Vickie Vidov, owner of Vidov West Salon in New York City, has been in the industry for 25 years and comes from a family of stylists. MODERN SALON sat down with Vidov to learn about her focus on hair loss.
Q: How did you come to be a hairdresser?
A: My mother is a stylist and so were my twin sisters. It definitely is in the blood. I fell in love with doing hair not only when I learned that I was good at it, but when I experienced how I made my clients feel. I was driven by my gift to help change lives. I saw hair as one of our most important accessories. It provides confidence radiating from the inside out; I just love seeing my clients leave the chair with a bit of a different energy compared with when they walked in. I always take notice of clients walking out. The way they exit speaks volumes about their experience. Behind the chair, we solve problems! With hair—and with life.
Q: Can you clear up any myths about hair loss for our readers?
A: The only myth I would debunk is the idea that there is no correlation between healthy scalp and healthy hair. Absolutely false! Your scalp is where it all begins, and your hair is a telltale to many health issues you might be experiencing. Let me put it this way. It takes all of your body functions to be working together to grow hair. The minute your body focuses on some other body part, the hair is the first to show signs. Your stylist knows you and your hair. They should notice and get you on a treatment to help feed the nutrients topically into the follicle, while your internal body is working on healing elsewhere.
Q: What types of health issues compromise hair health?
A: Stress and hormonal shifts are number one. I teach my clients that stress finds the weakest link and attaches itself; when we internalize stress for a period of time, you will see and feel a change in your hair. Diet is another reason. When you change your diet or restrict certain foods, the body reacts and, therefore, so does the hair. It’s not only hair loss that happens; it also can be the texture, becoming weak or brittle.
Reasons for Hair Loss
Asked to review the specific reasons for hair loss, Vidov listed:
- Progressive—generally predetermined, hormonal, hereditary.
- Symptoms: losing more than 100 hairs a day for 6+ months; thinning; experiencing baldness on top of the head or at the temples or crown.
- Causes: vascular deficiency, which is poor blood flow to the hair follicle, limiting the availability of nutrients necessary for hair growth; hormones creating excess oil production, linked to testosterone and a byproduct of testosterone called DHT, which has been found to disrupt the hair's growth; tissular deficiency, occuring when collagen and elastin, which help the scalp retain hair, are compromised and thinning results.
- Reactional—sudden, temporarily thinning hair.
- Symptoms: hair starts falling out in clumps; the hair thinning is spread throughout the entire head rather than an isolated area.
- Causes: vascular deficiency, which happens when poor blood flow to the hair follicle limits the availability of nutrients necessary for hair growth; nutritional deficiency, when the nutrients vital for hair growth are limited or lacking altogether; inflammation, when cellular stress releases molecules, triggering premature thinning.
- Potential triggers: seasonal changes; childbirth; stress; emotional shock; illness; unbalanced diet; fatigue; overexertion; some medical treatments.
Treatment for Hair Loss
Q: What treatment do you offer in your salon?
A: We offer a scalp analysis specifically tailored to the client. Some clients just need a good cleaning from buildup of oil and products, while others need treatment for a more severe condition. Rene Furterer’s Complexe 5 deeply cleanses and purifies the scalp to help by removing excess sebum, sweat and product buildup, essentially restoring balance, and this treatment can be done before a haircut. It’s an aromatic, concentrated pre-shampoo treatment featuring orange and lavender essential oils that are massaged into the scalp to stimulate blood flow to the scalp, ensuring healthy growth. We help our clients create a routine for healthy scalp care long-term, coming to the salon for scalp treatments either biweekly or monthly.
Q: Do you hope that scalp theory and treatments will be something your salon will become known for?
A: Definitely. I highly encourage and want to eventually incorporate scalp treatments with each and every haircut. Rene Furterer is revolutionary in scalp care, and I believe in their system, because I’ve seen real results through my clients as well as myself. We tend to forget that the scalp is just an extension of our skin, and we develop skincare routines, don’t we? We need to give the same attention and care for our scalp, as our hair can grow healthy only with excellent scalp care. I fell in love with doing hair because I felt like I was changing lives. Being on a healthy scalp routine change the client's life not only with the result of healthy hair, but by bringing attention to overall health. I may send my client to get blood work to make sure there isn't anything bigger going on. Or I'll teach them about what stress does to the body and help them become aware of it.
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