Look Good, Feel Better

I’ve cried at my reflection more times than I can count.

As a gal with a chronic illness, the horror of staring into my bulging eyes, grey skin and tired dark circles so purple and bruised that it looked like I’d been hit in the face, made me scared to shower for fear of catching a glimpse of myself in the mirror.

But with a bit of concealer, blush, lashings of mascara and some eyeliner, my corpse-like face stopped looking so close to death, and gave me the courage to walk out my bedroom door.

That’s one of the very many reasons I love makeup.

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Retro CV, Hazel Grace style, circa 2011.

Though I rarely feel as bad as I did in the above photo, bad days still happen often.

When I feel like shutting all the doors, pulling the curtains and diving beneath a pile of blankets so heavy no one will ever find me, I take a moment to face my reflection, and be kind to it.

With brighter, more defined eyes, colour in my face, and bruises concealed, I feel human, and I am ready to be part of the world with the confidence illness all too often steals.

With this in mind, Look Good Feel Better (LGFB) is something I am immensely passionate about, and will forever sing the praises of.

LGFB is an Australian program, that offers a free service for cancer patients, to teach them how to manage the way their illness and treatments like chemotherapy and radiotherapy affect their appearances.

Women, men and teenagers are taught everything from proper skin care to makeup application, and head-wear demonstrations.

The program is by no means huge, and is managed by a small team of staff, and volunteer support from cosmetic specialists, makeup artists and hairdressers, giving their expertise to help these sick individuals regain some confidence.

Without government funding, the program relies on the support of corporate and community support, one partner being Priceline Pharmacy.

Though there are many ways to get involved with the wonderful program, a new makeup brush collection now available from Priceline is an exciting new way to support the cause.

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Blush brush with Hourglass Incandescent Electra blush

The high-quality, synthetic, twelve brush collection is cruelty-free, allergy-free and suitable for sensitive skin.

15% from the sale of each brush will be donated directly to Look Good Feel Better, helping the estimated 10,000 people who will take part in the program this year.

I’ve purchased the blush brush, and the angle blending brush. Though bigger than my usual blush brush, is excellent for applying blush. Picking up just enough pigment and then buffing in perfectly. Works perfectly for bronzer, or just plain ol’ powder, too.

The angle blending brush is great for blending out eyeshadow edges, or even buffing in concealer.

If you feel like adding some brushes to your arsenal, I cannot recommend these more. Not just for the good cause, but the undeniable quality.

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Angled blending brush with Charlotte Tilbury The Vintage Vamp eyeshadow palette

Not too long ago, someone online wrote a pointed comment towards me, claiming that my money spent on makeup could be better spent on mental health care.

The fury that pulsed through my veins as I read that was enough to drive a woman to break things.

Image is directly related to wellbeing and confidence. It is hard enough to suffer any kind of illness, whether that physical or mental, and lose the state of health so many people take for granted, without losing the appearance you’ve had your whole life.

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Chronic illness can changed the way people see themselves, whether they like it or not. That “I look like crap” feeling doesn’t leave.

Every now and then my usually invisible illness rears it’s ugly head and becomes visible to me. Suddenly I want to hide myself away, I feel embarrassed to walk in public. I remember people staring at my thinning hair, falling out in chunks, my bone thin frame, and my face so devoid of colour it was frightening.

So if something as small as buying a few makeup brushes can help women, men and teenagers living with cancer across Australia feel good about themselves, and wake up each day with confidence, then it feels like the least I can do.

Look Good Feel Better brushes are available online here, or in stores. 

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*These were all purchased with my own money. 

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