Beauty tips for cancer patients: Make-up artist shares her tricks

When mum-of-two Andrea Pellegrini was diagnosed with breast cancer and started chemotherapy treatment, she started doing online makeup tutorials to help other patients feel good about themselves.

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by Miranda Knox |

39-year-old Andrea Pellegrini was devastated when, in July this year, she was diagnosed with breast cancer, after finding a 3cm lump in her left breast.

After starting chemotherapy and losing her hair just weeks later, the qualified makeup artist realised she needed to do what she could to make herself feel better, and decided to use her expertise to give tips and advice to give other chemo patients a much-needed confidence boost.

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Andrea- who lives in Harrow, North West London, with her her husband Paul and two children, Emily, 14, and nine-year-old Max- says: "When I was first diagnosed with breast cancer, I was devastated. I lost my long dark hair, and felt physically and mentally drained. I didn't feel like me anymore.

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"Chemotherapy treatment makes you feel bad enough, without having to look in the mirror and seeing a complete stranger staring back at you. Everything changes. From your complexion, to losing your hair, eyelashes and eyebrows thinning, and nails weakening.

"When I feel down about my illness, I feel so much better once I've put a bit of makeup on, a bright lippy can make such a difference. It makes me feel able to face the world, and stay strong.

"That's why I set up my Facebook page, Baldly Beautiful. I wanted to give some morale-boosting tips and advice for other women and have had an amazing response.

WATCH ONE OF ANDREA'S TUTORIALS HERE:

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ANDREA'S TOP TIPS:

-For a quick boost to the skin, massage in MAC strobe cream, concentrating on cheeks to boost blood flow and help to plump the skin. The cream will brighten and illuminate.

-When you're feeling down, cheer yourself up with a bright lipstick.

-To brighten and widen the eyes a pop of lighter coloured eyeshadow in the inner corner can work wonders!

-Use a waterproof mascara for watery eyes, and always use an oily makeup remover to ensure it comes of easily and doesn't cause any eyelash loss.

-Use translucent loose powder under the eyes with a small soft fluffy brush to set concealer and stop eye makeup/eyeliner from running and smudging.

-Always use lip balm before matte lipstick to make application smoother.

TOP PRODUCTS:

Benefit Browzings- Essential to fill in any gappy, thinning eyebrows or draw them in

Loreal Perfection Super Brow Artist- To plump up the eyebrow hairs and set them in place (available at Boots)

Estee Lauder Doublewear Eyeliner- Great for watery eyes

Forever Aloe Lips- Super-moisturising

MAC Strobe Cream- To wake up tired skin, give a glow, and moisturise

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Andrea says: "Women from all over the world have contacted me, asking for advice and have said my tips make them able to feel stronger and more confident."

Andrea- who is still undergoing treatment and due to have a lumpectomy operation in January- adds: "My cancer was caught early and it hasn't spread, so thankfully if I respond well to treatment, I'm expected to make a full recovery.

"I'm so lucky. Cancer treatment may change the way you look, doesn't have to change who you are, or affect your self-confidence. It's all about staying positive and making the most of what you've got."

For support and advice, visit Facebook page, the *Younger Breast Cancer Network *

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