How Learning To Love My Pale Skin Made me Happy.

Friday 5 September 2014

pale skin, before and after, fake tan, love, my pale skin, pale skin blog,

Over the past few years I've been on a roller coaster journey of learning to love and feel comfortable in my own skin and I admit, it hasn't always been easy... and sometimes I feel like I'm a walking ghost.

The thing about pale skin, is that is is often loathed by many and loved by few. Here are a few examples of the type of negative tweets that you see just by searching the words 'pale skin' on twitter...

It breaks my heart and makes me feel sad reading those tweets, not only because I used to think and feel the same way, but because society has this image of the perfect woman ingrained into our minds, and she certainly doesn't appear to have pale skin...

Gone are the days when I used to worry about reaching that ideal image, 'fitting in' and not looking pale, smothering myself in fake tanners and caking my skin in foundation and powder in shades that are nowhere near natural, and should never have made their way onto my face.

A few years ago, my skin tone used to rule my life. Before going somewhere I had to make sure I'd put my fake tan on the day before, had to make sure I had a dark enough foundation, had to avoid white clothes, white sheets, white anything... and I had to look like everyone else... i'm sure it's no surprise that eventually I started having panic attacks before going out with my girlfriends.

 And it didn't just end there, i'd be paranoid about my skin being blotchy, getting rained on or if i'd exfoliated enough to stop the blotchiness... it was a never ending circle, and that doesn't even include the other options of tanning beds or sunbathing. As my Grandmother had skin cancer few years ago, (she luckily made a good recovery) the thought of possibly self inflicting skin cancer on myself by using tanning beds and sunbathing scares me.

I can't remember when I stopped using fake tanners, but I remember the weeks afterwards. I remember worrying less, and not minding if I didn't look like a bronzed goddess. I remember when I started to be okay with being pale, and that it didn't matter if my 'legs looked less toned' because they were pale.

Now, I haven't worn fake tan in well over a year, I wear either a moisturiser with SPF 30 or SPF 50 sunscreen depending on what i'm doing that day and I've thrown myself well into the world of experimenting with pale skin beauty and finding out which products really enhance my skin tone, instead of masking it.

I've banned myself from wearing fake tan, and to go with that - you will never see a fake tan review on My Pale Skin.

The moment I let go and work with my natural skin tone, and stopped trying to hide it was the moment I started to become happier. We choose clothes based on what makes us feel comfortable and happy, but unfortunately we can't chose our skin tone - without damaging it or artificially colouring it - so stop fighting it, it's okay to be the palest person in your friendship group, yes it's annoying not being able to easily find foundation in your shade, but when you find a style that works for - run with it.

Learning to love my skin colour brought me a level of confidence I didn't have before, and helped me on my road to becoming a better person, and y'know what - I don't ever have to worry about smelling like digestive biscuits again.
Em xxx


  1. This is one of my favourite blog posts i've ever read! So well written and just genuinely great. I'm so happy for you that you have become some comfortable and stopped worrying so much - you will live a happier and healthier life for it, looking even more beautiful and natural! xo

  2. Isn't it funny how we don't love what we have but always want something different? In Japan and Korea, they idolize people with snow white or pale skin, which made me feel better about my NW13 complexion for a long time. I've starten to give up on trying to change myself. I just don't tan and that's fine! I'm really glad you started to accept yourself the way you are!
    Elina | Miss Blue Eyes

  3. I love pale skin. I've always thought the glossy, almost transparent and porcelain colour to be very flattering, but I love my own skin tone equally as much. I don't think I've ever wanted lighter skin but I do love natural pale skin on others. This kind of thing is found on both ends of the spectrum - tan skinned people attempting to lighten their skin and fair skinned people wanting bronzer skin tones. Its silly and ridiculous. We can't change our genes. And inflicting potential self harm on ourselves in pursuit of the perfect skin tone, shape size, etc for the purpose of being perceived as aesthetically pleasing to OTHER people is absolute rubbish. Society has some messed up beauty standards. Everyone is different and that is something that should be celebrated and not frowned upon. I'm so happy that you've decided to embrace your natural skin tone. Sorry about my looooong comment!

    Andrea // CocoDrizzle

  4. This is a great post, and I'm so glad you've embraced your natural skin tone, which is beautiful, by the way. I actually wish my skin was paler, but I tan very easily, so I've learned to just go with what looks natural, rather than caking on lighter foundation, and ending up looking silly. It's horrible how society makes women feel like there's a standard they should live up to, and if they don't meet that standard, they aren't "beautiful". I really hope your post gets lots of views from girls who feel the same way you used to, 'cause I have a feeling it might help them embrace their own skin too.

    Jodie |

  5. I adore your skin tone. You have a really beautiful paleness which suits you so well. So funny that we had this conversation just a couple of days ago! I still love tanning though - I catch it quite easily in the sun too so staying pale all the time I think for me would be more trouble than it's worth. Plus, I genuinely do look ill! But that may be down to not knowing the right products to suit me when I'm pale!

    Katie <3

  6. I love pale skin, I think it's such elegant! I'm such a strange shade haha, I'm pale but not a nice pale. Just a strange yellow. I'm too lazy to bother with fake tanning though, I do it occasionally on big nights out but that's it :)

    India / Touchscreens & Beautyqueens

  7. Really great blog post, I love your look and you look amazing! I have quite pale skin, which I don't mind now and then, but I do also quite like a tan as I find it makes me look a little less flabby in places. Although I would never tweet like that, which deffo does make me sad that girls think being pale = something worse than being another skin tone.

    Sophie x

  8. I just wrote about my light skin tone on my blog as well. I wrote about my experience with self tan and tanning beds. Then my skin cancer diagnosis. Scary. Yay for pale girls!

  9. It's funny to think the Elizabethans thought the absolute opposite- women were desperate to be pale! I feel exactly the same as you and many other commenters- I embrace being pale and am fine with not tanning. I'd rather be safe than sorry and pale skin (as well as all colours) should be embraced. Variety is the spice of life, they say! Gemma x

    Beautiful Life as I know it

  10. Thank you for this post! Every time I read something along these lines, I feel less and less alone in my paleness. Although I never use tanning beds anymore, I still use self-tanner and get spray tans. It's annoying and stressful and it's an extra expense that I could be putting towards something else. But I like to look bronze...although I can't decide if it's because I genuinely feel better about myself or if it's because it makes me stand out less. Hopefully time will tell. Either way, you look amazing and are such an inspiration <3 Kayla

  11. Great post! I think every skin tone is awesome, no matter how pale or dark. I'm quite pale myself, but I've always embraced it. It's part of who I am, my heritage and all that. I'm happy that you're feeling more comfortable in your own skin now. Lots of love, from a pale Swede! <3

  12. I loved reading this, and I wish more people had this kind of attitude towards pale skin. Being pale never really bothered me until others made a big deal about it - I've had all the usual comments about looking like a ghost, looking ill etc. In summer a lot of people assume that I'll start using fake tan but I'm quite happy being the way I am, and I think pale skin is just as beautiful as other skin tones. I'm so glad that you feel more comfortable now, and I love reading your posts about make up for pale skin, they're so helpful! xx

  13. This was a lovely post to read, as a fellow pale girl it can sometimes feel like my skin colour makes me less attractive. I rarely fake tan just out of laziness and also not being good at fake tanning myself. I try to embrace my pale-ness but I feel like I look better when Im a bit tanned, a bit more 'healthy'. It's lovely that you're embracing your pale skin, hopefully more people will start loving their skin colour and not feel the need to tan. Myself included! :D

    Emma x
    Writing Essays With Wine

  14. This was such an inspiring post! I am very very pale compared to most people where I live (tropical sunny island) and I constantly get made fun of and get called names and someone even once told me that 'there was something wrong with me'. But now I have learned to love my skin tone and your posts have helped me so much in looking for products that suit pale skin! x

  15. I love this post so, so much. I've been battling with my horrifically pale skin for such a long time and often feel so much less confident without fake tan on. I've never used a sun bed and would never go near one due to the fact my mother passed away from skin cancer. I'm trying to love and feel more comfortable with my naturally sheet-white skin and I'm slowly getting there. It's difficult with people constantly in my ear like "you look ill" "I think you need some sun" etc. I hope one day I'll feel completely happy with it and be able to wear it with pride. <3

  16. This post really hit home for me. I had a terrible time accepting how pale I was when I was younger, I didn't truly start to feel comfortable in my own skin until I hit 30. Now I see the beauty in it and feel confident in who I am. I am so happy to see you post about this and glad you are on your own positive path of self acceptance :)

  17. This is a amazing post Em, one of the best I've seen in a long time!
    From one ghost to another I salute you!

    Michaela.xo | Watercolour Camera.

  18. This is so inspiring! I am super pale and yeah it can get me down but i think that trying to make yourself up with fake tanners and all the rest of it can usually end up in you looking ridiculous because it's so different to your natural look. I completely agree with what you're saying about embracing the body and skin you were given. Such a great post! xxxx

  19. This is exactly what I'm like! I'm naturally pale but always fake tan, hopefully I'll eventually have the confidence to embrace it like you have as you look so gorgeous. And Em, I have to say in the pictures above you definitely look so much lovelier pale! The best post I've read in a while xxx

  20. I love this post - I am naturally pale but I refuse to wear fake tan or go on a sunbed. I always think natural is the best thing to be. I personally find people with all different skin tones and types beautiful, especially pale women. It is the norm these days to smother yourself in fake tan and be like the crowd - personally I do not find anything fake attractive - I pride myself on staying natural and I think all other women should feel the same <3 #girlpower

    Fav quote - "be your own kind of beautiful"

    If you have a moment, would love if you could check out my blog

  21. Hi Em, I follow you on Instagram and LOVE your posts. Recently I have started becoming a little insecure about my pale skin, but I remembered you posted the picture of this blog a while ago on Instagram and I knew I had to find the actual blog post!
    As someone with naturally ivory skin, freckles, blue eyes and nearly black hair it has been difficult to buy makeup and accept my skin tone. I hate how when I wake up I look like a zombie, with red blotches all over my face and puffy eyes. I know people who, when they wake up, look as perfect as when they went to bed: All due to the fact they are tanned. I also find that being extremely pale leads to the visibility of veins through my near transparent skin, which if course tanned people don't suffer from.
    But, I remind myself whenever I see your beautiful face that maybe it isn't so bad. Thank you for that x

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  24. I can relate to this sooo much! I am super pale and people always comment about it. I'd love to not have to worry about fake tanners but I get so tired of people making the "you're so white" comment. I feel like guys will find me more attractive if I am tan. This post made me feel so much better about myself.

  25. Aaaaahh YEAH, pale white girls. My favorite kind of girls. Gotsta chase the white ghost at night.

  26. Darling, i don’t understand wanted to be dark. For poc its a whole other issue. My culture literally promotes skin bleaching for girls to look lighter. The paler you are, the more beautiful/ desirable you are and the better you are treated. I have never in all my years heard that white people dont like their skin color, from an outside perspective it sounds so silly to hate what gives you the privilege of not being treated as trash. Anyway i am glad you see you are beautiful no matter your skin color or tone.

  27. Darling, i don’t understand wanted to be dark. For poc its a whole other issue. My culture literally promotes skin bleaching for girls to look lighter. The paler you are, the more beautiful/ desirable you are and the better you are treated. I have never in all my years heard that white people dont like their skin color, from an outside perspective it sounds so silly to hate what gives you the privilege of not being treated as trash. Anyway i am glad you see you are beautiful no matter your skin color or tone.

  28. I really appreciate reading such kinds of blogs. Thanks for sharing such informative articles.
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