Case study: Sonia Branco and Elsa Carvalho
They’re friends, they’re committed to making their clients look and feel great and now they’re students together on TrichoCare Education’s Level 4 Certificate trichology course. Sonia Branco is an advanced nurse practitioner, with special expertise in skin care. She also runs her own aesthetics salon, offering fillers and PRP treatments. Her friend Elsa Carvalho is an experienced senior stylist who works in a London salon, and specialises in Brazilian keratin treatments.
“Our families have been friends for ages”, says Elsa, “and Sonia and I reconnected when I moved from Portugal to London a few years ago. Since then we’ve talked and talked about moving our careers forward, learning new skills and maybe even working together in the future.” Now they’ve decided to go for it.
“It was Elsa who first became interested in trichology”, says Sonia, “but the courses she found were expensive and very time-consuming. Then after the COVID lockdowns we both were seeing more and more clients suffering hair loss and hair thinning. We could see they had problems, but we didn’t know the solutions. That’s why we both decided to take another look at trichology – to understand the real causes of our clients’ problems and be able to offer them proper help and advice.”
After just a little more research, they found their way to TrichoCare Education. “Their Level 4 course was much more accessible than anything we’d seen before – because we could study online in our own time and because of the cost”, says Elsa. “It was Sonia who finally said: ‘Elsa, let’s stop putting this off. This is definitely the course you should be taking. And if you do it, I will too – I love a challenge!’”.
Sonia and Elsa are just a few weeks into the course, and even though they both have busy lives, are already racing ahead in their studies. “At first, I did find the scientific words hard to understand – and pronounce as well”, laughs Elsa. “But Sonia has been helping me. She’s had a lot of academic training, so the anatomy and physiology, for example, were easier for her. But when it gets to the structure of the hair, that’s when I’ll be helping her!”
Sonia has taken many training and academic courses in the past, so she knows a good course when she sees it. “TrichoCare’s course is high quality and comprehensive. And it comes in bite-size chunks too, so you can absorb the information easily, and pause when you want to. It’s also very visual, with lots of illustrations, which is really important, especially for creative people, like Elsa.”
Sonia and Elsa get on really well, and are staying in regular contact. “What’s great is we can help each other when one of us has a problem. And we can challenge each other too – there’s no slacking when you have a friend to urge you to keep on going!” says Sonia.
Once they’ve successfully finished the course, they both see lots of opportunities to put their new knowledge, and qualification, into practice. “We know there’s such a need out there – look at hair loss among the Afro-Caribbean community, and hair loss in men, for example. They need trained people who understand the root causes underlying hair and scalp problems. And who offer clients an informed diagnosis and, above all, hope,” says Sonia.
Who knows? The two good friends may one day go into business together offering trichology consultations. Whatever happens, you can be sure they’ll not just complete the course successfully, but devote their new expertise to helping and advising their many current and future clients.
So if you’re thinking of studying trichology with TrichoCare, why not find a buddy and study together? It’s certainly working for Sonia and Elsa!