Losing hair? Sue Reynoso can make it pretty

This Scalp Micropigmentation Specialist is from  Dumaguete,  a graduate of Silliman University.

By Maricar CP Hampton

There’s a Filipina who knows a thing or two about hair – from grooming, to styling, to growing it healthy. Her name is Sue Reynoso.

A medical technology graduate of Silliman University, Sue was already a hairstylist in the Philippines when she came to the U.S. in 2005 petitioned by her immigrant father.  She worked her way toward getting a salon license to be able to practice in the U.S.  

Fascinated that she has seen many different characteristics of hair and has heard despairing stories about losing, thinning or prematurely greying hair, she went to school at the United States Trichology Institute to learn about the science of hair health as a Trichologist.

Her experience  as a practice manager for a hair restoration surgeon in New York and budding desire to be on her own would pave the way for Sue to start her own business. Soon, a clinic called Infinite Hair & Skin Care Solutions rose in Woodside, Queens where Sue and her business partner Erica Dineros, try to “educate people about hair loss while providing a solution.”

“Our customers are mostly Filipinos and Hispanics,” said Sue, a mother of three. Her husband Rommel  is another entrepreneur and also a marketing professional.

While more men tend to seek out their expertise, it is the women who ultimately make the decision to proceed with treatment for themselves or for their spouses.

Bald is beautiful…

If you’re a rock star or a newborn baby, she said. Some  men – eg. politician Cory Booker, FilAm comedian Jo Koy or actor Bruce Willis —  go for the “power bald” look. For women, wearing wigs is a stylish way to cover up.

“Hair loss is embarrassing to talk about and that’s why people avoid it,” said Sue.

Sue and her business partner Erica Dineros, two Filipino Americans trying to educate people about hair loss.

But judging from the amount of inquiries they receive online and referrals from hair salons and barbershops, it is a much bigger issue than how it is being perceived. She shared how women experiencing partial or complete hair loss, hide feelings of  shame and concerns about their looks. In the era of selfies and unabashed self-promotion, hair or the presence of it is important to boost a person’s confidence.

“My partner, Erica and I both have experienced hair loss. We want to understand more about it and how we can treat ourselves. We want to reach out to those who are suffering from it,” she said.

One of the solutions is Scalp Micropigmentation or Scalp Tattoo, which is ideal for people whose hair has become irreplaceable.

“Sometimes there’s no more option for hair transplant kasi kalbo na sila. I do what is called 3D camouflage.  It looks like hair that has grown back but it’s actually a tattoo,” Sue said.

Scalp Micropigmentation or SMP is a modern hair loss solution and non-invasive treatment that uses detailed micro-needles to deposit pigment into the scalp. The result creates the appearance of tiny hair follicles or short hair stubble. Scalp tattoo has to be age appropriate and aesthetically natural looking. A session lasts about two to three hours. Cost is anywhere from $300-$500 per session depending on the coverage or area that needs to be filled. Usually two or three treatments may be needed as recommended.

Sue and Rommel Reynoso and their children Khalem, 18; Lawrence, 8; and Alia, 5, at Khalem’s graduation from high school.

“There are styles, options that I give my patients but most of the time they agree with my suggestions.  I want to make sure they are pleased with the results and feel good about themselves,”  she said.  

As a certified Hair loss Practitioner and licensed Scalp Micropigmentation Specialist, Sue is able to provide scalp and hair treatments. “If we could identify that we could regrow their hair back, then we do it.” Her dream is to introduce the technology in the Philippines.

The hair loss center cannot prescribe medications, Sue said. “But if we see something like a skin disease, we refer clients to a dermatologist.”

Sue dispels the notion that hair starts to thin out at age 50.

“It’s not necessarily your age; it can be your diet, or your lifestyle and majority could be hereditary,” she said. Stress can be a hidden factor.

One of the challenges is the lack of information, she said. Scalp Micropigmentation is a new and developing trend for men. She has seen some clients who are “in denial” about their hair conditions.

“Usually, when they come in for consult they  are not sure what kind of treatment they need.  The more they talk about it, the more they learn what they need to do,” she said.

In Dumaguete, Negros Oriental, where she comes from, Sue used to run a restaurant. That’s where she developed her aptitude for business. She never imagined she would one day be part of the exploding hair care industry in America and connect with so many people looking for solutions. “There are a lot of people in need.”

© The FilAm 2019

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