I’ve worked in the beauty industry for over a decade, striving hard to promote a sense of wellbeing and happiness that comes from feeling your best. A result from the purchase or first wear of a new lippy, a foundation that lasts all day or a lash curling mascara. Even a sultry scent. Somehow however it always seemed an ethereal feeling to try and evoke and conjure. This feeling, almost a self gratification or inner confidence that a bit of war paint seems to bolster in us. For me this is nail polish, if my nails are glossy, chip free I feel I can take on the world. Polished.
The meaning and in fact need for this was solidified for me today.
The reason? Look Good Feel Better, a charity I have worked with and supported in my decade in beauty. However, it isn’t until a charities work is personal to you that it really hits home. I’m sure it can even seem a bit trivial – a charity devoted to bringing beauty and makeup tips to Cancer patients. But it really isn’t.
My mum is undergoing Chemo for Breast Cancer for the second time in her life. The first 20 years ago. This time I’m an adult. I have more knowledge. More feelings. It’s harder.
My mum is tough, she’s a terrier. One of those amazing women you wouldn’t want to short change as she’ll tear you to pieces. She’s hard working, still working and running an allotment in her sixties. I’m sure she thinks she’s still in her twenties sometimes.
But this evil disease has fought its way back and I know she’s scared. We are all scared. The other week she had to choose a wig, a horrendous reality of what is happening. My mums hair has always been a look don’t touch zone. Always perfect, always cut, coloured and styled. The knowledge of losing it is hitting hard. Suddenly the reasoning of those mothers and daughters who shave in solidarity makes some sort of sense to me. Not a route we will be taking but I suddenly get it.
However in this gloomy state of affairs, there’s a spot of light. The amazing volunteers at Look Good Feel Better visited her during her Chemo treatment. Totally unbeknownst to me. Along with the nurses they helped her find a wig as near to her current look as possible.
Then today they phoned her. They have arranged some beauty treatments and workshops for her in a spa. I’ve not heard her so excited in months. She’s got appointments other than Cancer treatment appointments she’s looking forward to and think about. Helping her with makeup, such as what to do with her eye brows during treatment. Giving her products and guidance on what to use and how to boost her confidence in her new appearance. This simple charity reach out programme has so much more significance now. It really is true that if you Look Good, you do Feel Better.
No it’s not going to make the cancer go away but it gives a chance of normality. A day, an hour, a feeling of being you again. So this post is dedicated to the amazing work of these volunteers and charity teams. It has redefined the importance of my role in the beauty industry and made my mum feel more confident and like ‘her’ as she tackles this.
So please, do click here to find out more about Look Good Feel Better.
To donate to this charity click here to go to their just giving site.
Just £5 will find a confidence kit for another Cancer patient like the one shown here, this is the kit my mum received and is over the moon with. She couldn’t wait to show me what she had learnt.
This is my brave mum, smiling in her new look wig. This lovely charity is helping boost my mum’s confidence and made her feel great today on Mother’s Day.