UZ Leuven teaches beauticians and hairdressers about special needs of cancer patients

February 2020 Healthy Living Willem van Altena
A cosmetic specialist applys some concealer to the lower eye area.

Beauty treatments for cancer patients? For the UZ Leuven this is an everyday reality. Twice already, the hospital has offered courses in this field for beauticians and hairdressers, together with the Leuven Cancer Institute (LKI) and the Institute For Professional Care (IFPC). A third course may take place later this year.

The training, which takes a year, points out the specific needs of cancer patients to the beauticians and hairdressers, and offers insights into ways of adapting their treatments in their salons for these special customers. Both patients and beauticians often lack knowledge about which products or techniques are preferable. But communication also forms part of the curriculum.


The beauty treatments can help the women cope with their situation and with the physical and mental consequences of cancer treatment. Hair loss and skin problems can make women feel extra insecure and unhappy.

During the course, that comprises 20 days with focus on theoretic as well as practical knowledge, participants are taught by doctors, nurses and other professionals from the multidisciplinary oncology team. The course ends with a thesis and an internship, and participants receive a quality label so that their customers know that they are in good hands.

Bianca Centrum

Cancer patients can also receive free beauty treatments at the UZ Leuven. The Bianca Centrum (location Gasthuisberg) provides a warm homely atmosphere that’s a far cry from the usual hospital environment, where women (and men!) can relax after their chemotherapy or radiotherapy, and enjoy a massage or a facial treatment by an oncologically trained beautician. She can also provide advice about losing hair, eyebrows or eye lashes, or about brittle nails. Furthermore, the Bianca Centrum also provides psychological care.

More information

Read more about the training for beauticians and hairdressers HERE

Read more about the Bianca Centrum HERE