My title uses the “For a Cure” phrase not in the traditional sense- meaning raising money to fight breast cancer, it is my way of helping women who have undergone so much to feel more like themselves again by giving them back their outer beauty…which hopefully will help strengthen their inner beauty and courage.
In the face of the monster CANCER, beauty may seem superficial and unimportant, but as a makeup artist and also a woman, I get how deeply something as seemingly superficial as “how we look”- can have a deep impact on our day to day selves, our mood- our entire being. And that is just from the standpoint of an everyday healthy woman! If it were not true, the cosmetics and beauty biz wouldn’t be a billion plus dollar industry.
Now think of a woman who just found out she has cancer. Not only will she soon be fighting the possibility of death and the psychological impact of a life interrupted, but when her life saving treatments come and take her hair, her eyebrows and with breast reconstruction- her areola and nipples- it is really a wonder to me how these courageous wonder women wake up each day and face life anyway. Cancer is a sucker-punch- and I want to use my makeup talents to punch it back- hard…right in the face. I want all women facing cancer to beat it and have people be able to say
“She did it anyway”
I do this because I know how psychologically we can effect how we heal and how our lives unfold. It is my belief that when a woman looks good, she feels better and maybe just maybe that little extra “somethin” can help her heal faster better sooner. Just my hope.
I have been a makeup artist for 35 years. I’ve done photography shoots with famous photograpers, I have done tv shoots with celebrities and famous directors, I have done makeup for presidents, politicians and recording artists. I had one of the first makeup schools in New York City from 1991 to 2008. I was even nominated for an Emmy once. At this point in my life, I had pretty much done everything on my “Makeup Artist Bucket List”. I was actually ok with leaving the business and just doing my art and jewelry making.
Then one day I was doing makeup on a shoot for a woman who would turn out to be my “Mentor but she didn’t know it”- Christine Guarino from a World Of Pink”. I was talking with her while doing her makeup, I realized that permanent makeup could help women dealing with cancer look and feel better and I began to sparkle inside thinking that I could use all of my experience to help them!! This also resonated with me deeply because for years I have been carrying the guilt of not doing more for my mom when she had cancer. I really don’t do death well- I isolate and pretend it isn’t going to happen… and that is what I did with my mum. There I was- a somewhat famous makeup artist with a shop in NYC- I could have hooked her up with cool wigs and hats with ponytails etc, but for some shitty reason my brain just pretended that it wasn’t really that bad, and since she lived in Arizona and I was in NY, it was an easy sell. I just wrapped myself up in my shop and “busyness”, and let those precious years and opportunities to show my love to her just drift away. Well, I still beat myself up about that, but NOW I have a venue to channel it into good and somehow make up for it by helping people today.
Now I choose to “SPARKLE ANYWAY” and share my sparkle!
Thank you so much for reading this, and feel free to pass it on to anyone you know might need me! xoxo