Octopus Hair salon to host dementia patients on Mondays to help support families in Northampton

The salon's owner says she has special experience catering for the 'quirkier' customers since her own father suffers from the disease

Friday, 26th November 2021, 2:01 pm
Updated Friday, 26th November 2021, 2:02 pm
Dana says she can spend more time with each customer on the day to make sure they are comfortable

A salon in Northampton will be offering special sessions for people with dementia in just over a month, inspired by the owner's father who suffers from the disease.

Octopus Hair, in James' Road, will be opening the sessions at the start of next year.

The sessions are intended to give a quieter, more relaxed haircut for those with dementia, as they can be unnerved by the hustle and bustle of a normal business day. They also give the chance for carers to take a load off for a while and maybe have a cup of tea.

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This new initiative will fit in well at Octopus Hair as their focus on providing a safe, calm place is central to the brand.

Dana Toulson, owner of Octopus Hair and host of the sessions, said she is well suited to styling her 'quirkier' customers' hair. The experience comes from having worked on her father, Neil, who suffers with a later stage of the disease.

The mother-of two said that it was this, along with a soon-to-be free weekday in a busy schedule that inspired the generous service.

She said: "There will be people who don't want to go out. But there are those who want to still feel normal and I wanted to focus my time and effort on them for a day.

"I have had customers who are going through the same thing. At least here they will have someone else to make them a cup of tea and be able to relax.

"I have that personal experience and completely understand what they are going through. Maybe I can give them that positive experience."

The Monday sessions will begin in January, after the business goes back to their pre-Covid-19 schedule.

By the old standard, Octopus Hair would simply close on that day of the week, prioritising 'back to back' sessions on other days.

But Dana said she will make the change to better help those who might be struggling, even if she sees hardly anyone.

She added: "I'm not expecting to be busy or anything. I could see one person in one month. But to have that nice welcoming space with someone who understands, that's what really matters."

Anyone who is interested in the sessions in January or the salon itself can visit their website.