Here’s How And Where To Donate Your Hair

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If one of your New Year’s resolutions this year is to give back to others, consider giving something you may already have in abundance: your hair.

Get Hair, Health & Science News

A human hair wig is a natural-looking option for anyone who is experiencing balding or hair thinning due to stress, alopecia, or the treatment of illnesses like cancer. This type of hair loss can be a devastating event, affecting a person’s confidence and happiness. Wearing a wig that looks and feels like their own hair can bring some semblance of normalcy back into their life.

And with the right care, human hair wigs can last years, compared to the months-long lifespan of some synthetic wigs. But where do those wigs come from?

How are human hair wigs made?

Human hair wigs come from people like you and the amazing not-for-profits that take it upon themselves to organize, collect, and create them. It can take 20 to 30 ponytails of hair to make one wig, so it’s not an easy task, but it’s incredibly rewarding for both the donors and the receivers. Pantene Beautiful Lengths, which is no longer in operation, provided thousands of wigs to women with cancer throughout its 12-year run, but many other organizations are still producing natural wigs for people in need.

Where to donate your hair

Here’s how and where to get involved if you want to shear and share this year:

Locks of Love

Minimum length: 10 inches

Locks of Love has been around since 1997, donating wigs to financially disadvantaged kids, teens, and adolescents experiencing medical hair loss. To donate to Locks of Love, you don’t need to have a professional make the big chop, so long as the donated hair totals at least 10 inches in length end to end and is shipped bundled in either a ponytail or a braid. Dyed or permed hair is acceptable as long as the hair is in good health.

Wigs for Kids

Minimum length: 12 inches

Wigs for Kids has one simple vision: “Helping children look themselves and live their lives.” For 30 years, the organization has been making wigs for kids under the age of 18 who have lost their hair due to medical reasons like cancer treatment or alopecia. Donated hair can’t be dyed, bleached, or highlighted, and they require at least 12 inches but suggest 14 or more.

Pink Heart Funds

Minimum length: 10 inches

Pink Heart Funds requires at least 10 inches of hair to make wigs for people of any age with hair loss disorders. Gone gray? No problem — Pink Heart Funds takes gray, dyed, or permed hair of any texture as long as it isn’t overly processed and is mailed in fastened with a rubber band or hair tie in a clear plastic baggie.

Children With Hair Loss

Minimum length: 8 inches

If your hair hasn’t quite made the 10-inch cut, Children With Hair Loss (CWHL) will take donated hair that is at least eight inches tip to tip. CWHL donates wigs to young folks under the age of 21 and prefers non-chemically treated hair, but the organization will take any hair in good quality, including gray hair. In 2019, CWHL was also the recipient of more than 2,000 hair donations by a single entity (The Longhairs), breaking the Guinness World Record!

Hair We Share

Minimum length: 12 inches

Based on Long Island, NY, Hair We Share takes hair donations of at least a foot long. Recipients of these custom wigs must be under 18 and must have lost their hair due to medical reasons. Donated hair can’t be highlighted, but the hair can be dyed as long as tit’s still a naturally occurring color. Gray hair is also welcome.

MEDICALLY REVIEWED BY
DR. KATELYN CLOYD, ND

on January 13, 2020

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