Stylin’ survivor

Karla Granillo, left, a first-semester cosmetology student, styles the hair on her mannequin at Clovis Community College on Tuesday. CCC is the site of a program that provides free wigs and make-up to cancer patients. (CNJ staff photo: Andy DeLisle)

By Marlena Hartz: CNJ Staff Writer

To shrink the cancer in her liver, Carol Johnson had to lose her hair.

“That was the most devastating part (about chemotherapy),” the Clovis resident said.

“You wake up one day and there’s none left,” said Johnson, who finished chemotherapy about six months ago.

“I wouldn’t leave the house. I just looked horrible,” she said.

Lori Hicks found her mother a wig on the Internet, which helped.

“I felt better,” Johnson said. “People didn’t stare.”

Now, Hicks is doing the same for other cancer patients.

She captained the establishment of a Clovis Community College program that provides free wigs and make-up to cancer patients. In December, CCC became one of 13 “Look Good … Feel Better” facilities in the state.

“Not everyone has a daughter that can help them find a wig. Not every one has the money to buy a wig,” said Hicks, a CCC cosmetology instructor.

The national “Look Good … Feel Better” program gives female cancer patients tips, along with wigs and turbans, to help restore their appearance and self-image during chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Services are provided to patients at no cost through a partnership with the Cosmetic and Toiletry Foundation Association, American Cancer Society and National Cosmetology Association.

Five cancer patients have received help through the CCC program since it began in January, Hicks estimated.

“It just makes these women feel so much better that they are not alone,” Hicks said.
“Half of them cry they are so happy,” Johnson said.

CCC cosmetology instructor Mae Zaloy is a “Look Good … Feel Better” volunteer.
In addition to a wig, she said each woman is offered a make-up kit and instructions for applying make-up, eyebrows and eyelashes.

“We are so image conscious … I can’t imagine (not having hair),” Zaloy said. “(Cancer patients) are probably the bravest people I know.”

Fast facts
• For more information about “Look Good … Feel Better,”
contact Lori Hicks at 769-4104.
• For more information about cancer and patient
programs provided by the American Cancer Society, visit
www.cancer.org or call (800) ACS-2345.