We should celebrate our period rather than hiding it, says make-up artist Leena Bhushan

Make-up artist Leena Bhushan talks about overcoming period stigma and not letting your periods stop you from achieving your goals.
Leena Bhushan
For make-up artist Leena Bhushan, there is never a choice between periods and work. Image courtesy: Leena Bhushan
Sonakshi Kohli Updated: 2 Jun 2021, 06:08 pm IST
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If you’re active or even just present on social media, chances are that you’ve seen quite a number of Indian brides turning heads for picture-perfect make-up.

In all probability, some of the featured brides have got their make-up done by renowned make-up artist Leena Bhushan. Yes, that’s how popular she is and that’s how popular her clients get post her Midas touch on their big day.

“I am a freelance make-up artist,” she says, describing precisely the nature of her job. Needless to say, bridal make-up happens to be her specialty.

And with almost every Indian bride aspiring to rope in Bhushan for her wedding-day make-up, it comes as no surprise that the artist has to mostly travel for all of the 30 days of the month. 

“I have to step out to fulfill a work commitment almost every day,” she quips.

An ordinary work day is anything but ordinary for her
“On most days, I do have a commitment with a bride getting married in the morning. Hence, my day starts early at around 6 a.m.,” says Bhushan.

Leena Bhushan

This is followed by rushing to the next venue, where her evening-wedding bride awaits. That’s not all. She also travels across India as well as internationally for destination weddings. So basically, the woman is always on the go.

How, then does she manage her period problems, you wonder?
Do not mistake Bhushan’s success for an obstacle-free life. As if juggling motherhood and work isn’t enough of a hassle–just like all of us, she deals with menstruation and all the problems associated with it as well. 

“Although I don’t get scared of my periods now, I do remember the days when I got my period in the 12th standard. I was just always fearful and worried about getting a blood stain on my skirt or simply about people somehow getting to know about my period,” Bhushan recalls.

Nope, her period struggle didn’t just magically end with her adolescence. “When I am working while on my period, there is always a certain discomfort involved and I do get period cramps as well,” she says.

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“But being on the move and staying busy makes me think of the discomfort much lesser compared to when I am sitting idle at home while on my period. So, work and travel has in a way helped me overcome my period problems,” she adds.

The lady doesn’t let periods come in the way—EVER
Many women go through severe period cramps, mood swings, fatigue, nausea, and other symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) before or while they’re menstruating. And sometimes, these symptoms are so severe, they can almost bring their life to a halt for those terribly painful five days of the month. 

However, in Bhushan’s case, periods have never come in the way of her work life and professional goals. 

“Periods are no longer a big deal for me, maybe because I’ve had them for almost 20 years now,” she sighs.

Now, if you think, she’s just lucky to have an ‘ignorable’ period, you’ve got to understand one thing here. According to doctors and health practitioners worldwide, if your period is so painful and uncomfortable that it meddles with your daily-life activities, you probably have an underlying health condition such as polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOD) or endometriosis. And you need to get it diagnosed and treated asap. 

Leena Bhushan

Finally, some period-management tips, courtesy Leena Bhushan
“Staying hydrated and drinking lots of water helps me sail through my period smoothly. It can work for you as well,” Bhushan suggests.

“Wear a good-quality sanitary napkin to feel comfortable through the day and keep a few extra ones handy in your bag if you’re on the move,” she adds.

On a closing note, she has a message for all the ambitious women out there: “Surely, menstruation is a sensitive topic, but periods are a natural phenomenon for every woman. So, don’t let it turn into a stigma or let your periods be such a big deal in your head. Don’t let them turn into a setback for you or stop you from achieving your goals and dreams.”

“Talk about periods openly and reach out for help if you need it. Be supportive towards other women, who might reach out to you for help while they’re on their period. After all, we should be celebrating this aspect of womanhood rather than hiding it out of shame or letting it stop us from achieving our goals,” Bhushan finally says before signing off.

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