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13 People Opened Up About Learning To Love Their Insecurities

It took a while, but we all learned to love parts of ourselves we disliked before.

Big or small, fleeting or permanent, insecurities can gravely affect how we feel about ourselves. That's why there's no greater satisfaction than getting over something you were wildly insecure about in the past. We asked our co-workers about how they overcame their insecurities, and here's what they had to say.

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1. Jamé was insecure about her smile when she was younger, but now, she'll literally LOL for pictures because she knows happiness looks good on her.

Taylor Miller / BuzzFeed

"I hated showing teeth (because I felt they weren't straight) but then, when I would smile without teeth, I felt I looked dorky. Especially with a huge grin, my eyes (which are already small) just seemed smaller."

How did you get over it?
"Honestly, by learning joy and enjoying the funny, happy moments in life so much that I wasn't concerned with who saw what or how I looked! Now, I give roaring laughter and will smile in photos a ton of ways. I honestly always find the candids are the best because those are the reflections of the happiness and the trueness from within."

2. Caelan hated the dark circles under her eyes, until she realized most people didn't even notice them.

Taylor Miller / BuzzFeed

"NOTHING is worse than when people tell you that you look tired – resting tired face is real."

How did you get over it?
"I used to wear tons of different concealers, but then I moved to New York and realized that no one cares at all. Plus, every friend I've ever mentioned it to says that they never noticed it or that it's vaguely Parisian looking LOL."

Are are any products you love?
I mostly go makeup-free on my face (I'm v lucky) but if I'm going out, Benefit's Boi-ing Industrial Strength Concealer baked with Laura Mercier's Translucent Powder is a winning combo!"

You can get them from Sephora, Benefit's Boi-ing concealer for $20, and Laura Mercier's translucent powder for $38.

3. Kyle was insecure about his acne and wearing makeup to cover it up, until he said "fuck it" and tried concealer. Now, he loves skin care and makeup, and he proudly wears Fenty's Trophy Wife highlighter!

Taylor Miller / BuzzFeed

"My acne made me feel really exposed, especially in social situations. I knew that makeup could help me feel a bit more comfortable, but I was also super insecure about appearing too 'feminine' if I were to try wearing it."

How did you get over it?
"Ultimately, I started with concealer and still felt anxious about going out with it on my face. Eventually, though, I was just like 'fuck it,' and now I love dabbling with all kinds of makeup and skincare products. I think the advent of more male social media celebs flaunting gorgeous makeup looks and tutorials really paved the way for 'guys like me' to feel comfortable experimenting with makeup and realizing all that stuff is just a social construct and revolves around gender as performance."

Are they any products you love to use?
"Glossier Invisible Shield is the best facial sunscreen I've ever come in contact with; it's super light and glides on like a serum. CeraVe's Skin Renewing Gel Oil is a dream serum that's super inexpensive for how well it works. Fenty Beauty's Trophy Wife Highlighter is my go-to going out highlighter. It's so bright and fun and sparkly!"

You can get Glossier's Invisible Shield on their website for $25, the Cerave's Skin Renewing Gel Oil is available on Amazon for $18.80, and you can find Fenty's Trophy Wife at Sephora for $50.

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4. Sarah was insecure about her face shape, especially after hearing people make comments about it all the time. She has now learned to embrace and celebrate what she's got!

"The chubbiness has fluctuated throughout the years, but it's not like my bone structure has changed. I always preferred photos shot from further away (can't see the roundness as much) or even sometimes shot without smiling (smiling widens my face a lot and also makes my eyes smaller, which to me emphasizes the roundness). Chinese people love to comment on physical appearance, even if they're basically a stranger. I'll never forget one of my mom's old colleagues in China commenting on how round my face had gotten. She's not the only one either. My mom comments on it too — it's just a natural thing they say in passing, like it's no big deal. But it is to me!"How did you get over it?"Honestly there are days I'm still insecure about it, but I now embrace my round face for the sole reason that it's the only face I got and it comes with parts of my mom and dad, and I wouldn't change it for the world. I've gotten lots of compliments on my smile too, so why tuck it away? Why not take close-ups? My face is cute, beautiful, and dare I say, sexy."
Taylor Miller / BuzzFeed

"The chubbiness has fluctuated throughout the years, but it's not like my bone structure has changed. I always preferred photos shot from further away (can't see the roundness as much) or even sometimes shot without smiling (smiling widens my face a lot and also makes my eyes smaller, which to me emphasizes the roundness). Chinese people love to comment on physical appearance, even if they're basically a stranger. I'll never forget one of my mom's old colleagues in China commenting on how round my face had gotten. She's not the only one either. My mom comments on it too — it's just a natural thing they say in passing, like it's no big deal. But it is to me!"

How did you get over it?
"Honestly there are days I'm still insecure about it, but I now embrace my round face for the sole reason that it's the only face I got and it comes with parts of my mom and dad, and I wouldn't change it for the world. I've gotten lots of compliments on my smile too, so why tuck it away? Why not take close-ups? My face is cute, beautiful, and dare I say, sexy."

5. Elena was insecure about how pale she was, especially after being called "Casper." She has now realized there are worse things in life than being pale, and blush has become a valuable ally.

Taylor Miller / BuzzFeed

"I got made fun of A LOT ('Are you sick?') because of how pale I was, and then how red I'd turn if I tried to tan. I'm Mexican, everyone in my family has a perfect tan. I have translucent skin."

How did you overcome it?
"I started tanning. All. The. Time. It was too much, I looked insane — and when I mystic tanned, I looked orange. One day, I saw a picture of myself and was like WTF? I just kinda realized that this is what I got, love it or not, but skin cancer, wrinkles, and orange skin sure as hell don't look better. I'll still get a spray tan every now and then but I'm pale...this is life — I also learned to apply blush, so that helped. LOL."

Any favorite products?
"I love Tan Towels because you can basically swipe on a buildable tan. It gives you a discreet, even glow on your face, neck, body — wherever you need it! Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Matte Bronzer is awesome! Even if you're pale like me, it gives you a natural looking glow, and it literally smells like chocolate! Milani blush is legit amazing! It's super pigmented, lets you build up as much (or as little) color as you want, and it's under $10 bucks!"

You can get Tan Towels and the Milani Baked Blush from Amazon for $24, and $6.39. The Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Matte Bronzer is available on Sephora for $30.

6. Jessica hated her curly hair and thought people would only take her seriously if she straightened it. A coworker encouraged her to stop straightening her hair for work, and now, she wears her hair curly every single day.

Taylor Miller / BuzzFeed

"I started having issues with my curly hair at a very young age because kids would make fun of me for it. They'd scream out 'Pibe! Valderrama!' when I would walk by. Most kids at my school back in Guatemala had straight hair, so I grew up hating the fact that I looked different than them. As I got older, I started straightening my hair a lot. Mostly because I loved how many compliments I'd get, but also because I had this perception that straight hair made me look more put together and professional. I would spend at least an hour straightening my hair before interviews because I was so terrified I wouldn't be taken seriously if my hair didn't look perfectly in place."

How did you overcome it?
"It wasn't until I started working at BuzzFeed four years ago that I truly started embracing my curly hair. One day I was complaining about how my hair felt like straw, and my manager at the time dared me to stop using heat on it and to embrace my natural curls. I was so terrified to do this, but seeing how she embraced her curly hair really made me see that there was nothing wrong with my hair. The first few weeks were tough, but I slowly started seeing my hair come back to life. Now, I wear my hair curly every day. Embracing the natural you can be such a freeing experience, but I feel like it was truly life-changing for me. Accepting and loving my hair has slowly trickled down into loving myself as a whole, and I can't even imagine feeling any other way."

Any favorite products for your curls?
"For me, using DevaCurl products has been a game changer, as it has truly made my curls glow up from the frail, dead strands I used to have."

You can get DevaCurl products from Sephora and they range from $20 to $88.

7. Nikki was insecure about how much hair she had on her eyebrows and arms when she was younger, but guess who's eyebrows are everyone's #goals now?

Taylor Miller / BuzzFeed

"I had kids call me 'hairy monster' and I cried a lot in elementary school. I started shaving my legs in the fourth grade. One time I over-plucked my eyebrows using my mom's tweezers and it was hideous."

How did you overcome it?
"Well, I used to be super embarrassed about my eyebrows, but yay now they're in! Also being more 'hairy' now means I have actually great hair, eyelashes, and brows."

What are your favorite brow products?
"I love Benefit's Precisely, My Brow Pencil Ultra Fine Shape & Define to fill in any sparse areas – this lasts me forever since I don't actually fill in my whole eyebrow. However, my absolute favorite eyebrow product is the Clear Brow Gel by Anastasia Beverly Hills because my eyebrows can be hard to tame, and this stuff WORKS and keeps my hairs in place!"

You can get them both from Sephora, Benefit's Precisely, My Brow Pencil Ultra Fine Shape & Define for $24, and Anastasia's brow gel for $22.

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8. Treye was holding on to his edges, until he realized that a bald head can be just as cool as a full head of hair. Oh, and New York City prices might've helped get him there.

"Growing up I was pretty insecure about my hairline, especially toward the end of middle school and all through high school. That's when I noticed those edges were SLOWLY starting to go bye bye. It was tough to realize that I would never have the option of rocking any trendy styles at that time — like corn rows or a dope fro. And for my younger self, I didn't fully realize that a bald head was just as cool as a full head of hair. I held on to my edges up until I finished college."How did you overcome it?"Once I moved up to New York City and learned how much a haircut cost to trim up basically nothing, I said 'NOPE,' and embraced the bald life. And that's when I fully found the power in my lack of locks. I love my bald head now!"
Taylor Miller / BuzzFeed

"Growing up I was pretty insecure about my hairline, especially toward the end of middle school and all through high school. That's when I noticed those edges were SLOWLY starting to go bye bye. It was tough to realize that I would never have the option of rocking any trendy styles at that time — like corn rows or a dope fro. And for my younger self, I didn't fully realize that a bald head was just as cool as a full head of hair. I held on to my edges up until I finished college."

How did you overcome it?
"Once I moved up to New York City and learned how much a haircut cost to trim up basically nothing, I said 'NOPE,' and embraced the bald life. And that's when I fully found the power in my lack of locks. I love my bald head now!"

9. Ignacia didn't like the way her curls looked, but it all changed after she went natural and started taking care of her hair properly.

Taylor Miller / BuzzFeed

"It never curled the way I wanted it to, or when I had it relaxed it never stayed straight because I sweat from my head. I think the main reason why I was super insecure about it was because my cousins had like...perfect, curly, ringlets or cool waves, and mine didn't do ANY of that. Being mixed was a struggle, especially trying to adhere to certain expectations, etc."

How did you get over it?
"I started to embrace my hair after I went natural and really started to take care of it. Yeah, I'll never have wavy hair that doesn't get fuzzy in the humidity, but it's mine!"

What are your favorite hair products?
"The two products that treat my hair so well and just do the damn thing are: DevaCurl Supercream — It moisturizes my hair without it getting super oily and gross; I have a billion different curl patterns throughout my head, so it's important to have a creamy styler that doesn't weigh down my curls. DevaCurl Ultra Defining Gel is lit for the summer. Humidity never wants me to win, so when I apply it wet, it sets my curls as they are so the moisture in the air doesn't expand them as much as they would without. Plus, it doesn't make my hair all Ramen Noodle textured which is always a good look."

You can get both from Sephora, the DevaCurl Supercream for $28, and the DevaCurl Ultra Defining Gel for $22.

10. Sarah was insecure about her double earlobe, until she learned it was something she shared with her grandmother.

"As a little girl I hated it, and only wore my hair down to cover my ears. People always asked me (and still do) if I ripped my ear or something because of the way it looks."How did you get over it?"I'm not sure when I got over it, but I eventually did and now think it's cool, plus I learned my grandmother also had it. I show off my ears all the time!"
Taylor Miller / BuzzFeed

"As a little girl I hated it, and only wore my hair down to cover my ears. People always asked me (and still do) if I ripped my ear or something because of the way it looks."

How did you get over it?
"I'm not sure when I got over it, but I eventually did and now think it's cool, plus I learned my grandmother also had it. I show off my ears all the time!"

11. Rachel was insecure about not having her ears pierced, her weight, and her height. She has overcome her insecurities by realizing clip-on earrings are pretty great, everything in moderation is key, and you don't have to be tall to be heard.

Taylor Miller / BuzzFeed

What were you insecure about?
"I have been insecure about not having my ears pierced, my weight, and my height. Everyone has their ears pierced, weight is so hard in our society, and it's hard being 5'1."

How did you get over your insecurities?
"I started wearing fake earrings and realized there's no big deal. My weight has been a constant struggle, but I exercise, eat healthy, and do everything in moderation. As for my height, I always felt unheard because of my size. Getting older has shown me no matter my height, I can still be heard. Even better if it’s with a four inch heel."

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12. Essence was insecure about her legs, but now, she loves throwing on a pair of shorts in the summer.

"My legs were so skinny, and honestly they still are. I'm a black girl from the south, so being skinny wasn't my beauty ideal; being thick and curvy was." How did you overcome it?"I didn't wear shorts really until I got into college. By then I'd just grown a lot in the self-love department and grew to embrace my body. It was a natural thing that happened with time and slowly realizing that my body fit me, and as long as I presented myself with confidence than that's all that mattered. I think that naturally, with time, people just mature and we subconsciously work through some of our problematic thinking. I think I just realized that my insecurities were valid, but also ridiculous because everyone's body is different and there's no 'right' or 'wrong' way for a body to look. I've gone from not showing my legs to showing them every chance I get. Summer is my SEASON!"
Taylor Miller / BuzzFeed

"My legs were so skinny, and honestly they still are. I'm a black girl from the south, so being skinny wasn't my beauty ideal; being thick and curvy was."

How did you overcome it?
"I didn't wear shorts really until I got into college. By then I'd just grown a lot in the self-love department and grew to embrace my body. It was a natural thing that happened with time and slowly realizing that my body fit me, and as long as I presented myself with confidence than that's all that mattered. I think that naturally, with time, people just mature and we subconsciously work through some of our problematic thinking. I think I just realized that my insecurities were valid, but also ridiculous because everyone's body is different and there's no 'right' or 'wrong' way for a body to look. I've gone from not showing my legs to showing them every chance I get. Summer is my SEASON!"

13. And Daniela hated wearing hoops when she was younger, because she thought they made her look "too Latina," and she didn't think that was a good thing. Now that she's learned to love and embrace who she is, the bigger the hoop, the better!

Taylor Miller / BuzzFeed

"I was trying to fit into that whole Abercrombie & Fitch surfer look that was very popular at the time, and I thought wearing hoops made me look extra Latina. I moved to the United States when I was 11 years old and I just wanted to fit into a new culture and country. I guess I didn't wear hoops for years because I was trying to camouflage my ~Latinidad.~"

How did you get over it?
"I was young at the time. Now that I'm older, I'm 100% comfortable, and even thankful for who I am and where I come from. Though we're living in a world where diversity is finally being celebrated, when I was a teenager, the only Latina the mainstream media considered beautiful, was J.Lo, and I did not look like her. Now that I've learned to love and embrace a lot of things I didn't before, I've realized being Latina is actually one of my favorite things about myself. Celia Cruz and María Félix are my style icons, I bleed Harina Pan and Vicks vaporú, and I'm still crying about Coco."

There's light at the end of the tunnel, even when it feels like it's filled with insecurities.

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