ME/CFS, Makeup & Me

You know that feeling when you are hungover feeling achy, tired, nauseas and dizzy? Imagine feeling like this except you haven’t been drinking the night before, you have a medical condition which makes you feel too exhausted to go shopping without resting at the front of the shop, you can’t do scenic walks for the fear that you may not be able to walk back home due to exhaustion. I used to experience this everyday.

I have Myalgic Encephalopathy (ME)/ Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), a condition I can’t even pronounce! Today is International ME/CFS Awareness Day (12th May), last year I was too ashamed of my condition to explain it to people as I was in denial of being considered disabled and I was hurt by the insulting representation of my condition in the media, swaying people to think I have a yuppies disease. I have now grasped my condition, accepting that my body has limitations and through this I have gotten better. The help of Graded Exercise Therapy, involving analysing my routine so I don’t have “boom” and “bust” sessions during the day with my energy, has significantly improved my fatigue over the last six months. I rarely now feel the unpleasantness of  ME.

My condition varies with its symptoms depending on factors in my life such as lack  of sleep and stress. I have triggers which will essentially set off fatigue, mine is travelling as I find it quite stressful. I have had periods of exhaustion  where I have had to stay in bed for days to recover, as well having to nap everyday. Occasionally I am too exhausted to even digest my food, so it comes back up.

Some Symptoms:

  • Fatigue
  • Cognitive dysfunction (clumsiness, dizziness, poor memory, concentration problems)
  • Muscle symptoms (spasms, pain)
  • Emotional symptoms (mood swings, depression)
  • Impairment in the immune system (raised lymph nodes)
  • Sleep disturbances
  • IBS
  • Vomiting

How do you get it?

Personally health professionals believe that due to a serious contraction of glandular fever and cytomegalovirus, my body was exhausted by the viruses, now causing me to be easily fatigued. Although post viral fatigue is not always the cause of this condition. This makes research in this area quite difficult, not knowing what area of the body or mind to concentrate the help on.

Sufferers of this condition have different experiences, symptoms and triggers; they all deserve the care and understanding of their condition to help their well-being and improvement. There is no known cure at the moment, so understanding can often be more appreciated than help.

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How does make-up come in to it?

Make-up helps my confidence when I am having a low day with my condition whether be it frustration over it or fatigue, it helps me feel normal. I am able to cover up tired eyes and tired skin. Somehow looking good (in my eyes!) makes me feel better physically, helping me have more of a positive frame of mind improving my symptoms. It also serves as a non strenuous hobby, which is somewhat addictive!

I hope this has given you an insight into my condition, raising an awareness for all the brave suffers out there.

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Don’t forget to enter my Kylie Cosmetics GIVEAWAY that ends TOMORROW!

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23 thoughts on “ME/CFS, Makeup & Me

  1. I love this post!! It’s amazing how different you can feel by just brushing your hair, getting out of your PJs and applying a little make up. All big big steps for someone with ME.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks for sharing, I also have ME/CFS and can relate. I hope your path to recovery is short and easy. Please check out my blog where I talk in depth about my experiences of the illness and how I am trying to cure myself. xx

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    1. Thanks for reading and I wish the same for you! I’ve tried several times to get onto your blog but it keeps coming up with the message that it is no longer available… I don’t know if there’s an error? xx

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      1. ahh that’s why it didn’t work, i was clicking on the one which is linked to your profile (justmejourney.wordpress.com). I’ll have a good read of your blog tonight 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Hey, I also have ME/CFS and love my makeup! I’ve been suffering the last 4 years and only got diagnosed this January. Makeup has been my mask for many years covering my depression and anxiety, and now it hides the pain and exhaustion of ME/CFS. Do you find that people often don’t think you are ill because you take pride in your appearance? I’ve had plenty of comments on how I cant be so tired if I have managed to put makeup on etc. What they don’t see is me having to have several rests whilst getting ready over a couple of hours!

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    1. Hi thanks for stopping by! I definitely feel makeup is bit of a mask, but it also gets me into a routine of getting ready for the day, pushing me to leave the house. It also makes me feel more confident and positive, which I personally believe is key for my fatigue being more manageable. Hilariously, yes people do think I can’t be tired even when underneath I’m running on empty, the Drs think I look much better since I started to wear makeup to appointments! With or without makeup on people question me. With this condition we will always be questioned over it, as it is an “invisible illness”. I find some people don’t understand disabilities if it isn’t staring them right in their face! 😛 I know it can be frustrating, just do whatever makes you feel happy in yourself whether that be with or without makeup on. 🙂 x

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  4. Yes sadly we will always be questioned. It doesn’t bother me so much anymore. At first I was embarrassed and really took it to heart, but now I just try to educate people on it if they question me. And if they still don’t understand, then so be it! I will always wear my makeup with pride, quite often its the biggest achievement of the day and its definitely a confidence boost. Thanks for replying, I look forward to following your blog 🙂

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    1. I was embarrassed as well, think some people just can’t understand as they can’t imagine life how people with the condition experience everyday things. No thank you, I love knowing my blog is reaching out to real people. I’ve never met anyone in person with this condition so sometimes I feel a bit lonely! 🙂

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      1. I’ve only met 2 other people with it, and they were actually teenagers through work [I’m a children’s nurse – at least trying to be!] I’m trying to pluck up the courage to go to a meet in my area to meet fellow ME/CFSers soon. Where in the world are you? Im Yorkshire in the UK.

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      2. I definitely want to. I’m not sure what’s holding me back at the moment, I just feel panicky! I’m sure I will do it at some point! Xx

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