3.5.12

Cancer Chic

Cancer.  It’s a word that just won’t go away.  And there is more than just one type of cancer.  Cancer affects everyone.  In today’s world, it’s almost impossible to not find someone who knows someone who has cancer.  As health care professionals and medical scientists work tirelessly to find a cure, and to understand this beast, all we can do is wait.  Some will beat it, and some will succumb to it.  And those who live it will SURVIVE it.  It’s a journey that will change your life forever. 

Just ask Heather Alvas and Karla Laing.  Two gorgeous women who survive this on a daily basis.  By looking at them, you would NEVER know the suffering they’ve both been through.  In 1999 Heather was diagnosed with adenocarcinoma of the appendix stage 4.  At first, the diagnosis was not positive and they didn’t think she’d see her next birthday.  But through medical and natural treatments, and the amazing support of her family and friends she survived.  Four years later, after the birth of her son, the cancer reappeared in her left lung, and she had her lung removed in May 2004.  Karla was diagnosed with stage 2 Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in 2009, one year after the birth of her second daughter.  While working to get into the best physical shape she’d been in 20 years, she knew her body well enough to know that something just wasn’t right.  And after a series of tests, she was given the diagnosis.  Both women are currently cancer free, but continue to SURVIVE cancer on a daily basis. 

Both Heather and Karla have always been there for each other.  They met in University in Saskatchewan in 1992, and then both made Calgary home shortly after, to follow their dreams and start their careers.  And today, together, they created Cancer Chic in December 2011.

Heather is married with one child and works part-time as an IT Project Manager.  A self-described “girly girl” who loves make-up and beauty and who is passionate about being chemical-free, Heather enjoys bringing her knowledge and ideas to women living with cancer through Cancer Chic.

Karla is a married, stay-at-home Mom with 2 young daughters and she finished cancer treatments just under 2 years ago.  Karla adores fashion and is fanatical about fitness.  She is often busy trying new activities and encouraging her family and friends to get active and live in the moment.  Bringing Cancer Chic to life has been a labour of love for Karla and she looks forward to growing the scope of the organization.

With their huge hearts and understanding of living with cancer, Cancer Chic offers a workshop every 2 months held at the Wellspring Calgary.  The workshops are targeted to women living with cancer who are between the ages of 18 and 45 years old, and are interested in any or all of the following three areas:  chemical free make-up and skincare, hair loss strategies, and fitness.  Their overall goal is to inspire and support women who are living with cancer to feel stronger and more confident for life.  

Visit their website and be inspired and moved.  They share their story through pictures that will take your breath away and give you goosebumps.  And through Cancer Chic, they can give back the strength that was given to them while they went through their own life changing moments.  Two beautiful women who define Courage, Hope, Health and LOVE.  Thank you Heather and Karla for touching our lives.  

Be sure to check back for the launch of their big fundraiser November 2012.


To empower and support young women living with cancer through beauty, fashion and fitness.  

Cancer Chic Online
Cancer Chic Facebook
Cancer Chic Twitter


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