This trending Instagram campaign is encouraging women to celebrate their acne

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Viola Levy
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#freethepimple is trending on Instagram, encouraging women to celebrate their skin conditions without concealer.

For years, we’ve been made to feel that less-than-perfect skin is something to be ashamed of. This pressure can have a negative effect on our mental health, but luckily, the tide is beginning to turn. In the last few months, thousands of women have embraced a new era of skin positivity – a shift that platforms like Instagram have been instrumental in bringing about.

Examples of the skin positivity movement are everywhere. In February, Stylist photographed and interviewed four women with adult acne for a major foundation- and concealer-free shoot, while Cult Beauty founder Alexia Inge noted in a recent post that certain acne-shaming photos of Cameron Diaz 15 years ago would never be acceptable today. 

And now, an online campaign is taking things a step further – going from shaming to celebrating skin conditions in a bold way.

The #freethepimple campaign encourages women with skin conditions to take a break from their cover-up methods and anti-acne treatments and proudly share photographs of their skin to the world, to reassure fellow sufferers that they’re not alone and reiterate that their natural complexions are nothing to be ashamed of.

The movement was founded by model and acne sufferer Louisa Northcote, who initially posted a video about her skin on Instagram back in March.

“I spent so many years covering [acne] up, having it affect my day, affect my life and affect my mental health but now I embrace it as it is part of who I am,” she explained in the video’s caption. 

The #freethepimple hashtag has sparked hundreds of responses, with other women posting selfies of their skin, accompanied by captions telling their own stories.

The #freethepimple movement is a bold step forward for skin positivity. And while there’s nothing wrong with wanting to be blemish-free, it takes the pressure off the idea that only perfect complexions are acceptable. 

Hopefully, the campaign can inspire more women to have a better relationship with their skin in the process – pimples and all.

Main image: iStock