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Cold Capping:
Frequently Asked Questions

Here you will find frequently asked questions by clients and caregivers about cold capping. For any further questions, fill out our contact form or email us and we would be happy to answer them!

What is cold capping and how does it work?

Cold capping is the process of cooling the scalp to help decrease hair loss and risk of long-term alopecia when receiving chemotherapy treatment. This can be done either mechanically; with a scalp cooling machine, or manually; by manually applying caps that are rotated out of a cooler with dry ice. This works by constricting the blood vessels in the scalp as well as putting the hair follicles in a dormant or less active state. These two mechanisms of action cause less absorption of chemotherapy to the hair follicles, which decreases the damage and increases hair retention. 

What are the benefits of Cold Capping?

Cold Capping is a scientifically proven process that reduces hair loss and decreases the risk of long-term alopecia during chemotherapy. Research shows that cold capping has a 78% success rate! Successful cold capping gives oncology patients the confidence to look and feel like themselves, as well as give patients the choice on who they share their cancer journey with. 

Why does Cold Crowns use a three cap system?

Cold Crowns caps are custom designed to drop to cold temperatures faster and stay colder longer, therefore all you need are three caps! Our three cold cap system allows you to rotate the caps through the cooler with ease making it very user-friendly. At Cold Crowns, we strive to keep things simple and effective for the best cold capping experience. 

What is included in a Cold Crowns Package?

At Cold Crowns, we include everything you need and more to ensure a comfortable and successful cold capping journey.

Rental Items:

  • 3 Cold Crowns Cold Caps

  • 1 60L Cooler on Wheels 

  • 1 Infrared Thermometer

  • Velcro Straps 

 Complimentary/Comfort Items:

  • Dry Ice Safety Gloves

  • Skin Barriers to protect the skin

  • Hairnets 

  • Wide Tooth Comb

  • Satin Pillowcase 

  • Tumbler/Water Bottle

  • Electric Blanket 

Cold Crowns all-inclusive rental package also includes all the dry ice that is required for your treatments as well as a detailed guide with hair care tips and training video to ensure you are well informed and comfortable with the process. 

Best of all, a dedicated cold capping specialist is available 24/7 to help support you through your journey. 

What is the cost of renting Cold Caps?

The cost of cold capping is specific to treatment type and duration. Cold Crowns offers an all inclusive price which includes all the equipment, supplies and items required for you to successfully and comfortably cold cap. Cold Crowns also assigns you a dedicated Cold Capping Specialist from start to finish to guide you through the process and ensure you are well supported. This includes a hands-on teaching as well as a direct line to your Specialist. Contact us for a free quote!

Is cold capping covered by insurance?

Unfortunately at this time, cold capping is not covered by insurance providers in Canada. Cold Crowns' long term goal is to bring awareness to this method and hopefully have insurance cover some of the costs in the future. We at Cold Crowns understand that some clients may not be able to work during treatment and finances can be difficult to navigate. We work with each client to come up with a payment plan that best works for them. 

I just found out I am starting treatment in the next few days. Will I have time to get cold caps before my first treatment?

Absolutely! Cold Crowns understands that chemotherapy treatments are time sensitive and may begin within a few days to a week. Our standard delivery time for teaching and equipment is within a week, but if you require this to be expedited, we will do our best to accommodate your needs. 

How will i Receive my Cold Crowns Cold Caps?

Cold Crowns is based in Southwestern Ontario - Kitchener Waterloo Region. We offer FREE in-home teaching in a 2hr driving radius of our home base OR we offer Canada wide delivery with teaching over ZOOM. 

How will I know how to use the cold caps and what if I have more questions?

Cold Crowns is dedicated to supporting its cold capping clients from the beginning of their journey until the end. A dedicated cold capping specialist will be available at your fingertips 24/7. Included in your package is also a very detailed user manual as well as a training video that you can access at any point in time. Your initial training will always be either in person or via ZOOM to ensure you are comfortable before your first treatment. 

Is Cold Capping Painful? What does it feel like?

Clients generally describe cold capping as uncomfortable, but is typically well tolerated. Most clients describe the feeling as an intense brain freeze that lasts around 10 -15 minutes.

Why hasn't my doctor recommended cold cap therapy?

Cold Capping therapy has been widely used and researched in the UK and other parts of the world for over 30 years - some countries even having it a standard of treatment for patients that are eligible. Unfortunately due to the limited awareness and accessibility in Canada, cold capping is not as well known. Cold Crowns aims to change that by raising awareness and making it accessible to all Canadians. 

I have already started chemotherapy treatment. Would cold capping still benefit me?

Absolutely! To get the best results, it would be ideal to start cold capping with the first chemotherapy treatment. However, initiating cold capping after the start of treatment would still decrease the risk of alopecia as well as encourage faster hair growth post chemotherapy treatment. 

Do I need to cut or wet my hair for cold capping?

Cutting or wetting your hair is not necessary for manual cold capping. Sometimes a slight trim can help minimize tangles and prevent pulling and increased hair shedding, but the goal of cold capping is to retain as much hair as possible, therefore it is not necessary to cut your hair. Some mechanical cold capping machines do require you to wet your hair for treatment, but with manual cold capping, it is not necessary nor recommended to wet your hair. 

What is the process of Cold Capping?

A day of cold capping can be quite intense. At Cold Crowns we are very transparent about the labour intensive process to save your hair and try to make it as easy and comfortable for you and your caregiver as possible. 

Depending on the time of your treatment, you or your caregiver will pick up the dry ice the day before or the morning of treatment. Two hours prior to your treatment time, the cold caps will be layered in the cooler with the dry ice. The first cold cap will be applied one hour prior to treatment. The cold caps will be changed and rotated out of the cooler every 25min for the hour prior to treatment, during treatment and depending on your chemotherapy treatment 2-4hrs post treatment. 

Can I take a break from wearing the cold caps during my treatment?

We understand that a cold capping day can be very long and tiring. Unfortunately breaks are not recommended during treatment. Without the cold caps, your scalp would naturally warm up, leaving your hair follicles vulnerable to damage from the chemotherapy which would affect your overall hair retention results. 

Is cold capping therapy for me?

Cold Capping therapy is not for everyone. Cold capping is only approved for use in solid tumor cancer patients and there are some barriers to the use of cold capping. We always recommend discussing cold capping with your healthcare provider as well as a cold capping specialist to see if it is a right fit for you. If you are eligible for cold capping, it is important to know that results vary from person to person depending on the chemotherapy drugs you will be getting. However, if you follow Cold Crowns' cold capping system diligently, it will offer you the best chance of retaining your hair through chemotherapy.

Who can help me with Cold Capping?

Any friend or family can help assist you with cold capping. We offer training to all caregivers as well as a training video that can be accessed at any time. 

Don't have someone to help you?

We have resources we can connect you with to help find a PSW to help you with the process.*

*PSW services are not included in the Cold Crowns package and are arranged by the client. 

Where do I store my cold caps in between my treatments?

The cold caps should be cleaned, dried and placed in their original bags in the cooler so that they are ready to go for your next treatment. It is important to ensure the cooler lid is left ajar to ensure proper airflow through the cooler when the caps are being stored inside. 


Dry ice is a solid form of carbon dioxide that is commonly used as temporary refrigeration. The temperature of dry ice is about -74 to -109 degrees celsius, making this an extremely cold and potentially dangerous material if not handled properly. We always recommend wearing the safety gloves provided when handling the dry ice. When storing the dry ice, it is important it is in a well ventilated area that cannot be accessed by children or pets. NEVER leave dry ice in your bedroom or car for long periods of time as the accumulation of the carbon dioxide can lead to asphyxiation. Dry ice safety and training is always discussed during the initial training. 

Why choose Cold Crowns over other service providers or mechanical systems?

Cold Crowns is a manual cold capping rental system that is designed to be accessible for all Canadians, user friendly and portable allowing you to spend less time at the hospital and more time in the comfort of your home. Unfortunately access to mechanical scalp cooling machines are limited as very few hospitals in Canada physically have them. Cold Crowns also differs in experience compared to other cold capping services. At Cold Crowns we understand both the healthcare side as well as the client experience aspect. We know that unwavering support and knowledge makes a huge difference in the journey and are dedicated in supporting our clients from the beginning of their cancer journey until the end. Cold Crowns is here to fight your cancer alongside you!

If you have any remaining questions, please do not hesitate to contact us!

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