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HLN meets… Lyndsey Brack, Diamond Hair Solutions

An alopecia sufferer herself, Lyndsey runs a wig salon to support other local women suffering from hair loss by giving them a private, personal and safe haven in which to gain back their self-confidence.

Written by Rachael Nichol
Published 13.01.2022

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As women, we’re faced with plenty of challenges that life throws at us. From periods and childbirth to menopause, plus adding all of the other side effects that come with being a woman into the mix, we all still proudly manage to power through.

But whether we like to admit it or not, our appearance is important to us. It makes us who we are and feels central to our femininity. To feel like you’re not in control of your appearance in any capacity is difficult to imagine, but to be faced with the realisation that big clumps of your hair is falling out without anything you can do about it must be heart-breaking.

That’s what Ashington local Lyndsey Brack experienced. On her first visit to the hairdressers after giving birth to her son 14 years ago, she noticed a small patch of her hair was missing. Over the short space of just a year, this progressed to total hair loss.

‘I felt anxious, lost, alone, stressed and depressed like my world had fallen apart,’ says Lyndsey. ‘Waking up to clumps of hair on the pillow or in the shower is terrifying. Losing my brows, lashes and body hair was so hard to cope with that I felt like I had been rubbed out; I no longer looked like me. I wasn’t given any help as to where to go. I wasn’t directed to Alopecia UK. I just felt lost and alone on my journey.’

A week later, Lyndsey went to the doctors, where she was diagnosed with alopecia. Two in every 1,000 people in Britain have alopecia – an autoimmune disorder that triggers episodes of hair loss, sometimes in just small patches while at other times over the whole body. Alopecia can be caused by stress, pregnancy, menopause and other underlying illnesses.

Lyndsey shut herself away from the world; she didn’t meet friends and family and leaving the house was a struggle as she said she ‘no longer felt like herself’. She turned to counselling but found the best therapy was meeting other people with Alopecia, which has now led her to set up her own support group at the RVI, which has now over 30 members.

From her own experience and discussions in the group, Lyndsey learnt how important it is for women to find the perfect wig – not only for their own self-confidence – but to avoid bringing attention to their condition. And so, Diamond Hair Solutions was born.

‘After year and years of bad wigs, when I finally found the wig, the old me instantly came back,’ says Lyndsey. ‘Wigs can be fun, you just need to find the right one and you don’t need to spend a fortune.

‘Diamond came about as my love for wigs grew; I had done some wig reviews, took part in a charity fashion show with wigs. The more my love of wigs grew, the more people told me I should do this as a job – so I jumped in headfirst with no experience of running a business! I wanted people not to feel ashamed of wearing wigs, not to be so hush-hush and for people to wear their wigs and feel confident.

‘I had been to salons as far away as London and I felt what we lacked was a personal wig service, a one-on-one experience which offered trust and friendship, and also respect and privacy. I didn’t have to walk into a salon full of ladies with all their own hair or be put in a back room. I knew we needed something new and more personal in the North East and, as my confidence grew, I knew I was the lady to do this.’

Lyndsey started with appointments in her home and has now opened a salon in her own garden to provide the perfect safe haven for her clients and that privacy and personal touch that is so needed. As well as private clients, she can now supply North East hospitals with wig allowances – either for patients who have lost their hair from chemotherapy or alopecia – and has helped hundreds of local ladies regain their lost confidence.

Lyndsey works alongside local hairdresser Robbie Wilson who cuts and styles her customer’s wigs. Together, the dream team hold a unique understanding of hair loss and share a passion for improving the quality of life for people who experience it. With over five years’ experience in wig styling and cutting, Robbie’s salon hair.robbie is another place that women suffering from hair loss can visit and experience a personal and private service, from a stylist who understands and cares.

‘The feeling I get after fitting a wig is amazing; there are plenty of tears in the salon. Sad tears, but then happy tears,’ says Lyndsey. ‘I have made some fantastic friends along the way. I encourage people to bring a family member for support to appointments and I make sure everyone uses their allowance wisely and cost-effectively.

‘Working with Wansbeck Hospital means that I’m working in my home town and helping my local community. It saves ladies going all the way to Newcastle; many of my customers are elderly and don’t want to be travelling, so a wig salon on their doorstep is very helpful.’

And one of Lyndsey’s clients, Nicola, knows first-hand how life-changing Lyndsey’s support can be. ‘I had suffered from full hair loss on my own for about four years,’ Nicola tells us. ‘I was depressed, unhappy in myself and with my appearance, and felt alone and lost. I’d lost all my confidence and felt like I should hide away. With Lyndsey’s guidance and advice, she talked me through good and bad wigs and the difference between synthetic and human hair. She became my saviour and my go-to for any help I needed.

‘I got my first human hair wig and it changed my life, and the way I felt about myself. With her support, I got it styled to look just like my bio hair and, for the first time in a long time, I felt happy. She’s so friendly, discreet and really wants to help those with hair loss feel better about themselves; who better to go to than someone who is experiencing hair loss themselves?’

Lyndsey doesn’t stop at transforming women’s lives from her own garden. Alongside running her own salon, as a way of giving back to Alopecia UK, who have supported her on her own journey, she has set up Diamond Wig Bank North East. Here Lyndsey sells unwanted wigs donated from others at affordable prices and splits the proceeds with 60% going to Alopecia UK. To date, she has raised almost a whopping £6,000!

 

If you have any wigs you would like to donate or would like to join Lyndsey’s support group, contact her on 07470 282 951 or email at diamondhairsolutions@outlook.com

If you or anyone you know needs support or help with hair loss, visit the Diamond Hair Solutions website or contact Lyndsey.

Or, to keep updated with Lyndsey’s journey and for some wig inspiration, follow her Instagram page.

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