Watch CBS News

Sisters help cancer patients of color get wigs through "Coils to Locs" organization

Sisters creating curly hair wigs for cancer patients through "Coils to Locs" organization
Sisters creating curly hair wigs for cancer patients through "Coils to Locs" organization 02:33

BOSTON – Two sisters are making a difference for women of color going through cancer treatment.

One of them learned firsthand how hard it can be to find a wig that resembles her real hair. So the pair got to work to change that.

It was in 2015 that Dianne Austin was diagnosed with breast cancer and was told the chemotherapy treatment would cause her to lose her hair. Her doctor gave her a wig prescription

"So I went to the hospital where I was going to be treated here in Boston and they didn't sell any tightly coiled wigs. They only sold straight haired wigs," she said.

Dianne and her sister searched the entire country but they couldn't find a wig that resembled their beautiful tightly coiled, kinky curls.

"We started asking around and talking to the vendors at the hospitals. They let us know and confirmed that women are asking for these wigs," Pamela Shaddock said.

They took matters into their own hands and launched Coils to Locs. From there, they found a manufacturer and then the wigs had to pass a wig fitter test.

"She took the wig and she started stretching it and turning it inside out and she said, this is really good quality. I remember having a sigh of relief," Austin said.

Now women of color searching for curly wig styles at cancer center hospitals and medical hair loss salons have an alternative.

"Continually reaching these women and letting them know that these wigs are becoming available. We are in 15 hospitals and medical salons across the country," Shaddock said.

"And sometimes we are like pinching ourselves.  we look at each other and think, we actually did this.  We created this business from scratch," Austin added.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.