What if the inside does not reflect what is seen on the outside?
Most of the time, people suffering from mental health problems hide their pain and struggle with a mask saying ‘I am okay’ when in reality, they feel like they are going to burst any moment.
Beauty blogger and mental health advocate, Yasaman Gheidi, encourages everyone to not be afraid of peeling off their fear and start accepting the scars caused by personal experiences with mental health problems through a make-up challenge.
Covering up with powder of lies
Gheidi admitted in an Instagram post that she is suffering from depression and anxiety. During a party at her workplace, she experienced panic attacks which made her leave the party earlier than expected. After that incident, she was terrified of questions from her officemates asking where she’d gone. Gheidi’s fear of revealing her illness even compelled her to ask her partner to cover for her. She then questioned herself on why she felt the need to hide the real reason for her early departure that night–wondering why she can’t say out loud that she has a mental illness.
“Why did I have to be ashamed and lie about my anxiety attack? So many wonderful and amazing people suffer from the same mental illnesses that I do on a daily basis. Why can’t we just talk about it openly? Mental illness shouldn’t have to be hidden away, let’s start to talk about it,” she further explained about her realization.
Smudge colors of hope
On January 9, 2017, Gheidi posted a video on her Youtube channel entitled “The Inside Out Challenge.” In the first part of the video, her face was adorned with her usual make-up and a smile on her lips. As the video progress, she started erasing the make-up, revealing the bare half of her face. This time, her eyes turned dull as she started drawing lines using her make-up brushes. At the end of the Youtube video, half of her face was painted in blue and her eyes were surrounded with black pigments of teardrops.
She wrote on her Youtube page that she created the challenge to raise mental health awareness by expressing what she actually feels inside through the art of applying make-up. She later revealed that the Inside Out Challenge was inspired by the Pixar film, “Inside Out.” Gheidi also revealed that the incident which happened at the party is what pushed her in creating the said online campaign.
Full look of courage
On top of that, it made her really happy that her video became viral. Ever since she posted it, a lot of people have been speaking out the truth behind their mental illnesses through photos and videos of the said make-up challenge campaign, creating art out of their scars.
One of the most viewed posts under the Inside Out Challenge is from an Instagram user named, Brit Gorman wherein she painted half of her face with a white pigment accompanied by scribbles of thoughts and stigma surrounding mental health patients.
She stated the reason behind her make-up on her post, “Anxiety affects me more often than depression, and my mind is constantly buzzing. Small thoughts (like sending a text or remembering someone’s name) often feel just as important as the big ones (like a family crisis or financial emergency.) The internal buzz can make my heart rate spike, and put me into panic mode for no good reason.”
Gorman thanked Gheidi for taking the initiative to start the campaign and for bravely speaking up about her mental health condition. Aside from Gorman, more people are posting their make-up looks on their social media accounts under the hashtag: #insideoutchallenge. As a way of giving back to the people who are supporting and contributing to the Inside Out Challenge, Gheidi keeps on reposting her favorite photos and work of art on her Instagram page.
Gheidi and the people who’ve joined her campaign are engaging the people to discuss their own experiences with mental health which would help the public to further understand the complexity of these problems.
Her fight against depression and anxiety is what started her online campaign which now serves as a creative outlet for people in the same situation as her. She gives them hope by turning a mundane thing such as make-up, as a tool to express their courageous battle with mental illnesses.