In our ongoing interview series #YourSkinDiaries, we’re shining a light on thought leaders in the beauty and lifestyle space and their unique stories and relationships with skincare – from motherhood to sustainable practices, to the skin positivity movement and beyond.
FaceTune, Instagram filters, Snapchat filters… these days, access to extreme photo editing and airbrush technology is at our fingertips; feigning flawless skin has never been easier. With much of our lives on display thanks to social media, the desire to edit out imperfections and present the most ‘visually appealing’ version of ourselves is only natural. After all, putting our most vulnerable selves out there for the world to see isn’t easy.
But thought leader Adam Robert Lamb is on a mission to challenge perfectionist beauty standards which sets unrealistic expectations and can knock skin confidence. Championing skin positivity through his YouTube channel and social content, he reminds people that real skin should be celebrated more, and skin concerns like acne are completely normal and not something to be ashamed of.
With a growing Youtube presence and social media following, we caught up with the UK-based skin positivity advocate to learn about what got him into skincare and why he’s empowering people to love their skin, flaws and all.
“I know how bad acne can affect someone’s mental health and self-confidence…but suffering from acne is totally normal and no one should feel ashamed of having it.”
YOURS: Tell us about your skin and your skincare journey thus far – what’s your current skincare routine?
ADAM ROBERT LAMB: My interest in skincare started when I was around 17 years old and I had just finished a long course of acne treatment. My skin changed drastically and I had to find products that worked for my concerns at that time. Ever since then, I have had a growing interest in the skincare industry and this led me to pluck up the courage to share my passion for skincare over on YouTube.
Currently, my skincare routine is filled with hydrating and skin barrier strengthening products like ceramides, cholesterol, fatty alcohols, amino acids and, of course, exfoliating acids like Beta-Hydroxy(BHA) and Alpha-Hydroxy Acids (AHA) a few times a week.
(Image courtesy Adam Robert Lamb)
Y: What encouraged you to start a YouTube channel and share your knowledge of skincare? What are some of your biggest takeaways from this journey so far?
ARL: I always lacked confidence in myself and struggled with self-esteem issues but one day I said to myself enough is enough and I wanted to do something that pushed me and allowed me to be more confident. I then purchased a vlogging camera and a week later signed up to YouTube and uploaded my first video.
I have learnt a lot about myself since starting YouTube two years ago but the best thing that has come from it is meeting this incredible community of skincare enthusiasts and sharing our passion for formulations, for skin and for the technology that comes with it.
Y: You often advocate normalising acne and empower people to feel comfortable with their skin and their imperfections. Why is it important for you to spread this message?
ARL: When I suffered from another acne flare-up last summer, I didn’t want to shy away from creating content on YouTube and Instagram – I wanted to share my experience and the issues I was going through because I know how bad acne can affect someone’s mental health and self-confidence.
Acne can be seen to be ugly, dirty and contagious but in reality, it affects more than half of the world’s population so why should anyone be made to feel that way. Yes we want to treat the acne in the safest way possible but suffering from acne is totally normal and no one should feel ashamed of having it.
“I love skincare but that doesn’t mean I have ‘perfect’ skin. I love filming regardless of what state my skin is in because at the end of the day, real skin rules.”
Y: What pushed you to overcome your own skin insecurities and feel confident in your own skin?
ARL: It wasn’t until I started YouTube, which is when I felt more confident with not just my skin but with myself as well. Having a camera film you and then editing it back is a challenge in itself, but I knew this is what I had to do to push myself out of my comfort zone.
I love skincare but that doesn’t mean I have ‘perfect’ skin. I get breakouts from time to time, I have hyperpigmentation and acne scarring but I love filming regardless of what state my skin is in because at the end of the day, real skin rules.
Y: Do you think the skincare/beauty industry has a long way to go when it comes to skin positivity? What would you change about the industry if you could?
ARL: I think over the past 10 years, from heavily airbrushed campaigns to where we are now, seeing more inclusivity is a step in the right direction but there is still this gap when it comes to normalising acne and skin scarring.
If I could change anything, I would ensure that brands, big and small, use real skin to market their products. That’s one of the reasons why I love before and after pictures because it shows a true transformation of a person’s skin instead of already starting off with someone who has clear skin.
The more brands that follow suit to capture skin that has ‘imperfections’, then more and more people can feel good about their skin and not carry this burden on their shoulders that they will never be accepted into society because they don’t look like a model. It’s about everyone, no matter their skin tone, texture or shape – everyone is beautiful and everyone is worthy.
“Seeing more inclusivity is a step in the right direction but there is still this gap when it comes to normalising acne and skin scarring.”
Y: Considering product choices are often confusing and overwhelming, what advice would you give to skincare novices or people who are often too busy to look for products that work for them?
ARL: It’s no secret that the skincare industry has become so big over the past few years and it seems that every few days there is a new trendy product or new ingredients to try. Even a skincare obsessive like myself can feel overwhelmed at times but I always tell people to keep it simple. Overcomplicating your routine, especially using too many exfoliating products can do more harm than good.
The beauty of having a hyper-personalised skincare routine from Yours is that it takes out all of the fuss of endlessly trying to find ingredients and products that potentially won’t work for you and instead, have a curated routine to match your skin type, concerns, lifestyle and environment. As well as their essentials range, it’s not complicated or confusing – it uses gentle but effective ingredients designed for everyone’s skin.
(Image courtesy Adam Robert Lamb)