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Color is important, too. Donovan works with five wig companies to ensure she has a variety of colors. Often, these wigs have both highlights and lowlights, which creates visual depth and a more natural look.

Some wigs are sewn onto caps made of monofilament, which allows some of the scalp to show just as it would with a person’s natural hair. Additionally, Donovan said, a wig might be a little thinner in some spots, which mimics natural hair growth. Some wigs also have lace fronts, which helps create the illusion of a natural hairline for people who like to wear their hair pulled back.

Although a patient can buy a wig made from human hair, Donovan said most prefer synthetics because they’re easier to care for. Wigs made from real hair must be combed and restyled after wash. Synthetics, on the other hand, are permanently set in their styles.

“It’s pretty much shake and wear,” Donovan said.

Most patients will start to grow their hair back after finishing chemotherapy, Donovan said, and it’s not uncommon for the wigs she provided to find their way back to her boutique. Donovan is able to clean and refurbish them to donate to new patients.


Information from: Columbia Daily Tribune,