Welling beauty consultant helps boost confidence of those suffering from cancer

PUBLISHED: 10:22 06 August 2014 | UPDATED: 10:22 06 August 2014

McMillan trained Terry Arnold (left) at Boots number 7 counter with colleague Suzanne Nelson who lost her husband to skin cancer. Picture:

McMillan trained Terry Arnold (left) at Boots number 7 counter with colleague Suzanne Nelson who lost her husband to skin cancer. Picture:

A beauty consultant who has watched her loved ones deal with the devastating effects of cancer has undertaken specialist training to help others suffering from the disease.

Terry Arnold, 50, of Welling, is a No.7 expert at Boots in Broadway Shopping Centre.

Terry is one of the newest graduates of a specialist training programme set up between the popular high street chemist chain and Macmillan Cancer Support, which involves staff being trained to help and support customers who have skincare issues as a result of their fight against cancer.

A recent survey showed that over three quarters of women said the visible side effects of cancer treatment had a negative impact on their confidence, while more than two thirds said they didn’t know how to disguise them.

This led to a network of specially trained Boots Macmillan Beauty Advisors being introduced.

Terry said: “Over the years I’ve lost a number of close relatives to the disease, including my aunt Jackie Arnold from Plumstead at the age of only 42, my other aunt, Beebee Arnold, who also lived in Plumstead and died when she was 56, and my nan, Ethel Arnold, who was again from Plumstead and died from cancer aged 66.

“My best friend Jeaenette Persechino from Belvedere had cancer of the womb in her mid-forties but thankfully has just been given the all-clear.”

Tragically, the husband of Terry’s close friend and colleague Suzanne Nelson died from skin cancer at the age of 59 three years ago.

Terry explained: “All these examples of the effect cancer can have are deeply upsetting, which is why I decided to do whatever I can to help those suffering from it.

“I haven’t got a magic wand and I can’t do anything about the cancer but by using my skills as a beauty consultant I think I can do something for the ladies who have it to look a little better and perhaps feel better too.

“People with cancer sometimes say they feel alien or isolated because of their treatment and I want to help them feel normal again with a little pampering.

“Thanks to my Macmillan training I know what creams and other preparations can and cannot be used with someone who has had radiotherapy or chemotherapy to treat their cancer, and if they need that little extra bit of advice I have leaflets I can give them or I can refer them to our in-house pharmacist.

“Apart from my advisory work in the store, I’ll also be joining other Macmillan trained consultants on a voluntary basis for occasional visits to some of the London hospitals, like St Thomas’s or Guys, to help cancer patients there.”

Terry became officially qualified to take up her new role as a Macmillan advisor after she underwent an intensive training programme, passed an examination and had an interview with the branch’s beauty manager Nathan Gardener.

Warm praise for Terry’s new Macmillan consultant status has come from Suzanne Nelson, 62, whose husband Peter Nelson died from skin cancer.

Suzanne, of Bexley, has been Terry’s friend for many years and works close to her at Boots in the Broadway Centre as manager of the store’s fragrance department.

Suzanne said: “Peter found a lump in his groin which they operated on and took away only to find it was cancerous.

“Later on it was confirmed he had skin cancer when he was about to have hip replacement surgery.

“Despite having radiotherapy and chemotherapy, the cancer spread first to his lymph nodes and then his chest and, less than two years after his diagnosis, he died in 2011.

“I was absolutely devastated because he was a lovely man. We had been married for 27 years and were briefly apart before getting together again. We have two children, a son called Tony who is 40 and a daughter, Samantha, who is 36.”

Suzanne added: “I think what my friend Terry is doing to help people with cancer is absolutely fantastic and I admire her 100 per cent for it.

“The aim of what she’s trained for with Macmillan is to make people feel better at what can be a real low-point of their lives and give them a little bit of hope.

“Terry is a very focused person who is passionate about everything she does so I know she’s going to make a big success of it.”

People wanting to consult Terry in her Macmillan role can either make an appointment to see her by phoning Boots on 0208 301 1657, or seeing her there any Monday, Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday, between 8.30am and 6pm.

If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Bexley Times. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Latest from the Bexley Times