With Lag B’Omer just around the corner, there are many excited kallahs who have kept their wedding date and are getting married! We all know the true simcha of a chatan and kallah is the simcha of them being joined together as one. Those who have chosen to get married during this challenging time get to have the opportunity to really focus on each other without other distractions or large crowds. They get to have an intimate affair with those nearest and dearest to them.
I am truly so happy for each couple getting married. I feel it’s a testament to the fact that no matter what challenges are put in front of us, our Jewish spirit keeps us focused on rebuilding and moving ahead. This year, bridal season remains my favorite “season,” even with everything going on. I have written this article to help kallahs navigate an already demanding mitzvah during the COVID-19 crisis. I am fully committed to helping kallahs feel beautiful and comfortable, from the beginning, as they take on this beautiful new mitzvah. Below are some guidelines to follow to ensure your safety and the safety of those around you, so that you can feel confident and happy with your new wig purchase.
Leave your entourage at home. Usually, kallahs walk through the door with their mom, sisters, cousins, aunts, mothers-in-law-to-be, friends and sisters-in-law, with all their kids! I honestly believe, regardless of COVID-19, when a kallah walks in with an entourage, it makes it much harder and more confusing for her. There is so much information the new bride has to process and make decisions about that having too many people around is too distracting. Bring your mom or one trusted friend. Not only is this safer for everyone, but you will leave the appointment calmer, happier and more knowledgeable.
If you feel any symptoms, cancel! Bring gloves and a mask to protect yourself and those around you. Also, bring your own wig grip (or purchase one when there), hair rubber bands, barrettes to tuck your hair into, hats, headbands or clips you want to try wigs on with, so that you minimize using items others might have touched. You can step outside the salon with a handheld mirror and remove your mask so that you can see fully what you look like.
Plan ahead. With everything going on, there can be unavoidable delays that are beyond anyone’s control. So it is best to start the wig-buying process as soon as you can.
There is currently limited inventory. If you find something you like, buy it, as it is currently harder to replenish wig inventory due to worldwide mandated shutdowns of wig factories. Factories that have reopened are currently filling backorders from when they were shut down so expect custom wigs orders to take longer than usual.
Lace tops—know what you are getting into! It’s very enticing to buy one of the natural-looking lace tops that you see on Instagram, but you need to know that lace tops are fragile pieces that need to be maintained with costly repairs. If costly repairs are not in your budget, and/or you’re not the type to treat your wig delicately, I suggest you stay away from full lace-top wigs.
Be sure to work with someone who is service oriented and works well with kallahs. Expect every new wig to be a new experience and each one needs to have a break-in period. That is the time needed when you get used to the wig and figure out all the little nips and snips that still need to be done. A kallah especially has more of this break-in period, as she does not yet know what she likes. During this time, some of the services a kallah might need may not be available or safe for the kallah and provider. Make sure that once safety restrictions are lifted, you will be able to be properly serviced.
I truly love meeting and working with kallahs, and I am here to help you! I explain to kallahs that one of the most important parts of wearing a sheitel is to be patient; it takes some time to master the learning curve on how to put on the sheitel and properly wear it. Having a great wig is like having a gorgeous Chanel lipstick. The product is amazing, but knowing how to properly put it on is key. Since each hairline and head shape is unique, it’s important that I show the kallah how and where to place the piece so it looks most natural and comfortable for her. Depending on the type of wig, and which style the kallah chooses, I educate them about the best products to use to maintain their desired look.
It is such an honor and privilege for me to be a part of this special time in a kallah’s life. I wish all the kallahs getting married a huge mazal tov, a simcha filled with true joy and a lifetime of happiness.
Sari Friedbauer is the owner of Sari’s Wigs. She is a licensed cosmetologist/hairdresser and a certified wig maker. She is available for consultations and can be reached at 201-694-5319.