Woman covers her facial scars with tattoos with amazing results

Jan 28, 2015 at 12:00 p.m. ET

Basma Hameed was severely burned by hot oil when she was 2 years old. Her face was permanently scarred. Over the next decades, she had more than 100 procedures on her face to hide the third-degree burns she suffered, but nothing worked. Parts of her face were still scarred. But then she had an epiphany.

If permanent makeup — like the eyebrows Hameed had tattooed on — could change her face, why couldn't tattoos change her scars? And just like that, Hameed changed her own life. She covered her scars and for the first time, was able to see her face as she'd always wanted to. Now she helps other women with facial scarring do the same thing.

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Her technique uses skin tone pigments on scar tissue to camouflage the discoloration. And it works. She received all the training she needed and now has clinics in Chicago and Toronto where she changes the lives of many women.

It is hard to imagine going through life feeling so unhappy about one's face. There is really no easy way to deal with that. I have no equivalent in my own life and can only empathize and imagine what that must feel like. What Hameed gives these women is hope again. It's the ability to go outside their home and feel confident. Is there anything better?

Tattoos and cosmetic surgery both get a bad rap and sometimes it's for a good reason. But this is the best use of this treatment I have ever heard of. Beauty isn't everything, it's true. And we all need to learn to live with our flaws and embrace them. But scarring is different and anything that can help restore self-esteem to women who need it is amazing in my book.

Talk about using your own pain to spread joy in the world. Truly, this is a beautiful thing. And some of her work, she even does for free. What a story.

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