3D printing is everywhere these days: From Valentine’s Day roses to exquisite culinary art, it seems like there’s no form that the space-age printing technology can’t achieve. But this development in 3D printing takes the possibilities to a whole new level.
Danielle Grillo runs Transitions Hair Solutions, a New Jersey company that offers prosthetic hairpieces for people who have lost their hair due to alopecia or cancer treatments. Three years ago, Grillo learned of an Italian manufacturing process that can 3D print perfect molds of clients’ heads, which can be used to make ultra-precise fitting hairpieces. Her company has been offering clients these 3D printing-assisted hairpieces ever since, using real virgin hair and perfect prosthetic scalps that match each individual client’s natural coloring to a T.
“Even the hairdressers can’t tell it’s a hairpiece,” says Sheri Valle, a cancer survivor who has been using one of Grillo’s 3D printed pieces for nine months.
When Valle’s hair started growing back after chemotherapy, she underwent precautionary radiation that killed her hair follicles. She feels lucky to have found Valle’s company pretty early on.
“I’ve had several comments,” Valle says. “People who have no idea it’s a hairpiece, saying ‘I love what you’ve done with your hair.’ You can also get highlights, change color. Straighten, curl. You can style it like you would any hair.”
Plus, the perfectly-fitting piece adapts to Valle’s body temperature. She loves that she can swim and do sports while wearing her hairpiece without any issues. “I could even surf in it!” she jokes.
“I survived this cancer,” she says. “Now I’ve gotta live.”
Have you had any amazing encounters with 3D printing? Tell us @britandco!
(Photo via Transitions Hair Solutions)