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Local beautician shares the struggle that women with hair loss conditions face

Jada Pinkett Smith
Posted at 10:52 PM, Apr 04, 2022

CLEVELAND HEIGHTS, Ohio — There is a level of TLC that some women find at Hair Allure’s salon in Cleveland Heights, specifically in the hands of Ashley Hammett that she says is tough to find elsewhere.

Hammett says about 80% of her clients deal with some form of hair loss.

“It's a very sensitive subject because some of the clients are in their 20’s,” said Hammett. “You’re not thinking that 20-year-olds are suffering from alopecia, hair loss, breast cancer.”

Hammett said that she often works early morning hours because some of her clients don’t want to be seen in the shop by others.

“It's the embarrassment, you come in somewhere and you want to look good and you want to feel good but you’re around all these other women and they’re getting their hair done, their natural hair,” said Hammett.

A University of Connecticut study found that alopecia is the number one cause of hair loss in Black women and that almost half of Black women have experienced hair loss.

Many women like Jada Pinkett-Smith suffer from alopecia, Smith has been public about her struggle since 2018.

“Alopecia is a very broad term, it just means hair loss, there are many different types of hair loss,” said Neil Korman, a professor of dermatology at University Hospitals. “The one that we’ve heard a lot about in the past days or weeks is an immune type of hair loss called ‘alopecia aerate’.”

“When you see a little girl you often say, ‘You look so pretty, your hair is so pretty,’ so you’re trained to believe that your hair is associated with beauty and if you don’t have hair then you feel less beautiful,” said Hammett.

Korman said there are drugs in the works aimed at helping people regrow their hair, but they're not out on the market yet, that’s why Hammett said she specializes in serving clients who suffer from hair loss.

“It doesn’t matter what’s under it, it’s all about the outcome and as long as I know when you get out of my chair that you’re going to look great and you're going to feel great it doesn’t matter where you start,” said Hammett.

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