One of the best things about Instagram is how you get a peek into people’s so called “real” lives. From celebrities and busy mothers to college girls looking to show off their adorable dorm room, it’s a sea of people from all walks of life. But what We really love about Instagram are all of the fabulous women on there living with spinal cord injuries.From sharing cool photos of their domestic lives to their “Wheelchair OOTD (Outfit of the Day),” the photos some of these ladies are sharing are changing people’s minds of what is possible when living with a SCI. They are beautiful, strong and inspiring women. Here are some of our favorites!
Tamara Mena, J bone 89, Tiphany Adams, uwalk I Glide, Ksenia Bezuglova
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These fierce ladies have shown what is possible when you don’t let conditions determine your destiny.

One of these women stand out because her story is incredibly surreal.

Steph Aiello is became a quadriplegic after a violent car crash when she was just 20. She says her passion for make-up helped her reclaim her identity as she adjusted to life with limited hand and wrist function.
San Bernardino native Steph Aiello, 26, was driving back from Las Vegas to California with friends in 2010 when she dozed off at the wheel, after which the vehicle crashed into the desert near Barstow.

The would-be cosmetologist was supposed to start beauty school the next day, but she emerged paralyzed from the waist down, with limited hand movements. And while her immediate plans were compromised, her passion for make-up remained – and she told Daily Mail Online it eventually became a key factor in her recovery.

After the 2010 car crash, Aiello spent months recovering at a hospital in Pomona. She initially lost feelings from her chest down and later recovered sensation in half of her back.

Two of Aiello’s friends were in the car with her during the tragic crash. One of them, whom the 26-year-old called her ‘guardian angel’ in one of her vlogs, did not survive.

Aiello, who said in a video she remembered most of the accident, was left with night terrors and anxiety when she found herself in a car again.

Tragedy struck again on Christmas Day, when Aiello was granted a six-hour permission to spend the holidays at her grandmother’s house in Upland, where 40 loved ones were waiting to see her.

The family got into another road crash just a block from the hospital, when a drunk driver ran a red light and rammed into their car, the Daily Bulletin reported at the time.

We didn’t even make it past the first light,’ Aiello told the Daily Mail Online.

Her mother Sandra suffered broken ribs, a punctured spleen and other injuries that required surgeries and several days in the hospital. Her father Marco had a concussion.

Aiello’s aunt Angie Atkins expressed concern at the time, after the second crash. ‘I’m worried about her,’ she told the Daily Bulletin.

‘I think physically, she’s doing OK. Psychologically … her beautiful smile is diminishing.’

The 26-year-old described her anguish in one of her videos

I remember sitting there thinking, “This just can’t be real,”‘ she said. ‘Like, “Why am I here?”‘
‘Sitting there in the car and your dad’s not speaking to you because he’s been knocked out and your mom’s not breathing in the back seat – you’re just thinking, “Why? Why does this have to happen?” You sit there and think you’ve been through enough.’

Aiello went to the hospital after the second car crash, then back to rehab, where she tried to adjust to life as a quadriplegic. She remained depressed for about a year – until make-up started playing a part in her life again.

‘My occupational therapist knew that I was struggling mentally and she came in one day and said, “We’re doing this. We’re going to figure this out,” ‘ Aiello said.

The two sat during the therapy session with her make-up and brushes, trying to figure out how she could continue to handle products with limited movements in her hands and fingers.

Aiello learned how to open containers using her mouth as well as her hands, and to flick brushes across her face while holding them between both of her palms. The benefits were both mental and physical.

‘I feel like emotionally, it made me revisit the person I was before my accident, with a passion of trying to beautify things,’ she said

‘It was therapeutic for me because I didn’t have much wrist function and finger function, so I had to use the muscles that I did have after my injuries. I had to compensate.

As the sessions progressed, she said her mental state started improving as she reclaimed part of her personality prior to the car crashes.

‘I think it also mentally helped me because it was a challenge for me and I became stronger from it,’ she said. ‘I became who I was again.’ 

A typical makeup routine for Aiello involves holding brushes between both of her hands to apply powder, and placing smaller brushes horizontally between three of her fingers to do her eyes.

Her technique is so precise she can even complete a flawless winged eye-liner in just a few strokes, as shown in one of her tutorials – something she knows takes a lot of patience, ‘even as an able-bodied person.

She also uses her mouth to remove a lipstick cap, and her mouth to twist out the baton. 

After Aiello got out of the hospital, her aunt, who is also an occupational therapist, helped her get brush holders that wrap around her fingers, which enables her to do other people’s make-up.

Her lifelong ambition to become a cosmetologist is materializing, as she is now a licensed make-up artist. She wants to explore special effects makeup in the future, while continuing to share snapshots of her life as a quadriplegic online.

Her makeup videos have been viewed about 9,000 times each, and Aiello has also posted vlogs in which she answers questions about her life as a quadriplegic. She hopes sharing insight about her lifestyle on social media can empower others. 

‘I do it because I didn’t have anyone to do it for me,’ she said. ‘That was one of the biggest struggles – I didn’t have anyone to motivate me and make me think I could actually live my life how I wanted. After I figured things out on my own, I thought, “I don’t want anyone else to go through it alone.” So I decided to put myself out there and make myself vulnerable for other people.’

Six years after she became a quadriplegic, Aiello, who has now joined a wheelchair dance team, said she has learned how to strengthen her own confidence.

I have learned that you have to fake it to make it, that it’s so important to fake your confidence until you feel comfortable enough to say, “I do love who I am,” ‘ she said.

That was my biggest struggle – I didn’t have any confidence. But when I got confidence I thought, “OK, I can do this.” Just because you see yourself one way in the mirror doesn’t mean others see you the same way.’

By Daily Mail, blog easy stand

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You have to fake it to make it!

Aiello became quadriplegic after she dozed off in a car

A makeup vlogger with a spinal cord injury, Steph Aiello from California was injured in a car accident not too long ago. She is active in both the beauty side of life as well as focusing on intense rehab. Her life is exciting to watch. Within the last few months she was invited to a beauty blogger conference and was able to meet Tyra Banks, and she’s now in Germany undergoing stem cell injections (which she is sharing with her followers). A stunning beauty with great hair, she’s definitely one to follow.

Source: @uwalk_iglide

So Adorable

Never forget where you came from

Absolutely stunning

Aiello makeup session

Jbone89

A makeup expert and motivational vlogger with a spinal cord injury, Jordan Bone from the UK has over 117k followers. Her makeup skills are insanely impressive, especially considering she can’t move her fingers. Every day she posts a new photo sharing snips of her gorgeous home, her makeup, or even her travel adventures with her hunky fiancé Mike.

Tiphany Adams

Star of the Sundance channel’s reality show Push Girls that followed the lives of four woman living with spinal cord injuries, she has since become a weightlifter. A paraplegic, she is a regular at the world famous Gold’s Gym in L.A., outlifting people on a daily basis. Even though she was injured in a car accident as a teen, she’s a fighter (and she’s not afraid to show a little skin). Tiph, as she calls herself, shows the world that you can be both strong and beautiful.

Uwalk I Glide

"This has been my life for nearly six years....I get so close but not close enough. I miss my happy place. No I don't want sympathy from this post.....I am posting this in hopes that the next time I come here I can get a little bit closer on my own....with hopes that I can feel the sand between my toes just One more time. There's no place i'd rather end this day than here. Tomorrow starts a new journey. Tomorrow at this time, I'll be on a plane to Germany ad waiting to receive a treatment I've dreamt of since I woke up in ICU realizing that my life had changed. I pray to God that my brother and Cat are with me. I want to say thank you to everyone who who called me/ commented/messaged me wishing me luck and wishing me a safe trip. The support I have is unreal and I'll never be able to repay you guys for helping me remain strong and become who I'm meant to be. You guys are my fight. My community is my fight. The SCI world WILl have a cure....and when that cure is known, we will all dance together knowing we beat our own bodies. Knowing we did the impossible because WE are possible"

Source: By@uwalk_iglide

Ksenia Bezuglova

A popular model with a disability from Moscow, Russia, Ksenia, also a mom and wife, was paralyzed in a car accident 2008. She however hasn’t let that derail her modeling career. She is a very busy model, and posts inspiring photos of her photo shoots constantly. Her recent snaps from rolling in Milan Fashion Week are especially great. While none of her descriptions are in English, her photos speak louder than any English word could.

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