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Skin comes in different tones and textures — all beautiful in their own right. However, the idea of “perfect skin” continues to linger despite these strides. Touted as the goal of skin care, it’s accompanied by a host of other unattainable ideals, including “youthfulness,” “porelessness,” and “whiteness.” It can also mean “even-toned” and “blemish-free”, which means no pimples or scarring.

The term “perfect” is a clear and unmissable red flag. For Filipinas, these standards are particularly unhealthy because of our darker skin tone and, sometimes, bigger pores. For women in general, it’s another toxic aspect of beauty that puts women right back in that hamster cage, chasing after the impossible. How do we overcome these ? Adjusting our mindsets can help. Health should be the goal of skin care, not perfection. Here’s why.

It’s in the Genes

Sometimes it’s as simple as being born with “perfect skin.” Those who don’t inherit blemish-free skin from their ancestors aren’t necessarily stuck with acne or large pores for life but will have a more difficult time getting rid of it. While there is no “acne gene,” a family history of acne means you’re likely to develop acne yourself. There are also other factors at play.

For example, according to the Journal of Italian Dermatology and Venereology, genes can determine how effective your body is at fighting acne bacteria and inflammation. such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) can also trigger acne breakouts. Diet plays a huge factor, as does the environment. The Journal of Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology (2017) notes that poor is linked to excessively oily skin, which causes inflammatory acne.

Skin Can Be Unpredictable

Unfortunately, the P. acnes bacteria isn’t the only blemish trigger out there. Even with years of steady care, the occasional breakout or inflammation can still disrupt skin. Stress and a fluctuating mental state can contribute to eruptions of eczema and other skin disorders.

Health problems like diabetes and hypertension can cause skin issues. Intense distress can trigger rosacea, psoriasis, and hives, according to the Association for Psychoneurocutaneous Medicine of North America (APMNA). Even everyday factors like the weather and humidity levels, sun exposure, a pollen-laden gust of wind, and your pillowcase can cause blemishes. Some of these skin conditions go away on their own, while others resist treatment and persist.

‘Perfect’ Is Relative

Perfection can be relative in that its definition changes with . Some people like porcelain skin, others like . Some people see beauty in celebrating real skin, pores, zits, freckles and all. Moreover, the Greek roots of “perfection” are attributed to completeness, while skin care is a never-ending, evolving journey of maintenance and improvement.

One way to have great skin is to continue to protect your skin daily. Use sunscreen like POND'S UV Bright Sunscreen even when . It can help hold back fine lines, wrinkles, and other signs of damage.

Double cleansing is also an effective way to maintain healthy skin. Start with Eskinol Naturals Micellar Water Clear with Natural Lemon Extracts, to dissolve dirt and oil and remove impurities from the skin before cleansing.

Having perfect skin is a lofty goal and an unhealthy beauty standard that can make an otherwise relaxing activity like skin care incredibly stressful. When it comes to your skin, take your wins one day at a time and focus on skin health above anything else.

Check out this article on to get closer to your skin goals.