club psora's network is destigmatising skin conditions

category - skincare
type - big idea
Big Idea
sector - beauty
sector - health & wellness
sector - youth
Miriam Thom, founder of club psora, is building a new community around skin conditions — one that reframes chronic illness and normalises long-term healing

 

Let's start with club psora – what is it and how does it operate?

At this early stage, we're focusing on psoriasis and eczema because we consider both to be autoimmune diseases that can be treated through lifestyle changes. Our platform, which exists on Instagram at the moment, is two-pronged: one side is public-facing and the other is for our members.

The side that is public-facing is all about elevating the stories of those with skin conditions and shedding light on the holistic measures that somebody can take to get their body back into balance because skin conditions ultimately reveal to us that there is an imbalance.

Why did you choose to launch as a membership platform?

After being told I had incurable psoriasis, I had built up a lot of health knowledge and realised that I would sometimes need to advocate against prescriptions as well as against the idea that I was incurable. I wanted to create a membership platform because I’m aware that healing takes a long time; there are a lot of ups and downs, it's not linear and it's very isolating. So, club psora is a community of people helping others to rethink their diagnosis and feel part of something. The motive is to reframe illness as instead a guiding light towards wellness and a greater understanding of ourselves and our bodily systems.

Many skincare products suggest or claim to help psoriasis. What has been your key lesson from using such products?

It's difficult, but we made a very firm decision at the beginning not to endorse brands or products [through club psora]. Instead, we focus on education around ingredients and discuss buzzwords that acknowledge the marketing strategies used to reach a solution-seeking consumer. But the reality is that all products have different effects on people. Our skin is so dependent on our external environments and our internal state of wellbeing. So, we take the approach of using pure ingredients and finding out what works for the individual with a view to the long term.

Published by:

25 January 2021

Author: Abi Buller

Image: Club Psora

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Club Psora, US

You offer coursework, mind-body classes and live events for your community. Tell us more about this holistic approach.

All members begin with our restore protocol, which is a 21-day meal plan that helps them discover their sensitivities. We've then created a six-module package that explores people’s symptoms, triggers, biology, gut imbalances, mind and body. Each week's curriculum is on a theme and includes a lecture, a meditation, a movement class and a workshop led by an expertMembers are also assigned to small groups called Pod Psora, which lets them connect with others, share their challenges and hold each other accountable. I liken club psora to a school for skin because the more you learn the more confident you become in your healing journey. I also think the wider healthcare system could integrate such comprehensive understanding into their practices.

Can you tell us more about the link between internal wellbeing, mental health and skin conditions?

When I was finally diagnosed, I was prescribed a very expensive biologic which made the treatment inaccessible – I was already in debt from going to see so many specialists. After doing my own research, I tried all kinds of elimination diets, cleanses and liver detoxes, but after six months of focusing on my gut I wasn't experiencing results. But it was also around this time that I decided to change my career and redirected my energy and purpose in life [to club psora]. Within a few days the inflammation from my skin vanished, so I knew in my case that the symptoms had a psychosomatic connection. Every so often I'll get these little patches on my skin and it's basically an indicator telling me to slow down.

‘I liken club psora to a school for skin — the more you learn, the more confident you become in your own healing journey’
Miriam Thom, founder, club psora
 
 

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