It may seem like it happened all of a sudden, but I had actually been thinking about it for a while: I recently went back to a short bob, after 4 or 5 years of letting my hair grow, including an impulsive undercut that took an annoying 12 months to grow back to a decent length.
I felt like I needed a fresh look, I wanted to see something else in the mirror. I wanted to have strong, healthy-looking hair. And I was tired of spending 20 minutes washing my hair, waiting a few hours for them to dry, tired of having to “do something with them” – which eventually pretty much meant a side braid or an old lame bun.
Then, in the midst of all the Pink October marketing craze asking me to buy lipstick, notebooks, jewellery – buy, buy, buy like it’s the solution to anything – the idea made its way to my brain and quickly became an obsession: this long hair that was feeling heavy, too much, it could be a treasure for someone else. I’d heard you could cut your hair and donate it to make wigs for women with breast cancer, and a quick Google research led me to coupedeclat.be, a site created by Think Pink, the organisation against breast cancer.
And I read this:
60% of the women who lose their hair because of chemotherapy consider it the most painful aspect of their illness. About 8% of women with cancer even consider refusing chemotherapy so they won’t lose their hair, putting themselves in danger.
After that… there was no doubt anymore. I ordered the envelope that would allow me to send my hair back and made an appointment with a hairdresser. It was decided: after all, it’s just hair, it grows back. I don’t need it. Meanwhile, there are so many women suffering from breast cancer and struggling to afford the care they need, and I can help them.
4 days later, I gave up about 30 centimeters of my precious curls and gained…bangs! A first for me, since I’d always thought it wouldn’t suit my face. And let’s be real, it did feel weird in the beginning, but after a few hours, I was already used to it. And while I think I’ll just let my hair grow to a long bob, I’m definitely keeping the bangs for a while.
No trauma, only satisfaction: I’m excited about my haircut, and I did something good!
Now your turn! A few things you should know:
- the minimum length you can donate is 20cm. If you have less, they can’t really do anything with it. So be patient, hair grows fast ;)
- you don’t have to get your hair cut in a particular place: next time you go to your hairdresser, simply ask them to cut 2 or 3 ponytails of the lengths you want to donate before getting your hair washed, and take them with you when you leave!
- your hair has to be healthy. Think Pink accepts coloured hair, as long as they’re not messed up. Another good reason to take good care of them and think twice before going blonde or getting a perm I guess! Oh and grey hair is absolutely welcome.
- you don’t live in Belgium? And didn’t find a local organisation doing the same thing? You can still help! Send your ponytail(s) to Think-Pink, Sint-Pietersmolenstraat 23, 8000 Brugge, Belgium. Make sure your hair’s tightly attached and wrapped in a plastic bag before you put it in the envelope.
More info on the official Coupe d’éclat site.