Our skin can at times have a painful physical and mental hold over us. Especially when it comes to acne. Today’s blog takeover is by the angelic Harmony Butcher, whose skin confidence journey has been like many of us – filled with highs and lows.
By drawing on her personal experience, Harmony is passionate about spreading a message of value that encourages girls and women of all ages to embrace and love themselves just the way they are.
Table of Contents
Hey Harmony, how has your skin journey been so far?
A roller coaster! Haha.
Throughout my teenage years I never really experienced heavy or severe acne breakouts… just the occasional hormonal pimple. I considered myself very lucky that I didn’t experience it as I witnessed a lot of my friends go through tough journeys with their skin. The first time I experienced a heavy breakout was in 2018. This was due to a lot of stress and bad mental & physical habits.
I used a ‘band aid’ to ‘fix’ this… And later, I went on the pill and was prescribed a low dose of Doxycycline for a few months. My skin cleared very well after this. However, I was still struggling mentally and I wasn’t putting any energy, effort, or focus on healing INTERNALLY.
At the beginning of 2020, I started to break out again. My acne became severe and it was very painful (literally and also metaphorically). I didn’t want to leave the house because I was too embarrassed and I was too afraid of what people might have thought.
My skin’s physical state was giving me a lot of warning signs that my internal state was in desperate need of attention, healing, and wholeness. I had to make a conscious decision that I wasn’t going to let my happiness be dictated by something that was external and ever-changing (even though this was very hard).
I was able to heal my skin through medication as well as natural remedies and I am now on a journey with my skin naturopath, Hayley, to keep the internal healing constant and consistent. She has been a massive help and I am very grateful for her.
I had to learn to be content and choose every day to be happy in my skin – to choose not to wait for it to be ‘better’ to be happier… but to be happy regardless of what my exterior appearance looked like. And what I had to learn is to love who I am, where I am, AS I AM.
What have you learned during this journey?
I am beyond grateful for this journey I have been on as it has taught me so many invaluable lessons that I would have never otherwise learned and it has helped me become the person I am today. Also, I am so grateful for the health professionals that helped me along my journey. I am grateful for my improved mental state and the positive and joy-filled outlook that I now have on life, myself, and others… AND I am forever grateful for my husband, family, and friends who were amazing and supportive every step of the way.
Something that I wished that I learned a lot sooner was that despite how I may feel, clear, poreless, and ‘perfect’ skin does not make you ‘pretty’ or ‘beautiful’. Being your authentic self shines far beyond the eye can see and this is what makes you beautiful. I hope this can be a kind, gentle and beautiful reminder for you today, too.
Do you have rituals or products that helped you along your way to being more confident in the skin that you are in?
Being confident in your skin starts with being 100% confident in your true, authentic self.
There is nothing more beautiful than a woman who is unapologetically confident with her TRUE self.
The number one ritual that I have that has helped me more than anything to accept myself and be confident in my skin is to speak positive confessions over myself. To this day, I have notes all over my mirror at home with words of affirmation and encouragement. I sometimes say these out loud and other times I just re-write them in my journal. Some of my favorites are:
- “The greatness of my life’s entire existence does not depend on what I look like”
- “Another woman’s beauty is not the absence of my own. I can CELEBRATE HER whilst still appreciating me”
- “Be bold, brave, and yourself”
- “I am beautiful because I am ME”
- “I am grateful that my body is a vessel that allows me to enjoy and experience life to the FULL!”
My favorite products and natural remedies that helped during the toughest period of my skin journey:
- QV foaming cleanser and QV night moisturizer. I needed a very simple and minimal skincare routine and I highly recommend QV
- I found Tee Tree oil worked wonders for my acne
- My other favorite ritual that I did every night during the toughest part of my skin journey was to use a warm face washer and just hold it on my face. It relieved swelling, redness, and pain of the acne.
My favorite products that I use EVERY day (now):
- Dermaviduals skincare (cleansing milk, lotion, base cream high classic plus, sunscreen SPF). Dermaviduals is an all-natural skincare and if I had my time again I would have used their products from the beginning!
- I also use the Rosehip oil from Biologi
- Monthly facials with Hayley (she is the owner of Solstice Skin in Bondi)
- I recently introduced the LUNA 3 to my morning and nighttime routine and I say with no word of a lie that I have used it EVERY day!!!! It leaves my skin feeling so smooth and because it FEELS good, I believe it helps my confidence.
The beauty industry can oftentimes be a hard place to establish one’s confidence. What are your tips for nurturing a better relationship with yourself?
A great place to start is to understand that we aren’t born hating ourselves, our body, or our skin. We have LEARNED to do this. I have seen one too many ‘beauty tip’ blogs, articles, beauty campaigns, etc. that are bombarding our society with a message that you ‘need this’, have to ‘wear that’ and should ‘look like this’ to measure up to our society’s unattainable and unrealistic standards of beauty.
It is time to RE-DEFINE beauty. Being beautiful shouldn’t have anything to do with your external appearance. Instead, it should have everything to do with WHO you are, the state of your mind, and the quality of your heart & soul.
We need to raise a generation of women who don’t find their worth in their appearance. A generation that are freedom fighters and value placers. A generation that loves fearlessly, is kind above all else, and is passionate about lifting each other up. It is time to redefine beauty so that we can nurture a better relationship with ourselves!
I go into depth on 8 great tips for improving your body image that has helped me on my journey to nurturing a better relationship with myself on my blog.
The summary of these points are:
- Speak positive confessions
- Celebrate your body
- Focus on positive qualities
- Identify and remove triggers
- Surround yourself with positive people
- Develop a mantra/positive affirmation
- Limit social media activity
- Practice gratitude
What is your advice for those who are fighting acne?
There is soooo much that I could say and would love to say about this topic! And it is hard to compress everything into a short answer. But, what I want to leave you with is to make sure that you have compassion for yourself. Be kind to yourself and be proud of your progress and understand that progress and the journey are not linear and it looks different for everyone. Try and enjoy the journey as much as you can and enjoy getting to know yourself.
It is easier to stay stagnant and ignore the fact that there is a lot of unlearning and relearning to do! Also, it’s a BRAVE and courageous thing to decide to work on yourself and unlearn years of patterns of behaving and thinking… be proud of yourself for deciding to be better for yourself. Celebrate the small wins. Always.
I congratulate you and I am so PROUD of you.
You are worth it.