne’ according to

Teens try many products to help, but many students question if it’s worth it.

“Lots of teens stress about acne and go out and buy millions of products to obtain ‘the perfect look,’ but it really shouldn’t be like that,” junior Darian Belcher said. “Acne, especially in our teen years, goes away eventually and more importantly that doesn’t define who you are.”

Many students have opinions about labeling and stigmatizing acne.

“I think the main stigma is that acne means that a person is not clean, or is unsanitary,” junior Kelsey Green said. “These types of assumptions can be especially hard for teens who look to peers for acceptance and guidance. It can also lead to misinformation about what products you should put on your face, which can cause more damage or scarring.”

Damage can be caused externally with improper use of products,  but internal damage can be difficult to fix with acne.

According to a survey done by, “Acne can be very harmful to mental health. Of those surveyed, a staggering 96% of people with acne have reported feeling depressed over their condition. This has led 46% to develop self-esteem issues over their complexions, and 14% of acne sufferers have even reported feeling suicidal over their skin.”

Many students have their own perspective on building self-confidence in a negative society.

“I would say to just be unapologetically you, personally, I don’t care what people think about me in general, but it’s taken a while for me to obtain that mentality,” Belcher said.

Whether it’s a personal choice to get rid of acne or not, many students think society should not be the deciding factor.

“It was definitely a personal choice,” Green said. “My acne isn’t too bad and I’m lucky for that, but I chose to find products and live a healthy lifestyle for clear skin.”  

Some students have their own way of diminishing their acne and have advice for others.

“Honestly find a good acne scrub from the drug store and try to stay stress-free,” Green said.  “Also making sure you eat healthy foods that aren’t too sugary or greasy can help. A breakout is sometimes inevitable but if you take the right steps it can help with the frequency and intensity of the pimples.”

Limiting the number of cosmetics can also help lessen acne.

“I virtually never wear makeup,” Belcher said.  “If I do, it’s only because I’m a fan of a good ‘natural look’. Every morning I put on some moisturizer and Elf dewy coconut refreshing mist and occasionally I will do a peel off or a hydrating face mask.”

Other students feel that a healthy lifestyle doesn’t always have to be completely clear skin.

“I would say that acne is definitely not the end of the world and as long as you don’t point it out half the time people won’t notice,” junior Rylee Hampton said. “I think acne is something that will definitely be accepted over time. I think people need to accept it and stop wasting money on skin care products for their own beautiful skin.”

Acne is just a part of being a teenager.

“Acne is a naturally occurring thing that happens to everyone so in a real sense we shouldn’t be insecure at all,” Belcher said, “Acne is something that we all experience, and it’s an important part of growing up.”