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not wearing makeup to a PIP assessment!

sue66sue66 Posts: 124Member Pioneering
Oh for heavens sake just read this advice           If you are female, best to wear minimal make-up, if any - no lipstick or nail polish.  Assessors think that well-groomed claimants can't be disabled.        
 I sit down on a chair with a mirror in front of me and spend maybe 5 mins applying makeup, i feel depressed not wearing any at all, how does wearing makeup mean you cant possibly be disabled!  Are men judged then if they happen to have a PIP assessment in the summer then and arrive with a nice golden tan!  Its discrimation against us women. Well ive got my PIP tomorrow the 5th September, will i be wearing makeup, yes i will, don't see why i should look awful as well as feel awful too. Maybe its not worth me even bothering at all.     Rant over lol !


  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 17,425Community champion Disability Gamechanger

    Just be yourself, if you wear make up then wear it, if you don't then don't wear it. My advice is be honest and be the way you normally are.
    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
  • david235david235 Posts: 170Member Pioneering
    I couldn't agree more, @poppy123456 . There is all sorts of crazy "advice" around about only talking about your worst days (which would be benefit fraud), deliberately turning up to assessments in an unwashed state and the like. I would go along groomed and dressed as you normally would when going out assuming that strength and health allows for that on the day. If strength is short or other symptoms are interfering, make whatever compromises are necessary.

    PIP is about how you are on the majority of days, after all. It would not be inconsistent to claim that on the majority of days you are unable to get dressed at all, but you made a heroic effort to get dressed on that day knowing you had an assessment.

    Though putting on make up is not part of any PIP activity, it could raise doubts in the mind of the assessor if you say you did your own make up but that was wholly inconsistent with what you say about your ability to wash, dress or feed yourself. It would certainly ring alarm bells if you claimed that you could not lift your hands to your face at all, meaning you cannot wash, bathe, dress your upper body, feed or drink without help - but you said that you did your makeup that morning! If, however, you have told the truth consistently then you can easily answer any question about makeup in a way that does not undermine your claim.

    Any assumption that women cannot be disabled if they are wearing makeup is an unjustifiable stereotype. My partner does not wear makeup; she feels putting on and taking off make up is not worth the effort in the light of her chronic fatigue, also there is also the possibility of any products she uses causing problems with her eczema. It is entirely her choice whether or not to wear make up and she is beautiful as she is. Other disabled women I know do wear make up occasionally or every time they go out - again, it is their choice and theirs alone. I am not aware of any of the disabled men I know wearing make up, but I am sure that plenty of disabled men do wear some make up.

    Is a disabled man not disabled merely because he chooses to shave - which is arguably something optional? I think not! (For what it's worth, I shave when I can - but it is not every day, much to my frustration).

    Best wishes for your assessment, @sue66 .
  • wilkowilko Posts: 2,000Member Disability Gamechanger
    @david235, couldn't agree more, when I had my first acessment on reading the report concerning my appearance I was amazed at what the ascessor had observed to fill a A4 page, and that was being myself. My wife doesn't wear make-up no need so can't borrow hers and my daughters have left home and are unable to help or advise me. So no chance for me go as I am. 
  • tinka1992tinka1992 Posts: 97Member Connected
    When I had my assessment I didnt wear make up hardly wear it anyways but the assessor still.said I looked well keepet and  I had Jean's on and t shirt and some flat shoes on doesnt matter what u wear how u dress ect 
  • sue66sue66 Posts: 124Member Pioneering
    Thanks all for your replys, feeling very anxious this morning, I will wear makeup as ive not given any indication I have problems putting my arms to my face, I did actually mention when filling the form in that I wear makeup because it makes me feel mentally better, im not holding my breath on getting any points, just be glad when its all over!  got M.E. and anxiousness.   
  • Adrian_ScopeAdrian_Scope Posts: 5,283Administrator Scope community team
    Best of luck today @sue66! To echo everyone else, just be yourself, if you'd usually wear makeup then wear it. Don't do anything different tot what you'd normally do. Let us know how you get on. :)
    Senior Community Partner
  • MisscleoMisscleo Posts: 630Member Pioneering
    We'd all like to know how you get on.
    I think most of us have had "them" look us up & down and make comments about how kept or unkempt we are.
    If "they" were an higher IQ maybe they would see we all try more if we are going somewhere otherwise it's an old T shirt. Jeans. Slippers cos they'd know wr uncomfortable 90% of our time
    Good luck
  • pollyanna1052pollyanna1052 Posts: 1,634Member Disability Gamechanger
    So how did it go? I know you cant really glean how the decision will go, but were you treated kindly?

    Should`ve had my home based f2f today, but they cancelled on Tuesday and changed it to 24th...3 more week to fret.

    Good luck. xxx
  • worried33worried33 Posts: 309Member Pioneering
    I am male, but I can verify from my own reports, that if you well dressed and especially if you polite assumptions can get made that you have no mental problems.  

    On my PIP I wasnt clean shaven but wasnt left alone for weeks either, I would say as poppy has advised kind of average, probably 3-4 days from a shave, given I usually shave once a week at the most, it was just me myself.

    Regardless of how you dress and present yourself, explain how you are on majority of days, drill that message home.
  • sue66sue66 Posts: 124Member Pioneering
    Hi again all. Well it went ok, the assessor was a man in his 40s but he wasn't in anyway intimidating  or anything like that. I can tell by the questions asked that if I fail at all it would be based on the fact of poor medical evidence as I was diagnosed back in 1995, when I felt drs meds wern't helping I stopped and now use herbal and CBD oil, I havn't been to the gp in a long time because I go to see a Kinesiologist for help with anxiousness and muscle pain.   Was asked to do some gentle exercises  with pushing against his hands with my hands and my legs and squeezing his fingers with mine. He did repeat same questions but worded differently and repeat some questions already asked. Daughter inlaw  picked up on fact I was getting confused at some points. infact she said no offence meant but at some points I was coming across as quite senile:(  Unfortunately I couldn't say yes to any back up with the anxiousness  as I have never been back to gp for a referral to receive any help. My advice to anyone is do keep going back to the gp so its written down in your records.   Do keep a written diary of how  each day affects you in different areas.. Just up to a 6 week wait now but I wont hold my breath! 
  • sue66sue66 Posts: 124Member Pioneering
    So how did it go? I know you cant really glean how the decision will go, but were you treated kindly?

    Should`ve had my home based f2f today, but they cancelled on Tuesday and changed it to 24th...3 more week to fret.

    Good luck. xxx

    Hi Pollyanna1052  oh what a nuisance to say the least, poor you having to wait for another 3 weeks more, as you say to fret. Hears hoping your accessor is as nice as mine was. I can honestly say it wasn't that bad at all. xxx

  • worried33worried33 Posts: 309Member Pioneering
    Glad you got through it, I hope the report is favourable.
  • Adrian_ScopeAdrian_Scope Posts: 5,283Administrator Scope community team
    Hi @sue66, I'm glad it went okay. If you leave it around a week, you can call them up and ask for a copy of the assessor's report which will give you some indication as to what has been recommended. Hope that helps. :)
    Senior Community Partner
  • TopkittenTopkitten Posts: 1,042Member Pioneering
    If the world was fair and people were always honest...........

    Always remember that assessors both for PIP and Social Care see lots of people and those they see who are not being honest will go to extreme lengths to prove they are really ill.

    It is also an assumption that if you can take care of yourself when you see them you must be able to do so all the time. Remember that almost every assessor will NOT have a great deal of experience with varying conditions.

    People judge others based on their own experiences and healthy people are usually the worst at understanding serious conditions because nothing they have seen or done prepares them to deal with such things. That's why so many people struggle to cope if they become disabled but didn't start out that way.

    I am officially classed as housebound even though if I absolutely have to I can leave the house. Anyone seeing me do so would assume I am lying but what they don't see is me taking a medication overdose to do so and suffering badly for 24-48 hours just to drive round the block let alone get out of the car anywhere but at home. I have little or no ESA benefit as I am above the savings limit but I am still officially on it so I get letters now and again regarding my spending and for assessments. About 6 months ago I was told to report for an assessment appointment. I refused. I got a sterner letter and refused again and finally a threatening one. All this took 3 or 4 months and finally another letter came stating the had contacted my GP and an assessment wasn't necessary as I am housebound. Bunch of idiots! I told them that each time, they just didn't want to believe me. As for my spending.... I would have to gather together all my bank statements an go through them. I spend 23 hours a day in a recliner chair every day. No way I even know where all the statements are, let alone being able to go through them. I rang and told them this and haven't heard anything since. Maybe they contacted my GP for that too?

    "I'm on the wrong side of heaven and the righteous side of hell" - from Wrong side of heaven by Five Finger Death Punch.
  • worried33worried33 Posts: 309Member Pioneering
    This is the problem, I believe in been honest, but I just cannot put myself to trust an assessor, you have to be on your toes as I feel they trying to trip you up in their anti fraud role, someone else on here mentioned they refused to ask questions in the same order as the form as an example and also agreed when I mentioned they dont like to ask direct questions but instead indirect.

    So its understandable why people are worried about their appearance.  
  • david235david235 Posts: 170Member Pioneering
    The key thing to my mind is consistency, @worried33 . If everything an assessor sees and reads is consistent, then there is little reason to suspect anything is amiss. However, there are those who do attempt to defraud the system, who only make it harder for the genuine claimants and for those who have to operate the system.

    In many PIP claims the same issues keep returning in multiple activities - my pain, fatigue, muscle and sensation issues appear in something like half of the Daily Living activities, as well as "moving around". If I made a submission in relation to one of these activities that was way out of line with the others, that would set alarm bells ringing - equally if I did not raise expected problems with an activity based on what I'd said in other activities then that is something that needs explanation.

    For example, if I'd consistently said that my arm muscles were so easily fatigued such that I struggled to pull clothes over my head or pull my trousers up after using the toilet, but I said I had no problems at all in the kitchen and enjoyed baking cakes then there seems to be an inconsistency. Further probing might reveal that someone helped me in the kitchen including with all the more physical aspects of baking cakes and I could only manage to bake cakes twice a month anyway.

    Similarly, there is a difference between a claimant who refers to their notes to make sure they haven't forgotten one or more aspects and a claimant who appears to be reading their notes and struggles to answer any supplementary questions in a way that is consistent with the claim form. Everyone forgets detail under pressure, especially if anxiety or other mental health issues have risen up - but it is suspicious if someone cannot give any sort of explanation consistent with their claim unless they are reading.

    Two further aspects of consistency are whether what is being claimed is consistent with the assessor's experience of people with similar conditions, also whether the claimant readily discloses activities and times where they are more capable. One of the cardinal aspects of my condition is chronic fatigue, which is variable. I freely acknowledge that there are days where I'm only really able to get out of bed to use the toilet, and there are rather fewer days when I can drive a hundred miles or more and be on the go for eight hours. I will mention the treasured hobbies and activities I have lost as well as the one or two days a month I can do something that is physically heroic for me (though probably rather straightforward for most people without chronic health problems).
  • sue66sue66 Posts: 124Member Pioneering
    Type your comment        I think  I messed up real bad yesterday at my f f assessment. Daughter  in-law told me afterwards I had a couple of senile moments where I answered questions completely  wrong, not intentionally but just mis understood the question, One minute was talking about needing help with carrying washing down to line, then he asked do I wash every day, presuming he meant clothes wash I said no, he then asked me how often do you leave it then, I said well a couple of days as there's only the two of us or more  but like if I spelt something or stained my clothes or was sweaty then of course id wash them then.  Daughter inlaw tells me afterwards no he was talking about me washing myself again? Thing is earlier I had said yes I shower twice a week and flannel wash the rest so made me look like I was altering my answer? I really don't know which it was now. She also said I had another senile moment but wont tell me what I said.:#  Oh dear!  Also he asked what do I suffer from most pain or fatigue, I said pain but I should have both, silly me.. Should have said there is no choice to that answer as I get both. Oh well to late now.  :o
  • worried33worried33 Posts: 309Member Pioneering
    Pretty much agree with everything you said david.  Of course just bearing in mind tho people can be inconsistent by mistake, assessments are stressful, and its a one off thing that is quite easy to make a mistake on the information been provided during the assessment.
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