Serenity Wig Salon offers solutions and compassion
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Serenity Wig Salon offers solutions and compassion

“I think part of what keeps our clients coming back is that we’re really good at empathizing with what they’re going through.”

Chami Saks styles a wig at Serenity Wig Salon (Photo by Olivia Pasquarelli)
Chami Saks styles a wig at Serenity Wig Salon (Photo by Olivia Pasquarelli)

What began as a wig salon to serve Orthodox women has broadened its reach to provide a needed service to cancer patients and others experiencing hair loss.

Chami Saks, the owner and founder of Serenity Wig Salon on Murray Avenue, launched her business with the Jewish community in mind — those Orthodox women who cover their hair out of modesty. She said she noticed a need for quality wigs after searching for one for herself.

With a cosmetology license and a love for hair, Saks transformed her basement into a small studio to start her wig salon. She opened her first storefront five years ago and has since relocated as the business grew.

Shortly after opening the salon, Saks realized that the demand for quality wigs extended far beyond the Jewish community.

“There was an even larger need than I expected,” Saks said. “I would say probably about 85% of our clientele are hair loss-related. That’s a huge amount, and it’s not just people going through chemo and alopecia. There are so many different types of hair loss.”

Serenity Wig Salon prides itself on fostering strong relationships with its clients and creating an atmosphere where people feel comfortable and confident, regardless of what brings them into the salon.

“We love our clients,” Saks said. “We all talk about how much we love doing wigs in particular because everyone has a story. We can really build connections with people and they trust us, and it’s almost like it turns into more of a relationship.”

The rest of the team at Serenity Wig Salon, including manager Polina Neft, likewise values the connections they have with their clients.

“I think part of what keeps our clients coming back is that we’re really good at empathizing with what they’re going through,” Neft said. “We are genuinely just here to listen and help whenever they want help, and I think they really respond well to that. It’s like just having a team of support behind you.”

Alexandra Paes, a client since 2021, shares this sense of relationship.

After experiencing hair loss following her diagnosis of Hodgkin’s lymphoma, Paes said she visited multiple salons in search of a suitable wig. Through much trial and error, Paes said she eventually found Serenity Wig Salon after learning that many Jewish women wear wigs.

“When I started researching more about the Jewish community in Pittsburgh, I ended up linking with Serenity Wig Salon,” Paes said. “I found them online, called and made my first appointment there, not really sure what to expect.”

She said that she immediately felt the welcoming and warm atmosphere, and her positive experiences continued as she chose a wig.

“Not only did they take the time to know me, my story and why this was so important to me, but they did an absolutely phenomenal job matching me up with something that was truly going to make me feel beautiful,” Paes said. “They helped me feel like I wasn’t a cancer patient, I wasn’t sick, I wasn’t whatever I had been all of these years. Instead, they took the time to ask who do you want to be and what do you want to be.”

Saks said that she and her team do everything they can to ensure their clients are happy.

“We really encourage people to come back if they have any problems,” Saks said. “Because first of all, it’s an investment, and second, it’s your hair and your confidence. For women to feel good with their hair is such a big deal, so we’ve basically begged clients to come back if they aren’t perfectly happy.”

Through her experience as a wig-wearer, Saks could understand what makes a quality wig. Using her expertise, she began her own line, the Lola wig line, named after her grandmother who survived the Holocaust.

The wigs are made with real human hair and can be customized to the clients’ tastes through their choice of color and cut.

While wigs remain the salon’s primary specialty, Serenity Wig Salon offers an extensive list of services, including spa treatments and hair care. The business continues to grow, with new products and services anticipated shortly, according to Saks.

“I’m always wanting to do more and more with my business,” Saks said, “It’s all very exciting. I have an awesome team, so when you have a good team, you feel like you can do more.” PJC

Kathleen Gianni can be reached at

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