The Neiman Marcus flagship store in downtown Dallas is offering more than high-end shopping. Now, nestled in the historic commercial building is a space that provides support during the hardest part of some people’s lives.
Take the elevator up to the sixth floor, past the famous Zodiac restaurant and the Michael Flores Salon, and you'll find a new establishment called Hopemore. This spa is the only one in North Texas that specializes in services for those experiencing injury, recovery from elective procedures or illness.
Jeanna Doyle launched Hopemore in November after working for more than 25 years in oncology aesthetics and corrective makeup. Doyle had worked with plastic surgeons and then dabbled in advertising, but changed course when one of her friends was diagnosed with cancer.
“I kind of helped her navigate her appearance-related changes, and I realized when I helped her, I knew a lot about this,” Doyle says of her friend. “So that became a moment for me when I realized the tools I have could help people in a really important way.”
After leaving her career in advertising, Doyle launched Suite HOPE — the letters stand for Helping Oncology Patients Esthetically — as a nonprofit that she used to help women manage the changes in their appearance while they go through cancer treatment.
“With cancer, your looks can give you away before you decided to tell family and friends,” Doyle says. “Whereas with heart disease maybe people wouldn’t know and you could still have that privacy. But cancer is very different; when you start treatment it can give away your privacy.”
Hopemore aims to make clients feel comfortable, not only by offering services for those going through illnesses, but also by allowing everyone visiting the spa to remain anonymous.
It's impossible to tell which client is looking for help with an autoimmune disease, covering scars or just there for a great facial, Doyle says.
“It’s really a trifecta of things: It’s help with the wigs, it’s help with the makeup, it’s help with the skincare. It’s not an either-or,” Doyle says. “And after that, we want anonymity. We want privacy, people can tell people or not tell people.”
But while Hopemore maintains a level of privacy, it seems that clients can’t keep their mouths shut about the facility.
“We found that about 80% of our clients now are oncology because there’s so much need. ... People are Google searching and finding us — it’s incredible," Doyle says. "And people with other factors that are health-related other than cancer, too. People with other things like autoimmune are coming to us because we exist, so the feedback has been incredible.”
The Hopemore started a "Pay it Forward" program that allows clients to donate a dollar amount for people who need services but can't afford them.
“I feel like when a person’s physical attributes change so drastically and are generally less desirable changes, it can be mentally challenging and discouraging,” says Kim H., one of Doyle’s clients. “Their help has really helped me embrace the new person I have become since being diagnosed with cancer, and helped me regain my confidence.”
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Hammerton says her skin became fragile after she started treatment for cancer, and the staff at Hopemore have helped her replace the products that now cause her irritation. Hammerton says she also got help finding a wig to fit for her face shape, and with her thinning eyebrows and eyelashes.
“When you get cancer, you are told, no more massages, facials and nails. Risk of infection is high,” says Hammerton. “For me, that was a normal part of my life. It left me feeling like cancer was taking everything that I enjoyed away from me and changing my body image of myself. Then, to be surprised with a complimentary facial finder by donations just makes your day.”
Olivia P. just scheduled her fourth visit to Hopemore. Previously, she had received services on a number of things including scalp treatment, tips and tricks on how to create the illusion of eyebrows and eyelashes, and a facial.
“Having cancer is a scary place to be, and having these beautiful ladies guide you through some of the more personal issues with regards to your appearance, skin care and hair loss issues is a tremendous help,” Popplewell says. “Their assistance has allowed me to be out in the world with friends and family and know I look my best. Everyone wants to be as normal as possible, right?”