Viola Davis Suffers from Alopecia

Viola Davis

 

The ‘How to get away with murder’ star is a natural beauty, however it has only be recently that the actress has been able to talk about what was really going on under her wig. Viola Davis has now confessed that she was battling with a hair loss condition known as alopecia areata which caused the actress to lose most of her hair at the age of 28.


"I wore a wig in the Jacuzzi. I had a wig I wore around the house. I had a wig that I wore to events. I had a wig that I wore when I worked out. I never showed my natural hair. It was a crutch, not an enhancement … I was so desperate for people to think that I was beautiful.”

Davis discusses how her alopecia areata made her cling to human hair wigs and hide underneath them because she didn't feel beautiful in her natural state. Despite losing her hair and her confidence, Viola is now back on top and better than ever with a whole new outlook on life. 'The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.' I am telling you, I have spent so much of my life not feeling comfortable in my skin. I am just so not there anymore."

When Davis attended the 2012 Oscars she bravely exposed her natural short 'fro. We have to applaud her decision to show off her natural hair at a time when the whole world would be watching. We can only imagine how big a step that was for her. While Davis still wears her human hair wigs to work and media events, she no longer feels like she has to hide under her wigs and sees them as an option rather than a necessity in her life.

What Causes Alopecia Areata

Like Viola discovered, alopecia areata and the hair loss associated with it can be triggered by stress. She then began to internalize it which can often make the situation worse. Existing evidence indicates that alopecia areata is the result of an irregularity in the immune system. This particular irregularity leads to a misguided immune system that ends up attacking its own body. For unknown reasons, alopecia areata causes the body's own immune system attacks the hair follicles and disrupts normal hair growth, leading to often quite extensive hair loss.

Real Human Hair Wigs

Viola hid underneath her wigs and let hair loss and alopecia areata control her life. However using a real human hair wig isn’t a bad thing, in fact it’s a great way to get your confidence back and get you feeling like yourself again. Human hair wigs look natural, beautiful, are breathable and comfortable. Instead of letting alopecia areata control your life, take back your life and feel confident in your own skin – and your new hair! It can be easy to shy away and hide when battling alopecia areata but here at Transitions we’ve helped so many women find a human hair wig that makes them feel like themselves again!

For a free consultation (valued at $250.00) with one of our hair loss and human hair wig specialists, click here or call 1300 427 778. Start your journey back to great looking hair today!

Donation Received - Thank you Kate!

Kate donating hair

We would like to say a big thank you to Kate for donating her beautiful hair! 

‘Wigs for Kids’ is a not-for-profit organisation founded in 1981 which, as the name would imply, aims to help children who are suffering from hair loss by hooking them up with beautiful wigs. One of the reasons that hairdresser and founder of Wigs for Kids Jeffrey Paul started up the organisation was his 15-year-old niece who developed leukaemia and was devastated to lose her hair to due to the chemotherapy treatments. Since its inception, Wigs for Kids has helps more than 100 children every year who have lost their hair due to alopecia or other medical related hair loss.

For more information about donating your hair, or if you are looking for a human hair wig for yourself or your child you can come in for a free consultation with one of our hair loss specialists. Call 1300 427 778.

Looking for a Better Hair System?

Hair with sunglasses

Many people that come in to our studio have tried other hair loss solutions and are looking for a better hair system. Each person that comes in is looking ideally for the best hair system available. However, because each person and hair loss issue is different, each solution needs to be tailored to the individual.

What they are really asking is... ‘What is the best hair system for me?’

And the answer to that question is... ‘What do you want from your hair system?’

Everyone has different expectations and concerns, some of these include:


- Having the most natural looking front hair line
- Durability and Longevity
- How ‘thin’ the base is. Creating an invisible transition from grown hair and reconstructed hair
- Weight of the hair system
- How cool the hair system will be
- Density or thickness of the hair
- Natural scalp appearance
- Type of hair
- Grade of hair
As you can see, this list contains a variety of different expectations and concerns, some of these being mutually exclusive. It is very important to work through what you mean by ‘the best hair system available’ with your hair loss consultant.

Experience whilst in the studio is an important part of the restoration process for many of our clients. If you have had a bad experience somewhere else due to whatever reason, that may be a main concern in the search for a ‘better hair system’.

Not all hair studios are created equal.

Here at Transitions it is our pleasure to be able to sit down with our clients and gain an understanding of their expectations, dreams and concerns. We always seek to give the right advice, and to find a balance between budget and expectation. Hair restoration is not a once off purchase, but a continuous journey. Hopefully we will be able to make this journey a little more comfortable.

Next step

If you have any questions about hair systems, non-surgical hair restoration or hair replacement call one of our certified consultants at our Sydney office 1300 427 778. Alternatively, you can book a free, no obligation consultation with one of our hair loss specialists.

The Alopecia Project Photography Series by David Regan

A personal and intimate portrait series by London-based photographer Daniel Regan, ‘The Alopecia Project’ is a powerful and moving look at people who live with alopecia every day.

(View Daniel's photo series  here).

Regan says his photographs capture the resilience of his subjects "against a condition that is incredibly chaotic in its nature."

The true message of the project and one that we firmly agree with here at Transitions Hair is that it is okay being you, but most importantly being the you that you choose.

The project resulted in the release of a book - Alopecia Uncovered which features 39 beautifully printed black and white photographs, as well as essays and journeys of those affected by the condition. 

This book investigates issues of self-esteem, fractured identities and perceptions of illness, illustrated through the use of empowering yet vulnerable photography that challenges the social constructs of beauty.

7 Ways to Make Your Hair Appear Thicker

Thick hair

Although the issue for some can be more than just styling, it is always nice to have a few tricks up your sleeve. We have pulled together a few tips to help give you the illusion of thicker, fuller hair. 

1. Curl Your Ends Inwards – If you do this while straightening your hair, it will give the illusion of more volume, making the hair appear thicker and fuller. Ironing your hair straight already gives the appearance of thin hair, and ironing ends dead straight (especially damaged ends) will increase this effect.   

2. Get a Multi-Dimensional Colour – one wash of colour is not your friend! One single all over colour can make hair look a little flat. Natural hair has multiple colours through it, and these colours catch and throw light in different ways making the hair appear to be fuller. So next time you are in the salon, steer clear of the one wash of colour and get some highlights (or low lights for that matter).

3. Use Volumising Powder – It sounds pretty basic but most of us aren’t using volumising powder, and if we are, we aren’t using it correctly. Use these products at the root to keep hair look full and voluminous. If you don’t have any powder on hand, dry shampoo creates the same effect!

4. Rinse Out ALL That Conditioner - One common mistake that people make when washing hair is not rinsing all of the product out after conditioning. The left over product will weigh your hair down, which could make it look flat and even feel a little greasy. A good rule of thumb is that if your hair still feels slippery, you have to keep going!

5. Get a Layered Haircut – This is the easiest way to give the illusion of thicker hair. Layered hair will bounce up, framing your face. You’ll still be able to maintain your length without the long hair pulling the volume out.

6. Blow-dry Upside Down – By flipping your head and blow drying from the roots, you will be able to give your hair a lot more volume, and an overall thicker look.

7. Use a Mousse – If you hate looking like you have product in your hair, mousse is the way to go. A lightweight mousse, to the roots of your hair and whether you are blow-drying, curling or straightening you are guaranteed an increase in volume. 

Solutions for Hair Loss in Women

Here at Transitions Hair for Women we are committed to providing you with quality solutions for female hair loss. We have a variety of options to suit every need, lifestyle and the level at which you are experiencing female hair loss. For more information about these solutions call 1300 427 778 or click here to schedule a free, confidential consultation (valued at $250.00) with one of our consultants who specialise in hair loss in women.

Four Common Causes of Female Hair Loss

Chemotherapy

‘Long, beautiful, gleaming, steaming, flaxen, waxen...’

The hair symbolises beauty and femininity. It’s associated with personal style and physical attractiveness. This is why having luscious locks is the goal of every woman and the reason most women panic at the thought of experiencing thinning hair problems.

But what exactly causes women to lose their crowning glory? Read on and discover the four common causes of hair loss in women.

1. Medications

Medications used to treat health conditions may trigger hair thinning problems. These include: chemotherapy drugs for the treatment of cancer; nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) for fever, pain and inflammation; blood thinners; oral contraceptives; diet pills and medications for the treatment of acne, attention deficit and hyperactivity disorders.

2. Ailments

Hair thinning may be a symptom of underlying medical conditions, such as hyper and hypothyroidism, syphilis, hypotrichosis and lupus, or a result of disorders like trichotillomania. It may also be due to scalp infections, such as demodex parasiti, tinea capitis, piedra, folliculitis and kerion, which are due to infectious agents like fungi, bacteria and viruses.

3. Hormones

Androgenic alopecia or female pattern baldness is caused by the production of the male hormone, dihydrotestosterone (DHT). The accumulation of DHT in the scalp may disrupt the flow of blood and nutrients from reaching the follicles, causing them to shrink and produce smaller and finer hair strands. The decrease in oestrogen production or the change in hormonal levels during pregnancy or menopause may also trigger hair loss. Typically, pregnancy-induced hair loss is characterised rapid and general hair thinning all over. Usually it will recover afterwards, but this is not always the case.

4. Lifestyle

Dieting, smoking, drinking and stress may affect the quality of your hair, causing the onset of hair loss or thinning hair problem. Nutrition deficiency may weaken the follicles, resulting to the growth of smaller, finer and thinner hair strands. Physical stress due to constant exposure to heated styling tools like curling irons and straighteners as well as tight braids (e.g. dreadlocks and cornrows) may also trigger the onset of hair loss in women.

Unhealthy lifestyle, hormonal changes, diseases, infections and medications are some of the common causes of hair loss and hair thinning problems in women. Once you understand each of them, you will have the opportunity to stop the onset of hair loss, reduce its severity or treat the problem once and for all.

At Transitions Hair, we specialise in hair loss in women. No matter what the state or the cause of your hair loss, we can help you find the most suitable solution for your condition. We offer a wide range of clinically proven hair lost treatment and hair restoration solutions, from hair extensions and wigs for women, to hair transplantation, hair integration system and laser therapy.

Traditional Hair Extensions Leading to Balding in Young Women

Users of traditional hair extensions are literally pulling their hair out with despair, unaware that tailored, gentler and more realistic hair loss solutions are available.

Sufferers of female hair loss will know the paranoia that comes with trying to convince the world that they have a healthy head of hair. Prompted by months of worry, many women are tragically driven to attempt to hide their hair loss problem by attaching weighty false tresses to their already weak hair.

Hair Extensions Causing Traction Alopecia

In a heartbreaking and ironic twist, it appears that the use of poor quality hair extensions, many women’s bids to maintain hair, is actually exacerbating hair loss. Confirming this vicious cycle, hair surgeon Mabroor Bhatty of Transform Cosmetic Surgery, revealed that traditional hair extensions drastically aggravate hair loss and spot balding. Warning against using such extensions, Bhatty explains how the pull from the weight of the extensions themselves create tension in the hair follicle, resulting in patchy and severe hair loss as the natural hair is simply unable to bear the strain. Known as ‘traction alopecia’, this dermatological disorder is both painful for the scalp, and distressing to the woman.

An Alternative to Traditional Hair Extensions

However, there is hope for women living with hair loss and interested in hair extensions, especially for increasing hair density and length along the crown and part. Made specifically for women experiencing hair loss, Topette Crown Extensions successfully avoid excess pulling on delicate hair follicles, whilst still adding length and thickness to hair. Unlike traditional hair extensions, these topettes look seamlessly natural. Many women express their concerns that their traditional hair extensions are not wholly convincing, as thinning along the crown and part still give away their hair loss problem. Addressing this issue, crown extensions create the natural appearance of hair growing from the scalp whilst also adding a seamless natural density along the crown and part.  This undetectable look is achieved through the use of a transparent lace matrix contoured to the shape and size of the scalp where said thinning is occurring. Individual hairs are implanted one strand at a time into the lace matrix to avoid the awkward lumps and bumps that come with inferior hair extensions.

Topette Crown Extensions offer a far superior alternative to traditional hair extensions, giving the wearer confidence, comfort and a more convincing natural look. To read more about the securing system and tailored design of topettes, as well as hear testimonials from Transitions clients with topettes click here. You can also call us on 1300 427 778 to book a free consultation with one of our hair loss specialists.

Are You a Qualified Hair Transplant Candidate? Find Out Here:

When losing hair

Problem: I’m a 35-year old woman who started experiencing hair loss at the early age of 17. Now, I have thin and fine hair strands, and my hairline is receding. I am thinking of considering hair transplant, but is it the best option for my condition? Most importantly, am I qualified for this type of surgery?

Surgical hair transplant is a viable option for female hair loss problems. This is why many women ask whether or not they qualify for this type of procedure.

Though only a hair loss consultant or hair transplant doctor can determine who qualifies for transplantation, there are factors and general rules to help them consider the best candidates for this surgical hair restoration option. Below are some of them.

Age

What is the best age for hair transplant? Young people (those under the age of 27) are usually not good candidates for transplant surgery since the hair loss may not be mature enough, or the pattern of baldness may not be established completely. Early transplant may cause the incorrect distribution of a finite amount of donor hair, resulting in operations throughout the person’s life if baldness progresses. Also, the doctor may have no way of knowing exactly how severe the future hair loss will be, resulting in unrealistic expectations and making the patient dissatisfied with the outcome of the hair transplant.

Gender

Hair loss in women is usually different in appearance compared with hair loss in men. Women have a diffuse thinning throughout the entire head while men typically have localised areas of thinning. Women who are experiencing diffuse hair thinning are not good candidates of transplant surgery, but those who have a distinct pattern of baldness, including vertex thinning, hairline recession and a donor area that is not affected by androgenetic alopecia, are good candidates for this type of hair regrowth procedure. Patients with alopecia areata are not good candidates for hair transplant due to the erratic nature of the condition, one never knows the full extent of the hair loss or future hair regrowth

Hair Density

Exhibiting the right hair and scalp condition has a great impact on the outcome of the transplantation. Good candidates of hair transplant are patients with higher hair density (the number of hair strands per unit of surface area). Why? This is because the number of follicular units you can transfer is limited to the amount of hair available at the donor area (the back of the scalp). Hence, if the hair is denser in this region, the doctor will have more hair grafts available for transplant and achieve better hair coverage.

Ethnicity

Ethnicity has a significant role in the success or failure of a hair restoration procedure. Since this restoration technique depends on the hair density, the outcome of the procedure may differ among various groups. Asians have very straight hair and have less follicular density compared with Caucasians. Africans have coarser and curlier strands which are advantageous for hair transplant. But no matter what the ethnicity, the best way to learn if you are a good candidate of hair transplant is to consult an expert in this field.

Scalp Laxity

Scalp laxity refers to how loose or flexible the scalp is. The looser the scalp, the more donor hair can be removed and transferred, and the lesser the chance of scarring. A patient with a tight scalp may not be a good candidate for transplantation since it may result to painful scarring.

Bottom Line

Although doctors have their own set of factors and rules used to determine whether the patient is a good candidate of hair transplant or not, these are some of the most common factors that can establish which patients best qualify for this hair restoration option.

If a hair transplant is something you would like to consider, you can contact our experts to explore the possibilities of undergoing this type of hair restoration. Our hair consultants are trained to determine whether hair regrowth can be achieved through a transplant surgery.

Apart from hair transplant, we also have many hair loss treatment options that can be tailored to your specific needs, from laser hair therapy and SensiGraft, to hair extensions and wigs for women.

Alopecia Areata: Hair Loss and the Grieving Process

Grieving over hair loss

A diagnosis of Alopecia Areata or any similar condition that results in hair loss is devastating news for anyone. Regardless of age or gender, these unpredictable (and often extreme) changes to a person’s appearance often results in a negative psychological impact.

The Australian Alopecia Areata Foundation (AAAF) in conjunction with Associate Professor Gerard Kennedy and Ryan Veal of Victoria University, have created an informative brochure on the grieving process that can accompany hair loss.

Funding for the creation and production of this document was provided by Nicholas Assef, an investment banker, father and husband who developed Alopecia Universalis suddenly as an adult. He now spends time motivating those that have developed the condition on all the positives in life.

The brochure outlines the seven stages of grief that may be associated with Alopecia Areata as well as coping mechanisms for this from of hair loss. If you know somebody close to you with Alopecia Areata, you may feel helpless at times. Although you cannot “cure” the disorder, you can let the person know that you are there for them, and show you care. This brochure suggests many ways in which you can do that and will hopefully develop your understanding of what your friend or family member may be going through.

You can read the full document here.

Supporting a Loved One with Trichotillomania

Loved one with trichotillomania

Four Things You Need To Know

Whether it is your friend, daughter, sibling or partner, showing love and support to someone with Trichotillomania can be challenging; especially if you don’t actually understand what’s going on.  Sometimes when we think we’re being helpful, our advice only frustrates someone with Trich and makes us and them feel helpless.

Here is some guidance to help you better understand your loved one’s hair pulling disorder and how you can help them and encourage them in a positive way.

  1. It’s okay if you don’t understand, and definitely don’t pretend that you do. Listen, without making suggestions or offering advice. Instead, supply plenty of praise, hugs and above all, acceptance. Trichotillomania is more prevalent than you might think. Your loved one isn’t crazy for having this strange hair pulling disorder – they are one of many people who also suffer for Trich and even more who fall into the broader category of Obsessive Compulsive Disorders.
  2. If they could stop, they would. Many people with Trichotillomania can't stand the question, "Why don't you just stop?"  You need to understand that if they could – they would! It's not a choice, even if it appears to be. Asking this question may make your loved one feel as if there is something wrong with them, making them feel even more frustrated with the situation.
  3. Hair pulling will probably remain an issue for life. So it is really important that you come to terms with this. Even though some days it will be unnoticeable, other days it may be rampant without any warning.
  4. Don’t be the ‘Pulling Police’. Hair pulling often occurs subconsciously so while alerting your loved one every time they pull may seem like you’re helping, it will often do more harm than good and put strain on your relationship as they will associate you with those negative feelings of shame and guilt when they are ‘caught out’.

So what should you do when you're sitting down, perhaps watching television, and out of the corner of your eye you notice you loved one pulling?

Distraction can help; try handing them a cup of tea. Engaging the logical brain can often stop subconscious hair pulling. Invite them out for a walk. Getting out or even just moving from place to place, helps. Reading and watching TV are triggers for pulling. Play chess, computer games or anything which involves the hands. Cross stitching is helpful. Try to keep them active and interested. Boredom is really bad for Trich.

Do you want to help your loved one restore their hair? Going out in public with bald patches can often add to the embarrassment and low self-esteem that they may already be feeling. Why not bring them in for a free confidential consultation with one of our hair loss specialists to help them restore their hair and their confidence! We have consult rooms in Sydney and representitaves in New Zealand. Skype consultations are also available if you are from outside New South Wales. Call 1300 427 778 to book now.