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Heads up . . . Oamaru shop owner Zelie Allan is asking her customers to help young breast cancer sufferers feel better about hair loss. PHOTO: ASHLEY SMYTH

The discomfort of wig wearing while undergoing chemotherapy prompted Oamaru woman Zelie Allan to seek out a better option.

Mrs Allan, who owns clothing store Style 358 in Oamaru’s North End, has started a new fundraising initiative to help provide a more comfortable option for young breast cancer sufferers dealing with hair loss.

After going through her own battle with breast cancer in 2014, Mrs Allan had bought a wig with $400 Government funding for that purpose. But she found it uncomfortable, and too hot to wear in summer.

She recently came across some Australian-made bamboo headwear, designed by former supermodel Helena Christensen, and thought it would be a perfect alternative.

Customers who shopped at Style 358 can help with a “pay it forward” initiative by adding a donation on top of their purchase, either in store or online, to help towards paying for the turban-style headwear.

Mrs Allan had already covered half the cost of each turban, and then customer donations would cover the other half.

As of last week, nine turbans had been paid for. Prices varied and were around $69 to $99.

The headwear would then be sent to Shocking Pink – a charity designed to help young women aged 20 to 45 who have been diagnosed with breast cancer. Mrs Allan said the fundraiser would be ongoing, and she hoped the public would get behind it.

People could give anything from $1, and she had just had a customer pay for a whole turban.

“It’s just a drop in the ocean for one person to donate. But for the person who gets it, it’s massive,” she said.

The turbans were also available for purchase instore, for other cancer or alopecia sufferers.