Jessica-Jane Clement comes to the aid of Yemzi, whose trip to a hair salon ended in a headache, and Rosie, whose hand was left scarred after a dermal anchor piercing went wrong.
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My name's Jessica-Jane Clement. When I'm not modelling or protecting you
from being scammed on The Real Hustle, I'm at the beauticians trying out new treatments.
But I've learnt from my experience
that it can be like the Wild West out there!
In most parts of the country you, me, or anyone can open up a salon.
You don't need qualifications to practise and I can tell you
from experience there's some shocking work out there.
A few years ago, I had some lip fillers and ended up
with two small hard lumps in the middle of my lips.
Each week we're going to be investigating
various beauty disaster stories and try to discover what went wrong.
Tonight, the latest piercing trend ends in disaster.
With the piercing needle, they were splitting open my skin.
It went a really dark black colour
and to find that they could have caused severe nerve damage
in my hand, that could ruin somebody's life.
I take the salon responsible to task.
-It's not a scar, that's an open wound.
-It's an open wound from where a piercing was removed.
And a treatment for longer locks leaves one girl with a small bald patch.
The middle of my scalp had basically been ripped off from my head.
I smelled her hair and it smelled like off cheese.
Oh, my God!
Us Brits love to pamper ourselves
and we spend a whopping £4 billion on salon treatments.
But not everybody who steps out of the salon is a happy customer.
As 20-year-old Yemzi Akinbade from Bournemouth, found out.
Before the treatment I had a really full head of hair
and it was really healthy and now it's really dry and brittle
and I've got bald patches.
As a fashion student and part-time model,
Yemzi likes to change her hairstyle almost as often as her clothes.
I've done so many photo shoots and catwalks. Looks are so important.
I enjoy it cos I like to express myself in front of the camera
and it's fun to have my makeup done, try on loads of different outfits and stuff.
When I was young, I used to have braids. I used to relax my hair.
I've had weaves, done so many different things.
For her latest look, Yemzi wanted long luxurious locks,
but on a student budget, so she headed to the capital
to get a good deal.
It's only £25 in London whereas it's about £125 in Bournemouth.
There's a small black population in Bournemouth so they charge more money.
This is the photo when I was in the hair salon
and thought I looked quite funny when my hair was braided down so I took a photo.
Yemzi had a weave. Extensions were sewn onto braids of her own hair.
Afro-Caribbean hair gives when it's platted,
so to make sure it stayed in, it had to be snug.
When you get weaves, they are really tight so you expect to have a headache for a few days,
but she got about halfway through
and I decided to take a Paracetamol because I was in so much pain.
I felt like I was having a panic attack or something.
The next few days I was still feeling really bad
and then the hair stopped hurting.
From there, everything was fine.
Yemzi hit the town with her new long locks, but three weeks later
her dream weave turned into a hair horror.
I noticed the smell and that's when
I realised that the weave had obviously gone wrong.
One sniff from Mum and it seemed less of a hairy,
more of a dairy problem lay beneath her weave.
I smelled her hair and it smelled like off cheese
and I turned round and said she needs to take her hair out...
and see what it was.
I had noticed that hair was just coming out as I was unbraiding it.
Then I saw a wound. I was seeing blood and an open wound.
-That was when I phoned the doctors.
-I was just really shocked.
I knew there was a smell, but I wasn't expecting
that it was because my scalp had been ripped off of my head.
Yemzi's kept her lost locks as evidence of her hair horror.
That's actually my skin where's it's been pulled off
and that's what was making the smell.
Hair extensions are big business. Our favourites are made
from human hair and next to the US and China, little old Britain
buys more than any other nation.
With a sewn in weave,
your hair's braded and extensions are stitched on.
But overuse of extensions can lead to long term hair loss.
Yemzi Akingbade went to a professional salon to get
her weave, but she believes the hair stylist got it so wrong
she's now been left with a small bald patch.
So she's packed her bag of evidence and come to meet me,
so I can see the damage for myself.
I look forward to seeing Jess and hopefully she can get me some help
because I really don't know what to do now.
-Hi, nice to meet you.
-Nice to meet you, too. How are you?
-I'm good, thanks, how are you?
-Good, thank you. Shall we have a seat?
What did you have done and why have it done in the first place?
I wanted a new look and I didn't want to touch my hair with chemicals
so I went for the weave and it's meant to protect my hair,
but in the end it made it worse.
When did you know something wasn't right?
The centre was tender to touch so I thought that was a bit odd.
-There was no pain for the rest of the time. It was only when it smelt.
-What does it smell like?
-My mum said it smelled like mouldy cheese.
The only think I was worried about was how many people had smelled it.
-That was the main thing I was concerned about.
It was really embarrassing.
I just had to take it off.
I felt so disgusting in myself and as I was undoing it,
it was fine, and I got to the centre and hair came out.
-Like the scalp was coming with it.
Bits of the scalp were coming with it.
It was attached with some hair that I've got with me.
-So this is your scalp?
-This is my hair and the end is the scalp.
-So have you still got a bald patch now?
-Can I have a look?
-It's just here.
-That looks so painful!
-It doesn't actually hurt.
I'd be so angry.
That goes right the way down there as well.
It looks like it's really bumped as well, like it's scarred.
-How's that affected the modelling?
-I was going to do hair modelling
but I couldn't with a bald patch.
-So it's actually costing you money now?
I'd like to look into what's happened cos we don't know why you lost your hair
-and secondly, I want to see if there's anything I can do to help you.
Hopefully, I can get my hair back.
Yes, we want to get your natural hair back.
I've got scabs on my hair. I don't know if my hair can grow back
but fingers crossed.
Body piercing's become big business
and in the last ten years the number of salons
and piercing parlours on our high street has more than doubled.
You might be surprised to hear that there's
no official piercing qualification
which is worrying because the latest craze, dermal piercing,
involves implanting a stud or a gem into parts of your body
and if it goes wrong, getting it out can be a nightmare.
As 22-year-old beauty junkie, Rosie Todman from Gloucester
found out to her cost.
I use fake tan,
get my nails done,
have my eyebrows dyed,
teeth whitening, just the home kit.
When I think about it it's quite a bit!
The more is more approach applies to piercings too.
My first real piercing was my belly button.
and I had that done when I was 12.
I used to have my tongue pierced and my nose pierced.
Once you've had one piercing, you feel like, "What can I get done next?"
And then Rosie decided to take the plunge
and get her first ever dermal anchor at her local piercing parlour.
That's the place where I've had most of my piercings done so that's why I went there.
I just thought it would add that extra little bit of sparkle.
Rosie picked her gem and braved the procedure.
You've actually got to cut a hole out
and push through the hole they've made with a plate which has
a screw on it which they then screw the gem on top.
All was well for a few weeks until the sparkly gem fell off
and then her problems started.
I first noticed when I was walking back into my office
and I pushed the door open and I noticed that the gem
was missing and it looked really red and quite swollen.
I know you should have been able to see the screw coming
out of the skin which the gem screws on and I couldn't see that any more.
Two days later Rosie went back to Kara to ask the piercers for help.
"Do you realise that the plate had sunken a little bit into my skin?"
One of the piercing team tried to dig the lost anchor out of her hand.
She was struggling trying to get it out.
My hand was bleeding, I felt a bit faint
cos I'd been in pain for the last half an hour, 40 minutes.
But there was worse to come.
Then she just stopped and said "Oh, we're shutting now,
"Come back tomorrow."
I felt like I've went through that pain and they didn't have
the courtesy to ask me nicely to leave,
It was just like "We're shutting now.
"You'll have to come back tomorrow."
Rosie was sent away with the anchor still embedded
and an open wound in her hand.
She returned the next day.
This time staff turned DIY doctors in their attempt
to remove the anchor.
With a piercing needle, they were slitting open my skin.
She put her fingers down on my hand
and was sort of like squeezing it out, like that.
And suddenly she just said "I've lost it" to her friend.
It was just like a rip basically, in my hand.
Gobsmackingly, the piercers asked Rosie to leave.
It was time to shut up shop. Again!
Rosie finally turned to the local hospital for help.
It went like a really dark sort of black colour. I had it x-rayed.
They could tell by where it was that it was around some nerves
so they had to be careful.
They said that I had to have what was in my hand removed
and go under a general aesthetic
so they could open up my hand properly in a sterile environment
to get it out.
Then to find out that they could have caused severe nerve damage
in my hand - that could ruin somebody's life.
On the advice of doctors, Rosie went back to Kara to report
her injury, but felt humiliated
when she was offered a free piercing or vouchers as compensation.
They didn't care if I was left with a scar. That's the most upsetting thing. They just didn't care at all.
I've travelled to Gloucester to meet Rosie
to find for out myself how a microdermal
could have landed her in A&E.
This is a new trend and is seemingly quite dangerous
so I want to meet Rosie and find out what it's all about
and how she is now.
So, dermal implants. I've heard a little bit about them.
-Why did you want one done?
-It's a new piercing that was out
and I was up for seeing what it was like and also,
cos it's quite a girly piercing cos all you're left with is just a gem.
Can you explain exactly what went wrong?
The ball came off the top cos it wasn't screwed on tight enough
so I just went back in there for them to screw the ball back on.
Unfortunately, it wasn't high enough so she tried to pull it out
and was digging around, trying to get underneath it.
She just told me the shop was shutting and I'd have to come back.
-So they actually sent you home with an open wound?
-And then you went back the next day?
She then got a piercing needle and was trying to slit open my skin
to open it up.
-That must have been so, so painful!
-It was horrible!
I did say to them, "Should I go to hospital to have this removed?"
and she said, "No, the hospital won't do anything different
"than what we're doing."
She dug her thumbnails around it
and was trying to squeeze it out through the cut,
but instead, she pushed on the plate too hard and then they told me
-the shop was shutting.
-A second time they told you it was shutting?
Then did you go the hospital afterwards?
Yeah, I saw the hand surgeon and he said
because of all the nerves and the arteries
that are right where the piercing was embedded in my skin,
he said I'd have to go under general aesthetic to remove it.
Can I ask what are you actually left with now?
Sort of like a scar, like a bubbly kind of scar.
At the time, I felt quite angry and now I feel quite upset
because it caused quite a lot of trauma in my life
and I had been going there for many years as well
and I do feel let down by them.
-Well, I'm going to do my best to get some answers for you.
I want to find out more about this microdermal craze,
so I'm going back to basics,
starting by seeing the procedure for myself.
I've got an appointment with one of the countries top piercing experts
and he's going to show me
how a proper dermal piercing should be done.
Dave Potasnick has over 20 years experience in piercing
and dermal implants.
-Hiya, I'm Dave.
Dave has set up his own training school to demonstrate
how this very new trend should be done.
# I can't look at your skin Cos it's doing me in. #
Basically, I'm on a bit of a research mission
because I met a girl called Rosie and now I've got
loads of reservations about those dermal implants.
-This is what happened to her.
What are your thoughts straightaway when you see that?
Um, that's not the prettiest picture.
If microdermal's done properly, it shouldn't look like this.
So can I see one of these implants?
This is a very standard microdermal that we put in.
The top unscrews so you can change them for different sizes
and different colour gems. It goes into the skin
like putting a foot into a shoe.
So the longer part goes in first and the smaller heel just sits
under the skin and that holds it in place.
What would you do if one of your clients came back
and they'd lost the top and the implant had started to embed?
If we could easily see the top, we'd screw the top back on,
tell them to keep it clean,
get them to come back a couple of days later to have a check.
If it was worse than that, we'd tell them to go and see a GP or casualty.
We've got someone here who can show you how microdermal's done.
-Yeah, can I see?
-Yep, no problem.
To start, Dave uses an antiseptic to sanitise the area.
So what I'm going to do is pinch the skin up.
I'll make the little incision with my punch,
take the punch away, there'll be the little core of skin.
It will either come with the punch of just be left.
I'll pluck that out the way.
There'll be a little hole in her wrist
and then it's popping the dermal in...
getting it down to the right level,
wiggling it about...
take the clamps off.
You'll probably bleed a little bit and then mop it up
and it's ready to go.
How did that feel?
That felt fine. It didn't really hurt at all.
Now that I've seen a microdermal done for myself,
I can see that it does take great skill to get it right.
So make sure you thoroughly check out your piercer
before you take the plunge.
Yemzi Akingbade believes the weave she got in a London salon
has left her with a small bald patch.
I've brought her to meet Carol Michalaedes.
She's a top trichologist, or hair consultant to you and me.
Most people who come to see me are very worried
that they're losing their hair.
My job is to examine the hair and to examine the scalp
to work out what's going wrong, to see what we can do for them.
-Lovely to see you again.
-Do you think your hair can grow back?
I'll stay positive and say "yes."
-We're going to find out for sure now.
It's nine days since Yemzi discovered her scalp infection
and Carol's assessing whether she'll be bald forever.
-Quite a bit of trauma here, isn't there?
-Is it hurting?
It's not painful. Was it painful to begin with?
-It was painful when she was sewing it.
-And then it eased off?
-Yeah, I felt no pain...
-And when you took them out you felt no pain?
-Only a bit tender.
-Well, it's oozing a little bit.
It's still a tiny bit raw looking.
It is scabbing over.
-Before this was done, your scalp was fine?
No problems, you hadn't scratched yourself, banged yourself,
had any kind of accident?
Could Yemzi's bag of evidence hold the clue
to whether her scalp will recover?
-There you go.
I mean, you can see that there's a lot of scalp matter in there
so it's been oozing and weeping so clearly there's been an infection.
It would seem that a lot of hair has been lost from the actual follicle
so some of the hair would have come away as a result of the infection,
some of it's broken off as a result of taking out the weave,
putting in the weave too tightly, taking it out again.
Do we know what's caused this?
I think this is unusual damage to see as a result of a sewn-in weave.
I think that it was sewn in too tightly.
-So it sounds like I should speak to the salon about this.
-Yes, I think so.
I think really in light of the fact that she was complaining,
she didn't feel well, it would have been sensible for
the hairdresser to say, "I'm not too happy about carrying on with this."
How fully will the hair grow back?
On the actual sites where the scalp is injured,
you've got the wounds, it looks like that will scar
and hair doesn't generally grown on scar tissue.
Around the sites, the tissue looks fine
and that hair should grow back normally
and my feeling is enough of that hair will grow back to cover
the scar tissue you're left with so I don't want to paint
a gloomy prospect, but you will end up with a little bit of scarring.
-Thank you very much.
Well, that was mixed news for Yemzi
because, although she'll have a scar, hair should grow around the scar and cover it up.
But it is clear from what our expert said that something did go wrong
with that weave and I've got some serious questions for that salon.
Rosie Todman's microdermal ended up with a trip to A&E.
So I've come to meet top hand surgeon Matt James in London
to get his expert opinion on Rosie's case.
I can't put an exact figure on it
but I've seen, in the last year or so, maybe 10 or 15
of these implants get snagged and tear out.
If you're using your hands and you have something on the skin,
the chances of it pulling out within a year are high.
So this is a picture of Rosie's hand.
As you can see, she has a scar in-between the first web of the hand
which is fairly deep,
and the implant, I believe, is still deep within the skin at this stage.
My worry is those small nerves right underneath the skin.
There is also muscle underneath the skin
and some tendon in that region as well.
If you're prodding around blindly, and we teach our trainees
in hand surgery that you should never prod around blindly
in the hand as you can damage these nerves.
So what would recommend if somebody had a problem like this?
Don't put a transdermal implant in to the back of the hand
because it's going to snag and pull out.
If you develop an infection in your transdermal implant,
you need to see your GP
or your local accident and emergency department.
If the implant goes under the surface and is infected
then it need to be fished out by somebody who knows the anatomy of the surrounding regions
so you don't cause damage to the underlying structures.
I don't believe most therapists know the anatomy of the region as they're not trained hand surgeons.
I've collected my evidence
and now I want to get some answers from the salons responsible.
Yemzi wanted a striking new look, but not one like this!
Our hair expert says the reason why she has her bald patch here
is that the weave was put in too tight.
Rosie's trend-setting treatment ended up in surgery.
and out hand specialist says the reason why this was,
was because the piercers should have never tried
to retrieve that dermal implant.
I want to talk to the people responsible
so I'll try and contact them. Let's hope they want to talk to me.
Yemzi's been told she could be left with a small bald patch forever.
I want to help to give her a new style that will cover her blushes
and the problem patch. So I've arranged an appointment
with super stylist, Vernon Francoise.
You won't see what I'm doing on you today.
-You're going to be blindfolded.
-How does that sound?
Quite odd, but it's OK.
We're blindfolding Yemzi
because we want her new look to be a complete surprise.
Vernon firmly believes it's better to work with the natural texture
of Afro-Caribbean hair rather than going for damaging weaves.
Many people think that the tighter you go the more secure
it will be and it's something I really disagree with,
so obviously by putting the thread through and tying it
to knot it and secure it lifts the scalp and over a period of time
causes soreness and the scalp to rebel against that
and it ends up being an open wound, which is quite devastating.
Yemzi lusts after long locks,
but Vernon's not going to give her length, he's giving her hair height.
If it's long and it's long in a certain way, it looks great,
you'd be happy with that?
-Yeah, I just want it to look the best it can.
This hairstyle's going to subtract the fact that there's a gaping hole
in Yemzi's crown centre
and emphasise the ethnicity of Afro hair.
I think I'm going to like it.
From the finished result which you will see,
you will never ever think you've had any problems with your hair before.
-If anything, I would assume now people will come up to you,
-going "Oh, my God, I love your hair!".
-Let's hope so.
After over three hours of styling, Yemzi's new look is complete.
-I want to open them!
That's amazing. I love it!
Our main focus was obviously the situation at this crown here
with the open wound but now you're trying to look for it, to find it.
-I can't even notice it now.
At the same time, I wanted to give you length but shape.
How will you feel walking out of the salon
after everything you went through?
I think I'm going to strut out of the salon.
-I feel so much better about myself.
-Just go off and have fun
and don't be scared to embrace the beauty of your hair.
You've restored my faith in hairdressers and I want to come back
and get it touched up because I love it so much, I really do.
I've had a major breakthrough.
I'm on my way to Kara, which is the salon responsible
for Rosie's microdermal nightmare
because the manager has agreed to meet me face to face
so this should be interesting.
As far as Rosie's concerned, they haven't taken her ordeal seriously.
So, I'm heading to Gloucester to confront the salon with the facts.
The staff's actions ended in major surgery for Rosie.
I want to convince them to stop putting dermal piercings
into the hands
and also stop them from trying to remove them themselves.
I'm putting my case to the manager
in charge of the salon who has agreed to meet me on camera.
Hello, Carl? I'm Jess.
I've got a picture of what Rosie was left with afterwards.
I'd just like to get your opinion on that. What you have to say about it?
Well, it doesn't look... Yeah, it doesn't look nice.
-It looks quite painful.
-It looks very painful, I agree.
I'm a body piercer and I see lots of scarring.
It's not a scar though, that's an open wound.
It's an open wound from where a piercing's been removed.
I wouldn't deny that it looks horrific to look at.
How could a dermal implant been embedded so deep
that you couldn't actually remove it?
From what I'm aware, the piercing was OK for the first month or two,
then the ball came off.
Then they had an attempt at putting the gem back on to the bar.
They couldn't do it. They asked her if she'd pop back in in the morning.
She didn't come back for 24 hours.
By that time, the skin had grown over the top,
it was very deeply embedded.
Why wasn't she sent to hospital straightaway
instead of sending her home with an open wound on her hand?
The day she came in, the piercer was on her own.
The next day, there was two piercers so she was hoping by getting some assistance
to help push down around the area and expose the bar,
she'd be able to screw the ball on, but it didn't work.
How come it took so long of prodding and pushing,
basically hurting her, to get it out and then being unsuccessful,
told to come back the next day and it was still unable to come out?
We couldn't actually get to it.
I don't believe that was out fault.
She may have slept on it that night or bruised it,
but it was clearly too difficult to get to
and we may have caused further injury by trying to remove it.
We never go out intentionally to hurt anybody.
We want to make every customer happy and there's been many successful piercings over the years.
I spoke to a hand expert, who informed me that under no circumstances
should anybody remove using these. That should be left up to a surgeon with a scalpel.
I don't think it's a surgeon's job to remove a dermal piercing.
It's a piece of jewellery which is several millimetres long
and a couple of millimetres under the skin.
I've removed some successfully myself, as have the other piercers.
It isn't that difficult apart from when it goes wrong.
But we could never have foresaw that it could go so horrifically wrong.
-If this happened again, you'd send them to the hospital.
Our expert said under no circumstances
should a dermal implant ever be in the hand,
simply because you do sleep on it, you do move it,
It's the most mobile part of your body. What would you have to say?
I wouldn't do a dermal piercing at present.
Not until we're absolutely sure what went wrong here.
We will continue our surface piercings,
what we've done for the last 20 years...
Well, 15 years, here. And we'll sit and discuss
exactly where we're going to go on dermal piercing.
Is there anything you'd like to say to Rosie?
Of course, I'd like to say I'm sorry.
Sorry for causing her any discomfort and pain.
We hoped that she would have jewellery that would last forever.
I'm very apologetic for that and I hope the scar heals up
and she has no future problems.
That's a massive result. and fair play to the manager.
He's clearly taken the issues seriously
and has agreed to review his dermal anchor procedure.
And they certainly won't be doing any more dermal piercings
in the hand in the foreseeable future.
I'm really pleased that Jess went into Kara's
and that they are apologetic as well.
I'm pleased to hear that they're not doing the mircodermal piercings
in the hand for the time being
and I hope that they make this a permanent decision.
And I've also heard back from the salon who gave Yemzi her weave.
Whilst they declined our request to be interviewed
they did tell us that the hairdresser who gave Yemzi her weave
has been doing them for over 15 years.
The salon also say Yemzi said she was comfortable when they asked
about the tightness of the weave
and believe Yemzi's scalp infection was not caused by their treatment.
She got a pair of tweezers and was just ripping my eyelids apart.
What were you using that caused this client of yours to end up in A&E?
I don't go out unless I've coloured them in.
-Is that one going up a bit higher than the other one?
I'd be so angry!
The nurse said "It looks to me like they've used superglue."
If I'd had known, I'd never had got them done.
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
E-mail [email protected]
In most parts of the UK, the beauty industry is unregulated. It's up to beauticians and hairdressers to get qualifications, so anyone could open up a salon. Be sure that when you book in for a treatment you're putting your looks in the hands of a pro, or, as Jessica-Jane Clement finds out in this consumer series, it could turn ugly.
Young student and model Yemzi wanted long flowing locks on a student budget, but a trip to a salon ended in a headache. Weeks later her mum raised the alarm to a foul odour emitting from Yemzi's scalp which 'smelt like gone-off cheese'. Now the wannabe model is left with a bald patch and a carrier bag of hair that she's saved as evidence.
Young piercing addict Rosie visited her local salon to get the latest trend, a dermal anchor. But when the stud implanted in her hand went missing the piercers tried and failed to dig it out with a needle, and then sent her home with an open wound when the shop closed for the day. Rosie's nightmare ended in surgery and she is now left with a scarred hand.
Jess is on the case, helping return Yemzi's hair back to its former glory and fighting Rosie's corner when she gets a face-to-face meeting with piercing parlour responsible.