Lips, Eyes and Nails During Cancer


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It’s the same as before cancer—outline your lips with a lipliner pencil. This should prevent your lipstick from “bleeding.” Chose lipliner and lipstick that compliment each other, from the same color family. Use moisturizing lipstick.

Eyebrows/ Eye shadow/ Eyeliner

One of the volunteers in the Look Good…Feel Better class shared that she’d been waxing her eyebrows thin for a few years before cancer. After cancer, she had super thin eyebrows. Before you lose your eyebrows, take an up-close photo of your face so you’ll know where to “paint them on” when the time comes. I didn’t use much eye shadow—I did the basics, and I did them for me, not anyone else. I prioritized my energy. If you’ve got the energy and are used to wearing eye shadow, or feel it makes a difference, use Q-tips and toss them out when done each day. I did use eyeliner. It gives the illusion of having eyelashes. It helps frame the eyes. Wipe the eyeliner pencil with a clean tissue after each use, or shave the pencil after each use for a fresh start the following day.

Nail Care

I looked like I had “smoker’s nails” without my ever smoking. They were yellow, dry, very brittle and had deep grooves. You may want to cut your nails short so they don’t catch on anything and torn ripped off. At this stage, they may even look better short. Nail polish can cover the yellow. You can find undercoats with protein. Wear gloves for doing chores; washing dishes. Never cut your cuticles (even when not in treatment.) Use hand moisturizer, even oil, and rub it into your cuticles. Do not use artificial nails during chemo. (I’d strongly suggest avoiding nail salons during this time.) As always, tell your doctor about signs of infection, or inflammation.

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