When thinking about covering my hair as a young kallah, I must admit I was afraid of it. Most of my friends had not had success when it came to their first wig purchases, and the process of finding a natural-looking wig was daunting. Unfortunately, my first wig purchase did end up falling short, and only after a few years did I learn through experience what I wanted and what made me feel like a true version of myself.
Thankfully, wigs have gone through a complete 360 since those times, and nowadays most sheitel machers have an open-ended conversation with their clients. A brand that is breaking down the barriers between wig customers and the wig industry is Talking Wigs. Talking Wigs, located on 3212 Avenue J in Brooklyn, is owned by Tamar Elkabats, whose mission is to cultivate a professional relationship with her customers.
She focuses on transforming your wig, whether it’s dull and not as natural as you’d like or just does not represent your inner beauty, to one that reflects who you are. You can contact Tamar at (718) 717-8777 or [email protected]. Find Talking Wigs on Instagram @talking.wigs. Jewish Press readers can enjoy a special offer: With mention of this article, you can trade in your old wig and take up to 50% off the purchase of any new wig (of the same length) and/or $100 off any wig repair.
Michal Goldfein: What inspired you to start your brand, Talking Wigs?
Tamar Elkabats: When I see women, I see hair. I believe that hair is the frame of the face and the extension of one’s personality. As I was growing up in a religious community, I noticed that most wigs looked the same. But I knew that my touch could bring out one’s personality in a unique and modest way. My creative mind has always been coming up with new styles and shapes. When a client walks into my salon, I right away see her face, figure, and colors. And within seconds I will have in my mind the right style for her.
We are all unique and we can play with hair in many different ways. The opportunities are countless here. One can create many different styles on the same wig. And that’s what inspired me to start Talking Wigs. I realized I have a unique vision and sense of style that is modest and elegant. I am sharing my talent with my clients and adding it to the standard of the Jewish fashion world in the 21st century.
Where did your love for craftsmanship come from?
I came from a very talented family. My mother used to run a bridal gemach salon. She was one of the top tailors in town. As a girl I was always interested in these little finishes and details. I got to learn how to sew from the best. Along with the passion I had for hairstyles, I did have the knowledge and the platform to go ahead and start creating wig masterpieces.
What challenges have you faced in starting your business?
For me there was no challenge. I have been able to experience my passion and revel in the craftsmanship and the art of beauty. While working with several brand names in the past, I got to learn different techniques. I was able to see the wig industry from inside out. That’s how I came up with my own wig idea based on my own technique where comfort meets luxury. Our wigs come with ultimate customer service to fulfill everyone’s needs.
You sell, rent, and repair wigs. What is your favorite part of the business?
My most favorite part of my business is reviving an old wig. I love repairs. I love sharing my vision with the client and laying out different options: a blend of colors, style, hair texture, and cuts. On top of it all, it won’t break the bank, which is very important for my clients. So wig transformation is the most exciting for both me and my clients.
What brands of wigs do you sell?
I carry my own line called Talking Wigs. Thanks to that I can offer my clients the ultimate warranty on sales and service.
What advice would you give someone looking to buy a new wig?
My advice would be to focus on what you are looking for. Remember, the style is the frame of your face; the color is the light of your face; and the texture is your personality. Finding the right professional to customize a wig for you is the key here. Personally, I always start with the individual needs of my clients. I offer a free consultation to ensure the most personalized experience, inclusive of custom color, texture, and style, with no middleman.
You are an expert in transforming an old wig into a new wig. Can you describe the process?
It all starts with the client’s needs. For instance, if a client has a problem that all the hair is falling in her eyes instead of going away from her face, I would suggest to her to add a lace front to the existing wig to ensure full control of the front. The process itself varies depending on the kind of repairs. I walk my client through every step of it. I will lay out the options, the cost, what would be more affordable, and what would last long. The repair shouldn’t take more than 10 days and it comes with a full warranty. Lace repairs have a limited warranty.
Lace-front wigs are on trend – what do you think of them?
I love them. They are lightweight and breathable, yet delicate. The lace will blend naturally with the scalp tone and feels just like a second skin for a natural and elegant look.
Do you think a wig can give a woman a dose of confidence?
We are taking an age-old mitzvah from forever ago and letting it evolve with the times. Like everything else, wigs have been evolving with time. Today a woman can follow the mitzvah and still look like herself, which is very empowering.
What are your goals for the future of Talking Wigs?
My ultimate goal has always been to understand each and every one of my clients, their true needs, and successfully come up with individual solutions for each one of them.