Hair loss, debilitating nausea, a painful mouth… the physical side effects of cancer treatments are incredibly difficult to bear.
But nothing prepares you for the turmoil the diagnosis will have on your emotions, especially as a woman.
‘Your whole femininity crumbles’, says Isabelle Guyomarch, entrepreneur, mother-of-two and breast cancer survivor.
‘It’s often the follow-up treatments that are hardest to cope with, the scars and the side-effects. Your feminine identity is completely destroyed and you have to reinvent it again.’
In August 2013, the French businesswoman’s life was turned upside down when she was diagnosed with aggressive stage-3 breast cancer.
Refusing to let her diagnosis defeat her, Isabelle explains how she ‘rebuilt’ herself as a woman – by deciding to help others going through the same thing.
‘I fought for life and I won; I’m in remission’, she says. ‘But I needed to make sense of my battle, like many cancer survivors do’.
And so Ozalys was born.
Drawing upon her personal experience of feeling weakened by cancer treatments, Isabelle and her team created a range of 11 products specially adapted for all patients’ needs.
Detailing what’s special about her fluoride-free, Essential Care Refreshing Toothpaste with Ginger, she says: ‘When you’re in chemotherapy, you have bad breath, you feel sick, you have a dry mouth… so we’ve put in real ginger extract, which is an amazing anti-nauseant and anti-humectant.
‘All our products have specially-conceived lids that you can twist and not lift off because your hands can become very damaged.’
It’s not about making money for her - it's about meeting people's needs.
‘I’ve created the Absolute Care Hand and Foot Moisturizing Cream, which is three products in one.
'Even if you still have the financial means during your cancer battle, you no longer have the strength to use a ton of products.
‘It’s easy to lie to people and say you need to buy three different creams, but you really don’t if they’re very high quality.
'Everything has a double function – a day cream that can double as a night cream for instance [the Precious Care Day And Night Moisturiser].’
The groundbreaking range also includes perfume, which has been designed to only be applied to a specific area and ingredients selected for skin weakened by chemo, with fragrances chosen to minimise headaches.
Explaining the ethos behind her fast-growing brand, she said: 'You’re a different person, both psychologically and physically after cancer.
'But you can create something positive out of it, that’s my approach with Ozalys.
'I want to help women to get back up, to get back in front of the bathroom mirror, to find their inner confidence again, find out who they are now.'
Ozalys have created a complete range of products specifically for women directly or indirectly affected by cancer.
Their highly soothing, moisturizing and protective products, with their delicate applicators and subtle fragrances make daily beauty routines also moments of well-being and comfort.
Shop the full range here.