Geralyn Lucas was only 27 when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. Shaking the foundations of her world, she was faced with the harrowing decision of whether or not to undergo a mastectomy. She shares her incredible journey in her memoir, Why I Wore Lipstick: To My Mastectomy. Having been diagnosed at an early age, Lucas thought it was important to share her story with others to help dispel the myth that breast cancer discriminates by age.
Filled with courage, humor, and inspirational candor, Why I Wore Lipstick: To My Mastectomy details Lucas’ internal struggle and soul searching to rediscover her “inner cleavage” after losing a key female-defining characteristic and feel sexy and whole once again.
Having gained wide praise as an author and inspirational speaker, SELF magazine said Lucas’ “honest, funny and courageous account of facing down the disease is both inspiring and entertaining, and readers who know anyone going through treatment will love this singularly upbeat account.” Inspired by Lucas’ book, dress designer and breast cancer survivor Betsey Johnson designed a T-shirt to promote Why I Wore Lipstick: To My Mastectomy; cosmetic company Stila created a lipstick called Geralyn; and The Young Breast Cancer Survivor Foundation and Zeta Tau Alpha Foundation both endorsed the book.
Lucas’ message is not just for women who have experienced the effects of cancer. “This is a universal story for women,” she says, “A lot of people say going through a serious illness makes you look deeply at who you are, and that can be true. But you don’t have to have breast cancer to do that.”
Lucas was an editorial producer at ABC News for 20/20 before joining Lifetime Television as a producer and head of the Stop Breast Cancer for Life initiative. She lives in New York City with her husband, Tyler, and their two children. Skye, her eldest child, was born in the same hospital where Lucas had her mastectomy.