Tiffany and Randolphe hold hands as the pastor pronounces then man and wife. MDWFeatures / @i.tiffanytaylor

By Martin Ruffell


THIS WOMAN met her husband on an online dating app after believing her love life was DOOMED because of the patchy skin covering her body.

Director of accounting, Tiffany Taylor from Pennsylvania, USA, developed the rare skin condition vitiligo when she was just 14 years old. Those affected by vitiligo have a lack of a pigment called melanin in their skin causing white patches to appear in affected areas.

Growing up, Tiffany would do everything in her power to hide her vitiligo, worried at how strangers and friends would react. She would cover her pigment-free patches of skin in copious amounts of makeup to avoid people noticing her ever-spreading condition.

Tiffany pictured with her father as a child. It wasn’t until the age of fourteen that she started to develop vitiligo. MDWFeatures / @i.tiffanytaylor

Uncomfortable in her skin and low on confidence, Tiffany’s love life was unsuccessful as she believed that she was not attractive enough to find love. She met compliments directed towards her with scepticism as she thought these could not be genuine.

In the relationships she did have, Tiffany would always seek approval from her partners due to a lack of confidence – something she now realises must have been difficult for boyfriends to hear time and time again.

It wasn’t until autumn 2017 that Tiffany finally decided to show the world and more importantly herself that her vitiligo was part of her identity and should no longer be hidden.

Growing up, Tiffany would cover her face in makeup to hide her vitiligo. MDWFeatures / @i.tiffanytaylor

Inspired by photos of other people with vitiligo online, Tiffany had professional photos taken of her skin without makeup which quickly gained attention on social media. The positive feedback she received from numerous strangers gave her a huge boost in confidence.

By the time Tiffany met web developer, Randolphe Jacques on a dating app in summer 2018, her confidence in herself was at an all-time high. For Randolphe, Tiffany’s vitiligo was no issue, and he was immediately drawn to her sophistication and ambition.

In September 2019, the couple got engaged and they were married in July 2020.

Tiffany’s vitiligo has stretched across her face, arms and body. MDWFeatures / @i.tiffanytaylor

Tiffany does receive occasional negative comments, with some people bluntly asking what is wrong with her skin and others staring at her when she goes out. Luckily, these insensitive comments are dwarfed by the positivity she receives.

“Growing up, my vitiligo was something I was so insecure about,” Tiffany said.

“I wore makeup to cover it from the day I found out.

Once ashamed to tell anyone about her condition, Tiffany is now keener than ever to share her body positive story with the world. MDWFeatures / @i.tiffanytaylor

“My dating life and relationships prior to my husband were always doomed because I wasn’t comfortable in my own skin.

“I always thought I was not attractive enough and found it hard to accept compliments.

“Seeking constant approval isn’t the most attractive quality in someone so it made it hard for me to be a confident partner.

The happy couple on their wedding day in July 2020. MDWFeatures / @i.tiffanytaylor

“It’s hard to hear someone you care about constantly talking down on themselves.

“If it was an issue for partners, they didn’t tell me.

“I realised that I was more of the issue when it came to romantic relationships.

Tiffany beaming in her wedding dress. MDWFeatures / @i.tiffanytaylor

“I needed to be a happy person alone to be a successful partner to someone.

“When I started my relationship with Randolphe, I had reached a place where I was confident enough to love and have a greater empathy for a partner because I finally had it for myself. I was able to love more and accept love.

“The proposal was a total surprise. He wanted to take a walk along this trail where we had gone on our third date. It was a perfect moment where he could have kissed me for the first time, but he didn’t.

Since accepting her skin condition, Tiffany has a newfound confidence. MDWFeatures / @i.tiffanytaylor

“He never forgot about it and took me back there. This time, he got down on one knee and proposed. I said yes.

“Our wedding day had to be reimagined because of the pandemic.

“We had planned for an outside ceremony, so we were able to keep our original venue but had to reduce the guest count and change the seating setup to be properly spaced out.

Before deciding to show her vitiligo to the world, Tiffany would be worried about exercising incase her makeup would run, revealing her hidden secret. MDWFeatures / @i.tiffanytaylor

“There was a beautiful arch, flower petals down the aisle, and a trickle sound from a creek flowing nearby.

“We kept it short and sweet, but still did everything that you would do on a regular wedding day.

“Our first dance was so special. We had it in the middle of the aisle which was covered in flower petals.

Tiffany has learned to embrace her vitiligo and let go of the insecurities that hampered her previous relationships. MDWFeatures / @i.tiffanytaylor

“For every one-hundred positive compliments I receive online, there’s always going to be a hater or someone being negative.

“I have learned to focus on the good and positive in life. It’s so much more uplifting than doing the opposite.”

Tiffany’s vitiligo has continued to spread across her face, arms and body.

Tiffany with her newly wedded husband Randolphe on a date in the park. MDWFeatures / @i.tiffanytaylor

However, being able to finally accept these changes has meant that Tiffany doesn’t face a future filled with trepidation as she once did, but instead enters married life with a new sense of confidence.

The newlyweds can’t wait to finally head to St Lucia for their delayed honeymoon in 2021.

“My skin is still changing, but I continue to take on the changes with confidence,” Tiffany said.

Tiffany bearing her skin in her wedding dress. MDWFeatures / @i.tiffanytaylor

“In the past, I let insecurity hold me back from being confident in everyday situations.

“I was always insecure and jealous, thinking why would someone want to be with me simply because of my skin.

Tiffany has even had the confidence to become a model alongside her job as a director of accounting. MDWFeatures / @i.tiffanytaylor

“Randolphe quickly didn’t notice my vitiligo. He saw beyond my skin into my heart and actions.

“I’m finally free and am thankful for every day I choose to stop hiding.”