The month of October represents two things Giuliana Rancic is passionate about—and they’re both events that Glam girls near and far should be actively thinking about.
First, there’s Halloween. With plump pumpkins decorating neighborhoods and candy corn lining the aisles of your local market, we’re sure you’ve already spent time pondering potential characters to dress as for the upcoming holiday.
“We’re trying to figure out what we’re going to be,” says Rancic, who tackles her yearly costumes with full commitment, having been a spot-on Rachel Zoe and Victoria Beckham in the past. “I never do a sexy costume. I always do pop-culture-type costumes. I’m trying to figure out a good one for the family. I have to think of someone very ‘right now,’ but honestly my brain hasn’t even gone there yet.”
We’ll be brainstorming costumes for the very busy E! News host here at Glam (how about Kate Middleton in that polka dot dress?) as October also marks her other monthly focus—breast cancer awareness. Rancic was diagnosed with the disease two years ago. She was 36 years old, healthy, and had no family history. Her world came to screeching halt.
And yet something beautiful came from the diagnosis. Through sharing the story of her breast cancer on the E! reality show she and her husband star in, Giuliana and Bill, Rancic was able to draw attention to the illness. “It’s so difficult to go public with something so private,” she admits to Glam at Westfield San Francisco Centre’s Pink Tea Under the Dome party, “but it’s the best decision I made.”
She’s nearly two years into her remission, with a new baby boy in her life, and Rancic’s passion for the cause has yet to waver. Hooking up with Bright Pink, the only national nonprofit focusing on the prevention and early detection of breast and ovarian cancer in women, Rancic continues to speak publicly and openly about the importance of being proactive about the disease.
Her takeaways? Knowing how to do a personal breast exam—if breast cancer is caught early, the five-year survival rate is 98 percent, and 80 percent of women diagnosed with breast cancer find their own lump. Also on her agenda is building a cancer support system among women so they can share personal experiences. “I think the most important thing is that you don’t need a microphone or a stage or a TV show to make a difference in someone’s life,” she says. “You just need to have the courage to share your story. Anyone can make a difference in her community. Anyone can reach people.”
Rancic also works with Bright Pink to make women’s most glamorous dreams come to life. Called Fab-U-Wish, the foundation grants women fighting breast and ovarian cancer an incredible, high-class experience—from a makeover and shopping spree to a trip down the red carpet—to provide distraction from their illness and focus on something fun.
The idea came from her own experiences, of moments that made the road toward recovery a little less difficult—moments where she felt good about herself, or where she felt like the old Giuliana. “I remember before I went back to work I was feeling good one day. I had some energy,” she shares. “So one of the things I did that day was get dressed … I started to see the old me again, and that was important. It isn’t so much that you want to look pretty for other people—you just want to look like you did before. I called it fab therapy.”
So can we make it official now—October is Giuliana Rancic’s starring season? With breast cancer awareness advocacy at the forefront, and Halloween festivities trailing behind, she’s taken October on full throttle and is shining brightly along the way. So get it, girl—this is your month.