The daily hair loss grind – ugh

by admin on September 7, 2007

Today is a better day as far as my general outlook. It’s not because my major hair loss shedding episode has come to an end, it is better… just because. I got up, put my hair in a ponytail and decided to not spend each minute of the day focusing on my present hair loss situation. The good days come and go, I take each day as it comes.

I just finished cleaning up the kitchen, which by the way I have no idea how two people can use what seemed like 30 pieces of silverware since 7:00pm last night when I last cleaned the kitchen. By the looks of the kitchen you would think I was running a catering service, but I digress. Anyways, as I was cleaning the kitchen I was reminded of one of the many horrible things about going through a massive shed. No matter how hard you try to get on with your day you are constantly reminded about your struggle because your hair is EVERYWHERE. It’s on the counter, it’s on the sponge, it’s in the sink… if I pick up a splenda packet off the floor 9/10 times there may a piece of my hair attached to it because my hair is all over the floor as well. It’s usually not visible when I’m standing looking down at the floor.. well sometimes it is, but often not. Fortunately for me my hair and the floor are pretty similar in color. But it never fails, more often than not when I reach down for a paper I get a hair with it. How lovely. right? The other day in the car my fiance dropped something on the car floor, picked it up and what do you know my hair is with it. It’s on your clothes, even the clean ones hanging in the closet, in the bed, on the couch… am I leaving anything out? I’ve not touched on the obvious.. the shower.

{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

julie September 12, 2007 at 12:19 pm

I totally empathize with your daily struggle. I started hair loss at 17 and live with 4 brothers who constantly reminded me about my hair loss and complained about seeing hair everywhere. You know, I stopped looking in the mirror until I had my wig on! I would leave my hair in ponytails everyday or pin it so nothing fell off. Its the little adjustments you have to make to cope. Sometimes I wish I could trade one of fingers for a full head of hair! At 17, I didn’t know what was going on and it hurts everyday. Can I tell you something…you are so lucky! :) You have a fiancee! WOW…I haven’t dated in 3 years! It’s gotten worse and so have the guys. Once they realize I wear wigs, they just don’t know how to handle it anymore. They seem great and then after date 2 or 3, they flip out and their true character shines through. You have so much to be grateful for, just realize that and you’ll be fine. In fact, make a list of 10 things you are grateful for and post it where you’d see it most. I am proud of you for sharing your thoughts and appreciate them because I felt so alone and lonely for the longest time. Thank You.

admin September 12, 2007 at 12:56 pm

Hi Julie!

Thanks so much for taking the time share your thoughts. Its so funny that you said you sometimes wish that you could trade a finger for a full head of hair! I just talked about that with my fiance last week, except in my story I said I’d swap a toe :) There is a heck of a lot more bodyparts I’d be willing to swap as well. I avoid the mirror like the plague, I seem to do better when I do. It’s gotten so crazy that when I go to the movies and have to go to the restroom, I walk straight past the mirrors avoiding looking in their direction, when I come out of the stall and head to the faucet I keep chanting to myself “don’t look, don’t look, don’t look, don’t look.” With the massive size mirrors and extremely bright overhead lighting, one look would ruin my whole day. Don’t even get me started on the mirrors in the Abercrombie dressing rooms… what is that all about? Super bright lights that shine so harsh they make you see every bodily flaw as well as how thin your hair is. Someone should talk to corporate about that :)

My fiance, yes he is so wonderful! I can’t even begin to tell you the lengths he’s gone to try and help me feel more comfortable. He knows how tense I am when I wash my hair and he knows how it bothers me to get close to my hair when its wet, so he hugs me keeping his hands low, lately maybe as a a joke he stated giving my leg a hug to completely avoid the head area :) I couldn’t be with someone who didn’t understand because this is a huge part of my life and I have some qwerks because of it. I can’t be with someone who is grossed out by the sight of hair all over the floor and in the shower because its inevitable, no mater how much I sweep or vaccum.

So where did I meet him you ask, I met him online. He got to know me and all of me first without judging the hair loss. He knew about it up front, I sent pictures of myself right away, always very honest about what I looked like and who I was. I ended up moving to his city and we had an even stronger bond in person. From there I moved in with him and the rest is history.

There are really good men out there, and I’m certain you will find one because you sound like such a special and amazing person with so much strength and confidence.

Thank you again for you writing your comments, it was comforting to read the words of another women who as gone through the same experiences.

julie September 12, 2007 at 2:44 pm

Do you also wear wigs or hair pieces. You know how much fun it is to shop for wigs…I loved it! Be careful, the lights are bright in some of the places and they have big mirrors, not A&F style, (we should write to corporate:) but…I had a blast. I wore styles I could never achieve with a full head of hair!
I’m also on Yahoo personals to find someone and I wear my wigs in all the pictures, but one of the first things I ask is if they’re cool about it!

See, you have a great head on your shoulders, hair or not…and you have a wonderful man that supports you, what more can you ask for. If I had a boyfriend, I wouldn’t care what anyone else thought I looked like besides him…Your fiancee’s opinion should matter more than any stranger because he loves you and has to wake up next to you.

You know those days when it hurts more than others? Or more hair is falling out than usual…I get depressed and it starts to hurt. But you know what, I think i’d be more afraid if I had an all too perfect Paris-Hilton life…We have a backbone, strength, confidence and an attitude that other women just don’t have. If we face up to this challenge, no matter how devastating, imagine what else we could accomplish. Every other challenge seems so blase to me…like weight loss! I went from a 14 to a 4, i started to learn to wear make-up and dress like a girl instead of a tomboy. (when I lost the hair, i really started to look more boyish or comfort clothes as I called them…) Now, I enjoy dressing up and down…sometimes I feel sexy just wearing a baseball cap. You are what you think you are…you should read some of the comments I left on the other posts…we aren’t alone here in this world. I just wish I could give everyone a hug! My dream is to actually protest against drug companies because 95% of females suffering from hair loss was caused by some drug. And, I would then attack insurance companies…if the drugs they cover exacerbate hair loss, why can’t they cover the wigs I have to buy as a result? Sometimes, I just don’t understand those people! I challenge them to go bald for a day! LOL :) :)

admin September 12, 2007 at 11:30 pm

No I don’t wear wigs or hair pieces at this time but I have seriously considered it. I think the reason I’ve hesitated is that I fear that while I wear a hair piece and my hair loss progresses that I won’t have progressed with it, meaning I won’t have accepted the way I look present day. If you showed me a pictures of myself today 8 years ago I would have been so depressed I probably would never gotten out of bed. I think It so awesome that you enjoy shopping for wigs, you seem like you’ve adjusted and accepted you hair loss so well.

So I’m curious, when you tell the guys on Yahoo personals about your wearing a wig how do they usually respond?

Congratulations on your tremendous weight loss and all your efforts to make yourself comfotable in despite your hair loss struggles. Thats so important, to control something whether it be putting on makeup or losing weight. Hair loss can make you feel so out of control and so helpless.

julie September 13, 2007 at 8:39 am

So I’m curious, when you tell the guys on Yahoo personals about your wearing a wig how do they usually respond? – The responses I get are so weird- A lot of them just stopped talking to me- one has identified with me as his family/friends have encountered the same issue, but i haven’t heard back from him for a while. I don’t usually mention that until I identify their true character…I look for certain clues like what he’s really asking and why…I try to assess whether or not they’re just interested in one thing or if they truly want to get to know me.

By the way…you’d be suprised at your own progress…
Funny story –

The first wig I purchased totaled nearly $400! It was styled and so uncomfortable…I was with my sister and her children and we stepped out to the mall afterwards. I was holding my niece when she accidentally pulled it off in the middle of the department store! I ran to the bathroom with her and crawled into a stall to fix it…the next day, I put it in the box and drove to the store I bought it from and just said here you go, take it! I don’t even want the money back, just take it back!

That day, the owner called and was upset at my actions…but I didn’t feel any remorse, just taken advantage of my vulnerability because she spent 4 hours trying to get me to buy something. I ended up returning and spent $50 extra on another piece. It is not all glorious and glamourous trust me…but despite the horror, it was comforting to know that I still looked the same, felt better and my confidence level elevated.

My advice to you is TRY! You’ll never know unless you try. Please. Even if its part of a halloween costume, you must overcome this somehow…Take a friend and just make it a day of beauty! Go shopping for a nice new outfit, have some ice cream or a nice dinner at a place you’ve always wanted…you need a distraction.

Steps to make yourself “wig” ready – Read your daily affirmations of the things you are grateful for, what makes you beautiful and strong? Do this for at least one week.
Call your friends and tell them about your “Day of Beauty” excursion and make appointments to get your nails done…makeup, whatever you want.

Locate the wig shop within the vicinity of the places you want to visit.

Write a journal about what it is you’d like to achieve when wearing a wig…create your positive thoughts and believe in them. I used to say, “i’m going to look just like Sandra Bullock with my new wig, I can’t wait” or I’d picture my face in so many different styles…so I new what look I wanted to achieve.

Plan an outfit for your day…wear something comfortable and try on different hats…use makeup lightly and embellish your favorite features.

When you wake up the day you are going, don’t look at yourself AT ALL! Ask your friends if something is in your teeth! Just avoid mirrors. Bring a “before” picture with you and keep it within reach, like in your wallet or pocket. Look at yourself, that’s who you will be again…pick out different styles and try them on..only look at the mirror once its completely on your head! Wear your new look for at least 3 days and go everywhere with in on…Put it away for another 3 days and write about what it feels like for you. Find it within yourself to want change…and then do it.

admin September 13, 2007 at 11:11 pm

Julie I Love Your tips for getting wig ready, those are so great, I love them so much I have to repost them on the main page as “Julie’s Tips For Getting Wig Ready” wonderfully written ! It’s interesting that you said “Look at yourself, that’s who you’ll be again..” sometimes when I’m forced to look in the mirror particularly when I’m out in a pubic area I first chant to myself before lifting my head “your beautiful, your beautiful, your beautiful, you will be ok” it is my attempt to try and convince my mind that who I see in the mirror is who I was, despite my hair loss.

About the yahoo personals…I think assessing the true character of the guy first is a good idea, why even waste your time with idiots. Your beauty shines through your words, any guy would be lucky to have you by his side.

My jaw was dropped open as I read your story about your first experience buying a wig. Isn’t it called “Murphy’s Law” Anything that can go wrong will go wrong. Places in the mall are probably the worst. I always see those little kiosks at the mall close to me that sells wigs and clip ons. But there is no way you’ll find me sitting in the middle of the mall, on display while I try on hair. I need a much more discreet environment. All the girls working the kiosks have tons of hair, I’d prefer to see it put on a girl who had thin hair. I think thats what I would love, is to see in person the different hair replacement processes available actually done on women with real hair loss. Whether it is wigs, hair pieces, wigs with bonding etc. Maybe it would help me to be not so afraid, maybe it would take out the fear of the unknown. You can’t really go by anything you see online, pictures can always be altered to show the before pic with an artificial advanced stage of hair loss. Sometimes I see pictures on wig websites that make me question whether the model they are using actually is wearing a wig or if that is their real hair. False advertising type thing. Or I could be just being cynical.

dev September 14, 2007 at 12:24 pm

Has anyone tried clip-ons for the top of the head? I have hair around the back and sides and very thin on top.
Dev

julie September 14, 2007 at 12:25 pm

Thanks for the compliments. You know those wig and clip accessory kiosks are funny to me…they look so fake and most are actually the worst synthetic hair possible.

I have actually seen different processes of hair replacement/enhancement pieces and a lot of them look so difficult, its no wonder those people charge an arm and leg! They do for the most part look great, but I still think you have to begin by wearing a wig. You have to see yourself with the hair, envision it and accept your beauty. Those pieces take much effort to maintain and it may leave you frustrated at first, however, I am glad that I was sort of trained with wigs first. It allowed me to feel out every aspect of wig wearing and I felt a lot better.

YOU WROTE: Sometimes I see pictures on wig websites that make me question whether the model they are using actually is wearing a wig or if that is their real hair. False advertising type thing. Or I could be just being cynical. NO YOU ARE NOT BEING CYNICAL…MOST OF THEM REALLY ARE WEARING WIGS OR SOME TYPE OF ENHANCEMENT. This is how we fall prey to advertising. Be careful with what you read…

admin September 14, 2007 at 12:40 pm

Hey Dev –

I don’t know much about the clip ons. I do know I’ve seen some advertising on the internet and on the home shopping network for something called a “topper,” but I don’t know how well they work. I am also curious to know if anyone has tired those and what their experience has been with them.

Hey Julie –

I wanted Tyra Banks hair ! :) I know she’s wearing something, probably a lace front something or other bonded to her head. She should do a program on that. She once did do a show about hair loss and she had Amy Gibson, the soap opera actress with alopecia areata, on her show. Amy wears gorgeous wigs, that look completely real. I think I read once that she stated no one ever knew when she was on “The Young and The Restless” that she actually had hair loss, the only person that knew was her hair dresser. But back to my original thought it would be great if Tyra would show all the different options for people with hair loss (hair pieces, and wigs) and the application process etc. Demystify the whole thing.

julie September 14, 2007 at 12:53 pm

Yes, Tyra is a hair wearer! Beyonce, Faith Hill…and so many others that I probably would get in trouble if I mentioned.
(Please note, the before picture I sent with my hair loss resembles what is was like 6 months ago…it has actually gotten worse over the months and my scalp is more visible. Its also very, fine and thin…in fact if you took a strand, you wouldn’t have to tug it before it falls into your hands. If you look closely at the tip, the root is hardly noticeable.)

If you would like to, please check out reprievehair.com…i was chosen to wear the piece and give them my unbiased opinion about the product. they are in the process of mass producing it…when you log onto that page, you will see my pictures! before and after. Unfortunately, because i do not have a stable condition, I cannot wear it any longer and must continue wig-wearing. I actually tried on an Amy wig and was not thrilled about it…maybe it was the one I tried but the hair was not evenly distributed and there was just way too much hair for me that it did not appear natural. There are so many good brands out there…just remember…from a manufacturer, they actually only cost about $10-$25 for synthetic, and around $450 for human hair…now when you do your research, come back and tell me what some of these people are selling them for. I would never recommend purchasing hair online. you must try it on because they do need to be cut and styled to your face frame.

admin September 14, 2007 at 1:00 pm

Hey Julie, I’m getting your pictures ready to put online to share with everyone. YOU are So Gorgeous!!

What did you think overall about the reprieve hair system and the process? From the pics it looks pretty amazing. What is the cost? How did you get hooked up with the company?

Alicia September 14, 2007 at 1:10 pm

This is the first time I have been on this website and I love it. Like everyone else I have suffered from female pattern baldness since my late teens. I just went to the reprieve hair site and I had a lot of trouble viewing, but from what I could view, it looks great! I am also interested in learning more about it.

julie September 14, 2007 at 1:23 pm

Alicia,

its an awesome product and i’m so sad that I cannot wear it. My doctor told me that my hair follicles are WAY too thin and brittle, while the product is non damaging to the scalp and hair, I have a very sensitive scalp…my skin is also very sensitive as Im currently also battling with Tinea Versicolor…i have measle like red patches all over my body! Its an embarrassing discoloration of the skin caused by bacteria, source unknown, maybe the tanning booth! or the gym?

Now please remember, as a regular on this site, I will never knowingly or falsely advertise a product, endorse it or promote it for myself…personally, I don’t get paid for it so whatever information you need, ask! I am more than happy to tell you why it works for me and provide you with information on all types of products. You have to decide for yourself, research everything and anything first before making a decision. You don’t want to risk what you have on your head, or what’s in your wallet.

Below please read a press release about Reprieve Hair-

NILES, IL (JULY 10,2007) – Fashion World Ent. Inc launches a new non-invasive solution to individuals suffering from alopecia, pattern baldness or a mild form of hair loss. The solution is Reprieve™ Hair, a unique, patented system that’s attached to the individual’s hair using a medical grade adhesive.
The system is simply an oval-shaped base containing 100% unprocessed virgin Remi® hair and is made in many sizes. Depending on the severity of hair loss, Reprieve™ Hair covers an individual’s hair loss area using their existing hair, so the scalp remains healthy and untouched. The base has a polyurethane hinged flap with perforations along the entire perimeter, where the individual’s hair is pulled through using a crochet needle. The consultant applying the system applies a strip of medical grade adhesive on each flap. When the hair is pulled through, it rests on the adhesive and the hair lies like a normal full head of hair.
This new, non-surgical, non-invasive procedure takes up to 1 hour to place and remove. Since the hair is real 100% human hair, the stylist can safely cut, perm, style and color to fit their clients’ preference. Licensed cosmetologists or hair replacement doctors that have hair loss clients or offer hair replacement services must be certified by Fashion World Ent, Inc. to perform this procedure. Classes are being scheduled throughout the United States for a fee and include a starter kit with the tools needed to perform this procedure.
Only licensed cosmetologists can take the class and use it…they go through an extensive 2-day training…I know because while I did model the product, I also attended the training program here in IL. I wanted to meet and talk to the people that were being trained on it, they know me and my story-I am so happy they are helping others…

Melanie August 31, 2010 at 9:13 am

I know how having your hair everywhere (except on your head) feels like…
I hired a housekeeper and she said there were more hairs that used belong to me on the floor and bed than fur from my two fur-shedding cats.
My cats shed so much fur I bought one of those ‘furminator’ things… still apparently I was worse. I even considered using the furminator on my own head to save myself the embarassment… (I didn’t actually do it, but I did think about it).

callie2993 October 25, 2010 at 12:35 pm

Hi all, Today is my first time on the site. I can’t tell you how happy I am to find someone that understands hair loss. I have sympathy with everyone having hair all over everything and everywhere.
I wish I knew how to wear a hairpiece or something on the top. Don’t get the concept of a “topper”. I tried extensions and they looked great from the front but when I looked at back in mirror, I could see the clips and webbing. Haven’t tried that again. I hope to learn more as I read the forums. Thanks to women who help women!

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