Why a TikToker is documenting his psoriasis journey online

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Rosie Daniels documents her psoriasis journey online. (Picture: Rosie Daniels/TikTok)

SKIM founder Kim Kardashian has been open about her journey with psoriasis for years, often sharing photos of her skin during breakouts on social media. The common autoimmune disease causes the body to make new skin cells in days instead of the typical cycle that takes weeks, resulting in dry, scaly flakes.

Kardashian even attributed a recent flare-up of psoriasis to a diet change she made in her famous attempt to fit into Marilyn Monroe’s iconic dress for the 2022 Met Gala.

But the multi-hyphenated reality TV stars aren’t the only ones dealing with the flaky skin condition, which affects an estimated 7.5 million Americans.

TikToker and UK-based influencer Rosie Daniels shared her psoriasis journey online to raise awareness of the condition.

“This is my chance to do everything I can to try to get the word out about how common this disease is,” she told Yahoo Life.

Daniels’ TikTok, which she shares with boyfriend Harry, has more than 4 million followers and features mostly couple-related content, including trending and dancing. Most people wouldn’t necessarily choose to talk about an autoimmune disease on social media, but the decision was a no-brainer for Daniels.

“We share a lot about our life in general, so obviously I thought that was an important part of my life. So I’m going to share that online,” she says.

Daniels’ psoriasis flare-ups began when he was 12 years old and mainly affected his scalp. “I was living in Australia at the time. I started seeing red patches on the back of my scalp,” she says. The breakouts on her scalp continued for about seven years and then started to spread.

“When I was 19, I started getting a few different patches of psoriasis on my stomach,” says Daniels. “They were really small, like literally the size of a coin, and I didn’t really think about it. I just thought, ‘Oh, they’ll just disappear. “” But they didn’t.

Instead, she says, “They got worse and worse.” Daniels adds, “My skin has cleared up a bit, but about six months ago my skin was at its worst and it covered about 90% of my body.”

His videos on the subject range from trying psoriasis remedies to answering frequently asked questions. A video of her boyfriend drawing petals on his psoriasis patches and turning them into “flowers” has been viewed over 14 million times.

Since psoriasis is an incurable autoimmune disease, topical treatments can only manage the symptoms.

“I’ve tried different diets. I’ve tried different supplements. I’ve tried Chinese herbal medicine. I’ve spent thousands and thousands of pounds trying to find different treatments that will work for me and be the healthiest, but I haven’t found anything that clears my skin 100%,” she says.

One of the most common questions Daniels gets is about the level of discomfort she feels from the patches of psoriasis, which she compares to the feeling of a severe sunburn.

“My whole body feels like it’s on fire, like it’s burning,” she says. “To the point that I can’t lie in my bed sometimes at night because it hurts so much.”

Even simple tasks can be difficult during particularly severe flare-ups. “Bending over as if to tie my shoes, because my skin wrinkles a little, [it] I literally feel like my skin is like ripped or someone poured acid on me and it burns so much,” she says.

Showing off your most vulnerable skin to an audience of over 4 million is a reasonably scary undertaking, but Daniels says the feedback she’s received has been surprisingly positive.

“Because I shared this whole journey, the people who followed us from the beginning and kind of saw our journey knew me with this condition. So they never questioned it and they were always there to support me,” says Daniels, who shares that she is immensely grateful for the community she has built on TikTok.

“We’ve created such a huge following that is literally so supportive, like I never even have the words to explain how much I appreciate the support everyone online has given me.” She adds, “I’ve never received any hate because of my skin.”

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