There are a lot of great customer stories that spring to Nicole Staples’ mind, owner of Madeline’s Hair Replacement Clinic in Saco. She remembers one meeting with a client who was about to lose all her hair due to chemotherapy.
“She kept saying, ‘I’m sorry, I know it’s just hair,’ over and over to me through tears, but I told her I understood,” says Staples. By the time she was fitted for a full hair system two weeks later, her client’s tears turned to joy. “She told me her hair stylist of 15 year didn’t even notice that it wasn’t her real hair. It’s great when our clients look in the mirror and still recognize themselves.”
Staples knows first-hand how difficult it is to lose hair. She was diagnosed with alopecia universalis as a college student, a condition that resulted in full hair loss. Her first visit to be fitted for a wig was a disappointment, as all the styles suited older women and not a stylish 20-something.
It wasn’t until she was referred to Madeline’s as a patient that she felt like herself again. She was fitted for a full hair replacement system that was identical to her real hair. From there, she decided to commit herself to the hair-replacement industry and became a licensed cosmetologist and continued to work at Madeline’s as a stylist. Two years ago, she bought the business and now sees as many as 40 clients a week, many from all over the country.
Staples brings her firsthand experience to every appointment which is a huge comfort to her clients. “I know how upsetting it can be and how it can affect a woman’s self esteem. I once sat in that same styling chair at my consultation holding back tears, so I know it’s a sensitive topic.” she says. “A lot of the time it helps just knowing I understand how they feel.”
Madeline’s caters to all types of hair loss and customizes each system to best match a client’s hair and lifestyle. Chemotherapy treatments can trigger everything from complete hair loss to thinning hair and Madeline’s helps women on both sides of the spectrum.
Chemotherapy patients are the most emotional appointments for Staples. “With chemotherapy, a woman is faced with being told that not only does she have cancer, but that she’s going to lose all her hair, too,” says Nicole. “It’s a lot to comprehend in such a short period of time. My biggest goal is to take that one piece of worry off their plate”.
She is glad that the taboo of hair loss for women, whether it’s due to chemotherapy treatments or hereditary hair loss, is starting to be a thing of the past.
“My favorite part of any appointment is seeing a client look in the mirror and see a look of joy appear. We hear so often, ‘I feel like myself again!’ It’s wonderful to be able to make clients feel great during what can be a very difficult time.”
For more information about Madeline’s Hair Replacement Clinic, visit madelineshairreplacement.com.