We had the good fortune of connecting with Christie Valdiserri and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Christie, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
My thought process behind starting my own business, The Baldtourage was that I wanted to have somewhere to go to feel less alone and to be surrounded by other women who can relate to how I feel about being bald. It is hard enough to lose all of your hair, but to lose all of your hair and to feel alone, is a thousand times more difficult. I started a mini business back in high school, teaching dance classes out of my parents’ basement. Being my own boss is just in my blood!
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am a model and a dancer! I’ve been dancing for 22 years now, it is my passion! Dance has always brought me so much peace and happiness. After I lost my hair and got fired from a dance job, due to my hair loss, it suddenly became extremely hard for me to find myself again. It was dance that kept me going as well as moving across the country to Los Angeles. After hiding under a wig for about a year and a half, I finally found the courage to share my story. About a year after that I submitted myself to the Sports Illustrated Swim Open Casting and next thing I knew I had a centerfold in the 2020 edition as the first ever bald model! If I had never put myself out there, and revealed my truth, of being bald… I don’t know where I would be today. Probably still dealing with shame, regret, anger, and hopelessness. Some lessons I learned along the way, is to embrace who you are and to never ever ever give up. Even if it feels like it is all crumbling down in front of your eyes, find the strength to stand back up… it will be worth it. I want the world to know that I am unstoppable. Being bald is a symbol of strength, not of weakness, and true beauty comes from within!!! Oh and… it is time to NORMALIZE BALD WOMEN!
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Fun question!! We would definitely go to Catch LA and get fourteen rounds of their cauliflower haha that is my favorite food ever!!! We would hike Fryman and take in all the views! Obviously the beaches, either Malibu or Hermosa, two of my faves! I would probably drag them to a dance studio, because ummm we all need a little dance break! And lastly, Sage Organic Bistro is another all time favorite food spot!!! Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I dedicate this shoutout to THE BALDTOURAGE!!! My ladies, girlies, and mommas who are actively involved in this community I have created. They truly keep me going!!! Day in and day out, I message with some of the little girls’ moms and they just fully support me and everything I am about. It means a lot to me, as I navigate this new look on my own. They are also the most amazing parents to these little kiddies, doing everything they can to surround their children with other children who also have hair loss and are so open to giving them experiences to help them grow their confidence! The ladies, who range from ages 21- 65, in Baldtourage constantly lift me up, cheer me on, and support me! I can’t express it enough, how much they mean to me. Lastly, my kiddies. I teach them dance twice a week and they constantly remind me what is important and how to unconditionally love myself. It is the most beautiful thing.
Zammarroo Photography Robert Kazandjian