Body positivity looks different for everyone. For some, it might be embracing their bodies even though it might differ from the mold society says it should look like. For others, it could be learning to love the newfound stretch marks on their body after nine months of growing a child inside of them. For Instagrammer Ashley Soto, it was learning to accept and love the skin she was born in.
Tried something different this time and I absolutely fell in love 🏁 seeing the different kind of art you can create with what others perceive as "imperfections" is mind blowing to me. Everytime I do #markerchronicles I fall in love more and more with what I was chosen to carry. It isn't about being black or white because we're all human, we all feel the same emotions within and we all carry hearts that's what makes us the same.
After being diagnosed with a skin condition called vitiligo at 12 years old, Soto spent several years covering up her body in long sleeves and pants. However, a decision to trace the depigmented patches on her skin with a black marker changed the way she began to look at her unique skin.
I get stretch marks just like everyone else regardless of if I have a skin condition or not. I go through all the same struggles you all go through that's why I preach self love so much. I don't care if I have to repeat myself in every caption to love who you are regardless if you have tiger stripes, #vitiligo, or whatever the case may be. I'll sound like a broken record each time because at least someone reminded you to appreciate and love yourself unconditionally always 🎨🌎❤
"I never realized how beautiful my vitiligo was until I traced it with a black marker, it really helps to bring out the different colors of my skin," Soto told Daily Mail in an interview. "I was always trying to find a way to look at my skin in a positive light, [and] I couldn't do that before starting this. Now what others would perceive as an imperfection, I have made into something more beautiful and made it more accepted than before."
Paint chronicles 🎨 It was fun being her canvas. Everyone is art, not everyone sees it but with time you will. Confidence doesn't happen with a switch it takes time and you can get there if you just start believing it. Believe you are beautiful. Believe you're worth it. Believe that those quirks that make you who you are is what makes you different. Remember to always stay #bodypositive 🦋
Not long after, Soto began to use her Instagram account to promote total body positivity by creating art using the patches on her skin, and we can't get enough of it. She even recreated Van Gogh's Starry Night!
Her account is truly an encouragement to those who struggle with vitiligo themselves, in addition to those followers who just need a reminder of how important it is to love the body they were born with.
We can't get enough of her inspiring messages. Check out Soto's Instagram page for more of her incredible positivity!