Stylists can receive free education on how to spot scarring alopecia.

Stylists can receive free education on how to spot scarring alopecia.

Image: NSAAM

Editor's Note: This article was originally published in August 2022. Since then, SAF continues to offer resources for those struggling with scarring alopecia and for the professionals who support them through it.  On Dec. 9, 2023, SAF will present The Scarring Alopecia Summit, from 1:00-4:30pm EST. This is a free virtual event offering a comprehensive agenda specifically for this challenging condition. The added bonus of 90 minutes of breakout lectures and discussions will divide into breakout sessions tailored to types of scarring alopecia —whether it be delving deeper into medical aspects, engaging in safe discussions, or seeking guidance from experts on specific concerns.  Register today. 


This September is National Scarring Alopecia Awareness Month (NSAAM) and as a stylist, you are on the front lines and can make a difference. You can recognize changes in your client’s hair and scalp, even before your clients themselves may notice a difference. Many individuals see their hairstylists regularly, which makes you a valuable resource for scarring alopecia education and early detection. NSAAM will teach you about the signs and symptoms so you can alert your client if you notice changes, which can lead them to see a dermatologist and save their hair.

"After the “slap heard ‘round the world” at the March 2022 Academy Awards, alopecia has become a household word and billions of people have become aware," said Jean Pickford, SAF executive director. "Ultimately alopecia patients were the real winners at the Oscars. SAF is leveraging this opportunity to continue the education and help save more hair!"

As a “Let’s Get Visible” campaign partner you will receive SAF’s alopecia 15-minute online training module — hosted by world renown dermatologist and hair loss expert, Dr. Maryanne Senna. You will also join other stylists and salons around the country to raise education and research funds through the September Donate-a-Dollar Campaign.

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Sign up here to receive your invitation to participate. SAF will be sending an invitation in mid-August to 1,000 salons around the country. Once you sign up, you will receive the free online training module and instructions to launch the September Donate-a-Dollar campaign. Upon completion, your salon will be listed on SAF’s Certified Salon List, and you will receive a Certificate of Course Completion and SAF’s Seal of Recognition for public promotion.

The cause of scarring alopecia is poorly understood, and the signs and symptoms are often missed or ignored. Dermatologists and hair loss experts are reporting a significant increase in scarring alopecia patients over the past several years. The cause is not yet known for this surge of new patients. The differences between alopecia and scarring alopecia are the hair follicles are permanently destroyed resulting in permanent hair loss and patients typically experience significant pain, burning and itching on their scalp. While the exact amount of hair loss can vary, we do know that early detection and diagnosis leads to quicker treatment to keep as much healthy hair as possible. This disease is a follicular emergency and timing is critical!

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