Lili Reinhart: ‘My skin has caused me a lot of anxiety and sadness’

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Lili Reinhart, a/k/a Betty on Riverdale, is profiled in the October issue of Glamour magazine. The actress, who turned 22 yesterday, has been refreshingly honest in discussing her issues battling depression and social anxiety, her experience with sexual harassment in the industry, and has stressed the importance of body positivity.

One issue that Lili has been very upfront about is her fight with cystic acne, which she’s had since she was 12. In sharing her struggles, as she did with an Instagram story back in May, she hopes to help others suffering from the same condition “to be able to feel okay about their skin.” At the time, she also asserted that “my breakouts don’t define me” and invited her followers to be a #breakoutbuddy and “get through this acne experience together.” In the Glamour profile, she admitted that just the night before her interview she was in tears while FaceTiming with her mom because she felt she looked ugly. Here’s what else she had to say:

On her ongoing struggle with her skin: “My skin has caused me a lot of anxiety and sadness. I have a specific type of body dysmorphia that stems from acne. I see any acne on my face as an obsessive thing. [It’s] the only thing I can think about, and it makes me want to hide.”

On a surprising #breakoutbuddy: “Lorde actually messaged me on Instagram when I had spoken out about my acne,” she says, “and she was like, ‘Girl, I feel you. I’m totally on the same page as you.’ It was really comforting and very sweet of her.”

On coping with camera phones and paparazzi: “It’s only been two years that I’ve been semi in the spotlight, and it still pisses me off so bad when I see someone trying to sneak a photo of me,” she says. The idea that she can be photographed whenever, wherever, makes her feel “like a zoo animal.”

She’s got “off days” too: “Sometimes I feel like I look like s—. Sometimes I don’t want to talk to anyone. And it’s like, I’m allowed to have those days. I’m not going to apologize for that.”

She’s honest, but doesn’t put it all out there: “I haven’t really shown the super vulnerable side of myself to my audience. If I did that, I wouldn’t have anything left for myself.”

[Via Glamour]

One thing she does keep to herself is her relationship with Cole Sprouse, her Riverdale co-star whom she’s been romantically linked with since May. She told the magazine, “I’m private about the things that I want to be private about.” While the two tend to keep their union on the down low, last week Cole posted a photo on his Instagram that is the first he’s shared showing them in what sure looks like “couple mode.” They are so cute together and they look so happy.

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It’s pretty, pretty late

A post shared by Cole Sprouse (@colesprouse) on

Lili ends the interview on words I would like to have embroidered on a pillow, “If people could just open their eyes a little bit and see there’s a wider range of beauty, there’d be so much more happiness.” I think by being so honest about herself, she’s doing a lot towards achieving this.

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Photos: Getty, WENN, Instagram

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12 Responses to “Lili Reinhart: ‘My skin has caused me a lot of anxiety and sadness’”

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  1. Livethelifeaquatic says:

    I cannot with her. Zooming in to see this terrible skin she won’t STFU about … nope.

    • Sitka says:

      She has shown it many times on her instagram. Just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean she doesn’t have it. The pictures are likely from times she had a professional MUA do her make up so I would hope you couldn’t see it?

    • ans says:

      I am VERY good at hiding my cystic acne but it crushes my soul anyways. With all due respect, STFU Livethelifeaquatic.

  2. Crumbs says:

    I know she’s asked about it, but literally all I know about her is that she has skin issues and she’s a super private person dating her costar. It’s getting repetitive and boring now, so she might want to change up her talking points. It’s nice she’s advocating for healthier bodies, etc but damn. Talk about something else for a hot minute.

  3. Noodles says:

    Geez, when celebrities complain about people taking photos of them! Get over it or find another job!

  4. Valerie says:

    I was about to ask if she had body dysmorphia, and there it is in the article. As someone with BDD, I sort of feel for her. It’s easy for me to roll my eyes and be like, “stfu, girl,” but I know how powerfully magnified these so-called defects are to the person who sees them.

    Realistically, her skin is NOT that bad, especially for someone who has cystic acne, so I don’t know what her brain is telling her she looks like. But then that’s the nature of dysmorphia.

  5. VeronicaLodge says:

    I feel her on this. My skin looks perfect when I leave my house. Catch me when I first wake up, whole other story. I have rosacea and acne comes along with it. Over the years I’ve perfected the right foundations and moisturizer that give the facade of smooth, even toned skin. The few times I’ve gone to run a quick errand without my usual routine and I’ve gotten “did you get a bad sunburn? That looks so painful.”. It sucks. This is my skin and I look like a tomato without makeup.

  6. Parigo says:

    Lili is a bit extra, but I like her just like I like all of the Riverdale cast. She got Cole to fall for her and he was definitely the most eligible dude on the show, so she must have something going for her.

  7. Jag says:

    She should watch early videos from thataylaa on youtube. Taylor showed that acne didn’t define her because she’d go out without makeup or do a full face and show us how.

    After 10 years of cystic acne, she did go on Accutane, but now she has dry skin because of it. (I went on Accutane 30 years ago and ended up with pernicious anemia, so have to have B12 every month for the rest of my life or I’ll eventually die. Many people I’ve talked to – and my sister – who have been on Accutane have ended up with the same thing. It’s called pernicious anemia, but is really psuedo pernicious anemia because the Accutane allegedly kills the intrinsic factor in the stomach which is where we absorb B12. If you’ve ever been on Accunate, please get your vitamin B12 level checked at least yearly.)

    She also should go see her doctor and get her hormones fully checked. Many women with cystic acne have PCOS and have too much of a certain male hormone that causes cystic acne. I had that and also Candidas – yeast overgrowth – from being given too many antibiotics. When I’d eat sweets, I’d break out, even though my dermatologist said it wasn’t possible. I wish her well.

  8. Nikki says:

    I try hard to be sympathetic with people who are all wrapped up in their insecurities, but sometimes I just want to buy Americans a ticket to third world countries, where many people walk around maimed, with open sores or terrible scars, just in terrible conditions. Even in a rich country like the USA, people without much money get amputations for diabetes instead of preventative medical care, and below a certain income level, plenty of people don’t have TEETH. That’s why the Amy Schumer movie “I Feel Pretty” irritated the hell out of me; her feeling gruesome over a few pounds extra is insulting. Acne is no fun, and any young person can feel self-conscious, but at what point is it self absorption? Put on some concealer and try to focus on something or someONE else.

    • MarcelMarcel says:

      As someone with a full thickness burn scar and chronic pain I take umbrage with your statement. Her acne causes her emotional discomfort. It doesn’t impact her mobility or cause her the physical discomfort that my conditions give to me however we can only understand pain as we experience it.
      So she can feel badly about her acne while still having compassion for people in worst positions than her.
      By your logic I shouldn’t be upset by the time I was on fire. Because although I almost lost my arm it wasn’t amputated and I recieved first class medical care.
      I think we are allowed to acknowledge the negative impacts of bad experiences we have had as a privileged individuals. Doing so can allow us to deepen the compassion we have for those less fortunate than ourselves.
      She is an actress on a hit show so perhaps her candour is having a positive impact on a struggling teenage girl with acne.