How to Ditch Perfection From 5 Women Who Did

March 13, 2020
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We’ve all felt the pressure of perfection. But according to some studies, this sentiment is mostly felt by women. Sound familiar? A U.S. survey found that women (more than men) felt they “did not meet their own high standards with family and workplace commitments.” And in a 2011 survey, half of the female managers, compared with fewer than a third of the male ones, reported self-doubt in their performance. 

But these insecurities don’t stop with our achievements, they also apply to our appearance. Of the 2000 adults surveyed, 9% of men considered themselves handsome compared to just 2% of women who thought they were beautiful. This needs to end. That’s why we partnered with the clean, goat-milk skincare line, Beekman 1802 and their mission to embrace your Skinversity and cultivate a beautiful life.

Watch the video below to learn more about their mission and why loving your skin is always in. Because it’s not about how your skin looks to others, it’s about how your skin feels to you.

Ahead, we asked five women how they’re ditching perfection to embrace their own Skinversity and encouraging others to do the same. Join the movement and share how you #EmbraceSkinversity by tagging your photo or story on Instagram with @beekman1802 and #embraceskinversity.

On the pressure of perfection…

In the social media space, there is a lot of pressure to look perfect all the time. When I first started creating content, I wouldn’t record myself without makeup or a filter to hide my imperfections because I was scared of what people might have to say about my skin. After three years in this space, I came to the conclusion that you can’t hate something about yourself you will live with forever.

Your skin, dark circle, pimples, blemishes will never fully disappear so instead of refusing them, you might as well accept and love them just as much as you do the “perfect” parts of you. Be kind to yourself every day and see how your overall wellbeing changes instantly.

On the person who has encouraged her inner confidence…

My mother is my biggest inspiration when it comes to taking care of myself. She would always make sure we see the good in any situation and stay positive. She was also the first person to show me that taking care of your skin is just as important as taking care of your soul. Without feeling good outside you can never feel fully great within. It goes hand in hand.

On how skincare plays a role in how she feels about herself…

I start my day with time to myself. I take care of my skin, have my coffee and focus on my thoughts before starting to work on my brand. I take this time very seriously as I feel so much fulfillment by knowing I take care of myself every day.

On her top three confidence-boosting tips…

On Feeling the Pressure of Perfection…

Yes, I have definitely felt the pressure for perfection. There is constant messaging around us that tells us there is something wrong with our skin, body, looks and if we aren’t working towards perfection then we are lazy. When you look at skincare, most brands are selling the message of fixing and/or getting rid of aspects of yourself.

As I get older, I am feeling the constant pressure of staying “young” and it seems like everywhere I look someone is promoting the latest anti-aging products. Despite the outside noise, I am always trying to embrace the skin I have and accept all the aspects that make me unique like my rosacea and freckles. 

On the person who has encouraged her inner confidence…

My mom has always encouraged me and since I was very young she’s instilled in me that beauty comes from within. When I first found out that I had rosacea my mom was very encouraging and helped me see that this didn’t make me less beautiful.

On how skincare plays a role in how she feels about herself…

I love my skincare routine. I think it’s such a beautiful form of self-care and also a time to slow down and connect with myself. My skincare has changed over the years and the older I get, the simpler it gets. My main focus now is using clean and simple ingredient and I view my skincare as a way to enhance what’s already there rather than trying to fix or change anything.

On her top 3 confidence-boosting tips…

Curating my social media feeds. I think it’s super important to follow diverse people with diverse body types and skin types. It’s so important to be exposed to images of people that look like us and are also different from us. It’s so easy to get stuck looking at photos of people who represent the beauty ideal which can lead to a lack of confidence, but the more we can broaden the types of people we see, the more confident we can feel about our own skin. Lastly, taking care of myself: eating well, drinking enough water, exercising regularly, getting enough sleep, and sticking to my skincare regime.


Photo: Tony Redmer

On the pressure of perfection…

I think women are pressured in a lot of ways to fit an ideal mold. As a model, I feel pressured to stay young-looking. Whether it is covering my grays to keep my perceived age as young, maintaining a beauty regimen or staying the same size or shrink but never to gain any weight. The pressure comes from my belief that I will be valued more by clients if I look younger and more flawless.

I have always wanted to age gracefully and I try to accept all the changes my body and my face go through that are difficult to control. It is always appreciated when a brand sees that showcasing imperfections and flaws can add value to their campaign as opposed to brands that want to feed into their customer’s insecurities to make a profit. 

On who has inspired her inner confidence…

I’ve been inspired by a few different people. First and foremost, a fellow Piscean, Rihanna. I love the attitude she personifies and the way she lives her life. I have really made an effort to focus my life on my own personal development and joy rather than stressing about what everyone else will think. Lately, I’ve been inspired by Kenna Sharp. She has fair skin and very long black hair. She inspired me to kind of stop trying to blend my vitiligo with a spray tan and makeup and to just embrace the contrast of pale vitiligo with my dark hair. Now I love a little blush on my pale cheeks.

On how she recognized her own beauty…

I think I had to believe that what makes me unique and different is part of my beauty. And sometimes seeing that confidence personified in someone else can help you see it in yourself.

On how skincare plays a role in how she feels about herself…

Taking the time to remove my makeup and do my serums and creams makes my skin glow, and ultimately makes me feel better. It’s funny because people always think a skincare routine is too time-consuming but I find myself looking for more steps when I’m already done. I think spending those few minutes massaging the product on my face has helped me love my skin and myself more rather than using that time to just crash in bed or spend extra time on my phone.

On her top three confidence-boosting tips…

I have a playlist for almost any occasion and I listen to music whenever I’m alone, usually working, cleaning or getting ready for the day. You will really start feeling yourself and remember to play certain songs whenever you need that boost! Wear cute pajamas to bed whenever you can. And work out for at least 20-60 minutes a day whether it’s at home or the gym. There’s no better way to feel stronger and to get back in touch with your body.

On the pressure of perfection…

I was born in China, moved to Germany in middle school and came to the U.S. during high school years. Moving so many times across several continents, without knowing the language or having friends made me hyper-aware of my shortcomings or differences as a child and adolescent. Even as an adult and mother now, I feel the need to be everything to everyone. I think it’s an innate pressure as a woman to want to be a good mom, a hard worker, and a great wife. We spend so much time thinking about how to make everyone else we love happy, it translates into a self-asserted need for perfection.

On who has inspired her inner confidence…

My mom has inspired me ever since I was a little girl. She taught me to be confident and independent, even in unfamiliar situations. When we moved to Germany for China with nothing but four suitcases, we left all our friends and family behind. My mom was in her 30s and didn’t speak a word of German. Even though life changed so drastically, she would always encourage me to be confident, try anything and give it my best effort. She taught me that every change was an opportunity to improve yourself and take the challenge head-on. I was afraid to make new friends at first but she pushed me to just be myself and the confidence would translate in any language.

Being the only Asian student in my school, I was also acutely aware of how different our background was. My mom taught me to be proud of our differences and celebrate what made me a unique person. Fast forward 20 years, I am raising a daughter in a blended, multiracial family. I hope I can bring out the same self-love and confidence in her!

On how skincare plays a role in how she feels about herself…

Skincare is one of the ways I saw my mom always investing in herself. Ever since I was little, I could remember my mom using special lotions and creams every night. I would sneak a dip in her fancy jars and felt like such a pampered princess. The older I get, the more I appreciate a good skincare routine. It’s a simple 10 to 15 minutes a day that I take for myself.

As a mom, I’ve learned to really savor those little moments you get to relax and reward yourself. When I take the extra time to do my full skincare routine, I feel more at ease and confident because I can feel the difference it makes in my complexion.

On her top three confidence-boosting tips…

On the pressure of perfection…

I have struggled with perfectionism my entire life. Even though my platform’s sole purpose is to encourage others to be themselves, I constantly feel like there is still something I’m not doing right. 

I feel the pressure to grow my business as quickly as possible. I feel the pressure to juggle as much as I can, while still looking and appearing perfect. We’re constantly taught that a thin body, clear skin, and a beautiful smile is the key to unlock everything in this life.

Applause is addictive, and you receive a lot of that when you’re nearing perfect. But at what cost? Your happiness? Mental health?

I feel the pressure of perfection every day. I am still learning to listen to my standards and not the world.

On who has inspired her inner confidence…

My best friend, Madee, built me up each time I began to pick myself apart. She was the first woman I’ve ever known that valued my confidence and success as much as her own. It was never a competition with her.

I am incredibly inspired by her “who cares?” attitude. If she likes it, she’ll wear it. If it doesn’t fit, she’ll throw it out. If it’s going to interfere with her happiness, she will not do it. The way she shows up completely like herself, in a world pushing for the opposite inspires me daily.

On how skincare plays a role in how she feels about herself…

I don’t have perfect skin, and that’s okay. I thought I hadn’t found the “right” routine if I still had acne or dry skin. Now, I base it on how I feel. I want to feel clean when I start and finish the day. It’s a way for me to wash the day off, and prepare for the next. My skincare routine makes me feel confident. It feels good knowing you can take care of yourself, without the end goal being perfection.

What are your top 3 confidence-boosting tips?

1. Know your role model, and think “What would ___ do?”

2. Wear matching underwear.

3. Do something that makes you feel good! I love a fresh tan and styled hair. I dare you to come to me when I have tan and loose waves—I am a powerhouse.

I am proud of each and every woman showing up when they feel like they “shouldn’t”. I am proud of every woman who is fighting to realize their self-worth. It’s not easy out there, but you’re doing it! I am with you, and I am proud of you.

Your skin is not a problem that needs a solution. Discover how to embrace your Skinversity at beekman1802.com.


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