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Ask a Shop Clerk: Flora Shepelsky

Design by Flora, 243 E. 78th St., nr. Second Ave.; 212-510-8805.

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How’d you get into the wig business?
I have very curly, kinky hair and always had hair issues growing up. Also, I love to play with soft hair.

What’s your inventory like?
Around 500 wigs in Manhattan and 1,200 at my New Jersey showroom, plus 1,200 in the basement. I have buckets and buckets of ponytails in Jersey.

Where does the hair come from?
We import from Russia on a monthly basis. It’s collected in villages where women keep their hair covered eight months of the year and don’t do any coloring. It’s some of the healthiest hair in the world.

So, how much for a wig?
Ours start at $1,850 and go up to $10,000. Blonde, red, or curly hair is harder to get, but the most demand is for mousy brown.

What else is popular?
Hair-enhancement pieces like illusion falls and toppers. Unlike extensions, you can buy one, put it in your closet, and keep it for years.

Do you cater to male clients as well?
We take good care of cross-dressers, but balding men are not my business. I personally do not like toupees. My husband is balding, and I make him shave his head.

Why is fake hair still taboo?
Years of bad wigs have given it a bad rap. It’s sad that fake teeth and fake boobs are okay, but if a woman puts on fake hair, she feels ashamed. My mission is to show people that a hairpiece is nothing to be embarrassed about.

Interview by Lauren Murrow.


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