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Diana Fraser used makeup to feel and look like herself during chemotherapy for breast cancer. Images via Diana Fraser

Right after my 29th birthday earlier this year, I was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer. I completed my eighth and final round of chemotherapy in July.

The biggest challenge I’ve had through this whole process has been trying to maintain a sense of “me.”

Chemo aggressively tried to strip that from me, but I found ways in which I could maintain my spirit and look like myself.

Makeup was one of the ways I was able to keep my morale high, even as I lost my hair. It helped me feel like I still fit into my former life.

As much as these are all cosmetic/material issues, they matter a lot, and they help me keep my spirits up in the pursuit of finding a deeper sense of self-love.

With the help of one of my best friends, Laura McMillan, I put together a makeup tutorial video, which takes you from the start — where I have no hair, eyebrows, or eyelashes — to the very end of my process, where I can recognize myself again!

For those of you watching that are currently going through chemo, I hope you find it helpful and uplifting.

This post and video originally appeared on Bay Street Hippie. Video was directed, filmed, and edited by Laura McMillan.


Diana Fraser is a corporate banking associate, lover of life, and a breast cancer warrior. She knows the ins and outs of urban Toronto lifestyle but true to her roots, she’ll always be a country girl. Her interests include music, yoga, boxing, and kicking your butt at any swimming competition. You could just as easily catch her at an art show as you could outdoors hiking and enjoying nature. She’s obsessed with her adorable pup, Alba, AND she makes a mean apple pie. To no one’s surprise, breast cancer only made her stronger, and she hopes she can share her strength with others.