Nickelodeon's 27th Annual Kids' Choice Awards - Red Carpet

Even if you stopped watching Glee halfway through its first season, it’s hard to avoid seeing Lea Michele‘s smiling face on posters, billboards, red carpets, CD covers, and merchandise. She’s obviously beautiful, and I tend to love even her oddest fashion choices, so I’m always caught off guard when she discusses the career obstacles she’s had to overcome with her nose, height, and acne. I want to be like, In what universe is Lea not considered gorgeous? but then I’m like, Oh yeah, Hollywood beauty standards are insane.

In Lea’s new memoir, Brunette Ambition, she shares her experience as a 5’2″ Jewish girl who accidentally found herself professionally competing with supermodels. What’s her secret for measuring up? Stripping down, of course. Lea writes,

This sounds a bit unintentionally raunchy, but I believe that if you’re short, you need to show as much skin as possible. Stylists at photo shoots tend to want to put a lot of fabric on me, but that doesn’t work when you’re five foot two. I’m always a big fan of minidresses– in fact, I often take dresses to the tailor to have them shortened even more.

So sassy. She can wear the hell out of a short dress, so I’m glad she knows what she’s doing. And even though it’s silly to look at traditionally attractive women and pat them on the backs for being “brave enough” to feel confident about their bodies, it’s always cool to see big screen representation for people who don’t perfectly fit the tall-thin-blue-eyed ideal.

Lea also talks about overcoming her battles with severe acne, saying,

You know those kids who become nearly suicidal about their acne? I’ve walked that fine line. It was impossible at times to look beyond my pimple-ridden skin or to imagine a time when I wouldn’t have to spackle my face just to leave my bedroom.

Yikes. While it’s really shitty to know that someone had to feel that low about her skin growing up, I’m sure Lea has tons of fans with chronic acne who will really benefit from seeing how confident she is today. Obviously there are much greater challenges in this life than going from “beautiful girl with bad acne” to “beautiful girl with some acne and a team of professional makeup artists,” but it’s cool that she’s getting the chance to break down her diva reputation and show off her relatable side. Lea Michele is living proof that anyone can achieve their dreams (as long as they’re extremely talented and super hot).

Via E! / Photo: Getty Images