- Acceleration Program in Tokyo for Women
Armonia, LLCMasumi Tsunoda
Tell us about the products of Armonia
Armonia is dealing in LINOLEA, which is a headscarf product for women. This is a scarf to be used by women who have lost their hair due to aging, illness or surgery. It is not a simple cloth-like scarf but instead, it is shaped to enable easy putting on and taking off. This shape has been created for ill people whose hands may shake, or people who have just undergone surgery and are facing difficulty in lifting their hands for a long time.
At present, four kinds are offered and we are planning to offer more kinds in the future. They can be purchased from EC sites and have also been handled at hospitals and in wig shops.
Since LINOLEA will be put on the head instead of a wig, we thought it is in a competitive relationship with wigs.
In fact, LINOLEA and wigs are in a complementary relationship. Wigs take some time to wear and are troublesome to wear for a long time. On the other hand, LINOELA is very easy to wear because you just have to put it on your head. In other words, the image of wigs is a suit for formal scenes, while that of LINOLEA is casual wear such as jeans.
Tell us the background that led to the development of LINOELA.
I was affected by multiple alopecia in the past. I used to wear a wig, caring about my physical appearance, but wigs were expensive and I worried if I was wearing them properly. One day, when I wrapped my scarf around my head, I received lots of compliments from many people.
As I am a woman, I felt happy when I was praised as having style. I was a bit depressed due to alopecia, but I could act cheerfully thanks to this experience. With hopes to convey this feeling to everyone, I decided to found Armonia and create LINOLEA.
Tell us about the customers' reactions.
First, we were selling it with uncertainty; we had doubts about whether there are real needs, so we were happy when we actually received positive feedback. Customers are telling us they just wanted these kinds of products.
Existing head-covering scarves are overly designed for ill people and are not charming. Moreover, normal hats are made based on people with hair so you feel itchy if you have no hair. In that regard, LINOELA can be easily put on and taken off and is a product gentle on the skin, making customers happy.
In particular, women suffering breast cancer lose their breasts and hair, symbols of woman, and thus many of them feel depressed. I would be happy if LINOLEA creates an opportunity for them to feel a bit cheerful.
Tell us about the future developments.
In addition to Armonia, we established an association for multiple alopecia called Alopecia Style Project. We hope that people like us can actively participate in society through these activities.
We are aiming to have people suffering alopecia fit in society by being recognized that some of them prefer wigs while others prefer scarves instead of being recognized as having a complex about having no hair.