Woman covered in birthmarks learns to embrace her unique look

A 26-year-old from São Paulo has a nevus birthmark covering more than 80% of her body. She has successfully combatted bullying and embraced body positivity.

Beatriz Pugliese, a 25-year-old from São Paulo, Brazil, has 80% of her body covered in birthmarks. She has undergone over 30 surgeries to reduce the appearance of her birthmarks since she was six months old.

After years of trying to change her appearance and rebutting several bullies, she is finally content in her own skin. Read more to find out Beatriz’s body-positive journey.

Beatriz's story to self-confidence

Nevus birthmarks are so rare that it affects 1 in 500,000. They cover most of the body, making the skin more susceptible to skin cancers.

Beatriz said:

The doctors who took my case together with my parents thought it best that parts of my birthmark were removed, because they were very large and the exposure to the sun is very dangerous.

She explained how she was termed as ‘monkey’ and ‘Dalmatian,’ from time to time. But, she did not let that hinder her self-confidence. Her positive attitude towards her body stemmed from her family, who always encouraged her to not cover up her birthmarks, ‘but to embrace them.’

In a conversation with Truly magazine, Beatriz said:

Never stop yourself from being who you want to be because of the judgements of others. I am sure that I would not be the person I am today if I had normal skin.
I think the condition resulted in me developing my character and my courage to confront lifes challenges.

What are nevus birthmarks?

Nevus birthmarks of pigmented benign tumours, called the congenital melanocytic nevi (CMN). It results from faulty development of pigment cells, which leads to the unusual appearance of the skin.

Today, Beatriz has her own social media handles and is quite the influencer. The young role model also attends annual meetups in Brazil, to help others embrace their nevus birthmarks.

Beatriz expressed:

I set up an Instagram and Facebook account, tonnes of people visited the pages to communicate with me. They wanted to get help and advice on overcoming things.
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