Health knowledge made personal
I am president of 4women.com, a company that provides fashionable head wear for women and girls with medical hair loss. Our company also fosters for a better understanding of the emotional side of medical hair loss.
I come from a family with three generations of breast cancer survivors. I also suffer from Alopecia Areata. My disease came on suddenly and unexpectedly. Literally, one day, my hair began to fall out in large clumps. In just three months I was completely bald. I was diagnosed with Alopecia Universalis, the most extreme case of Alopecia. Being faced with this sudden and unexpected appearance change was a difficult emotional adjustment. We live in an appearance driven culture where baldness produces stares and hurtful comments. Baldness is a physical mark of illness. People react differently to you. After my initial period of adjustment, I began to explore the options for women who experience medical hair loss.
My first reaction was to try and duplicate my hair by wearing a wig. While wigs may be a suitable solution for some women, I found them to be uncomfortable and hot. I wanted to wear something that was fashionable and comfortable. I was disappointed by the selection of scarves available for women with medical hair loss. So I designed the BeauBeau as a fashionable and comfortable alternative to wearing a wig.
For a woman, a bald head is an announcement to the world - "I'm different" or "I'm sick". When women are faced with hair-loss due to chemotherapy, alopecia or any medical hair loss, they cover their heads with cancer turbans, chemo hats, bandanas, scarves or wigs. Women want to feel as beautiful as they did when they had hair. This is why I designed the BeauBeau. I have lost my hair but not my sense of style. Alopecia handed me an opportunity to help other women cope with their loss of hair in a dignified and stylish manner.