Before treatment, my hair reached all the way down to my lower back. It was perfect. There was nothing I wanted to change about it. However, once I started chemo, there was no chance of it not falling out. I let it fall out until there was barely any left. My mom then cut it to be above shoulder length and then we had a friend shave it off for me. There is no worse feeling than brushing your hair and it all falling out and you can do nothing about it. I cried about losing my hair. I had the best hair according to myself and now I am losing it all. It is okay to be upset.
Before your hair falls out, you can dye it a fun colour or cut it short, or just shave it off immediately. It is all up to you. There is not a right or wrong way to do it. Eventually, you lose your eye brows and eye lashes, but this takes much longer. Now you do not have any hair there are so many different options that you did not even know that you had. I personally just chose to rock the bald look for many different reasons: I tried on wigs and they made me feel like I was hiding something and I thought that they were very itchy, they just didn't make me feel empowered, like they do for other people and that's okay.
What comes with the bald look is stares at grocery stores and people that you don't know preaching about Jesus to you. This was really awkward for me at first, but you soon get used to it and are able to handle people with grace. The second thing is people want to touch your head. I know it sounds so weird, but they do. Sometimes they ask and sometimes they do not. When they ask you it is totally up to you whether or not you say yes and who you say yes to. Sometimes I was okay with it and other times I was not. Some people I always said yes and some people I never let near me. That is totally up to what you want and what you feel comfortable with.
Another option is hats. I wore the toboggan winter hats because you lose a lot of heat from your head. I did this for warmth, but other people do it constantly. Any hat, any time, is totally okay. You can wear bucket hats and baseball caps and head bands and anything you want. You have cancer, wear whatever hat you want. Hats are a good way to keep people from staring. People usually do not think twice about a person that is wearing any type of hat. If a wig is not for you, hats are a perfect way to have fun with fashion and not make it obvious that you are bald. The thing with hats is that some places you can not wear them; mainly in school. When I returned to school, I was obviously bald. My school was very cold, so I wanted to wear a hat to keep my head warm. Our school had a no hat policy. I talked to administration and asked if I could wear a hat during the school day. They said yes right away. I mean what is more distracting to a class, a bald cancer head, or a hat? Hats are a great way to go and there is one for about any situation.
Another option is a wig. There are so many different types of wigs. You can get fake hair, real hair, coloured hair, natural coloured hair, and any type of length and style. Wigs are a great way to get your hair back during cancer treatment. I was given wigs and tried them. Wigs can go from anywhere in price from 10 - 300 dollars. There are so many different options, you just have to find the one that fits you and your personality the best. You have to look at the kind of hair that you want real versus fake. Real hair you can style and dye, but it is much more expensive. Fake hair is one way, but it is much cheaper. Wigs are great because you look like you have real hair and there is no staring. Wigs can also give you confidence. They are also a lot of fun, you can try out so many different styles and switch it up everyday. This is something you have to do research on and find your preferences because there is so much to chose from and it is up to you what you prefer.
The tan line... When I lost my hair I had a tan line from what outlined my hair line. There is nothing wrong with this, it is totally normal. You really do not have to do anything to fix it. It should go away in a week or two on its own even if you stay inside. Your head has really never seen the light like this. Even hospital lights will help to even it out. It will all workout naturally. There is no need for tanning lotion or prolonged time in the sun. When you are spending long times in the sun...SUNSCREEN! Your head will burn faster than any part of your body. it hasn't seen the sun and is not used to it. The last thing you want is for your head to peel and hurt on top of everything else.
Lastly, the question everyone asks, but no one asks out loud. What do I wash my head with? There is not any hair there, so shampoo or body wash? This is up to you. I used shampoo on my head still because your body still produces the oils even though your hair is not there. Shampoo is designed for your head. I used the same one I have been using to deal with an oily scalp because I still had the oily scalp even though there was no hair. You still might have the dry or oily scalp. Cancer changes a lot, but this stayed the same for me, so I used shampoo all over my head where the hair used to be. You only need a little bit because you do not have any hair to wash, just your head. Some people go with body wash because you are just washing skin and they do not have a dry or oily scalp. This is totally fine too. Body wash is generally cheaper too. This is a preference and based on your body. There is not a wrong answer here; both ways work.
Always remember the hair will come back. There will be awkward growing phases but it comes back. It might be different colour or texture, but it will be back. Mine was dark blonde and straight and it came back brown and curly. I know losing your hair is really hard, but it will come back.