The Chop | My Hair Donation Story

April 15, 2015·

If you follow me on Instagram, then you know that I chopped my hair last week! I cut off about 12 inches total (more like 9 inches on the front) and I donated it. This was actually my second time donating my hair – I did it once in November of 2012 and decided it was time to do it again.

A lot of y’all have asked me about the hair donation process, my thought process behind it, where I donated it, how to go about doing it, etc. So, I thought I’d share my experience. I’m also sharing my before and after pictures so y’all can see! These were all taken on my phone, so I apologize for the poor quality of them. 

Also, I realize I look creepy in these pics… haha! Totally unflattering, but whatevs…

So, this is my BEFORE. While I, admittedly, do love my long hair, I’ve felt like I’ve been in a hair rut for AWHILE. It had gotten SO long, and SO thick, that it was at the point where it was starting to get unmanageable. And, with the hot North Carolina summer approaching, I knew that I was going to need to do SOMETHING. Since I had such a great experience donating my hair the first time, I thought I’d do it again.

I wanted a change and instead of just cutting off a few inches, I felt donating it was the better way to go. I’d much rather see it made into a wig for a child or an adult who needs it much more than I do.

I went to The Cottage Salon here in Durham after a few friends recommended it to me. I made my appointment with Taylor (who ended up being AWESOME) and just decided to GO for it.

This is my before… that is A LOT of crazy, long, thick hair.

Hair Donation | Long hair cut to an angled bob (3)

To donate your hair, it needs to be clean and dry. Then, tell your stylist that you want to donate it. Most organizations require AT LEAST 8 inches of clean, dry hair. Some require 10 inches. Just make sure you check with the organization that you’re going to donate your hair to to see how much they need.

Your stylist will then section your hair off into small ponytails all around your head… the number depends on how much hair you have. Then, they will cut straight across right ABOVE the rubber band. This keeps the hair together. I then just take these pieces, place them in a plastic bag, put them in a padded mailer and mail them off. I will touch on this process at the end of this post. 

Hair Donation | Long hair cut to an angled bob (4)

Then, Taylor took me in the back for shampoo and conditioning and then she does the cut and style after the majority of the length has been cut off.

I have been wanting to try an angled bob hairstyle for awhile and thought now was a great time to do it. I didn’t even give Taylor much direction, I just told her what I was envisioning and she went from there.

This was the final cut and style!
Hair Donation | Long hair cut to an angled bob (5)

I love it from the side!Hair Donation | Long hair cut to an angled bob (6) Hair Donation | Long hair cut to an angled bob (7)

Side-by-side before and after!Hair Donation | Long hair cut to an angled bob (8)

I thought I’d just share with y’all what it looked like when I cut it back in 2012. This was my before and after the FIRST time I donated my hair:

 

Hair Donation | Long hair cut to an angled bob (1) Hair Donation | Long hair cut to an angled bob (2)

still being molly: Oasap Collarless Leather Jacket, JCrew Shorts, sheer OVI fuschia blouse, glitter flats, and pink clutch

While the short hair is definitely taking some getting used to, I do really love it. And, of course, hair does grow back… so there’s that! 🙂

Now, as far as what organization I, personally, chose to donate my hair to… I chose Pantene’s Beautiful Lengths. I did a lot of research before I donated the first time and loved their mission and reputation so I opted to donate my hair with them again. They’re sponsored by a bunch of other great charities and small businesses, even a fellow blogger who did a Philips OneBlade review and donated all proceeds from the post to them.

Wigs for Kids is also another amazing organization. I have not donated to them because they require AT LEAST 12 inches and I would have needed to wait a little longer to be able to donate that much hair all the way around my head.

I have heard some sketchy things about a few other organizations that I just didn’t like… things like them turning people down for wigs, charging for wigs, or throwing out hair. That didn’t sit well with me. 

A few things to keep in mind…

  • Hair can be no more than 5% gray
  • Hair MUST be clean and dry
  • Hair must also be free from dyes or chemicals… so, unfortunately, if you have colored your hair permanently, you can’t donate hair 🙁

I hope this information is helpful for those of y’all who are considering donating your hair. It’s such an amazing and worthy cause and totally worth the big CHOP!

Have you ever donated your hair before? What was your experience?