For more information contact:
Sandra Rea, Master Marketing & PR
949.613.2099 / Sandra@master-marketing-pr.com
Los Angeles Child to Receive Gift of Hair from Newport Hair Loss Center CEO and Founder Nazy Curtis
September 19, 2011 – Newport Beach, Calif. – When we see a bald man, we think little of it; when we see a woman with no hair we can’t keep ourselves from looking. When we see a child with no hair, we immediately think cancer. However, it might be alopecia, a condition that is far more common than we’d like to think. In fact, it affects more than 40 million women in the U.S. alone. It affects children, too.
As part of spreading awareness about this condition during September, which is National Alopecia Awareness Month, Newport Hair Loss Center’s CEO and founder Nazy Curtis is giving something special to a very special little girl. On Thursday, September 22, 2011, this beautiful second-grader who has had alopecia for much of her young life will receive a gift of hair… more accurately a gift of a custom human hair wig with hair personally donated by the child’s mother, father and one generous donor that Nazy met at a recent National Alopecia Areata Foundation (NAAF) event. “We had a presence at the NAAF event,” explains Curtis.
“We were there to answer questions from individuals who were experiencing all levels of hair loss. Many of the most anxious people we spoke with were parents of children who had alopecia. One mother touched us so deeply that we decided to create a wig for her daughter who just entered second grade. What makes the wig very special is that the mother, the child’s father and a NAAF staffer donated hair for us to create the wig. That means the child’s own DNA is actually in this wig. We will present it to her this month in hopes of spreading awareness about alopecia, what it is and to let people who are experiencing the condition know that they are not alone. They have a lot of support now that wasn’t available even a decade ago. We are here to support them, too, and have regular support groups to help educate them on what they may expect in their journey through hair loss, treatments they may consider and their options.”
Curtis knows a thing or two about hair loss. She has aolopecia totalis and has been coping with the condition for more than ten years. In hopes of educating and offering support to as many people as she can who may be losing their hair for any reason (alopecia, cancer treatment or trichotillomania) Curtis is in the final editing round of her book No One Could Tell.
“I’m very excited to get this book into the hands of people who are going through what I have,” says Curtis. “I didn’t tell anyone due to feelings of embarrassment over my condition and because I didn’t know that I could find support or how that support would change my life. I only started sharing my story with people in 2007 while undergoing chemotherapy to give support to the women who were going through treatment with me. It became easier as time passed. Now I am ready to tell the world. That way I can help more people.”
To learn more about this special gift of hair hand-off, about the upcoming book, the center and its support groups, or about AMANI HAIR, contact Nazy Curtis at 949.322.9555 or visit the company’s site at www.NewportHairLossCenter.com. Press inquiries should be directed to Sandra Rea at 949.613.2099.
About Nazy Curtis: A European-trained stylist with two decades of experience as a top stylist in Europe and the United States, Nazy Curtis serves clients with and without hair across Orange County and Los Angeles. Nazy’s dream was to open a center to support individuals experiencing hair loss for any reason. This became a reality in 2008 with the opening of Newport Hair Loss Center, a location that is attached to her renowned salon, d’ Orsay [door-say] the Art of Hair just outside Fashion Island. By positioning the business side by side, her hair loss clients and regular clients can be serviced together in the salon without anyone knowing the difference.
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Nazy’s personal experience has fueled her desire to reach out to others going through the devastation of hair loss. She recounts stories of hair falling out in clumps, it being all over everything, even the walls of the bathroom. She remembers sitting on the bathroom floor in tears with clumps of hair in her hands. These are the stories that help her clients not feel so alone when going through chemotherapy or alopecia hair loss.
If she can help even one person with cancer or alopecia, she feels she has been successful at what she does. This is the reason the Hair Loss Support Group was founded. Nazy feels if she had someone to talk to who had personal experience with cancer and alopecia during her own times of hair loss, that the experience would not have been so frightening and devastating. Her hope is that the Hair Loss Support and Education Group will encourage others through this difficult time.
The Hair Loss Learning Center is another avenue of community outreach. Through the Hair Loss Learning Center, Nazy volunteers her time to speak at cancer support groups, cancer wellness groups, and other cancer-related support groups. Her inspirational story offers hope to those living with cancer.
Nazy is directly involved in many charity events, including the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, where the Hair Loss Center holds events on race weekend with a raffle for free wigs and beauty make-overs for cancer patients. She also participates in local Relay for Life races in a similar fashion. She is a supplier of donated human hair for the American Cancer Society and a volunteer for “Look Good…Feel Better”- an organization that uses professional volunteers to provide free services, such as wigs to cancer patients.
Nazy’s story is one of adversity and triumph. She is a remarkable person and an inspiration to all who come in contact with her.
OC Health Magazine, October 2009
“Physicians are also very appreciative of Curtis’ services,” explains Dr. Lavinia Chong. “Nazy is an artist and a philanthropist. By sharing her story, she demystifies the taboo of hair loss, which can occur as a result of chemotherapy or other conditions. Nazy has assisted many patients regain their self-esteem by counseling them and providing them with beautiful hair systems, which, in turn allow them to reintegrate them into society.”
Newport Beach Hair Salon Owner Helps Those Who Suffer Hair LossSalon owner Nazy Curtis has a very personal understanding of the emotional pain that comes with hair loss
What makes salon owner and top Newport Beach stylist Nazy Curtis special goes beyond the custom hair systems (custom wigs) that she creates for clients. Curtis has a very personal understanding of the emotions tied not just to hair loss, but to physical conditions and diseases that ultimately lead to hair loss, such as cancer, alopecia and stress.
"In the summer of 2007, I was diagnosed with breast cancer," explains Curtis. "Though devastated, the irony of my situation was clear. For years, clients have come to me for custom hair systems, because they were losing their hair due to treatment for cancer or other reasons. During fittings, they share with me their anger about their illness and what is happening to them. They express concern about losing their hair. This is typical of cancer patients. I listened as they shared their feelings and fears. What I didn't tell them is that I knew about hair loss, because I have alopecia. Then I had breast cancer. Now, when I tell clients that hair loss is not the end of the world, and they have options, they can believe me. I truly do understand what they are going through."
Physicians stand behind Curtis. One is Dr. Lavinia Chong, an expert plastic surgeon who performs reconstructive surgery and whose practice is based in Newport Beach.
"Physicians are also very appreciative of Curtis' services, explains Dr. Lavinia Chong, M.D., a Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon, specializing in breast surgery in Newport Beach. "Nazy is an artist and a philanthropist. By sharing her story, she demystifies the taboo of hair loss, which can occur as a result of chemotherapy or other conditions. Nazy has assisted many patients regain their self-esteem by counseling them and providing them with beautiful hair systems, which in turn allow them to reintegrate into society and expedite their cures."
For women, the diagnosis of breast cancer is just one of the factors that causes emotional pain. Hair loss is a number-one concern among cancer patients, quite possibly due to the emphasis our society places on appearance. Those afflicted with alopecia tell a similar tale.
"When I was diagnosed with alopecia," says one patient who wishes to remain unnamed, "I actually contemplated suicide. I know it may sound silly to some, but the thought of going through life with no hair is something I couldn't imagine. Fortunately, a friend talked me off the ledge and showed me pictures of hair systems made of human hair that look so real I couldn't tell the difference. Then I met Nazy. She told me about her medical problems and gave me hope. She created a hair system for me, which I wear every day. No one knows it's not my hair, and I get compliments all the time. I'm not ready to share with people that it's not my hair. To me, Nazy is a brave woman, sharing her story. Maybe she can help more women like she helped me. For me, her story was a lifesaver - literally."
Curtis now offers more than hair care services and custom hair systems. She is starting a hair loss support group to be held every fourth Wednesday of the month, at 8:00 p.m. at her salon, D'Orsay, the Art of Hair, in Fashion Island in Newport Beach, located at 240 Newport Center Drive, Unit 107. Curtis will head this support group for cancer patients and survivors, as well as anyone experiencing hair loss. Her goal is to provide hope by sharing her story, answering questions and providing resources the group (and anyone outside the group) can use to help them deal with their situation.About Nazy Curtis
Curtis is an award-winning, European-trained hair stylist and salon owner with years of experience in the hair industry. A top stylist in Newport Beach, California, she is an educator and speaker, who presents on topics that relate to hair loss, hair replacement systems, surviving breast cancer, and more. An accomplished individual, Curtis speaks four languages and works with oncologists and plastic surgeons as relates to their patients who are suffering the devastating effects of hair loss due to disease and other physical conditions.View OC Health article
A hair of reassuranceBy Brianna Bailey
Newport Beach salon owner Nazy Curtis had one consolation when she was diagnosed with breast cancer two years ago.
"At least I don't have to worry about losing my hair," she said. Curtis has had alopecia for the past 10 years. The disease causes patches of her hair to fall out. Scientists believe the condition is an autoimmune disorder that causes the body's immune system to attack its own hair follicles.
Today Curtis sports a short, spiky bob, a photograph of an exotic bird with an exuberant crest of white feathers that hangs on one wall of her Newport Center salon was the inspiration for the cut, she said. Although she sees as many as 15 to 18 clients a day, most of them have no idea Curtis has alopecia, or that she is a cancer survivor. Curtis uses what she calls a "hair enhancement" to hide her hair loss. Now Curtis says she wants to help other men and women dealing with hair loss due to cancer and alopecia. She's started a support group for people dealing with hair loss. Curtis also fits, cuts and dyes wigs for men and women with hair loss due to alopecia, chemotherapy treatments or other diseases.
"These women still want to look beautiful," Curtis said. "It's one less thing for them to worry about. When you look good, you feel better."
Every few months, Curtis gives away a wig, which costs anywhere from $1,500 to $2,000, to someone who wouldn't otherwise be able to afford one.
"I don't just give them away to anybody, you have to have a story, a good reason why you are deserving or can't afford something like this," Curtis said.Her customers say Curtis' experience with hair loss has helped them cope with the problem.
"I think she has her foot in the door, she understands what we're going through because she's been through it," said Llana Barron, a 24-year-old cancer patient who Curtis recently fitted for a wig."She's a mentor in a way. I can ask her questions about her treatment," Barron said. Curtis found a wig that matched Barron's natural dark-blond hair and added highlights and styled it for her. "It's basically like going into a salon and getting your hair done, Barron said. "She works on it as if it was my real hair."
Cancer free for the past year after undergoing a mastectomy and chemotherapy, Curtis still copes daily with her alopecia, but the experience has made her appreciate life more, she said."I kiss my children and call my friends to tell them I love them for no reason," Curtis said.