I didn’t have eczema on my face until about three years ago, and that’s been a really difficult thing to deal with. When it was at its worst, I’d wear a hat and glasses going to the grocery store, and even then people would be staring at me. Though I had a huge flare up during a trip to Cuba where my face blistered up, and all these little old ladies came up to me all concerned saying, “you need to wear sunscreen!” That was a nice moment for me because I realized it doesn’t look as bad as I thought – it probably just looks like sunburn!
Christine, 29, lives with eczema
Christine has had to adapt to life with severe eczema. The key? Confidence and a great sense of humour. Now she’s making peace with her skin, and, she hopes, helping others do the same…
Actually, when I travelled to France for a treatment, people would come up to me and ask me what was going on. It’s always better to just ask somebody if you’re that curious. If people would, it would open this conversation. The media can help with that. Like what they’re doing with models, showing cellulite – people love that. Representing it is how you normalize it.
Skin is the biggest part of your confidence and, at times, eczema has broken mine. But then again, when you’ve been down such a dark path, you appreciate the times you have good skin even more. The confidence eczema can take away, it can add in even greater volumes on good days.
When you’ve been down such a dark path, you appreciate the times you have good skin even more. The confidence eczema can take away, it can add in even greater volumes on good days.
One of the ways people cope with this condition is with humour: people with eczema or psoriasis are some of the funniest people I have ever met, ever. Funniest, silliest… it’s been so great to have this community, to be able to laugh at ourselves and make fun of each other.
Having eczema has definitely brought positive things into my life. It’s taught me to be empathetic. There are so many good people in the world, so many people have wanted to help me – I can’t explain how impactful that has been. I want to help people for the rest of my life. I don’t think I’d be like that if it wasn’t for my eczema.
Find out more about Christine’s journey with eczema by following her Instagram account @itchybitsyme.