Hair today, gone tomorrow

before and after pics of hair donation

Summer is at hand and it is, as they say, time to let your (long) hair down. And while you’re doing that, perhaps you’ll realize that having long hair is really quite sweltering in the summer. Maybe you’ll realize that chopping off the voluminous hair would be really quite refreshing. And perhaps when you realize that, you will consider donating those luscious locks of yours.

“Excellent,” you say. “I’ve heard of Locks of Love”. But wait! Did you know there are other organizations you could choose based on how much hair you have to donate and who you would like the intended recipient to be?

The three most often-used hair donation charities are Pantene Beautiful Lengths, Locks of Love and Wigs for Kids. Because Google is awesome and I use it to answer all of life’s questions, I used it for some research and found this table included in an article from Business Insider earlier this year (Jan. 6, 2017, to be exact):

comparing hair donation charities

I’ve donated my hair several times now. (I am pleased to report that doing so inspired my niece and my daughter to donate theirs as well!) At first I chose Locks of Love because, like you, I hadn’t heard of any other organizations.

After learning of the others though, I changed over to Pantene. Why? They take the smallest amount of hair; I’ll be honest, it’s really hard for me to have to the patience to grow my hair out enough to create a 10- or 12-inch ponytail. Rather, I have enough hair to create a 12-inch ponytail, but the resulting cut makes me look like Kramer from Seinfeld and that’s, well, not a look I care for. On me.

It’s not necessary to go to a participating salon for the haircut, but having it done at a salon is easier than doing it at home. At a salon, a stylist can section off the hair into ponytails of the required length and gather it neatly for you to slide into a zip-top bag for shipment. Then the stylist can style what’s left behind.

Hopefully you will enjoy the resulting look and the feeling of liberation. Chopping off all that hair is very freeing! But even if you end up looking like Kramer, you can rest easy knowing two things: 1) You helped restore the self-confidence of a woman or child going through a medical treatment who feels lost without hair, and 2) Your hair will grow back. And then you can do it all over again.

Who’s with me?

– Wendy MacKenzie is a mother of four, Parenting Program volunteer, and frequent donator of hair.

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