“I’m Outraged I Was Given Toxic Cosmetics”

300px Katy for ealertBy Katy Skahill, Breast Cancer Action member

In December 2014, I was diagnosed with invasive breast cancer and had a bilateral mastectomy that same month.

During my chemotherapy treatment afterward, I saw posters at my hospital advertising the American Cancer Society’s Look Good, Feel Better® program.

During the Look Good, Feel Better class I attended, patients in cancer treatment who had lost their hair, eyebrows, eyelashes, etc., learned how to wear wigs, tie scarves, and apply makeup. We were also each given a bag of cosmetics products.

Quite by accident, while researching a safe sunscreen to wear during chemo, I discovered that the bulk of the products I’d been given at the Look Good, Feel Better class contained chemicals linked to cancer, and some even included chemicals that would interrupt the effectiveness of Tamoxifen—an oral cancer drug I take today and will take for years.

TakeAction 2015

I threw the majority of the products in the trash and cried for hours. That was one of the most painful moments I have experienced since my breast cancer diagnosis.

I was appalled that I would be invited in as a friend, told that I was cared about, and then given a bag full of potentially harmful products. I did some research to find out how such an unethical practice could be taking place. This led me to Breast Cancer Action’s Think Before You Pink® campaign. I learned I am not the only one who feels this way.

Now, I’m taking a stand by telling the American Cancer Society and the Personal Care Products Council to clean up their act.

These industry giants claim to care about women like me. Join me in telling them that if they truly care, they must STOP their hypocritical pinkwashing NOW and refuse to allow companies to participate in the Look Good, Feel Better program if their products put our health at risk.

This entry was posted in BCA Action Alerts.