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Headwear Confidential and Top Hair Loss Tips for 2013

Thursday, 10 January 2013 10:50:00 Europe/London

young woman with hair loss leaning against a wall

Whether you are ‘new’ to hair loss or hair loss is a long standing adversary for you, I thought some helpful advice and top tips based on personal experience might be the order of the day.

First up, Lulu O’Hagan’s calm and practical tips on how to deal with the trauma when your hair first starts to fall. Lulu is a fashion stylist by trade, and she has had personal experience of hair loss since 2008.

DO

  1. Try to keep the panic to a minimum - I would never say don't panic as it is impossible!
  2. Book in with your doctor, so that they see the very start of your hair loss.
  3. Have all the relevant blood test checks. B12, Ferritin (stored iron), perimenopausal (if you are that kind of age), Thyroid.
  4. Ask for a referral to a dermatologist - they cover hair loss. They can usually give you an NHS prescription for a wig too.
  5. Go and see a Trichologist - if you can afford it and hear another opinion.
  6. Allow yourself to grieve the loss of your hair even though it may come back.
  7. Remember you are still YOU - on the planet – alive - even without hair.
  8. Make sure you try NHS wig suggestions first - they are much better than you would think. They are sold in various shops. Mine was from a shop in Notting Hill, London, where Lily Allen gets hers! They last for around 3 months, which gives you time to breathe and think about other options.
  9. If you choose real hair wigs - especially for long hair don't use Indian hair (they mat dreadfully) - go for European/ American/ Chinese hair.
  10. Always ask the salon what kind of hair they use!!

DON'T

  1. Turn into a panic-stricken headless chicken like I did!
  2. Spend a fortune on supplements at the health shop.
  3. Go to the first wig-making salon that looks like they can help. Deep breaths and research first.
  4. Feel guilty that you are so upset without being diagnosed with cancer. Cancer patients have written to me that facing losing their hair was almost worse than facing losing a breast. Each person is entitled to deal with such a shock in their own way.
  5. Get too annoyed with people who say "wish I could just take off my hair and wash it", “think of all the hairdressing bills you are saving" etc, etc. - they are just trying to be positive!"

Lulu O’Hagan @Alopecia Beauty Tips

But what if you want to ring the changes and have some alternatives to wearing your wig all day, everyday?

Many women speak of wanting a ‘day off’ from the wig and it can be particularly handy at this time of year.

1. Take a look in your wardrobe - look at the colour of your winter coats/jackets – make a note of it and buy a winter weight hat that matches. This immediately takes away the everyday stress of trying to match up or wondering what you can wear to keep warm today. Also it will make you look ‘weller’ – I know that sounds silly, but I’ve had too many women tell me this strange fact not to believe it. Co-ordinated hats appear smart and ‘snappy’ and you look ‘together’, however you might be feeling, and people will tell you how well you are looking…promise!

2. So that takes care of outside but what sort of a ‘girl’ are you? – city smart separates – ‘I’m off to the office’, or ‘I’m lost unless I’m in a pair of jeans’. Think about your style as you’ll need to find hats that match it to successfully ‘blend in’. Of course there are no hard and fast rules – you can wear whatever you like – but if you’re not use to wearing hats or you don’t know what shapes suit, take small steps to start with. If its ‘relaxed casual’ go for some soft little jersey hats, easy to pull on and go, and in the right colours (again choose in colours you wear lots of) very little fuss. Kimmy, Alma , and Carrie. 

Kimmy – easy pull on wear, dress up with a scarf

Kimmy – easy pull on wear, dress up with a scarf

Alma – flattering volume around the face

Alma – flattering volume around the face

Carrie – easy casual cap

Carrie – easy casual cap

If you need to be smart, look at some contemporary turban styles in rich fabrics – DO NOT think polyester velvet velour stretchy any thing! But rich jewel colours in dressy fabrics such as stretch satin - Ava and Bella, or stylish expensive looking prints - Gemma.

3. Do look at the fabric label particularly if you are in the process of losing your hair. Your scalp may well feel a little itchy and tender for a few days. So natural fibres or natural fibre mixes are a good idea, 100% synthetic maybe a little to warm and not suitable. (Remember you could be wearing it indoors with the central heating on.) Softness is also a good idea - you want it to feel nice to wear, if you are going to wear it everyday.

4. ‘Head hug’ - Every women wears her hat differently – some like to feel the hat snug around the head, for peace of mind. Others find it restrictive and feel on the verge of an instant headache. Try it on if you can, and keep it on for 3-4 mins if you are thinking of buying it. This way you can re-adjust in the mirror, look at it from all sides, think about the colour and what you’ll wear it with and what your partner might say, (actually forget that last point, I’ll come back to partners). It is worth saying here that nobody puts on a hat and instantly gets it right – you’ll need a mirror and a bit of ‘adjustment’ time.

5. Don’t go too heavy on fabric ‘tog’ value – this is really the main difference between everyday hats and hats worn for hair loss. You’ll be wearing them inside and for longer periods of time, so choose lighter weight fabrics and then maybe layer up with a wide scarf up ‘over your ears’ for additional warmth. Easy to take off and put in a handbag and it means you remain covered at all times.

Ava – flattering fabric height to the face – no defined head shape

Ava – flattering fabric height to the face – no defined head shape

Bella – multi-coloured, easy to co-ordinate daywear

Bella – easy to co-ordinate daywear, (this style has since been updated Dec 2016 - Bella 2)

6. Finding it hard to even let your partner or children see you without hair in case you ‘spook’ them. Don’t stress about it, get a little beanie type hat for wearing around the house/in bed and it will have the added bonus of keeping your head warm when the central heating goes off! - Pella

7. Partners, loved ones and dear friends – hopefully all will be supportive, restoringly truthful and take to wearing hats to keep you company! If they aren’t instantly making the right noises, you can explain that you will look different for awhile but this is all about trying to re-create the attractive, feminine ‘you’ whilst the hair is gone. Ideas are welcome, humour essential but in a ‘we’re in it together’ sort of way – any reference to Hyacinth Bucket is …unhelpful!

So much better than a New Year’s resolution list, this is all about thinking what YOU want, and how YOU want to look, ditching the stress and no one has mentioned the gym once! Hoorah! Wishing you all a warm, chic, hat wearing Spring!

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Do I have to pay VAT?

If you are experiencing hair loss you may not have to pay the VAT on some of our products. Headwear we have designed and manufactured specifically for hair loss wear is exempted. ‘Standard’ items of headwear such as scarves, brooches, some winter/summer hats by other designers, skincare are not eligible. They have not been ‘adapted’ for special wear. The ‘status’ of items will be displayed in your basket, before ordering, once a short health declaration is completed.

During checkout you will be asked to confirm that you will be using our products for your own personal medical purposes.

It is a legal requirement stipulated by HRMC that Suburban Turban Ltd can justify our customers’ VAT exemption status. Please be aware that these details maybe verified at a later date.