Mercedes Sanchez on Makeup Free Mondays for

Our editor on Makeup Free Mondays: Battling Acne By Going Makeup Free By Mercedes Sanchez

Originally written for

I wasn't one of those unfortunate teens who had to live with acne, but at 17 I had my first breakout and that's when my skin changed forever. Even when the zits were gone, I was stuck with dreadful red scars that are still visible today some days more than others.

First, I should say I started wearing make-up primarily to cover those red scars. I love dressing up and looking my best, but I've never been a super girly girl. The whole process of buying make-up, the lingo, which chemicals to avoid and even how to apply are somewhat new to me. It's one of the things I love best about running a fashion and beauty blog because like my readers (and viewers), I'm learning as I go by speaking with the experts.

It wasn't until recently that I decided to do something about the blemishes by seeing a dermatologist and going Makeup Free. Though it has its benefits, going bare faced isn't the easiest decision to make especially for those battling acne like me.

Going make-up free to get healthy skin has ironically influenced my daily decision-making. I avoid foundation and blush when I feel my face needs a breather from the day-to-day cover up. And sometimes, it takes guts to go without it. When I have a new zit and bravely walk the New York City streets with a naked face, I try to plan my outfit and route accordingly. Why go through all the trouble? In effort not to run into anyone I know in my neighborhood or in the elevator of my apartment building. Heck, I don't even want strangers on the subway or on the line at the pharmacy to notice me when I have a new pimple. It's just embarrassing.

In the winter, I don't mind the frigid Northeast weather as it helps going without makeup that much easier: I just hide my face under my faux fur hat and oversized sunglasses.

Trying to go make-up free is also one of the main reasons I chose not to go for a chic, boyish haircut as I had originally planned before the New Year. Keeping my long hair in layers is another way of covering up the blemishes without the concealer.

As I work on getting rid of the long term red scars with prescribed morning and evening creams, these days I seem to be going more for a no-makeup look rather than going completely bare. When I need to cover up for a meeting at the day job or for Sunday service, I like to wear a light mineral powder foundation for a flawless look. It covers up the old scars with the touch of a brush, and it's great to use when I'm on the go. I often finish by applying one coat of mascara.

What do I love most about going make-up free? Besides the time I save getting ready in the morning, I love not having to remove the make-up before bed. I can just simply wash and rinse, apply my prescribed evening facial cream and hit the sack.

If it weren't for these darn scars, I would go make-up free everyday!