Every day, Cassandra Bankson wakes up, washes her face and does a makeup routine that dramatically transforms her looks.
The California teen has severe acne. It’s so bad that it covers most of her face, as well as parts of her neck, chest and back.
But Bankson is now able to model, and her shots are picture-perfect. How?
Bankson performs a daily makeup makeover, expertly hiding the extensive blemishes that cover her face and neck with a technique that she says she learned after hours of research and practice. She demonstrates her method in a before-and-after YouTube video that’s had more than 2 million views.
“It’s been overwhelming,” she said today on “Good Morning America” about the response online to her video. “It really is an eye-opener. I never knew that for men, for women, even for adults, it’s such an epidemic. Yes, it’s cosmetic, but it goes deeper than that. I think that’s something that’s a little bit of a misconception.”
At the beginning of the video, Bankson is made up. Her skin is clear and her cosmetics look natural and fresh. Then she explains that she’ll remove the makeup to show her face and demonstrate her technique.
When she appears again, her face is covered in red acne spots.
“I am the most self-conscious person about my acne … taking my makeup off is one of the most insecure things that I could probably do, for me,” she says, her voice shaking.
In the moments that follow, Bankson goes through a comprehensive routine that includes the application of foundation, concealer, powders and spray. When she’s done, her face is transformed. Her skin appears flawless.
Because of her transformational routine, she’s able to book modeling jobs, and is reaching out to other teens to help them with their own skin troubles.
Bankson, who got her first pimple in the third grade, has a powerful message for other teens who are suffering with acne: “I know exactly where you are, I’ve been in your shoes and there is hope,” she said on “GMA.” “Someone else has been there and there is a way for you to feel confident…you just need to kind of search around for what it is that makes you lighten up.”
Bankson describes her drive to help people as her “passion” and “duty.”
“I hope this helps you if you guys have acne, or even if you don’t have acne and you just want really pretty skin,” she says at the end of the tutorial.
While most viewers posted overwhelmingly positive comments, some have accused her of being “fake” about her looks. She is undeterred.
“It took me a month to post. …I thought I was going to get the same hate as school for my skin,” she said on “GMA.” “I thought if it helped one person, one girl or even one guy who was in the same condition, it would be worth it.”