Women with Skin Damage Caused by Cutaneous Lupus Report Improved Quality of Life with “Cosmetic Camouflage”
Cosmetic camouflage - a type of makeup used in clinical practice to cover disfigurements – is shown to improve quality of life measures in women with permanent facial skin damage caused by cutaneous lupus. After receiving training on how to apply the makeup and wearing the makeup daily for about 12 weeks, study participants reported notable improvements in mood, self-image and physical functioning. The control group experienced no significant improvements throughout the study period.
The study included 56 women with cutaneous lupus of similar age and socio-demographic backgrounds, with similar disease characteristics, and all of whom had permanent facial skin damage (skin discoloration and/or facial scarring). While all participants received initial cosmetic camouflage training, 36 people were then assigned to the cosmetic camouflage intervention group and 20 were assigned to the control group. The intervention group wore the makeup daily for about 12 weeks in Phase I, then as needed for another 12 weeks in Phase II.
By the end of Phase I, the women using the cosmetic camouflage reported significant improvement in health-related quality of life, especially with regard to mood and self-image. Physical functioning (e.g., activities related to leaving the home and engaging in social activities) also improved. The women’s overall quality of life scores were maintained from Phase I to Phase II. At the end of the study, the intervention group’s scores for depression, anxiety and self-esteem had all improved compared to baseline.
Skin damage occurs in about 80% of people with lupus, and potentially resulting discoloration and scarring can have widespread effects on a person’s quality of life. Yet small tips and tricks, like cosmetic camouflage, may help improve emotional and physical wellbeing. People with lupus interested in learning more about cosmetic camouflage should speak with their physician and/or dermatologist for guidance. Learn more about coping with the impact of lupus on the skin.