Bravery starts in the soul, grows in the heart and heals the world.
October is National Breast Cancer Awareness and Domestic Violence Awareness Month. And so Papierdoll celebrates women who battle both invaders: malignant cells and malignant men.
As we shine the light on these issues, we spotlight the beauty companies that combine profits with principles, or as one of our featured companies, The Body Shop, calls it, “business as unusual.” Avon, Revlon, Estée Lauder, Mary Kay and Liz Claiborne are among those who use their clout to help protect women from breast cancer and domestic violence.
These are companies that care about your health and well-being as a woman. Beauty and philanthropy? As the leading vamp of our generation, Kim Cattrall, would purr, “You can have it all.”
“Losing my hair was nothing compared to losing my breasts.”
In July 2002, Debra Hopes had her annual gynecological exam. Her pap smear was normal. Her left breast, however, had a suspicious mass. A mammogram confirmed the physical exam: Debra was diagnosed with Stage 2B breast cancer. Within a few weeks of her diagnosis, the Daytona Beach resident checked into Florida Hospital Memorial for a double mastectomy – followed by four rounds of chemotherapy and 35 radiation treatments.
She was 36 years old.
Before her surgery, Debra wore a triple-D cup bra. After the surgery, she had to re-learn how to walk and move, to find a new center of balance.
And of course, she lost her hair.
“Everyone warned me that on the 14th day into chemo, I would lose my hair. And exactly on that day, I had clumps of hair in my hands,” Debra recalls. “Losing my hair was nothing to losing both of my breasts. Personally, I loved being bald. I never wore anything over it, and if my appearance provoked a woman to talk to me about cancer, so much the better.”
The American Cancer Society (www.asc.org) lists breast cancer as the second leading cause of cancer death in women, with a 1-in-8 chance that a woman will have breast cancer some time during her life. Nearly 212,000 women in the United States will be diagnosed with invasive breast cancer this year. In 2005, about 40,000 women will die from the disease.
As scary as these numbers sound, there is good news about breast cancer – the mortality rate is on the decline, thanks to women taking steps toward early detection that include breast self-exams, regular check-ups and getting mammograms, particularly for women over 40. (October 21 is National Mammography Day. To find a facility in your area, visit www.acs.org or call (800) 227-2345.)
Based on her own experience as a younger-than-average breast cancer survivor, Debra Hopes believes that women of all ages should get regular mammograms.
“One of my childhood friends was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer at 34 and later died from it,” she said. “I don’t believe that this is an over-40 disease.” The American Cancer Society guidelines for mammograms suggest that women age 40 and older should have a mammogram every year as long as they are in good health. But Debra urges every woman to listen to her instincts and be proactive about her health care.
“If you find any tiny thing that does not feel right, you have a mammogram (at any age). If your doctor can’t or won’t do it, find another doctor. You can beat this disease as long as you are educated and demand that your doctor listen to your concerns and then act accordingly.”
Today, Debra Hopes is disabled (due mostly to a work-related injury), yet active as a volunteer for the American Cancer Society. She doesn’t wear a lot of makeup by choice, but when she does, she buys 100% from beauty companies that support breast cancer awareness and research, as do the 25 women in her support group (their name is “I’m Still Here”).
“If any proceeds go to fight breast cancer, we buy it,” she said.
Note: Debra’s hair grew back and is now as long as it has ever been.
Pretty in Pink: look and feel beautiful while you help find a cure for breast cancer.
From the shimmer of lip color to the sparkle of an elegant lapel pin, pink is the official color of breast cancer awareness, prevention and hope for a cure. So go ahead – think pink, and buy products that raise money to fight breast cancer.
Since 1992, Avon’s signature lapel pins, necklaces and special cosmetic items have raised and awarded more than $350 million worldwide for access to care and finding a cure. All 100% of the net proceeds from sales of Avon Crusade fundraising products support the Avon Crusade mission to fund access to care and finding a cure for breast cancer. (To find out more, visit www.avonfoundation.org.) You’ll also receive a free breast cancer resource guide with the purchase of any of these products.
Avon’s Limited Edition Nailwear Nail Enamel (avon.com) strengthens nails with diamond dust and empowers the breast cancer crusade with star power. Choose from Salma’s Hope (Salma Hayek), Sharon’s Heart (Sharon Stone) and four other celebrity women’s favorite colors.
Spanning more than 30 brands — including Clinique, Prescriptives, Bobbi Brown, M-A-C, Flirt! and Origins – the Estée Lauder Companies have long supported organizations that help and empower women.
The Estée Lauder Companies’ Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign raises hundreds of thousands of dollars every year. Their Breast Cancer Research Fund, created by Evelyn H. Lauder in 1993, is the first and largest not-for-profit organization dedicated to funding innovative and groundbreaking research on the causes and treatment of breast cancer. A minimum of 85% of all funds raised, up to $10 of the purchase price from the items in the Estée Lauder Pink Ribbon Collection 2005, goes directly to breast cancer research grants and awareness programs. (For more information visit www.bcrfcure.org.)
Estée Lauder Limited Edition Pink Ribbon Compact 2005 glitters with pink crystals, and arrives filled with Lucidity Pressed Powder to correct shine and smooth skin tone.
Revlon is a significant corporate sponsor for the National Breast Cancer Coalition Fund
(www.stopbreastcancer.org), and, of course, the annual Revlon Run/Walk for Women.
With events in Los Angeles and New York, the Revlon Run/Walks have become one of the nation’s largest 5k fundraising events, with more than $32 million distributed for breast cancer research, counseling and outreach programs. Although Revlon does not feature special fund-raising items, their generosity for finding a cure for breast cancer should not go unnoticed.
“One minute I was watching television, the next I was flying through the glass top of the coffee table.”
Several years ago I met a client I’ll call Angela. She was in her early 30’s: smart and pretty, reserved but kind. She was divorced, I was single. One day we were talking about men and relationships. I asked her why she left her husband, and she came around the counter of the store where she worked.
In a quiet voice, she told me about an evening when she and her husband were watching the news. Her husband kept talking through the broadcast, a fact that didn’t bother Angela until a story about new research on breast cancer came on. Angela’s mother had recently been diagnosed with the disease, and Angela wanted to listen. “Would you mind telling me that later, Tim?” she asked, motioning to the
television. “I want to hear this.”
sure if her husband shoved, punched, or literally threw her, but she recalled that “One minute I was watching television, the next I was flying through the glass top of the coffee table. That was the first time.”
It wasn’t the last.
Angela’s story is one of thousands written every day into medical charts and obituaries around the country. Every day, on average, more than three women are murdered by their husbands or boyfriends. In 1994, the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Ms. Magazine began a national registry for victims of domestic violence called “Remember my Name.” There are too many to mention in this column, but you can read this heartbreaking list at www.ncadv.org.
According to the Justice Department, one in every three women will be beaten, coerced into sex or otherwise abused in her lifetime. In 2000, 1,247 women were killed by an intimate partner. More than 300,000 pregnant women suffered injuries by an intimate partner. Domestic homicide is the leading cause of death for pregnant women.
It’s a health epidemic on the rise. Eighteen of 32 states with three-year-filing figures reported an increase of 20 percent or more of domestic relations caseloads. Nearly 157 million Americans – more than half of the entire adult population – personally know someone who has suffered at the hands of a violent partner.
Domestic violence is usually physical (hitting, shoving, punching, kicking), but also includes physiological, sexual, and verbal abuse; rape, stalking and other forms of controlling behavior that prevent women and their children from living in a safe, normal environment. (Men are the minority victims of domestic violence; women are 14 times more likely to report suffering severe physical assaults.)
Angela eventually found the resources and courage to leave her husband, but many women are trapped in a terrifying cycle of violence. It is difficult and dangerous for battered women to leave their abusive partner because the violence typically increases when the abuser realizes his victim is leaving his control. Victims of domestic violence are often without financial and social resources, and often are too terrified to tell anyone.
How fashion, skincare, and unused cell phones save women’s lives.
If you need immediate assistance, dial 911.
The National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE (7233).
Thirty-five years ago, there was no such thing as a shelter for battered women. Today, thanks to such organizations at the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (www.ncadv.org), there are more than 2,000 shelter and service programs that provide legal guidance, social services and counseling for battered women and their children. NCADV is devoted to helping women and their children obtain a safe environment free from violence and the threat of violence.
The Body Shop (www.thebodyshop.org), Avon (www.avon.com), Mary Kay (www.marykay.com) and Liz Claiborne, Inc. (www.lizclaiborne.com) are four beauty/fashion companies dedicated to this cause. Liz Claiborne began its corporate program “Love Is Not Abuse” in 1991: a bold move for a company in an industry where image is everything.
“Even by today’s standards, this would be considered a ‘brave’ thing to do, as domestic violence is an issue that makes many people uncomfortable and is certainly not a ‘pretty’ issue for a fashion company to take on,” says Jane Randel, Vice President of Liz Claiborne, Inc. The Liz Claiborne Foundation supports domestic violence awareness, including educational programs aimed at younger women and teens, to help them recognize the signs of a dangerous relationship before it’s too late.
With Public Service Announcements narrated by such celebrities as Susan Sarandon and endorsements by New York Yankees Manager Joe Torre (“Safe at Home”), Love Is Not Abuse brings significant attention to the crisis of domestic violence.
“Consumer research told us that domestic violence was an issue of importance to women in general, and especially to our consumers,” states Ms. Randel. “We believe we have a responsibility to give back to the people who made us successful – primarily women and their families.” (To read the entire Papierdoll interview with Jane Randel, click here.)
The Body Shop (www.thebodyshop.org), was founded on the idea that ethics and profits can co-exist. Domestic violence awareness and prevention is one of the many human rights programs supported by this UK skincare and beauty company. Their Donate a Phone, Save a Life program gave new purpose to used wireless phones, donating nearly 1,500 cell phones to shelters, with all proceeds benefiting the NCADV and the Wireless Foundation. The Body Shop also features fundraising items that support their campaign to end domestic violence.
Avon announced support for its new campaign, “Speak Out Against Domestic Violence” in 2004. The Avon Foundation pledged $1 million over the next few years in support of the domestic violence cause, starting with a grant of $100,000 to the Family Violence Prevention Fund. 650,000 Avon Sales Representatives will participate in a community outreach to support domestic violence education and awareness across the country.
Mary Kay, Inc. (www.marykay.com) recently committed a $200,000 grant – the first of its kind in the nation – to fund the addition of a fourth felony investigator for the family violence section of the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office.
Founded by Mary Kay Ash in 1963, the Texas-based company has a long-term commitment to prevent domestic violence. Company employees and Independent Beauty Consultants, after training and education provided by the company, have personally intervened to assist women living in violent relationships, and have volunteered thousand of hours to women and their children living in shelters and safe houses.
Good for you, good for her: products that turn domestic violence victims into survivors.
Your purchase of these fashion and beauty products will directly benefit programs that educate and help eliminate domestic violence.
Limited Edition Long-Sleeve Love Is Not Abuse T-Shirt Other items include limited edition Hearts of Palm Gloves and the limited edition Reversible Scarf
Profits from all sales will benefit the Family Violence Prevention Fund and the National Domestic Violence Hotline.
The new TimeWise Microdermabrasion Set fights fine lines, refines pores and helps you achieve beautifully smooth skin. Try a free sample today – supplies are limited. You’ve got a heart of gold by supporting worthy causes, now you can put the Midas touch on your body, face and lips with the MK Signature Gold Glimmer Set.
Stop Violence in the Home Lip Care Stick for smooth, supple lips. $2 from every purchase benefits the National Domestic Violence Hotline.
Shatter the silence on the issue of violence with the Stop the Violence Whistle. Five dollars from every sale funds scholarships for Outward Bound Women of Courage, a seven-day personal development program for women survivors of violence.
Avon’s Speak Out Against Domestic Violence Bracelet supports the cause with 66% of its purchase price donated to domestic violence awareness and prevention.