BY CARLY FINDLAY
Carly has a lifelong genetic chronic illness called ichthyosis form erythroderma (which means scaly red skin). Her skin gets itchy and sore and she gets infections easily, which sometimes result in hospital stays where she is bandaged up like a mummy. You can read more about her story here.
There used to be colours I’d avoid wearing close to my neck. Black, bottle green and navy. They showed up my peeling skin – epidermal snowflakes on dark wool and cotton.
I couldn’t avoid bottle green and navy – they were my uniform colours at primary school and high school. I had snowflakes on my shoulders. Those anti-dandruff shampoo ads do nothing for the self esteem, screaming “OMG skin flakes on shoulders – avoid me at all costs!”
I used to cover up, and be encouraged to cover up. Mostly because my skin made me feel embarrassed, and I didn’t want people staring at more than just my face. People assumed the worst – that I’d been “stupid in the sun” or in a fire. Plus I was conscious of getting skin everywhere.