Vitiligo (a disease that produces white patches on the skin due to loss of pigment) to the average person is not a pretty sight because of the discoloured nature of the skin.
Persons with vitiligo are often stared at in the streets and many times feel like an 'oddity' because of the attention their appearance draws.
Vitiligo appears on areas of the body which are usually exposed such as; face, neck, eyes, nostrils, nipples, navel, genitalia; body folds (armpits, groin), sites of injury; cuts, scrapes, burns, around pigmented moles, hair (early greying of hair on scalp and body), and the retina.
But there are steps that that persons with vitiligo can take to make the white patches less visible.
The most popular option is the use of concealers (cosmetics), which comes in a variety of brands. There is also tanning of the affected areas as well as permanently tattooing makeup to cover the white spots. I would personally recommend sunless tans because we should avoid sunlight as much as possible.
For this week however, we will only explore the use of cosmetics, which is a temporarily way to conceal vitiligo. I have had great success with this method. However, this is an expensive option as the cost of purchasing makeup and treatment for the skin could run you a pretty penny. On average, a person with vitiligo could end up spending at least $3000 weekly, for the very basic elements in the makeup kit.
A basic makeup kit should consist of these main ingredients; a concealer, cover crème (my brand is Derma blend), setting powder, a foundation - crème to powder, lip liners, eyeliners, lip gloss, lipstick, no-shine face powder, mascara and dozens of makeup wedges. In addition to these, you have to add and replenish on a regular basis; makeup remover solutions, skin toners, moisturisers (essential), and wipes. To those who want to look exceptional; eye shadows and blushes could be added. On an average, the cost to equip myself with quality product ranges from $15,000 to $25,000 monthly.
Makeup can be applied on a daily basis if you choose to do so.
HOW TO APPLY
STEP 1 - Wash face thoroughly and apply moisturiser on the face and neck.
Step 2 - Using a makeup wedge apply foundation to blend in with the natural skin tone, then apply your setting powder of choice.
Step 3 - The most technical part of this process is applying the cover crème. Apply a generous portion of the cover crème only to the areas affected by vitiligo (white spots). Then apply more setting powder to the area being worked on.
Step 4 - Apply more cover crème to the area, this time paying close attention to those parts which need just a little "touch up". Don't over apply the cover crème as this will give you a darker, and heavy look. When blending is complete next add lipstick, eye pencil to complete the look.
Applying makeup for at least five days for the week means that you need to pay special attention to skincare. Remember, try to invest in a good skin moisturiser and try getting a facial at least every other month.
Clordene Lloyd is the founder of the Jamaica Vitiligo Support Group