When my daughter Katie was born with a port wine stain birthmark covering nearly one fourth of her face, I was devastated. Going to the grocery store or any other public place became a nightmare. As women will do, one would approach us to take a peek at the tiny baby, then recoil in horror with something like, "What's wrong with her??" as if she were contagious. Only one time did a woman acknowledge the stain gently. She did so by not mentioning it at all. She said, "What a beautiful baby, you must be so proud!" Big tears flowed down my face when she walked away.
I felt responsible for the birthmark. Somewhere, somehow I must have done something wrong. The guilt was overwhelming and shortly after Katie's birth, I had a nervous breakdown, ending up in a psychiatrist's office, on medication and nearly uncommunicative. Later, as interactions with other children began, the look of fear on other little one's faces when they met Katie turned me into a ferocious mother tiger. I would interrupt their childish disgust and, getting down on their level, explain this was a special mark of favor by the angels. Few parents, in fact, I remember only one, my next door neighbor, corrected their children, explaining it was just like being born with blue eyes instead of brown.
I swore my daughter would not be a victim to fate and that this "fatal flaw" would become her source of strength.
Somewhere around the age of three Katie began to climb into my lap while I applied my
make up each morning. Opening and closing the beautiful mysteries on my cosmetic table and trying to imitate what I was doing was a special part of our day. This was when she discussed three year old life to me. One day as I finished applying my foundation, she said, "
," pointing to the jar in my hand. I said, "Do you want to try this, Honey?" She shook her head yes and in the mirror our eyes made contact and she smiled. And taking the jar from my hand, she dipped her tiny finger into the makeup, leaned into the mirror and began covering up her birthmark.
I felt my heart shatter into a million tiny pieces. Holding myself together, I looked into the mirror at my daughter, not knowing what to say. If I said she looked pretty, then I would be insinuating she was not-pretty without makeup. If I said, "That's just for Mommies," I would be invalidating her decision. "
This," she had said. "
This I can change if I choose, she said. I think that's when the makeup artist was born.
Five years ago today Katie was diagnosed with Stage III Cervical Cancer. Radiation and Chemotherapy followed closely behind. She was twenty six years old. Never able to hide her feelings, I saw it all in her eyes. The fear. The anger. The determination. I saw "
It's funny how life is. You think you grow and change through the vicissitudes of life. You forget that your friends, your family, and yes, your children are the mentors who show you the way. One tiny hand pointing straight ahead, showed me,
"This way, This time, This."
by Katherine Kahoun, CMA,CPCT
On May 7th, 2010, five years ago today, I thought my life was over. A few months later I realized it had just begun. I was 26 years old when I was diagnosed with Stage III Cervical Cancer that had already metastasized to my lymph nodes. My world was instantly turned upside down.
I started chemo and external/internal radiation a few days later. Within three weeks I was in menopause. By week six I was postmenopausal. What should have taken years ravaged my body in a month and a half.
The further into treatment I got, the weaker I became. It took all my energy just to brush my teeth and get myself in the car for my daily doctor appointments. I completely gave up all beauty rituals including makeup, my favorite part. On top of living with a death threat over my head, I felt as if my femininity had been ripped from me.
One day I heard the same feelings of fear, desperation, anger and sorrow being shared by the other women in the chemotherapy treatment room, all of us sitting in recliners like a knitting club, hooked up to our IVs. Every woman there was longing, just like me, to feel young, feminine and beautiful again. Suddenly I was struck with inspiration like a bolt of lightening, and my entire life was transformed into one of meaning and direction.
I knew how to make women feel better about themselves, I must do This!
Since graduating from Makeup Designory School (MUD) in Los Angeles (Burbank, CA) in 2003, I was only able to do makeup in the evenings and on weekends as I was working full time to "make a living." But that moment, hooked up to an IV line in the Chemotherapy Treatment room, accompanied by my darkest depression, I instantly believed it was not only possible to make a living doing my dream, it was my Calling.
You see, as silly as it may sound, makeup had got me through some of my most difficult times while growing up. Born with a large port wine stain on my face I often felt like an outcast. Teaching myself makeup gave me the tools to fit it, to even feel beautiful. And all through school I shared my talent with my friends. I knew it was my destiny. I think every young child knows their destiny. Why do we stop believing?
Today I'm a full time makeup artist living the life I had imagined for myself. And although my desire of doing makeup has always been with me, it took facing cancer to embrace my dream. It took something like
This to not only see, but feel in my bones how very short life is and what its meaning is.
For me, giving from the heart makes every heartbreak a victory.
My business includes donating my time doing charity work with organizations like Florence Crittenton, AZ Humane Society and
Lady Ganga, the film to bring awareness of HPV and the immunizations now available to parents of young children.
My five year plan is to create my own makeup line. My intention is to donate a percentage of its proceeds to cervical cancer awareness and a cure. My goal is to have a line that is individualized for everyone. I know it's going to take some time and a lot of hard work; but I now know in my heart I was born to do
This. I believe with all my heart that Beauty can make a difference.
Here's a before and after picture of me that was done in March of this year. It took cancer and the acceptance of what it had to teach me to get to a point where I could show a before picture of myself. I know now, the secret of Beauty is
This: When you truly accept and love yourself just as you are,
Beauty finds you.
This is what I am called to do,
This is how I make a difference!
(In honor of Mother's Day, thank you Mom for always believing in me and pushing me to achieve my dream. I love you!)
Find me on Thumbtack.com
May is Annual Skin
Cancer Awareness Month
During a month's time I identify about 10 skin cancers on clients. More often than not I am the first to notice, the client is unaware of the changes in their skin. Having had a Stage I Melanoma removed from my right foot's arch a year ago has made this already hyper vigilant esthetician an absolute fanatic about skin health and skin cancer awareness. I urge you to take sun exposure seriously. Skin cancer is not to be taken lightly. It can disfigure you, it can kill you.
Skin cancers can show up in many shapes and sizes. When you have your annual skin cancer check up, be sure to show your doctor any areas that concern you, especially if they have just appeared or have changed recently.
There are four types of skin lesions that are of concern. With some attention to yourself and monthly self-diagnosis at home, you can perhaps prevent disfiguring surgeries to remove skin cancer and reduce the risk of skin cancer spreading to other parts of the body. Here is a concise explanation of the four types, courtesy of the American Cancer Society.
Basal cell cancers and squamous cell cancers
are most often found in areas that get exposed to a lot of sun, such as the head, neck, and arms, but they can develop anywhere on the body. Look for new growths, spots, bumps, patches, or sores that don't heal after several weeks. Shaving cuts that don't heal in few days sometimes turn out to be skin cancers, which often bleed easily. (They are not caused by shaving.)
Basal Cell Carcinoma have many different appearances, they can look
- Flat, firm, pale or yellow areas, similar to a scar
- Raised reddish patches that might be itchy
- Small, pink or red, translucent, shiny, pearly bumps, which might have blue, brown, or black areas
- Pink growths with raised edges and a lower area in their center, which might contain abnormal blood vessels
- Open sores (which may have oozing or crusted areas) that don't heal, or that heal and then come back
Squamous cell carcinomas can appear as:
- Rough or scaly red patches, which might crust or bleed
- Raised growths or lumps, sometimes with a lower area in the center
- Open sores (which may have oozing or crusted areas) that don't heal, or that heal and then come back
- Wart-like growths
Both of these types of skin cancer may develop as a flat area showing only slight changes from normal skin.
Actinic keratosis, also known as solar keratosis, is a skin condition caused by too much sun exposure and that can sometimes progress to squamous cell cancer. The lesions are usually small (less than ? inch across), rough or scaly spots that may be pink-red or flesh-colored. They typically are on the face, ears, backs of the hands, and arms, but they can occur on other sun-exposed areas of skin. Once you have one actinic keratosis you are twice as likely to develop many more. Some can grow into squamous cell cancers, while others may stay the same or even go away on their own. These areas should be looked at by a doctor, who can help decide if they should be treated.
Moles and Melanomas
A normal mole is usually an evenly colored brown, tan, or black spot on the skin. It can be either flat or raised. It can be round or oval. Moles are generally less than 6 millimeters (about ? inch) across (about the width of a pencil eraser). Some moles can be present at birth, but most appear during childhood or young adulthood.
New moles that appear later in life should be checked by a doctor.
Once a mole has developed, it will usually stay the same size, shape, and color for many years. Some moles may fade away with age. But it is very important to notice changes in a mole - such as in its size, shape, or color - this may be a sign that melanoma is developing. The most important warning sign for melanoma is a new spot on the skin or a spot that's changing in size, shape, or color. Another important sign is a spot that looks different from all of the other spots on your skin. If you have any of these warning signs, have your skin checked by a doctor.
The ABCDE rule is another guide to the usual signs of melanoma. Be on the lookout and tell your doctor about spots that have any of the following features:
- A is for Asymmetry: One half of a mole or birthmark does not match the other.
- B is for Border:The edges are irregular, ragged, notched, or blurred.
- C is for Color: The color is not the same all over and may include shades of brown or black, or sometimes with patches of pink, red, white, or blue.
- D is for Diameter:The spot is larger than 6 millimeters across (about ? inch - the size of a pencil eraser), although melanomas can sometimes be smaller than this.
- E is for Evolving: The mole is changing in size, shape, or color.
Some melanomas do not fit the rules described above, so it's important to tell your doctor about any changes or new spots on the skin, or growths that look different from the rest of your moles.
Other warning signs are:
- A sore that does not heal
- Spread of pigment from the border of a spot into surrounding skin
- Redness or a new swelling beyond the border
- Change in sensation - itchiness, tenderness, or pain
- Change in the surface of a mole - scaliness, oozing, bleeding, or the appearance of a bump or nodule
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WOW! WHAT'S NEXT?!
Some of you have already mentioned this to me, having heard about it on the news. Here's some more information about this pretty amazing breakthrough.
The FDA has approved Kybella for double chins! Available as a non-surgical injection, it will be available in cosmetic surgeon's and dermatologist's offices in June.
Over 80% of the population are concerned about this condition according to Derek H. Jones, MD, associate clinical professor of dermatology at UCLA's David Geffen School of Medicine and lead investigator in the study sponsored by KYTHERA Biopharmaceuticals investigating the fat burning injectable, ATX-101 (deoxycholic acid).
Treatment will involve a series of 12-20 injections per visit. A total of two to three visits, spaced a month apart. Each treatment takes about 15 minutes. However, the FDA comments that some people may need up to 50 injections in a single treatment, with up to six single treatments no less than a month apart. Results may last years.
Of course what everyone wants to know is can the drug help destroy fat cells in other areas of the body? Well it is approved only for below the neck and the chin and as it works best in small areas it's not going to be used for love handles and muffin tops. (Damn!)
Most common side effects are bruising, swelling, pain, numbness, and small, firm areas around the injection sites which gradually soften. It's possible there may be numbness at the injection site too but this resolves in time. If the shots are given too close to the marginal mandibular nerve which controls facial expressions, an off balance smile may occur. However, studies show this side effect went away over time.
As a cosmetic procedure, it is doubtful insurance will cover it.
Pricing won't be available until the drug is released in June though many experts predict it will be near the cost of popular fillers.
SOURCES: News release, FDA. News release, Kythera Biopharmceuticals. Derek H. Jones, MD, associate clinical professor of dermatology, University of California Los Angeles David Geffen School of Medicine; dermatologist, Beverly Hills. Alan Matarasso, MD, Manhattan plastic surgeon and spokesperson, American Society of Plastic Surgery.
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that's a savings of $350
. (Best results are achieved after six plus treatments.)
My suggestion is to alternate month to month a Facial Treatment with a Fractional CIT.
CITs should be performed every 60 - 90 days for optimum and continual results. What can you expect?
Shrink pores, eliminate fine lines, minimize gesture lines, dramatically increase collagen and elastin for firmer complexions and even out complexion tone and texture. This procedure is comparable to a Fractional Laser Treatments in results without the risks and very little downtime!
In fact, in my opinion, CIT (Collagen Induction Therapy) is hands down the most remarkable breakthrough in skin care rejuvenation in thirty years.
I'm Building my Brand on Facebook with my Page, Bryant Rushing Beauty. Will you like me please and leave a message about my products or facials? Thanks Bunches!
It's Not About Sex, It's about CANCER
Girls as young as 14 are receiving important health benefits from the HPV vaccine, which protects against a sexually transmitted virus that causes cervical cancer, a new study reports.
Canadian girls who received the vaccine around age 13 experienced a "large and significant reduction" in cases of cervical dysplasia -- an abnormal precancerous lesion caused by human papillomavirus (HPV) -- at ages 14 to 17, researchers found. Additionally, the girls suffered fewer cases of genital warts, which are also caused by HPV. "Cervical dysplasia and genital warts can happen as soon as a girl becomes sexually active, more or less," said lead author Leah Smith, a postdoctoral fellow at the Queen's University Center for Health Services and Policy Research in Ontario, Canada.
"Some parents have been delaying vaccination for their daughters until they're older, because they don't think they are sexually active," Smith continued. "These results show this age group is sexually active and they are at risk. The vaccine really needs to be given before the girls are at risk."
The HPV vaccine is recommended for both girls and boys ages 11 or 12. HPV vaccination rates have continued to lag in the United States, even though the vaccine has been available to girls since 2006.
Currently, only about half of women have received one dose of the vaccine, and just a third have received the entire three-dose course, said Debbie Saslow, director of Breast and Gynecologic Cancer at the American Cancer Society. "This is about preventing cancer," Saslow said. "Here we finally have a vaccine that can prevent cancer, and parents are not running to get their kids protected."
Cervical cancer does not occur until later in life, but the study authors suspected that some girls are nonetheless receiving important protection from the HPV vaccine within a few years of inoculation, Smith said.
To evaluate those benefits, the researchers tracked the health of more than 260,000 girls. Half of the girls were eligible for a school-based program that offered the vaccine free of charge to all eighth-grade girls. The other half were in grade 8 prior to the program, which started in 2007.The researchers looked for cases of cervical dysplasia and genital warts in the girls because these tend to be the earliest signs of HPV infection, Smith said. Cervical dysplasia is "not yet cancer, but over time, if it's left untreated and unchecked runs the risk of becoming cancer later in a girl's life," said senior author Linda Levesque, an assistant professor at the Queen's University Center for Health Services and Policy Research.
More than 2,400 cases of cervical dysplasia occurred in these girls between grades 10 to 12. However, the risk of cervical dysplasia was reduced by 44 percent in girls who received the vaccine, the study reports."This basically means that for every 175 girls who received the HPV vaccine, one fewer case of cervical dysplasia occurred," Smith said. "One case was prevented."
The researchers also found that girls eligible for free HPV vaccination ended up with fewer cases of genital warts, although the finding was not statistically significant."I don't think we were surprised the vaccine works," Levesque said. "What I was surprised by was the magnitude of benefits in such a young age group. I expected we would see some reductions. I didn't think they would be so large and of such significance."
Girls can receive the vaccine as young as 9, but health officials in the United States recommend the vaccine at 11 or 12, at the same time as other important adolescent vaccinations like tetanus/diphtheria/pertussis and meningitis, Saslow said.
This study involved the first HPV vaccine available on the United States and Canadian markets, Gardasil 4, which protects against four strains of human papillomavirus. Since then, two other vaccines -- Cervarix, which protects against two strains, and Gardasil 9, a new version of Gardasil that protects against nine strains -- have been approved in the United States. Girls and boys both receive the HPV vaccine in a three-shot series within a six-month time frame.
Many parents and health care providers are hung up on the fact that the vaccine is for a sexually transmitted virus, and fail to grasp that it is the first vaccine to actually prevent cancer, Saslow said.
She recommends that kids "just get the vaccine at age 11 or 12, because that's when it's recommended." Waiting longer could mean a less potent immune response from the adolescent, which leads to less effective protection against cervical cancer.
"We don't know when you'll be exposed to the measles. We don't know when you'll step on a rusty nail and risk tetanus," Saslow said. "With vaccines, you don't wait until the risk is higher. You go when your immune response is the strongest. Let's not make this about sex. It's about preventing cancer."
The study, published online April 27 in Pediatrics, resulted from a collaboration between researchers at Queen's University and McGill University in Montreal.
For more information on the HPV vaccine, visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
SOURCES: Leah Smith, M.Sc., postdoctoral fellow, and Linda Levesque, Ph.D., assistant professor, Queen's University Center for Health Services and Policy Research, Ontario, Canada; Debbie Saslow, Ph.D., director, Breast and Gynecologic Cancer, American Cancer Society; May 2015, Pediatrics
Copyright ? 2015 HealthDay. All rights reserved.
|Someone You Love: The HPV Epidemic
Katherine Alexandra Kahoun,
Certified Makeup Artist, Board Certified Derma Technician
Katherine Alexandra Kahoun was born in Arizona and moved to California after High School for Advanced Cosmetic and Makeup Education at MakeUp Designory (MUD) located in Burbank. There she received her Certification in Beauty Makeup Artistry in 2002. Following graduation, she enrolled in the American Institute of Permanent Color Technology (AIPCT) located in Tustin. There she received the Board of Regents Certification after completing the Micro-Theory Demographics Course. She was awarded the title Derma Technician in 2003. Successfully passing the CPCT (Certified Permanent Cosmetic Technician) Certification Examination through the Review Board of the Allied Health Association (AHA), Katherine is certified as a credentialed Certified Permanent Cosmetic Technician (CPCT). (Currently no such training or credential exists in Arizona or most other states.) After returning to Arizona in mid-2003, she started her business, Katherine Alexandra Makeup and has been growing ever since.
Katherine offers a wide range of services in the Beauty Makeup Industry. Her makeup look specialties vary from Natural to Elegant, and Glamour to Fantasy, perfected for anyone wanting to enhance their innate beauty. (Modeling, Runway, Weddings, Engagements, Senior Pictures, Prom, Parties, Bat Mitzvahs, Events, Headshots, Print, Film, etc.) Prices start at around $40 for women and $15 for men and vary based on event, location, dry runs and makeup style. Services available for Permanent Makeup are Lash Enhancement (Natural Look), Eyeliner (Upper and Lower), Eyebrows (Strokes and Solid), Lip Liner and/or Full Lips and Beauty Marks. Prices are listed on the Permanent Makeup Page of her website.
Katherine holds Makeup Classes for groups and one on one learning sessions. New events and Classes are regularly posted through her social media sites and her website. Additionally she offers services as a professional makeup shopper. Contact her for a quote on a particular event, more information or to schedule an appointment. Information is available on her website, www.KatherineAlexandraMakeup.com You can also follow her in the Social Sites listed below and with Instagram at http://instagram.com/katherine_alexandra_.
Cheryl Bryant Rushing
Licensed Esthetician, Editor
Cheryl Bryant-Rushing graduated from the first aesthetics program in the state of Arizona in 1986. After completing several advanced training programs and working in one of the first esthetic salons in Scottsdale/Phoenix, Cheryl launched her own business in 1990 after the publication of her first newsletter about beauty and skin care, Isis Risen. She currently writes at
Her clientele is through referrel only.
* Publisher Bryant Rushing Monthly Newsletter
* Former Publisher Monthly Newsletter Arizona Skin Research & Isis Risen
* Former editor of American Society of Esthetic Medicine Report
* Former columnist on skincare
* Freelance writer for aesthetic trade journals
* President, Gray Dawn Inc dba Bryant Rushing Beauty
* Developer of Bryant Rushing Advanced Recovery Skin Care Products
* Clinical Esthetic Specialist Anti-Aging and Acne
* Speaker and Educator Aesthetic Procedures, Practices and Business
* Dry Exfoliation for Aging Skin/Proprietory Procedure for treating photo-aged skin
* Medical and Esthetic Alliance Advantages outside the Medical Clinic Environment
* Dynamics and Histology of the Skin, It's Dual Respiratory/Eliminatory Functions
* Dry Exfoliation for Aging Skin
Copyright ? 2013 by Gray Dawn Inc
All Rights Reserved.