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Corrective Cosmetics Aren’t the Answer
A badly blemished woman feels better when she can show her true skin to the world. The latest research indicates that women who wear corrective foundation feel worse than blemished women who go out bare-faced in the world.
"The women who used foundations to cover these kinds of marks reported having a lower health-related quality of life than did the women who didn't wear the same kind of makeup," said Rajesh Balkrishnan, the study's author and a professor at Ohio State University (www.researchnews.osu.edu).
The surveyed women had severe facial scarring, acne, melasma, or hyperpigmentation. Participants' average age was 37. Ninety percent of the participants reported that they used corrective foundation to cover the blemish.
"The women who used foundation to cover blemishes may have had a tougher time psychologically dealing with their blemishes than did the women who didn't use corrective makeup," Balkrishnan said. "Although it's difficult to say why this is, it may be that the women who didn't wear makeup to cover their blemishes felt more confident in their appearance."
The Psychological Toll
Whether or not they wore makeup, participants overwhelmingly felt that without their blemish other people would see them in a less negative light, and that the overall quality of their lives would improve.
The researchers found no difference in quality of life scores based on the type and size of a blemish. For example, a woman with bad acne did not feel any worse or any better than a woman with melasma.
But the more fearful a woman was of being negatively evaluated in public, the lower she rated her health-related quality of life.
It seems women want a medical solution to their acne or melasma – not a cover-up. But what if there’s no medical cure? Then they want to be free to present their true skin, warts and all, and want to be accepted they way they are.