Tiffani Calix

What do actors Robert Pattinson and Viola Davis, talk show host Rickie Lake, and U.S. Representative Ayanna Presley all have in common? Each have experienced, to varying degrees, hair loss due to permanent and temporary alopecia. For many, alopecia and hair loss due to stress, changes in hormones, cancer treatment and more is a part of everyday life. Cue Metairie entrepreneur Tiffani Calix. Her company, Wigs by Tiffani, offers clients a transformative experience. Plus, she also gives back by providing free wigs for New Orleans-area children who are experiencing hair loss due to a variety of challenges. New Orleans Magazine chatted with Calix about her crowning achievements and how she (literally) flipped her wig into a thriving business. 

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Q: Why is hair so important to a person’s self-esteem and overall well-being? It is and it isn’t. To some, hair completes them, it gives them confidence to take on certain situations. Without hair, they feel like they have lost their identity. While some women with hair loss are empowered without any hair—to take on the world and own their hair loss, showing they’re strong even without their hair. So it goes both ways. Women are beautiful inside and out regardless.

Q: What’s a common misconception about hair loss? That only men can have receding hairlines and male pattern baldness. Women with hair loss are thought to be “sick.” Women experience the same kind of hair loss as men, if not more different types.

Q: How have you seen a great wig transform a person and their emotional well-being? When women have experienced hair loss, sometimes it’s almost as if they lost a part of “themselves.” Once that wig goes on, you can see it in their face—they feel whole again. Quite a few consultations of mine have become very emotional from happiness when they see their reflection with the wig on.

Q: What conditions do your clients have that have created hair loss? Cancer is the most obvious hair loss associated with women who have no hair, but there’s also: androgenic alopecia, telogen effluvium, trichotillomania, alopecia universalis, alopecia areata, post-partum hair loss, post-COVID hair loss, hair loss from PCOS, and so much more.

Q: Tell us more about the children’s fund and who has been helped? The children’s fund is a program I started probably about a year and a half ago. There’s just something about children with hair loss that gets to me. I can’t even imagine how a little kid feels living with hair loss, since grown women can be so overwhelmed by it. I decided to donate a custom wig to five children per month between the ages of 8-17, out of my own pocket. Since we have started fundraising for the “Wigs for Kids” program we have had many generous people donate funds (and hair!) to help contribute.

Q: How did your business get started and why are you passionate about it? I first started working with wigs in 2018 after the birth of my third child. I started experiencing postpartum hair loss, which I did not experience with my first two children. I was working behind the chair at my salon so self-conscious about my thinning hair. I didn’t think that anyone would trust me to do their hair if my hair didn’t look its best. This feeling led me to start wearing alternative hair myself from other brands, but as a hairdresser I would always tweak it and change it up personalizing it to me. That’s when I began studying hair, doing research, and decided to start my own brand. I started telling people about it, posting on social media, and it just kind of developed from there.

Transitioning from being in my salon over to the wig portion of my business has been extremely fulfilling. To be able help someone who has lost their hair, or never even had hair, is a feeling I can’t explain; it’s life changing. When my clients cry happy tears during our consultations, and they tell me I’ve changed their life is something I’ll never get used to. Little do they know…they actually changed mine. Now since my business has grown more I’m so thankful for all of my clients, and the opportunity to help even more women. I love seeing the happiness and self-confidence my wigs bring them.

Wigs By Tiffani
WigsbyTiffani.com
@wigsbytiffani

Lagniappe

Who has the best celebrity hair? Hmm…this is a hard one. I always love Khloe Kardashians hair. (Kardashians are frequent wig wearers if you didn’t know…)

What style is the most popular right now? Our “Jasmine” wig is by far the most popular color right now. It’s a darkest brown/almost black color. It’s natural, dark, and perfection.

Do blondes actually have more fun? Any style can have fun; it’s the person wearing the wig that brings it to life!

True confession

What’s a fun fact that people may not know about you? I can do the ventriloquist thing.