by Simone Ellin
When she learned she had breast cancer at age 29, Sonya Keshwani, a media professional with a high-profile career, wasn’t about to let cancer, and the hair loss that comes with chemotherapy, affect her sense of style. A raven-haired fashionista, Keshwani purchased a blond wig, thinking she’d try a different look. But wearing a wig, however cute, eight hours a day was far more uncomfortable than she had expected.
“I was getting treated in the summer, so it was really hot, and the hair loss itself makes your scalp extremely sore and sensitive, and it gave me migraines,” Keshwani says.
So, she went searching for options. Online shopping resulted in head coverings that were “were drab chemo beanies that made me just look and feel like a sick person. They didn’t express any aspect of my style, and they all but outed me as a cancer patient because they were just like what you see in TV ads or brochures about infusion centers,” says Keshwani.
That’s when she decided to try making her own turbans.
“There was a mom-and-pop fabric store right next to my infusion center,” shares Keshwani, “so, it kind of became a ritual that each time I went for treatment, I’d go next door to that shop, bring home a few yards of cloth, and experiment with my mom’s sewing machine.”
In 2019, after her cancer treatment ended, Keshwani started StyleEsteem Wardrobe (styleesteemshop.com), an e-store that sells high-fashion turbans for every event, season, and occasion. “Women want to feel stylish and like we’re a little trendy, even during hair loss,” says Keshwani, adding, “This is not only about fashion; it’s also about helping people.”
The original article can be found here as well as in the November 2022 print edition of Westchester Magazine.