St. Catharines hair stylist honoured for his work with cancer patients

What began as a promise to a childhood friend has blossomed into a mission of healing for St. Catharines hair stylist Carlo Turavani. Mr. Turavani has been making high-quality wigs for cancer patients for nearly a quarter century and this spring he’s being honoured for his work by the Boston Hospital Cancer Center.

Carlo Turavani is a hair stylist and who designs wigs for cancer patients that look like real hair “so they can go an live as normal life as possible ..because i believe if you look good from the outside, you feel better inside. I truly believe it’s a process of healing.”

Mr. Turavani’s client Lucie was diagnosed with breast cancer in October. “I had a lot of side effects, but when they told me I would lose my hair within 14 days of chemo–oh my gosh, I was devastated. And I came in here, and I cried.”

Lucie went from being devastated to delighted when she saw her wig “to go out, it really gave me confidence to have that wig.”

Over 23 years Carlo has created wigs for over ten thousand people suffering the effects of chemo or other conditions that cause hair loss. Some of their stories are heartbreaking. “One woman was so embarrassed about about being bald she didn’t want to go to her daughter’s wedding. So during the process we created a wig for her, and we tried to make it as close as possible to what she looked like. And I’m proud to say she did go to her daughter’s wedding.”

In May, Carlo is being honoured for his years of work by the Cancer Center at Boston General Hospital. Twenty two years ago a teenager accompanied his father to Carlo’s Transitions Salon. His father had lost his hair. That teenager – who is now the head of the radiation unit at Boston General – never forgot what Carlo did for his dad’s self esteem.


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