South Jersey stylist Martino Cartier on a mission to give every cancer patient a free wig

SEWELL, NJ (WPVI) — A South Jersey stylist has made it his mission to help women battle cancer by helping them overcome a major obstacle: their hair.

Every day at the Martino Cartier Salon, a brave cancer patient like Laura Donovan sits on a chair while Martino himself shaves her head.

The celebrity stylist’s reputation precedes him.

“My oncologist told me that in Sewell, New Jersey, there is a man who gives wigs to women with breast cancer. So I looked for him,” said Donovan, who hails from Yardley.

What she found is a man on a mission to give every cancer patient a wig that looks like their real hair for free.

“My job is to make them look truly cancer-free for free, and that’s what we’ve done with the wigs we use,” said Cartier, who founded his nonprofit, Wigs and Wishes, 12 years ago.

“A woman walked in and couldn’t find a wig that didn’t look like a wig,” he said.

His secret is to create wigs with hand-tied, pierced scalps that match the person’s skin tone.

“If the tin man needed a wig, the scalp would look tinny because it’s completely transparent,” he said.

To call his product popular is an understatement. He gets calls from all over the world about his wigs. Salons register with him for free and help him distribute more than 25,000 wigs a year.

“Our motto is if you don’t know how to give, you don’t know how to live — and we give joy, we give love,” he said.

In about a year, the salon will move to the Cartier family property, where there will be more space, private rooms for the wigs, events and even a petting zoo with over 100 animals.

“It’s like a women’s resort. They’ll come in while they’re doing their hair. You’ll see alpacas out the window, llamas, mini horses, all rescued,” Cartier said.

It is a dream larger than life and rooted in life, like Donovan’s, that Cartier is working so hard to change.

“To all my sisters out there, you are stronger than cancer,” Donovan said.

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https://6abc.com/wigs-for-wishes-martino-cartier-sewell-new-jersey-breast-cancer/12297741/ South Jersey stylist Martino Cartier on a mission to give every cancer patient a free wig

Alley Einstein

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