New-York based Keith Parris is the Icy Amputee Warrior who raises visibility and LGBTQ+ awareness towards people living with limb amputation. At the same time he is one of the most famous make-up artists who conquer YouTube, revealing their beauty secrets just to make us look and feel better. YASS Magazine met Keith and we learned how important it is to let your heart, your voice and your work speak for themselves.
Who is Keith Parris and how do you identify?
Keith Parris Identify himself as a Black Gay Male.
You call yourself the Icy Amputee Warrior and you are raising visibility and awareness towards people living with limb amputation. How important is awareness?
That is super important to be because there was always a stigma towards people who are amputated that “we can’t do everything”, “they’ re dead weight”, but people who are amputee or just have a disability are so much stronger than anybody else. People with disabilities go ten times harder than anybody else and we don’t take no for an answer!
Do you think there is still stigma or taboo in our societies against people with any kind of disability?
I don’t think it’s taboo anymore but I would love to see more amputee people in more campaigns, Tv shows , models in the media!
Where do you find the courage to stand out and support your fellow amputee brothers and sisters? Is It easy to be in the forefront?
I found my confidence by taken each day by day it wasn’t easy being open online at first because of all the random judgement but now I see more positivity than hate!
How has being publicly open helped you shape, accept and feel proud of the person you are today?
Being publicly open help me just find confidence and love for myself. When I started to be open online and in real life I felt like finally everyone could just see my true self glowing .
What made you decide to become a YouTuber and talk about your personal story?
I always wanted to do YouTube! I have been actually doing YouTube for a very long time around 2010. I had my first YouTube account I use to do jailbreak iPhone hacks and little DIYS and even show my “Hunger Games” book collections and merchandise collections. Then moving forward I had a whole new YouTube account and I just wanted to do makeup tutorials and fashion and also talk about what I go through as a amputee so if any of my amputee brothers and sisters see my video, they can feel like “okay I’m not the only one feeling / going through this same situation”.
Have you received any comments from people who have been inspired by you and see you as a role model?
Oh all the time! I love answering my DMs! I get so many comments and DMs from queer boys , people in my queer community! And even females telling me “thank you for your body positivity post and just making me feel confident in myself and body”!
Do you also have haters online?
Yep, sadly. But not everyone in life is perfect, of course. There are a lot of people that don’t like me , they don’t get who I am or my whole aesthetics . But, hey you can’t please everyone, you just have to make your work speak for itself.
How were your childhood years and how did your career start?
My childhood was good & tricky. I had a lot of good times and I had a lot of hard times too, but I wouldn’t change anything in my childhood, because it made me the strong black, gay, amputee man that I am today! And I started my career technically around 2015 when I posted my Wattpad Book “Amputee Story” and that is how everyone got to know me online. Also, the book went viral and jumped to number 1 on Wattpad website.
When did you first discover make-up and what role does it play in your life?
I discovered makeup around 2016, during my freshman year in high school. I was watching Nikita Dragun’s makeup tutorials and she really inspired my makeup journey. This plays a huge part in my life because people in the beauty world started learning me through my tutorials. I love doing my makeup, so i can look like a plastic Egyptian Kendoll! .
When did you come out? How was the reaction of your parents and what is your relationship with them and your family now?
I was actually forced to come out around my sophomore year in high school and my parents didn’t take it well at all. My family is from the West Indians; my mother from Trinidad and Tobago & my father is from Grenada, and in the West Indian culture it’s super hard to be yourself and live your truth back home. But, my dad actually supports me now! Additionally, I have come out to some of my cousins too that I trust and support and they support and love me!
What advice would you give to people who are facing struggles in their life and to people who try to love their body?
The advice I would give them is to really get the help they deserve to be happy and healthy. I would tell them to be careful of who they include in their circle because there are a lot of evil people in the world that just love to see you when you’re down. The bottom line message is that everyone deserves nothing but positivity and love!
How important is self-love?
Self love is super important to me because when you take care of yourself you’ re at your best! You can feel great and sexy and confident!
What are your dreams and plans for the future?
I actually love acting. Acting was always my first love. That’s actually how I wanted the world to know me, as an actor. I would love to see myself act super soon and I would love to do sitcom. I love making people laugh and it would be my dream to do teen drama too! Of course I will continue being a model, a beauty influencer and a successful YouTuber .
What is the message you would like to spread?
You can do anything if you set your mind and don’t listen to what people say negatively about you. Make your voice, your heart and your work speak for themselves!
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