We remember. We will always remember. Thank you for everything, guys. You’re still number one in our hearts.
Marcelo gave his club teammate Luka Modrić a big hug in the tunnel before kickoff in World Cup 2014
Xabi Alonso’s reactions | 24.5.2014
1- After Bale’s miss 0-1 (66’)
2- Bale’s goal 2-1
3 -After Bale’s miss 0-1 (77’)
4- Before the 2nd half ends. 1-1 (90’+5)
5- Marcelo’s goal 3-1
This Dermablend ad with Cassandra Bankson (there’s also other ones in their “Camo Confession” series) has been circulating online and gathering mixed, but mostly negative feedback and criticisms. People are finding it hard to reconcile the message of having to cover up yourself just to be yourself. Even if she’s saying that she uses it to be more creative in expressing her true self or how by covering up the imperfections by which people judged her by, she is now able to show her character and personality instead. Dermablend is most probably trying to copy or ride on Dove’s “Real Beauty” campaign. I absolutely understand the backlash – it’s an advertisement for a beauty product, after all. It’s kind of like that line: “you use it, not to cover your flaws, but to enhance your beauty,” which is often times just a marketing gimmick, but I think it could also be true depending on the situation.
I first discovered Cassandra Bankson when her foundation tutorial + acne revelation video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ex33wtqnNz8) had gone viral on YouTube a few years ago, which ultimately, in a way, catapulted her into some level of internet fame. I don’t watch a lot of her videos anymore (which are mostly beauty and wellness tutorials) – because they are lengthy as heck and she talks wayyy too much – but I remember that first one really struck a chord with me as I have struggled with skin problems all throughout my life (and still do so.) I would think that to anyone who have had really bad acne, while the media posts pictures of beautiful models with perfect (or perhaps, airbrushed) skin, her unveiling had a powerful impact.
The last time I remember having completely flawless skin was back in fourth grade. I got my period when I was 10-years-old and started breaking out quite awfully around the age of 11. Being the eldest kid in the family and the first of the cousins in the clan – I never really had anyone show me how I was supposed to take care of my skin. Or that I even had to take care of it, for that matter. I grew up in the Philippines where having a fair “mestiza” complexion is deemed ideal and beautiful (as with the typical colonial mentality, it supposedly reflects status – that must mean you do not slave away working under the sun all day!) and so all I have known growing up was to stay out of the sun for the sake of my “beauty” and that was it.
Suddenly, bam!, I had to deal with acne (mostly whiteheads and blackheads, but other times, very disgusting cystic acne), initially dealt with it immaturely (I would not go into detail), and tried EVERYTHING to treat it ever since I was 12-years-old: all kinds of facial treatments (glycolic, deep pore, paraffin, etc), Glytone, Proactiv, estrogen-progestin pills, various chemical peels (they hurt!), microdermabrasion, tea tree oil, salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, laser treatments, baking soda, lemon or calamansi, toothpaste, earth clay, cutting back on dairy or sugar or nuts or eggs, and the list goes on. I would have tried Accutane, had my dermatologist prescribed it, and had it not been extremely expensive nor hard to purchase in Manila. Ultimately, none of them worked perfectly for me – some did for a time, but then stopped working (like Glytone and Proactiv); some worked amazingly well but had some major side effects (the pills made me depressed and even more batshit crazy than usual); some only worsened the situation (baking soda was a REALLY bad idea.)
I’m lucky enough that I was not blatantly bullied nor were people mean to me because of my acne or because of my looks. Not that I can remember, anyway. But, I definitely received various, and mostly unsolicited, comments and advice from numerous people over the years. Such as:
“You probably don’t wash you face often enough.” I did and I do.
“You probably wash your face too often.” Okay, maybe I was guilty of this for some time.
“You probably always eat a lot of fried, oily things.” No, not really.
“It might be your shampoo, get your hair our of your face.” And I did.
“You should have slapped your face with the bloody underwear of your first period!” Don’t ask if you don’t get it, it’s an extremely strange and gross Filipino menstruation myth, and granted how many of my friends with amazingly flawless skin claimed to have done it or to have had it done to them, I sometimes wish I did it.
A long time ago, I was in a drugstore browsing the make-up section when a saleslady came up to assist me. By assist, I mean, go on a tirade of backhanded compliments. “This is perfect for your skin complexion, especially since you have big pores and you want to cover up those breakouts.” Before I could stop myself, I heard my snarky voice say, “Is that what you use for your super flaky skin?” Admittedly, it was not my best moment.
So, there was acne, then there was also dermatographia, which came out of nowhere, developed in high school, and I’ve left untreated – it’s pretty harmless. Most of the time it’s fun, interesting, and even entertaining when I’m bored. But not when it’s PE class and a ball hits me ever so lightly on the face and still leaves an awful red mark for a few hours, or when I’ve been shopping or lugging bags over my arms all day and somebody sees the imprints, the redness, and the welts and then awkwardly ask if I cut myself. Which I never did. I may have suffered from depression from time to time, but it has fortunately, never been that bad.
I’m in my late 20’s, I have acne scars to deal with but I still get pretty harsh cystic acne breakouts from time to time. It took me years to accept my skin for what it is, I was just unlucky in the genetic lottery, and have learned to deal with it and, most especially, take care of it. Even when some mornings are rather tough when I have to look at the mirror under harsh or bright lighting. I just make a face and tell myself to suck it up. I never actually wore any make-up when I was growing up unless it was for special occasions like someone’s wedding or my graduation. I only really started to wear some make-up on a regular basis when I moved to Canada and even up to now, I’m not entirely sure why I did. Maybe partly because every other girl I know does, and partly because I believe it really is just another aspect of how I present and express myself, just as how I choose to wear a certain piece of clothing or accessory, I can freely opt to choose to wear lipstick or mascara if I feel like it. And while some people might deem it as a form of vanity or narcissism, I would like to think it’s an acceptable way to express one’s individuality and that caring about how one presents oneself to others is healthy up to a certain level. If we didn’t care a single bit, we’d probably all look like unrecognizable hairy cavemen with a hundred layers of dead skin cells. Which could be attractive to some people, you never know.
I could write about insecurity or being self-conscious, growing up and beyond, but those are my own personal issues. I am aware that there are much much BIGGER issues to be explored about beauty and vanity; society’s unrealistic standards of “real” beauty; inner beauty vs superficial beauty; having a healthy self-image; cosmetics as health hazards, etc, and these things must be continuously discussed. I’m not exactly sure why I decided to write this lengthy post, but I felt the need to personally articulate my own thoughts on the issue based on my own experiences, and thought it might be a good idea, even if somewhat jarring, to share them. Most especially since this is something I have never really talked to anyone about, because talking about it draws attention to it, and in my head, I can see people with magnifying glasses already zooming in on my pores or the zit on my chin.
But I guess one thing I’d like bring up the simple concept of openness and kindness, which is possibly something most of us struggle with more than we could ever care to admit. In the way we see, address, and treat each other, men or women, as human beings; and even more so in the way we see and feel about ourselves. I’d like to think that people are made of multiple layers – physically, emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually – and one single layer, do not define their entire being. As cheesy or cliche as it might come off, I have eventually learned to remind myself that each person has the freedom to be and to do whatever makes them happy and to fully express themselves however they would like to (provided they are not hurting any other person). If wearing make-up makes you truly happy, then by all means, do so. If you feel totally happy otherwise, then do so as well. Because really, happiness in itself something that must be celebrated and not questioned. Because happiness, in any shape or form, is beautiful.
…Okay, lengthy rambling rant over.