Acne and Vanity

I have acne and I clean my face because I want to be attractive. I also run and exercise to be attractive. Is this vanity?

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In a way yes.

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You’re taking care of yourself and there’s nothing wrong with that. I had acne and did many things to to lessen it. I also run and exercise to stay in shape.


Your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit. It behooves you to take good care of it.


I read the other day a certain celebrity spends over $600.00 a day on her facial care. NOW THAT would be vanity.


Little flaws are worse in a way.

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Acne can have real social consequences. I don’t think having reasonable care for them is vanity. It is also reasonable to run to be fit or for fun.


Only on CAF would we find an opinion that taking care of acne might “in a way” be sinful. “Vanity?” Ridiculous.


Doing things to be attractive is vanity to a certain degree. Intentions change things and I didn’t say it was sinful.


Attraction is not a bad thing. If people weren’t attractive to one another, the human race would die out. It’s obviously part of God’s design for us that we would find one another attractive.

And aside from that, grooming oneself is healthy. An obsessive fixation with one’s looks could be vicious. But just wanting to look attractive or to care for oneself is a perfectly healthy attitude.



Nope, you’re good to go

Nonsense. Anyone with any type of medical issue, be it acne or whatever, in no way is being vain in trying to clear it up.

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That’s not what I meant and someone already said that.

You should always say what you mean then there will be no confusion. A blunt answer like the one you gave can have negative repercussions on people who are scrupulous (and there are many in these forums).

Well, I’m sure we wouldn’t have it as a ubiquitous trait if God has created us as is in his own image! Possibly evolution, as usual, provides a better explanation. For example:

Is acne really a disease?: a theory of acne as an evolutionarily significant, high-order psychoneuroimmune interaction timed to cortical development with a crucial role in mate choice.

Bloom DF1.
Author information
Adolescent acne is considered from the perspective of evolutionary psychology with an emphasis on a role in mate choice. The fact that acne, which is almost universal and not a true infection, is (1) initiated at puberty by the action of pubertal hormones on likely distinct, pro-acne follices, and (2) typically resolves in one’s early twenties when prefrontal cortex development is complete, suggests that the condition’s timeframe is meaningful. Acne’s conspicuous localization on the face, and its ability to elicit reflexive disgust and avoidance in observers, suggests a possible role in sexual selection. The pathophysiology of acne is reviewed, and the suggestion made that, far from being a disease, adolescent acne is a normal physiological process - a high-order psychoneuroimmune interaction - that functions to ward off potential mates until the afflicted individual is some years past the age of reproductive maturity, and thus emotionally, intellectually, and physically fit to be a parent.
PMID: 14975524 DOI: 10.1016/j.mehy.2003.11.003

It would depend on what sort of attraction. If you want to be attractive in order to attract someone and eventually marry, I don’t see any issue. Just listen to your desires. You’ll know when you feel prideful rather than just trying to look decent out of necessity.

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There’s nothing wrong with wanting to be attractive for the sake of simply being attractive. Many priests take care of their image and they’re not doing it to get married


I don’t think there’s anything wrong with looking put together. However, attempting to look attractive for no reason is a fallacy. There’s always a reason. It depends on the person’s motives.

If someone decides to look good in order for others to look at them and make them feel good and special, that’s vanity. But trying to look put together and cleaned up is a completely different thing.

They’re already married to the best Bride of all , the Church. :slight_smile:

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No. Vanity is known also as pride of vainglory. It is the tendency we have to become preoccupied with ourselves, interfering with our ability to love others. It expresses itself in two ways. Classically, we think too highly of ourselves and become pompous, or we become obsessed with fixing all our flaws.

While being obsessed with our physical flaws CAN be vane, so can being obsessed with any of our flaws, including our own sins. The big thing is that we tend to be preoccupied to ourselves to the point of neglecting our duty to love others. The solution is humility–not beratting ourselves but coming to accept and love ourselves as we are. It doesn’t neglect our duty to love ourselves. It simply lets us be secure in ourselves–loving ourselves just as we are with all our potential.

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