They say beauty is only skin deep, but if life throws a traumatic event our way, a makeover sometimes has the power to heal from the outside in.
Christopher Hawkins (a.k.a. “The Makeover Guy”) runs his own makeover studio in Minneapolis, Minnesota, called Makeover Guy Appearance Studios. He has never been busier. With a strong social media presence and a popular YouTube channel, Hawkins shares videos of his most epic makeovers with the world, and they are everything. Hawkins styles people from every walk of life, some of whom have suffered illness, loss, issues with their weight, or simply want to embrace their ageing bodies with grace and style.
Here is one of those touching #makeovers that I wish I could encapsulate the entire process. Enjoy!
Phoebe Standish, from Vermont, took the initiative to visit Hawkins in March of 2019. Standish is 76 years old, and if anybody deserved a makeover, it was her. Life had dealt her an exceptionally hard blow, but the stoic woman had decided to take her fate into her own hands and choose life over grief.
Standish had lived in the same location for 49 long years, but acute stress prompted a move and a new chance to embrace the future after a devastating loss: Standish lost her son to pancreatic cancer. He died on Thanksgiving Day.
Petite and with pretty features, the spectacle-wearing, salt-and-pepper-haired woman shared her heartbreaking story with delicate sincerity for Hawkins’s video. “I’m living day by day and coping with a new way of life,” she said. And why Hawkins? “I feel so confident with Christopher’s expertise,” Standish explained, “and have watched many videos.”
“I just think he gets it.”
Hawkins certainly does. The video clip skips forward to Standish’s glamorous transformation, and Hawkins’s expertise is made tangible. The makeover guy can be heard in the background, offering affectionate snippets of affirmation to his beautiful client, and the viewer immediately knows that Standish has experienced much more than a physical makeover.
Her confidence has been restored.
Gone are the wire-rimmed spectacles. Standish now wears a wavy bob-style haircut with flowing layers and a vibrant reddish tone. She wears color, rather than the monochrome outfit she arrived in, and a jaunty scarf around her neck adds youth and flair.
But is she happy? “I feel rejuvenated—really,” Standish tells the camera, the compliment aimed at Hawkins. “I feel like a movie star!”
“And you are a movie star!” Hawkins adds.
Hawkins should know. He didn’t begin his career as a stylist. In fact, he started out as an actor. He grew disillusioned with the industry in the mid-1980s and moved into styling, eventually founding several salons in the early 1990s. His reputation grew exponentially, and Hawkins became a regular guest on The Oprah Winfrey Show.
Hawkins has met (and styled!) his fair share of beautiful women throughout the course of his occasionally glitzy and more frequently glamorous career. And while genetics and circumstances have their roles to play in our physical presentation, sometimes all you need is a helping hand from a man who knows style!
Standish’s story is one of unimaginable heartbreak, and nothing in the world can repair the damage done by losing a loved one. But losing love for oneself in the process is a tragedy that can, and should, be overcome. A makeover can bring a lost soul a million miles closer to finding happiness once more.
Phoebe Standish, you are beautiful!