Stylist supports cancer patients

PUBLISHED: 11:00 14 March 2009 | UPDATED: 21:43 31 May 2010

Michele Riccio styling Alison Saunders’ hair  Picture: ALISTAIR NELSON

Michele Riccio styling Alison Saunders' hair Picture: ALISTAIR NELSON

A HAIRDRESSER from Saffron Walden is helping cancer patients come to terms with hair loss caused by medical treatment. Michele Riccio, of Riccio Hair Design on King Street, has recently completed a course with celebrity hairdresser Trevor Sorbie learning

A HAIRDRESSER from Saffron Walden is helping cancer patients come to terms with hair loss caused by medical treatment.

Michele Riccio, of Riccio Hair Design on King Street, has recently completed a course with celebrity hairdresser Trevor Sorbie learning how to cut and fit wigs for women suffering medical hair loss. The course also included a session led by cancer nurses explaining the sensitivities of dealing with vulnerable clients.

Mr Riccio, who has run the salon with his brother Frank for 21 years, said: "Women complain about bad hair days, but few understand the trauma of losing their hair and having to wear a wig for months on end.

"My mum suffered with Leukaemia for 13 years and is now quite poorly.

"Although she never lost all her hair I have seen first hand the effects of the illness and medication, and how it can be devastating to a woman's confidence. I wanted to do something to help other women."

Breast cancer patient Alison Saunders from Saffron Walden has experienced first hand the benefits of a well cut wig. When Alison discovered she had the disease in 2006 she turned to Mr Riccio to help her overcome the trauma of hair loss.

"It made me feel so much better because people weren't looking at me knowing I had chemotherapy," said Alison. "I'd advise any woman facing a similar situation to come to Michele and talk it through before her hair starts falling out."

Mr Riccio, who completed the intensive course at the L'Oreal Professional headquarters in London, joins a small number of hairdressers in the country who are part of the My New Hair network (www.mynewhair.org) which supports patients suffering from medical hair loss.

"I feel honoured to have been trained by arguably the best hairdresser this country has ever produced, for such a worthwhile cause," said Mr Riccio.

Mr Riccio is happy to hold private appointments for cancer patients while the salon is closed to the public. For more information call Mr Riccio on 01799 522029.

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