MT. LAUREL, NJ (WTXF) - It isn't unusual for many of us, women in particular, to spend considerable time and money on beauty. But imagine you were losing your vision and you lost your ability to get "your look" just right.
Fox 29's Joyce Evans met a young woman who is maintaining her sense of style with the help of a prominent permanent makeup artist.
She's full of adventure--a world traveler and advocate for animal preservation, Shireen Dastis is always "camera ready" and, like most women, she works at bringing out her very best.
But this young new bride needs extra help at it these days. Shireen is rapidly losing her vision to a degenerative eye condition,
She's lost the ability to maintain her exotic look independently.
Enter Rose Marie Beauchemin, a longtime advocate for the visually impaired.
She's helping the visually impaired--young people like Shireen--to keep up their standards of style.
"It's as though they're forgotten, and they tend to kind of hide out in the background of life, and that really bothered me--hiding out because they're not confident."
She encourages her students to give back--these tattoo and makeup artists, nurses, aestheticians; you name it--have come from all over the world to the Beau Institute of Permanent and Corrective Cosmetics to be certified.
Rose Marie is president of the American Academy of Micro Pigmentation.
She first permanently lined Shireen's eyes a couple of years ago and gave Shireen her first tattooed eyebrows.
"My vision was better then, and I could see just how natural-looking they looked," Shireen told Fox 29. "It was really helpful to have my eyebrows done and wakeup and not have to fill them in like I did before."
But Rose Marie says there's a process to get them just right, and it rarely ever happens all in one visit or by trying to get brows you saw on somebody else.
"They're pulling them out of magazines and they don't work for them--it's not for their face, their features, not for everybody," Rose Marie explained.
This is Shireen's third visit--her second for microblading.
"Now since my vision is getting worse, it really is so helpful to me," Shireen said. "It's definitely life-changing."
So what does it feel like? Shireen tells us it feels like a vibration, but not like a prick.
The pigments, like tattoos, are not FDA-approved, but Rose Marie says all the ingredients in her bottles are "gamma-sterile."
She does say there are some medical conditions that may cause an issue for certain clients.
"We get medical clearance for someone on, say, chemotherapy, or just coming off," Rose Marie explained.
Clients with joint replacements, hip replacements, valves, or stints may also present red flags.
None of those are issues for Shireen, though there is maintenance required to keep her 'make-up' fresh.
Rose Marie says your first microblading procedure should cost between $600 and $800, and it should include your first touch-up.