Many of you will know Ruth Holroyd for her prolific blog – What Allergy – which tackles everything from celery allergy, anaphylaxis and eating out with allergies, to (safe) beer drinking, oxygen therapy and free from food. She’s a great friend of all of us on the FreeFrom Matters team, and has judged both the FreeFrom Skincare Awards and FreeFrom Food Awards in previous years.
If Ruth were a sportswoman, it would be safe to say she would be experiencing a good run of form right now – because some of her latest writing has been really good. She writes a monthly Allergy Diary column for FoodsMatter – and a recent one (17th January) was written through the eyes of her husband, which was a very entertain read!
But it’s her eczema writing that’s caught our eye lately. Just a few months ago she wrote about how the topical drug Protopic revolutionised her life, and this week on her blog she’s taking E45 to task for their unrealistic portrayals of beautiful women with virtually blemish-free skin – not your average eczema sufferer, by any means!
She raises interesting points, though. Why are those with problem skin conditions rarely seen in the media and advertising? Ads for acne-prone skin may show someone (usually a teen) with the odd spot, but never a more extensive problem than that. I certainly can’t recall seeing severe dry skin or eczema portrayed in any form, off the top of my head. As I commented in Ruth’s post, could there be a legal issue with advertising products suitable for eczema?
It’s a similar picture, I have to say, with the natural, organic and natural brands which are on our radar. Their websites may claim their products are suitable for those with problem skin conditions such as eczema or psoriasis – or severe dry skin – but invariably the models used to illustrate the sites are beautiful, and have flawless skin. There’s never a patch of dryness or spot in sight!
Is it unfair of us to expect to be shown ‘ordinary’ people and their ‘ordinary’ flawed or imperfect skin?
If you have any ideas or thoughts, do let us know …