High River spa owner collects donated grad dresses for Grade 12 girls

High River spa owner collects donated grad dresses for Grade 12 girls

The owner of a beauty spa in High River, Alta., is going beyond tanning beds and pedicures to help high school girls attend graduation night without breaking the bank. 

Going to grad is just too expensive for some girls — what with the gown, the shoes and the accessories to buy — so Coco Lux Beauty Bar owner Sue Meuller wanted to help out.

For the second year in a row, her back room is filling with donated dresses and shoes that she gives to girls who need them.

"We've had people come from Claresholm, from Calgary, here in High River — lots and lots from High River," she said.

"So it's been great, it's nice, you know, to, yeah, it fills our hearts, that's for sure."

Similar projects operate around the country, including one run through the Calgary Board of Education. 

'At least a thousand dollars'

As a mother, Meuller knows how pricey the grad experience can be. "At least a thousand dollars, at least," she said.

"At one point in time, everybody went to prom. Now, you might get 20 kids and there's not even a dance or anything afterwards because it's a big cost."

Meuller said she expects to collect 100 to 200 dresses. "We get a lot of girls from Calgary. So, we do spread the word. We call all the schools," she said. 

Mueller is also offering free spa services to Grade 12 students who wouldn't normally be able to afford the splurge.

"Eyelash extensions, makeup, the hair. We've even had my hairdresser ... she actually comes in and does the up-does for the girls."


Coco Lux also helps Grade 12 boys find a suit or a tuxedo and shoes. 

Meuller says she and her staff are careful to protect the privacy of the girls they're helping.

"It's very confidential," she said.

"So none of the girls feel like, 'oh my gosh, somebody's going to know.' It's not like that at all."

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