The Bald Truth
We’ve all heard the expression “crowning glory” in reference to hair. From fairy tales like Rapunzel to Victoria ’s Secret billboard ads, society ingrains in women the idea that long hair symbolizes beauty.
History lessons taught us that long locks were also strong indicators of a woman’s wealth and social status. 18th century queen and style icon Marie Antoinette popularized the “pouf,” an aristocratic hair style that teased the hair as high as possible (up to three feet!), before coating it with powder and embellishing it with fancy ornaments.
Three centuries later, we continue live in an increasingly image-obsessed society, where big hair is always in and women who defy that standard are considered “crazy” (Britney, anyone?). While we are quick to reject a woman with bodily fuzz, we lust after the Beyoncés of the world with their long, luscious locks.
But what about the 30 million American women who are follicly challenged? Many suffer from depression and tend to self-ostracize, hiding their imperfection from society’s critical eyes.
The stigma that surrounds baldness is all too familiar to Elline Surianello, a 52 year-old New Yorker who started experiencing hair loss at the tender age of 9. She was officially diagnosed with androgenetic alopecia at 14. A disorder affecting both men and women, androgenetic alopecia is characterized by hair thinning and, ultimately, partial hair loss.
According to eMedecine, androgenetic alopecia affects as many as 13% of pre-menopausal women, with that figure increasing to 75% in women over 65.
Not one to hide behind her disorder, Elline quickly realized that her hair wasn’t going to magically grow back. She took matters into her own hands and researched all the different solutions available to her at the time. After experimenting with just about everything from wigs to extensions to creams, she remained unsatisfied. The alternatives either looked fake, didn’t suit her, or contained potentially harmful chemicals.
In 1989, Elline founded the LeMetric Hair Center , where fully customized, unique hair pieces are manufactured in-house and with real human hair. Her hair pieces are safe, all-natural and non-invasive. Individual strands of real hair are hand-tied into a client’s existing hair. When there isn’t enough hair, she uses water-soluble attachments as opposed to the toxic and potentially carcinogenic glues and bonds used in traditional wig adhesives.
Today, LeMetric has satellite branches in Philadelphia , Chicago , Phoenix, and Toronto. A Calgary location is poised to be next.
With her blog and YouTube channel as discussion platforms, Elline urges women across the globe to become more pro-active and to find their personal journey to self esteem and self acceptance. She found hers through the custom-created hair piece she wears every day, but also through the bravery of the countless other women with alopecia she has met along the way.
How will you find yours?
This entry was posted on Monday, April 28th, 2008 at 4:11 am and is filed under LeMetric Hair Center for Women with Hair Loss. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.