All my readers here know me so well. I started this blog when I was diagnosed with cancer for the second time. Back in those days, I chronicled the challenges of going through chemo for a second time and the new experience of having a hormone responsive cancer. So many changes, so much to endure.
Everyone at No Surrender helped me through and that is how it has always been. Through mutual sharing, we have been able to gain the courage to face all the challenges facing us. We shared tips and ways to counteract our side effects. I worked on ways to reduce some of the more harsh side effects I was experiencing. How many of you remember these- or are dealing with them now?
Chemo-Tears. Remember those? The taxanes made our eyes tear so much the skin underneath would become raw and tender, made worse with each subsequent tear that fell.
Chemo-Feet. Ah yes. That burning, aching pain that accompanied peeling and dryness so bad our feet developed cracks.
Chemo-Acne. Where was this in the Cancer Catalog?? Suddenly our skin became super dry, incredibly tender, and broke out like a pre-teen's.
Radiation Fried Skin. This one really got me. I was given an ointment that was so hard to spread on my painful, tender skin it made it even worse.
ChemoPause Skin Moisture Suck. There is no other way to describe it. All your hormones are eradicated from your body and what is left is the skin of an 80 year old who spent 40 years in tanning beds.
Scars and More Scars. You get to feel like a patchwork quilt after awhile, don't you?
Brillo Head with Painful Scalp: There is no description for what our hair looks like when it grows in except for- What Happened? And then there is the tender, painful scalp...
The No Surrender Breast Cancer Foundation will ALWAYS be here for you to help you get through your cancer. We are not going anywhere. But, as the founder, I must tell you that I have worked for the past three years on ways to get us through treatment as well as to make us look our best when treatment is done. What's more, I am tired of hearing of all the new cases that cross my desktop every day. WHEN WILL IT END? What are we doing that has increased cancer so much?
I asked this question when I passed the magic 5-year mark thinking I was "done" only to find out that I had not only a second cancer, but this one was almost 3 times the size of my first and had gone outside my lymph nodes. I had been doing everything right since the first diagnosis. I reduced my fat intake. I didn't eat meat. I exercised. I did it all. And it came back.
One thing I didn't change was my routine. From the cleaning materials I used around the house to the creams and lotions I was using on my body. When I was researching my book, I discovered that there are so many carcinogenic and hormone disruptive toxic chemicals in the stuff I used religiously, it was an eye opening experience.
I remembered the things I put together at home to help ease my treatment side effects. I knew I should start there.
The first thing I did was create a list of all the toxic, cancer causing chemicals that I would not use on my body ever again. Then, I researched nature based alternatives. But, let's face it, I am also a woman and I wanted the stuff to actually work. You can smear on anything that grows in the garden and nothing will happen. But if you put it together with other ingredients that boost effectiveness, you see results.
My next stop was a botanical chemist. Together, she and I put formulas together. These formulas could not contain any toxins or banned (in other countries) ingredients. Then I went out into the field and found the finest botanicals and essential oils and we worked on combining them. We tested and tested. How did we test? I would visit an aesthetician and ask her to put the harshest chemicals she could on my skin. High levels of glycolic acids, mega Retin A, whatever she could give me. My face would be so red and raw it felt like it would fall off. Even smiling would hurt. And then, I would put our products on my face. If they stung or made it worse, that formula would be thrown out and we would start again. If it soothed and helped reduced the redness, it become a new product.
Then we tested our products on 100 women. Cancer survivors, patients, new moms and women and men who had never been through harsh chemical treatments like chemo. The results were astounding. We had a 99% overwhelming positive feedback.
That is how I developed my new skin care line called Bétèrre Skin+Care. Bétèrre means "Better from the Earth." Skin+Care means we don't just offer you a run of the mill skincare line- we make care the most important part of it.
I was also very lucky. Two of the most talented physicians, surgeons who reconstruct breast cancer patients, became my partners. They are constantly giving back to their patients. They care what happens to them AFTER they leave the office as much as what happens in the office.
Bétèrre is for everyone. If you care about your health and want to avoid cancer causing, skin damaging chemicals and want a pure, nature-based line that has been proven to work, then you will want to try it.
Remember my list from above? If you are braving through treatment and are experiencing what I experienced, I have products made for you:
Salve-A-Tion. It soothes and protects the delicate eye skin. It also forms a protective barrier so the new tears can't hurt it.
Chemo-Feet? Put our Rescue Me Foot Cream in the refrigerator to cool it down. Then massage in while it is cold. The burning goes away. The feeling starts to come back to the tingling numbed areas and the painful, peeling skin is moisturized and nurtured.
Chemo-Acne? The Balancing Face Serum glides on to soothe hot, irritated dry skin. The formula is made of amazing botanicals that will help fight the chemo-acne and prevent new outbreaks.
Salve-A-Tion and our glorious Golden Elixir. They will soothe your irritated skin and the light protective barrier protects from chafing from your clothes.
Chemo-Pause Skin Moisture Suck? Your skin is dried out and has aged 100 years in 10 days. Our Deeply Moisture Repair for Face will turn your skin around. Where it was dry, it is supple. Where it was dull and lifeless, it glows with an incredible luminosity.
Scars? Pure oils and a massaging applicator of our Scar
Brillo Hair and Painful Scalp. No more. The Botanical Hair Tamer really does tame chemo frizz and when massaged into the scalp provides long lasting relief.
Bétèrre was made for you. You don't want to add more toxic chemicals to your body after all you have been through. You don't want your kids and family to be to be exposed to them either. You want skin care that does what it says it will and will not harm you.
I have always done everything in my power to help the wonderful people of No Surrender as well as people all over the world. This is yet another way for me to give back to all of you who have given me such hope and strength over the years.
There is a Bétèrre way- it's here now.
I am so happy I can finally share it with you.