It was at the age of 12 that Ash Soto learned she had vitiligo. After a young girl asked her if she had showered with bleach, she began to feel embarrassed by her rapidly spreading vitiligo. The young woman, now 21, no longer feels any sense of shame and even enjoys the color of her skin.

Soto made the decision in her late teens that she would no longer let the color of her skin prevent her from achieving her goals. She began challenging herself every day by doing things like going out in public without a long-sleeved shirt. Soto’s body became a work of art after she overcame numerous obstacles. It really helps to bring out the different colors of my skin,” Soto told Daily Mail. “I never realized how beautiful my vitiligo was until I traced it with a black marker.” She has now painted her body to resemble numerous works of art, including Van Gogh’s “Starry Night,” and she has no plans to stop. What was once seen as a flaw is now something to be cherished and appreciated.

More info: Instagram (h/t)

When Ash Soto was 12 years old, she was diagnosed with vitiligo.

It’s a rare skin disease that leads to widespread pigment loss and white patches.

It was during Ash’s teenage years that vitiligo was most widely spread, and it was also when the bullying first started.

Ash felt too embarrassed to show any skin in public after a young girl asked if she had showered with bleach.

Soto: “When I heard that, I was so shocked that I started crying because I didn’t want to have the condition any longer.”

Ash, however, forced herself to do such things in her late teens, including going outside in a short-sleeved shirt.

But it wasn’t until she began doing body art that she finally accepted her skin condition.

She began by drawing a border around the white areas and quickly realized she had created a map of the world.

I had no idea how stunning my vitiligo was until I traced it with a black marker and saw how the different colors popped.

I will keep making skin art and sharing it with the world in the hopes that it will motivate and encourage others.

What was once seen as flawed is now admired and appreciated more for its unique qualities than ever before.

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