Image description: screenshot from Twitter user Amy Brown, (@amisamileandme) asking ‘I’d like to hear more about selecting and looking after wigs.’
So, wigs. You can get them from lots of different places, and in the UK at least I think NHS oncology departments can source them for you. I bought mine online, though – all of them come from http://www.lushwigs.com. (I’m not being paid for this post or anything like that, so no conflict of interests here!) These seem to fit me quite well even, and are mostly easy to put on (and stay on, which feels almost more impressive!)
I don’t mind not having hair (although it is growing back, if only in certain places, and looking slightly feathery and baby bird like!) – I was missing having brightly coloured hair and thought I would take the opportunity to get wigs in a few different styles. I’ve also never really had long hair so this is a good chance to try it out temporarily! They range from about £15-30, I think, and some of them were in sales. There are a few which are much more expensive but it’s quite easy to filter by price on the website.
Here are some of the wigs I have:
I like wigs because they’re a very easy way of changing up the way I look, which feels particularly important at the moment. I haven’t worn them as much as I want, but I tend to wear them out of the house when I’m not at the hospital. It means that if I am feeling self-conscious I can put a wig on and hide, or I can dress up for special occasions or just if I feel like it! I can only really speak for the Lush Wigs website but it has photos of the wig both on stands and on models, as well as a link to Instagram where if people have added the hashtag you can try and get an idea of what it looks like ‘in real life’. They have ‘normal’ looking ones as well as more unusual things – if anyone is interested in them, I’d recommend getting one interesting one and one that’s more work appropriate!
In terms of caring for the wigs I have to admit to being really bad at that, but they seem to have lasted quite well regardless! I comb or brush them before and after use, and try to keep them on wig stands between use. (Although now that I have more wigs than stands, that’s a bit of a problem. Probably a problem which means I shouldn’t buy anymore!) My wig stands and wig cap (which I bought initially but haven’t actually used because I haven’t yet needed to) were from Amazon, and were fairly cheap, but I’m sure you can also get them elsewhere. Arya does get quite intrigued by them and likes playing with them, which I can’t imagine is good for them (or her really) but she’s cute enough to get away with it! Dry shampoo works as a care method too, and I have a few hairsprays that work well, as well as some hair ties and pins. Because I’m technically right handed but have a bad tremor in my right hand, I can’t really use it very much, so I do often need help but this isn’t the case for everyone! You can also style and cut them – I put plaits in one (as you can see in the picture above) but haven’t tried scissors yet, being slightly too nervous! On the website it has care directions, including instructions for using heat products, how often you should be washing the wigs and how to store them.
One of the nice things about these wigs is that they are versatile and work for all sorts of people and all sorts of reasons for wanting wigs – I found out about them on a Facebook group I’m in, from someone who wears them for aesthetic reasons (and always looks amazing!). Other people who I’ve seen wearing them have alopecia, or cancer like me, or just want to ring the changes a bit! I haven’t noticed a lack of quality but I don’t wear them everyday or even close to that, so someone who uses them more intensively may know better than I do about these things!
In terms of selecting wigs, I looked through the website which has an option to save designs you like, and I try to buy a variety of colours and lengths – but it is quite addictive, so fair warning there! There’s a lot of fairly similar styles and depending on when it is, there’s sometimes sales on.
Writing this post is making me really want to wear a wig today, even though I don’t have plans to leave the house until my physio appointment on Friday. Yet more proof of how suggestible I am!