Is beauty skin deep? Most of us know that true beauty is based on what’s inside versus outside. What happens, though, when you struggle with loving the skin you’re in? Get ready to hear about the amazing life of a real *inside-out* beauty. Iomikoe’s stunning looks have captivated audiences around the globe. Now, the Hairlooms community has the privilege of learning more about her life up-close-and-personal:
Tell us about your self-love journey.
My name is Iomikoe Johnson. I am a 37-year old mother of 4, and I have Vitiligo.
I got Vitiligo when I was 25 years old. Vitiligo is a disorder that causes white patches to form on your skin. This happens because the cells that make up the color of your skin are destroyed. The result was having white patches – all over my body – on my dark skin. As a young girl, I was teased because my skin was very dark. As I got older, I still struggled with insecurities about my dark skin.
What obstacles did you face?
It was difficult for me to go out in public. I used makeup to cover my Vitiligo that was on my face for 11 years. I also wore long selves to hide my arms and often hid my hands in my pockets. When I stopped wearing makeup, people would walk up to me and tell me the rudest things:
Did you get burned Do you have mud on your face? Are you Batman’s sister?
People never wanted to touch my hands. I got stares. People pointed at me and laughed at me. They looked at me like I was some a kind of a creature. I lived in fear of going out in public. My marriage even ended, and I blamed Vitiligo because my ex-husband used to call me names.
What has been the biggest surprise along your journey?
I met the most amazing man and at first when we started dating I used to hide my Vitiligo from him and one day he came over and saw me without my make-up and I was surprised that he accepted me for who I was he told me he didn’t know that I had Vitiligo in my face but that I was beautiful and that if people couldn’t see that out in the world then that was on them for me to be myself and if I want to wear makeup wear it if I don’t want to don’t that I didn’t need to wear makeup.
What does the phrase “I Can” mean to you?
I never thought in a million years that I could accomplish the things that I have accomplished! I was on a television show in London —“This Morning: Black woman turning white,” which has 1.9 million views. My picture and my story have been shared in the US, UK, Vietnam, Greece, Africa, and Australia. I can do whatever I set my mind to I can accomplish all my goals while being myself. All I have to do is be myself.
What would you tell readers who feel like they can’t love their skin?
Know that you are beautiful in your own right; don’t ever let people’s words discourage you or hinder you from accomplishing your dreams.