Model and businesswoman Gail Mabalane has always been open about her struggles with alopecia. Something she says she began to suffer from as a result of her work as a model.
Despite how openly she has spoken about this, most of her fans had no idea just how bad things had gotten for her until she recently shared a photo of her crown from three years ago.
“Yep! This was me [three years] ago! #TrueStory. This journey inspired the birth of @ethnogenics,” she said in reference to a hair care brand that she recently launched.
“This is way more prevalent than we think. From receding hairlines to bald patches to hair loss that starts in the middle of the head to scalp sensitivity. We, (women especially) have just become so good at hiding it and “suffering” / fighting it in silence.”
Gail Mabalane also highlighted the fact that September is Alopecia Awareness Month.
Alopecia (also referred to as alopecia areata or AA) refers to a condition that results in sudden hair loss that starts with one or more circular bald patches that may overlap.
In some sufferers, AA occurs when the immune system attacks hair follicles and may be brought on by severe stress. The main symptom of this condition is hair loss and treatment may address any underlying conditions and includes topical scalp medication.
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“My wish is for everyone who is experiencing hair loss to know that you are not alone. I know that the experience comes with a ton of emotions. When we work through them, we come out stronger on the other side,” she added.
Gail Mabalane concluded her post with tips for dealing with alopecia and other forms of hair loss:
1. Get help as soon as you see it.
2. Don’t wait to consult a dermatologist because early detection and treatment may prevent permanent hair loss.
3. Identify “your tribe”. This can be an emotional journey. Find the people who offer support… we can’t do it in secret.
4. Find products that support your regrowth process. I struggled with this, hence the birth of Ethnogenics.
5. Be conscious of what you put your scalp and hair through. A lot of the hair loss is self-inflicted… so if we know better, we can do better.
6. Despite what society has taught us to believe we are not our hair, our hair is a part of us but we are much more than that.
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