Makeup tips for when you’re not feeling your best

An Interview with Darlene Baldachino,
Hair Stylist and Makeup Expert*

Darlene Baldachino Hair Stylist and Makeup ArtistI recently spoke to Darlene Baldachino to get some makeup tips from her for women going through treatment for breast cancer. Darlene is the Creative Director of the SydneyAlbert SalonSpa in Princeton, NJ as well as a hair stylist and makeup expert.

When you aren’t feeling well, and all you want to do is get on your sweatpants and lie on the sofa watching old movies or napping, why am I suggesting that makeup is important?


Taking a shower, putting on clean clothes and some makeup will generally help you feel better

I originally got this advice from my mother when I was under the weather as a young teenager.  I don’t have any science to back the advice, and this is not a medical recommendation.  Anecdotally, however, I can tell you that for me, it usually helps. There’s something about pulling yourself together with a clean shirt, washed face, brushed teeth and hair, and a little makeup, that somehow makes you feel better.  Try it, and let me know if it helps.

Makeup makes you look healthier

Theresa E. DiDonato, PhD wrote: “Beyond any attractiveness measures, cosmetics may help women create certain favorable social perceptions. Indeed, a recent experiment revealed that women pictured wearing cosmetics were evaluated as healthier, more confident, and even having greater earning potential than the same women wearing no makeup (Nash, Fieldman, Hussey, Leveque, & Pineau, 2003).” (Source: Psychology Today).

Makeup can help you protect your privacy

You may not care if people know you are going through treatment for breast cancer. Everyone is different, and this is your journey.  If you want to keep your condition private, you will probably want to wear a wig (assuming you lose your hair), regular clothes (no sweatpants in public), and some makeup when you go out.  It’s up to you — this is your journey and you are in control of what you do, or don’t, reveal to co-workers or others.

I will tell you from personal experience, you will get a lot fewer intrusive questions if you look “normal,” and not like you spent the day lying around in messy pajamas.

*Disclosure: Darlene is my personal hair stylist. I neither gave or received any financial compensation for conducting and posting this interview.

Hi, I am

Barbara Spalding MS, RDN, Culinary Dietitian

As a dietitian and world traveler, I love bold flavors — in food and in life. 14 years ago, I fell down the rabbit hole into Breast Cancer Wonderland. Since then, I’ve learned to cook differently while savoring the pleasures of food and companionship. I’ve built a resilient new life and a bold new kitchen. Let me show you the flavors of the world.
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