An Okehampton bodypainter showcased her talents last month at her annual fundraiser for Endometriosis UK, where she attempted to paint a model in just three hours.

Niki Etheridge, who has endometriosis herself—a condition in which tissue similar to the lining of the womb grows outside the uterus—has held fundraisers for Endometriosis UK since 2017. Usually held during March to coincide with Endometriosis Awareness Month, Niki had to postpone this year's as she was recovering from surgery.

She said: "After I was diagnosed about 12 years ago, I was directed to their charity for more support and information. They help with mental health support and awareness, especially for women who can't have children with this condition. I've made a campaign every March since 2017. This year, I had to postpone the campaign to June as I was still recovering from my last surgery in March.”

During lockdown, Niki got creative, raising funds by painting her face and sharing her designs on social media. Last year, she even did a lip art challenge, posting a new design daily throughout March.

This year's event, held in South Petherwin, was a hit, raising £230 in raffle money alone for the charity. The event was lively, with a band, photographer, and raffle. Niki took on the challenge of painting a live model's entire body in just three hours.

“I only got as far as painting her upper body, front and back. The challenge...involves only using brushes and a sponge. But it can take up to seven hours to paint a full body, so I think I did pretty well,” she added.

Niki's completed bodypainting (Submitted)

Living with endometriosis has been challenging for Niki. Her condition was misdiagnosed numerous times, and she has suffered many symptoms leading to frequent hospital visits and lifestyle changes. She was recently diagnosed with adenomyosis, where endometriosis grows into the muscle of the womb, and is now waiting for a hysterectomy.

Niki is passionate about endometriosis awareness, urging doctors to listen more carefully to their patients and supporting endometriosis education in schools to help young girls better understand their bodies.