Document Type

Grant Application

Project/Presentation Title

The Lipstick Project


Leigh Boyle


Spring 2017

Project Period

FY 2016-2017

Event Sponsor

The University of Maine Honors College

Project Abstract/ Summary

Leigh Boyle will share her story of The Lipstick Project, which grew out of her 2010 volunteer work in a women's hospital in Northern Ethiopia. The hospital cares for women with obstetric fistula, a condition resulting from prolonged, obstructed labor that leaves women chronically incontinent and ostracized. Leigh began giving weekly manicures to the isolated women, an act that proved life-giving for all. Upon returning home to Vancouver, Leigh saw similar need for restorative work in modern healthcare and established The Lipstick Project, a woman run volunteer organization that provides free, professional spa treatments to people in hospice and hospitals during the last days of their lives. The name "Lipstick Project" was derived from a mysterious crate of lipstick that appeared during the liberation of the Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp in 1945. A British officer at the liberation described the lipstick as an act of "unadulterated brilliance." Leigh's work is likewise brilliant.

Approval Status