I did a thing. Nine inches of my hair is gone and in the mail to the Pantene Beautiful Lengths program. I have always wanted to make a hair donation. If you’ve been following along for a while, you might remember that time when my hair donation went wrong. Honestly, it was a blessing in disguise that it didn’t work out the first time, because I got the chance to rethink where I gave to and why. I decided to donate my hair to women in need — not children.
When people think if hair donations, they mostly think of children with some type of cancer getting wigs. What they don’t realize is that it’s not that easy. Organizations like Wigs For Kids and Locks Of Love actually profit off of the donations that they get for free. Families often have to pay for the wigs that they receive and a whole lot of people are profiting off of other peoples’ choice to give. That did not sit right with me.
That’s why I chose Pantene Beautiful Lengths for my hair donation.
The program gives free wigs to women who have lost theirs from cancer. The operative word there is free. Women can apply for a wig through the American Cancer Society Wig Bank. According to the organization’s website, “new wigs are offered at no cost to patients without insurance or with inadequate insurance to cover the cost of purchasing a wig.” That’s a program that I can feel good about donating to.
I had a goal to give more this year. Giving a hair donation was something high on my checklist. After my year of purposeful living, I wanted to make sure that the things I did to make the world a better place wasn’t just through my purchases. People think that they need money in order to give, but that’s not true. Sometimes the biggest and best gift that you can possibly give is your time. Or, you know, your hair.
I cut off nine inches of my hair.
It was the biggest chop that I have ever had to date. My hair donation was somewhat of a sporadic decision. I had been doing research on what program that I wanted to donate to all year though. As my hair grew, so did my anticipation to make the cut.
The plan was to grow my hair out to get a 10 inch donation. That didn’t happen. It got to a point where my hair was just too long to manage. I figured it was time to make the cut at eight inches instead. My hair was so long that I rolled it up in my car window and didn’t even realize until I got to where I was going. That, my friends, is a sign for a hair donation.
“We know how important the appearance of strong, healthy hair is,” the Pantene Beautiful Lengths website reads. “For women battling cancer, the appearance of strong, healthy hair is even more important. That’s why we created Pantene Beautiful Lengths, the only program to help women feel like themselves again with free, real-hair wigs. So when you donate 8 inches of hair or $8 dollars to the cause, you’re helping to make sure that happens.”
For a while. my hair defined me. I thought that if I didn’t have my long, red hair, I wouldn’t be me. In fact, every single time that I’ve gotten in a salon chair, I’ve had anxiety. It would be so bad that I would have panic attacks leading up tot he day that I was planned to go.
This time was a little different. I called and schedule my hair cut for two days later, and didn’t freak out once during the chop. Not even when my hair was being put into tiny ponytails to be chopped off eight inches. While I’m not completely sure why my anxiety decided to go away for the moment, I’m chalking it up to the hair donation.