dress 2NDDAYearrings & sunglasses ASOSbag TOPSHOPbikini & boots stylist's own

On a platform synonymous with artificiality, Isabél Utterson’s story is one that certainly stands out amongst the sea of sameness – her Instagram page @izzyutterson is a brutally honest and authentic journey of self-love that we all need in our lives. Battling with  psoriasis – a chronic autoimmune disease which causes visible damage to the skin – Utterson urges fellow psoriasis warriors to #getyourskinout, and offers non-sufferers an insight into the daily struggles of living with this condition.

While the psoriasis causes considerable physical discomfort, beneath the surface it is equally damaging, eating away at the afflicted’s self-esteem. Twenty-two-year-old Utterson, currently part of the social media team at Charlotte Tilbury, was diagnosed with the condition aged twenty-one. “Initially, I tried to hide my skin”, Utterson explains, “but there came a point when it got so awful that I couldn’t, and I realised I didn’t want anyone to feel the shame I did”. 

pants ASOS DESIGN, top stylist's own

In a bid to share the wealth of lessons she has learnt so far, Utterson has spent the last year building a community through her Youtube channel, to encourage other people living with psoriasis to engage and support each other. From meticulous skincare regimes to even more detailed dietary plans, Utterson’s venture into Ayurvedic healing is having an undeniable impact on the psoriasis community. Users from across the globe praise Utterson for her courage, her mettle and her honesty, and contribute their own experiences and remedies. What is perhaps most refreshing are the posts on the days when she can’t quite keep the positivity going – there’s an emotional honesty there which speaks not only to psoriasis sufferers, but to all of us.  

The biggest lesson of all, she states, is facing the realisation that “there is so much more to life than what you see”. Exposed to images of perfection on every platform we devote hours to, Utterson’s sincerity, confidence and beauty is a necessary addition to your Instagram feed. In a world flooded with arbitrary and restrictive ideas about what we should celebrate and what we should be ashamed of, Utterson is the voice you need, the voice urging you to #getyourskinout.

featuring

ISABÉL UTTERSON

photography

HANNAH LAYTON

art direction & styling

MADALENA HERNANDEZ

words

JOJO SILVA

assistance

MAXINE NTAMBWE

IMOGEN CHONG

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