Courtesy of The Raithwaite Estate Spa, N Yorks

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Together, We Can Make Hair Loss One Less Worry


- By Jasmin Julia Gupta of Cancer Hair Care


“I founded Cancer Hair Care in 2011 as a free service with a group of deeply inspiring women and the dedication of amazing friends, family and supporters. 

I'm very proud to say that we are the only UK charity solely focused on offering guidance before, during and after hair loss due to cancer treatment. We span the entire hair loss journey and concentrate on all aspects of hair loss and hair loss prevention (scalp cooling), right through to new hair growth into recovery. 

Possible hair loss has a devastating effect on someone who has cancer. When a woman loses her hair due to chemotherapy treatments, her confidence takes a huge plummet. It can often be a hugely traumatic experience and left unsupported, she can experience both image anxiety and isolation. 

There are many barriers to women who lose their hair. One barrier that I felt we could easily do something about was the issues that face them when visiting a spa, such as feeling worried that the therapist won't know how to support them. In response, we launched 'Hair Loss Friendly Spa' in early 2019, which aimed to replace the ritual of going to the hairdressers with a supportive, nurturing spa experience.

The first of its kind, the Hair Loss Friendly Spa campaign offers spa-goers with hair loss a bespoke level of expertise throughout their entire spa journey, including thoughtful touches for guests with hair loss such as scalp care guidance, wig stands and head scarves. We piloted the campaign within the Champneys Health Spa Resorts Group before being rolled out to each of the Champneys spa resorts in Tring, Henlow, Forest Mere, Springs and hotels Eastwell Manor and Mottram Hall. 

The barriers to guests visiting a spa are varied but our Hair Loss Friendly spa campaign helps to remove them all. From talking to many women with hair loss, we've found that having a wig stand available in a treatment room is a simple and kind gesture that enables them to feel dignified and cared for.   

The skills required to support hair loss have to be learnt, which is why education is so important across your entire spa team. A few simple terms and techniques can make a huge difference to your individual guest and enable them to have an enriched treatment experience, free from worrying about their hair loss or feeling exposed, vulnerable, ashamed or embarrassed.

The next phase of our 'Hair Loss Friendly Spa' campaign is the launch of a new training and development programme. 

Intended to further empower spas to offer a deeply empathetic and – above all – enjoyable experience for every guest who is hair free, or who is experiencing hair loss, our new training programme is primarily for spa owners and operators and is totally scalable, to it can be tailored to fit the unique needs of each business.

We are delighted to be working with the Made For Life Foundation, who are including our Hair Loss Friendly Spa training within their therapist training courses. 

In the future, I'd also love to explore the potential to partner with other professional spa skincare brands, so we can co-train therapists about hair loss and enhance any existing training that the brand offers. This could include creating new spa treatments or offering Hair Care Masterclasses for guests and members to enjoy.

My vision is one of empowerment – of our existing spa therapists and the next generation coming through. With Hair Loss Friendly Spa, they can gain the courage and caring insights to push the boundaries and deliver what people really need within cancer care and hair loss and take spa services to the next level of care. Every spa therapist should be unafraid to help and support a guest going through cancer treatment – the difference this makes can truly be life-changing.







Jasmin Julia Gupta: Biography

Jasmin Julia Gupta is the founder of the free charity service Cancer Hair Care and social enterprise Twin Hats and she is the UK's leading expert in cancer-related hair loss and hair care. 

Cancer Hair Care (registered charity Caring Hair) is the only UK charity solely dedicated to offering guidance before, during and after hair loss due to cancer treatment. It is also the only charity to offer clinics within NHS hospitals and they offer support to women and men of all ages, hair types and ethnicities. 

Cancer Hair Care also offers a wide range of hair loss support resources including a comprehensive website; knitted hair loss dollies and play packs that explain hair loss to children as well as teenage services and campaigns including 'Hair Loss Friendly Spa'.

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Thursday, 01 October 2020