The most inspiring CoverGirl ever Make-up blogger, 13, fighting two types of cancer becomes honorary face of beauty giant
23:33 GMT, 16 October 2012
A 13-year-old cancer sufferer, who became a YouTube star thanks to her inspired make-up video tutorials, has become an honorary face of CoverGirl.
Talia Joy Castellano was thrilled to learn the news last month during an interview with Ellen Degeneres, and today, the beauty giant released a campaign-style image bearing her face.
The teenager, who developed an interest in make-up six years ago, when she was first diagnosed with neuroblastoma, has attracted over 14million viewers to her video blog.
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This summer, however, Talia uploaded a post announcing she now has 'neuroblastoma and leukemia at the same time'.
Although she says 'the chances of surviving are fewer than surviving,' she will continue her videos 'for as long as I can.'
Despite the harrowing diagnosis, Talia was bursting with positivity and energy when she appeared on Ms DeGeneres' show.
Clearly in awe of the host and the standing ovation she was greeted with, her eyes welled up at the beginning.
'I'm shaking I love you so much!' she admitted.
Mutual admiration: The teenager, who developed an interest in make-up six years ago, when she was first diagnosed with neuroblastoma, was as in awe of Ellen as the host was of her
In awe: Talia had no idea Ellen would surprise her with her very own CoverGirl poster
Indeed, when asked how she stays so positive, Talia quoted a line Ms Degeneres said in her role as Dory in Finding Nemo.
'When people ask me that, what do you want me to do, be depressed' she said. 'I
mean a little fishy told me, “Just keep swimming, just keep swimming!”'
Of course, the admiration was mutual, and Ms Degeneres, in turn could not praise Talia enough.
'I'll keep telling you that too,' she replied. 'I'm so glad that a fish told you that.
Fighter: Talia has been fighting cancer for six years, but has turned her harrowing story into an inspiration for thousands of young girls who tune into her make-up tutorials
'You really are quite something,' she continued. 'There's a depth to your soul that is
not a 13-year-old soul. You’re an old soul and you are very special and
amazing, and I’m so honored that you wanted to meet me and that I got to
Talia was first diagnosed with with stage four neuroblastoma cancer, a tumor that develops from nerve tissue in infants and children, on Valentine's Day in 2007.
She reveals during a video: 'You don't think, “Oh my god I'm
going to die”. It's more like, “I'm going to lose my hair, I'm going to be
skinny, I won't be able to eat, go to school, see my friends.”'
The seventh grader said her popular make-up tutorials were conceived out of her distaste for wearing wigs.
'I don't like wigs, they're so, I dunno… When I have on
a wig I feel, not fake, just not me', she explains,
Step-by-step: Over 100,000 people subscribe to the youngster's YouTube page to watch her bubbly and expert make-up tutorials, where she uses cosmetics as a 'wig' to give her, and her fans, everyday confidence
Inspirational eyes: Talia, who was first diagnosed with with stage four neuroblastoma cancer on Valentine's Day in 2007, make-up allows her to feel like she can embrace the features that she really like about herself
'When I put on my make-up I feel
like I can embrace those features that I really like about myself. I
feel if someone's looking at me, they're looking at my make-up, not
looking at my bald head.
'I am just trying to make young girls, young
adults, adults, anyone, feel beautiful by using make-up,' she adds.
Once a week, on top of enduring
chemotherapy, radiation, stem cell transplants, and blood transfusions,
she teaches her viewers how to master a make-up look that most girls are
quick to put in the 'too hard basket'.
'Just fill it in sloppily,' she advises of a base layer. 'But focus on
the eyelid because that's where we want most of the intensity and the
yellow to stick.
End result: Although Talia says she is not sure what her next steps are, she promises to continue her YouTube channel and make-up tutorials
'When you're using very vibrant colours like this you
always want to use a base. One, it will prevent creasing, and it will
give the eyeshadow something to stick to,' she explains of a look inspired by fire and her 'fiery' bathing suit.
She also tells her fans that 'it's just for fun'.
'I just did this while my parents were in the pool and I was really bored. It's
not hard at all. Some girls think it's so hard, being like “How do you
do that!” and I'm like “bro, it's”..never mind,' she trails off.
Cancer fighter: Talia now has neuroblastoma and leukemia 'at the same time', giving her only four months to one year to live
She revels her latest diagnosis to her fans, saying: 'I just wanted to tell you guys because I don't want it to be a secret.'
'Basically there are not really a lot
of options for treatment anymore,' Talia explains to her viewers with
the frank wisdom of few adults.
could undergo a bone marrow transplant, however the surgery would take a
considerable toll on her body because she has had 'so many surgeries
She admits in her video blog that she is leaning towards not having the transplant, which means she will only have four months to one year to live.
'I'm going to decide whether or not I want to do the bone marrow transplant, or whether or not I just don't do it and live the time I have remaining,' she says.
'This is not fair to me anymore. I'm only 13. I shouldn't have to be doing this…it's really not fair for kids to have cancer. It really frickin sucks.'
Although Talia is not sure what her next steps are, but she promises to continue her videos, and says 'I hope you guys understand where I'm coming from, not wanting to do the transplant'.
'I've gotten so many benefits from [cancer]. Having a YouTube channel, having to inspire people and having people look up to me… I adore, I love make-up, using it as my wig… it's amazing… the journey of having cancer was amazing. But every journey has an end.
'Having cancer has been a gift, but it's a horrible, horrible thing,' she says.