Vilma Subel, owner of Xiphium Salon in Leawood, Kansas, gives back in so many ways— from producing a fashion shoot for an inspiring teen with Alopecia, to hosting dog washes to raise funds for local animal rescue groups— but it’s her work with the homeless that is our #BeautyHeals spotlight this month.
Through the initiative Haircuts for the Homeless, Vilma helped in rallying together a team of hairstylists to the City Union Mission in Kansas City, Missouri to provide moments of wellness for homeless men and women on a special day last year. This included not only cuts, but also providing food, toiletries and most all, care and attention.
This altruistic act began when Vilma saw a social media request from her friend and photographer Jenny Wheat who does a lot of work with hairdressers. “My team and I were just devising a plan to go out and service the homeless when I saw Jenny’s post requesting hairdressers for the event. Jenny answered my prayer by jumping on it first. While she spearheaded Haircuts for the Homeless, I united our community of compassionate hairdressers for the event, and together we were able to make magic happen.”
Vilma said the men and women in the homeless community were overjoyed with the first event. “If you could see the looks on some of their faces while they were getting their hair done or receiving scalp, neck and shoulder massages— it was incredible. It was also eye-opening as I realized how much we take human touch for granted.”
Many of the people serviced that day were looking to re-enter into the workforce, or reconnect with families. One man, Vilma recalls, could not wait to send his daughter a picture of himself so she could see how well he looked.
“It’s incredible how one small, but very sincere idea, could manifest so much contribution from so many who wanted to make a difference for mankind,” Vilma says.
“A smile, an embrace, looking someone square in the eye and telling them how beautiful they are, I believe, helps to lift spirits and give people hope.”
Every day of every year, Aveda Artists and salons across the world engage in charitable acts of compassion and kindness. Through #BeautyHeals we are celebrating the people behind these stories, and invite you to search this hashtag for these inspiring stories.
If you are an Aveda Artist and have your own volunteering story to share, please do so using #BeautyHeals. By sharing and celebrating these stories we are paving the way for others to also give back— because passion begets passion.