As a teenager in Dubai, I was one of those girls who had clear skin. No it wasn’t flawless (I did have dry patches) but at least my face wasn’t festering with red spots. I didn’t apply any creams nor lotions nor any makeup. I didn’t need to. That all changed when I arrived Australia at the age of 16. It was all going smooth until my mum observed this redness on my right cheek. When I peered into the mirror, I realised I had become victim to someone’s fit of frenzy jealousy. What I didn’t realise was my days of clear skin had ended and that I would look at someone’s flawless face and ache for what I used to be.
I turned 22 a couple of months ago and while most of my friends are over that awkward acne filled, braced up stages of their lives, all dolled up and pretty, I am sitting in front of my bedroom mirror contemplating whether to apply a week (or 2 weeks) of absence from university to tend to this ginormous volcanic eruption that is about to occur on my forehead. It almost looks like a swelling or a bruise and my mom worriedly asked me whether I had bumped against a pole. On replying “no, it’s just another zit about to pop”, lil bro chimed in “NOT AGAIIINNNN” , which just goes to show how frustrating acne is for victims and viewers alike.
I have tried various creams, lotions, acne treatments ( natural and chemical), grandma’s cures & next door aunty’s remedies but I am still yet to recall the last time I looked in the mirror and was satisfied at what I saw. Sometimes there is an invasion to fight and sometimes there is scarring to treat. My face is the battlefield on which countless of wars of bacteria versus treatments have been waged on.
Ramadan 2015, I believe was the best short period, I could have cherished clear skin for. It was almost miraculous that my skin hadn’t spoken out for so long, so much so that even mum commented on how my skin was clear. No attacks by the oil production company and my scars were fading away. All in all I was having quite a gala time and was fantasizing on what makeup and dress I would wear for Eid and was giddy with excitement that on Eid I would be looking flawless for once. Two days before Eid, I guess I got short on preparing and planning, or maybe the facial bacteria that were exhausted with all the fasting got excited about Eid and decided to help out by going into overdrive and lo and behold, I was the proud expectant mother of triplets or possibly quantuplets of pimples. While my left cheek and forehead were as clear as a cloudless sky, my right cheek and chin were having their own little Eid party. Three to four zits on my right cheek and it seemed like they had bullied one who went away and was festering on my chin.
And that’s how Eid was. I had my own facial guests to attend to nevermind the actual guests and their reactions.
Honey masks and lemon ice cubes, salicylic acid and aspirin paste, cleansers and moisturisers for acne skin, my face has seen it all. I bet even the zits are like “Really Aaliyah? Are you still going to fight us with anything and everything? Haven’t you seen our strength? Haven’t you realised that we are making up for those awkward teenage years that you missed by giving you awkward adult years? I mean, c’mon, let’s become friends now alright?”
***All images are taken from Google Search.