There is Life After Hair Loss

by Terry Watson | March 11th, 2015
Reba Kennedy (Photos by Howard Gaither)

Reba Kennedy (Photos by Howard Gaither)

The doctor is in at Reba’s Hair Design. For the past 38 years, Dr. Reba Kennedy has dedicated her life and career to providing superior hair styling services to her devoted clients and others. A native of Siler City, N.C., she had one goal in mind after graduating from high school, and that was to make her mark in the world of fashion and beauty.

Along with her other nine brothers and sisters, Kennedy says her parents raised her to have respect for what God blesses us with and never take anything for granted. “My mother was always doing someone’s hair in our neighborhood. That was her way of making extra money for herself as well as for the family. Now as a mother of four, she fully understands her role as preserving her family’s legacy by ensuring that she has done everything to meet and fulfill all of her goals in life. “I started my journey of styling hair in the internal beauty school of Jordan Matthews High School in Siler City. I moved to Greensboro right after graduation and landed my first opportunity at Styles by Mr. Jones. Two years later I went to work at The House of Charms by Hipps. Mr. Jones and Doris Hipps guided me with excellence and sophistication,” she says. In 1984, Kennedy opened her very own salon, Reba’s Hair Designs. She has worked as a platform artist for Bronner Brothers Product Company and as a national educator for Ashtae Products, Inc.

Hair was always something she liked doing. “I never wanted to just be a stylist that just styled hair. I learned hair replacement in 1988. There are a lot of people that have hair problems. As a stylist, a situation may arise when you’re doing your best at taking care of someone’s hair but they may start having hair breakage or hair loss,” says Kennedy. Her interest and concern would later propel her into further enhancing her skill sets, and in 2012 she received her doctorate in Trichology at the Élan Center of Trichology in Madison, Alabama. She says she chose a career as a trichologist because it would allow her to learn more about hair care at an even higher degree.

Hair is a very thin delicate fiber. Too much heat or the wrong type of chemical can damage hair or lead to hair loss. Trichology is the study of hair, hair loss and scalp disorders. Clients may need to be seen by a medical practitioner for treatments of various scalp conditions when it requires a medical prescription. Hair styles can contribute to hair problems and natural hair styles even need proper care as well.

The additional service Kennedy now provides depends on what type of condition her client has. One of the more common types is Seborrhea Dermatitis; a condition that depends on if the clients has an oily or dry scalp. Most people experiencing dry scalp, it’s not always dandruff: female pattern baldness, male pattern baldness, Alopecia and others. Seborrhea Dermatitis is not curable and the client has to return for treatment to keep their condition under control. There are steam treatments, laser therapy, high frequency treatments, detoxifying treatments, exfoliating treatments and many more. Additionally, a mineral test can detect high mineral levels which can attribute to hair loss. A tricholoscope is also used to examine the scalp for problems that can’t be seen with the naked eye
Kennedy’s clients range from children experiencing hair loss to women and men. “No matter your gender or age, all types of people are susceptible to experiencing scalp problems and hair loss,” she says. “Only a trichologist or dermatologist is capable of effectively diagnosing what ailment an individual is experiencing.”

The products that she uses vary depending on what the issue is and determining if the client has any allergens. Trichologists are natural pathologists who also assist physicians with diagnosing an individual ailment. “I work with other hair stylists that are seeing clients with problems come into their salons and don’t know what to do for them. I’m able to help them feel better about themselves by letting them know there is help available,” she says.

In the future, Kennedy says she plans to expand her practice and help even more help clients with hair loss ailments. “Healthy hair is so important to a lot of people. High fashion hair styles are not what I’m about, I’m more interested in helping people keep the hair they have and provide alternatives if partial or total hair loss occurs,” she says.

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