Kim Kardashian has long been open about her struggle with psoriasis. And though the KKW beauty mogul typically posts glamorous selfies to her social media accounts, on Monday, February 11, she decided to get visually real about her skin condition.
On her Instagram Story, Kardashian, 38, shared a selfie of herself lying on a bed with a close-up of her face covered in brown smudges. “Psoriasis is the sh_ts!” the reality star wrote, adding an LOL face emoji.
In the next slide, the mom of three repeated the same photo with new text assuring fans she did not, in fact, put feces on her visage as a treatment. “It’s just herbal ointment,” she typed on that picture.
The ointment was placed in multiple places on her skin: forehead, chin, cheeks and under-eye area, suggesting her psoriasis flare-up was extensive.
In a third photograph, Kardashian shared what appeared to be a light unit. Phototherapy with UVB rays is one recommended treatment for the autoimmune condition, according to the National Psoriasis Foundation.
The photo series comes less than a week after the Daily Mail published a photo of the Keeping Up With the Kardashians star with bumps on her face saying she was suffering “a bad skin day” ahead of the Master Beauty skin seminar she had planned days later. The paper then mocked Kardashian for frequently wearing heavy makeup and foundation. Kardashian clapped back at the skin critics on Twitter, revealing that the bumps were not acne, but “psoriasis all over [her] face.”
Psoriasis is a chronic, incurable skin condition that “causes cells to build up rapidly on the surface of the skin,” according to the Mayo Clinic. “The extra skin cells form scales and red patches that are itchy and sometimes painful.” The organization explains that the condition goes through cycles of flare-ups that can last from weeks to months and periods where the symptoms subside or go into remission. Many factors, including stress, are thought to contribute to flare-ups.
Kardashian has tried several treatments throughout the years, including a low-acid diet, cortisone ointments, breast milk and seaweed treatments. In December, she shared on her Instagram Story that she was drinking celery juice, saying she was trying the popular diet trend because she’d learned it could help with the inflammation associated with her condition.
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