One 24-year-old girl with a rare skin condition has taken on the world by storm, choosing to get a tattoo to reduce the stigma associated with her disease.

Tiffany Posteraro has vitiligo, which causes white splotches across tanner or darker skin. She first started seeing the strange spots at an early age but didn’t know what was causing them.

“I showed my parents, but we just thought they must be scars or something,” she told Woman’s Day. “We had no idea what it was. A dermatologist gave me some ointment, but it did nothing.”

How a doctor never figured out what her skin condition was is beyond me — but a random stranger at a grocery store ultimately made the diagnosis, pulling Posteraro aside and telling her she had vitiligo.

Vitiligo is a disease that’s caused by a lack of melanin in your skin and even hair, and it leads to the loss of skin color on any part of your body, including your eyes and mouth. Melanin is the pigment that gives your skin, hair, and eyes color — and darker-skinned people tend to have more of it than light-skinned people. Vitiligo sufferers tend to have white splotches across their skin.

Over the years, Posteraro’s skin condition worsened — and people began calling her “cow,” “Dalmation,” and “burn victim.” The bullying and staring spurred her to turn to heavy foundations to cover the skin spots: “I tried everything possible to cover it up,” she told Woman’s Day. “I got really dark spray tans and used industrial-strength foundation, the kind used to cover deep scars.”

Eventually, however, Posteraro had a change of heart. “Why should I hide who I am?” she ultimately concluded. “It’s exhausting.”

That’s when she decided to get a tattoo on her arm that allowed her to embrace her condition — as well as confront the bullying front on. “It’s called Vitiligo” is tattooed right across a dividing line of splotches on the inside of her left arm, serving both as a reminder to herself to accept and love herself as well as to raise awareness and reduce stigma among others.

Some one to two percent of the world population has the skin condition, and it’s most noticeable in people with darker skin. Another woman who has been making strides in defeating stigma about the disease is Chantelle Brown-Young, a model with vitiligo all over her face and body.