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A student who spent years hiding her psoriasis has revealed how she learnt to embrace her natural beauty.
Louisa Sadler, 20, from Hereford, was diagnosed with the skin condition, which causes red and flaky patches of skin, when she was 12 years old but felt so self-conscious she hid the symptoms under long clothes and make-up.
Condition - Selfie - Instagram - Messages - Support
She learnt to embrace the condition after she posted a make up-free selfie on Instagram and received messages of support from people with similar stories.
Now Louisa says she feels 'so much more confident' than she did when she was younger, despite the condition covering more of her skin than it did before.
'When - Psoriasis - Fact - Part - Lot
She said: 'When it clicked that my psoriasis is in fact a part of me, but it doesn't define who I am, I was able to be a lot more comfortable with showing it off.
'That doesn't mean that I don't still have down days, where I feel I don't know how to handle my psoriasis and want it to disappear, but the space between those days has definitely increased.'
Louisa - Patches - Skin - Years - Scrapes
Louisa first noticed the patches on her skin when she was 12 years old but initially thought they were scrapes she had suffered after falling off a bike. It was only months later that she went to see her GP who diagnosed her with psoriasis.
'At the time I was diagnosed I was also beginning to go through puberty, so I felt I had this additional pressure of having to look a certain way whilst handling this new skin condition,' she said. 'I found myself covering it up more often than not with the clothes I wore and only a select few people knew about it.'
Louisa - 'I - Effort - Appearance
Louisa continued: 'I always felt that I had to make such an effort with my appearance because I...
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