• Banjo
    15
    This weekend I went to the movies with two girlfriends. I don't see them that often, but we do get together from time to time. One of the women always compliments me on my hair. This time she complimented me and said that she would like to get her hair cut like mine. She wanted to go to my stylist with me so that she could get the same cut. My intuition felt a bit like perhaps she and the other women have speculated on my wearing a wig. I didn't say much when she said that, but not sure if the discussion continues how to respond. Any advice?
  • Cathe Lartigue
    320
    They're your girlfriends! Why would you not want to be transparent with them? Part of friendship is trust and I would trust my girls enough to be honest with them. I would have just said--I'll lend you my wig to take to the stylist!
  • Happy to ve Retired
    251
    I think it depends on whether you are "out of the closet" with wigs and how close the girlfriends are. We travel a lot - so I have told people that I get my hair cut by a retired lady in southern California - and that she only works out of her house and cuts hair for people she has worked on for years. Yep - it has come up and that explanation tends to shut them up. In fact, I wear Jon Renau out of California so it is not really a lie.

    Only once have I discussed with a non-close friend that I wear a wig - and she also wears one so we just spotted each other. Even then - I would not bring it up.

    People do ask questions when they suspect something in a way to get you to disclose info. If you are not ready to discuss it, then don't. That is my advice.
  • Banjo
    15
    I am not out of the closet about wigs and would not feel comfortable talking about it. I wish I could say I trust girlfriends, but I don't want everyone to know and I don't trust that they wouldn't say anything to others. I like the response of saying a friend does it out of her house and is not taking new clients. I'll try that. Thank you for your responses! I appreciate your taking the time to answer.
  • Happy to ve Retired
    251
    It is not that I think it is somehow embarrassing to wear wigs - it is more that I don't want to be the topic of conversation. And, I don't want people staring at my head as it just makes me uncomfortable. Also, the next part of that conversation is why I wear wigs. In my case - I have extreme thinning - and although some people with hair as thin as mine do not wear wigs - I don't come across people with hair this thin very often. So, I assume some must be wearing wigs. But, I don't want to talk about my thinning hair - don't want to discuss what vitamins I should be taking or what I should be eating - don't want to talk about genetics, etc. If I wore wigs "for fun", I would probably be more open about it and would probably wear all different styles and colors. If I had some health issues, it would depend on whether I wanted to discuss them. But in general - I don't want this to be a focus of my life. So, I stay in the wig closet - at least as far as I know - in other words, people might know or suspect but I have not discussed it with them.
  • Malibu Marge
    6
    I’m having so much fun changing it up every day. At first, when they did a double take, I said, “ Guess what? My fairy godmother left me some hair”. Then, “ Oops, she did it again”. Then, “ I know... magic”. Treating it humorously works for me. I look 15 years younger and feel almost as attractive as I did in my teens and twenties, except without the acne . I got into all of this to help my daughter, who has alopecia. She’s in sales and has to “own” it, radiating her confidence and power. It is so much happier an experience to enjoy it than to treat it as an embarrassment. I’m “Nana, Mom, Wifie and Bosslady to the world. I’m Malibu Marge to ME! Fun, party Marge is still alive and well and the wigs allow me to still play dress-up. Party on!
  • btrflygal7
    19
    The only people that know are closed family and don't feel comfortable discussing it with anyone. I had people compliment either hair color or the cut. My sister is a hairdresser so that kind of ends any further inquiry, lol. But that is tricky if they are asking to go with you to your stylist. It does almost seem like they suspect it's a wig but can't say I understand that. I think people should respect privacy and not pry.
  • Jnc
    15
    My friends knew right away when I started wearing a wig. It has never bothered me telling people. A stranger came up to me once and asked where I got my hair done. I just told her it's a wig. She said - wow! I want one too. :) I love my wigs and am not embarrassed to tell anyone I wear one.
  • Happy to ve Retired
    251
    It is a personal decision and people should respect privacy if someone is not inclined to "share". For me - this is a chronic situation and I frankly do not want to spend my life discussing it. So, if someone compliments my hair, I just say thank you. Done - end of story. I am sure sometimes they are thinking that it is a wig - it probably looks better than most "real hair", but I still don't want to discuss it. Most people associate full time wig wearing with either being sick, or having religious reason. Either one leads to discussion that I would not want to become a big part of my life. I wear a wig so that I can "blend in" and look better. That is it. The whole Story told:)
  • Banjo
    15
    Yes, I'm much like you..My hair has been thinning since I was in high school and it's a painful subject that I really don't want to have to talk about if possible. Glad we can all discuss these issues...it really helps.
  • btrflygal7
    19
    [reply="Happy to ve Retired;2

    Same here, I started losing my hair during adolescence, and was ridiculed. I understand where your coming from. I just want to blend of in and that's why I choose not to discuss it with anyone.
  • Malibu Marge
    6
    Privacy is very understandable, especially if you’ve worn wigs for many years and can “pass”. It wasn’t possible for me with those who know me because I’ve lived in our 55+ community for 3 years and my hair was short, thin, curly and gray. Also,being retired, I have the freedom to treat it as a fashion accessory and not distract from career. Finally, not needing, but just wanting to wear a wig may make me less self- conscious. Anyway, “different strokes for different folks”.
  • Rainbow18
    27
    Some of my friends know...those I feel I can trust, and some don't know. One in particular likes to spread info around (another way of saying she's a gossip). Anyway, when someone asks me where I get my hair styled I always say...just go to Supercuts, they can do anything! And that usually ends the conversation.
  • Larry
    13
    Hi,
    I’m working on a book about baldness and the social and emotional impact that comes with losing your hair. It will be an anthology and I’m looking for contributors. It will be a non profit project. Any money that will come from sales will go to paying expenses in producing this book, and any other money will go to charities such as the National Alopecia Areata Foundation and the American Cancer Society.

    I’m looking for personal stories and essays about topics associated with hair loss such as wigs, beauty, coping skills and embracing baldness.

    God bless,

    Larry S. Barbee
  • Sarah3740
    25
    I share your concerns about not being out of the closet - once you come out, you can't go back! I have had the same experience. I am fortunate that I have a stylist who modifies my wigs, and she has always told me that she would never throw me under the bus if someone came to her wanting to have her hair cut like mine. She would instead be honest and say that the cut might not work with their hair. Do you have a current (or former stylist) who could to the same for you?
  • smootsdce
    0
    I have been open with my friends and family about wearing a wig because there is no way I could hide the fact. I have extremely thin/fine hair and no amount of product could explain the difference. I have not been open enough to announce it on social media, like Facebook. When someone mentions how great my hair looks, I just say thank you and move on. (We are a military family and have friends all over) The issue I have come across with sharing with non-friends/family is the immediate assumption that I am sick. When I tell them that I wear wigs because I have thinning/crummy hair, I feel a sense of judgement as if they are ONLY for those who are going through chemo or have an autoimmune disease. I am new to this lifestyle so I think I am going to be less open with people who comment on my hair from now on. I can empathyze with the OP regarding the issues of thin hair and the "helpful" comments. I think she is on the right track with keeping it private.
  • Sunset
    465
    I never ever tell someone I'm wearing a topper or a wig. I don't feel comfortable doing it. I get a lot of compliments & i just say thank you & try to change the subject. I'm embarrassed over my thin, fine lifeless hair that won't hold a curl & won't even hold color for very long. I look so much better with having more hair, and I enjoy being able to look better. Why wouldn't anyone want to look better? I don't want to explain to people why I wear a wig or hair piece. It is what it is. If anyone has ever suspected they've never said anything. I don't know what I would say if someone asked me if I was wearing a wig. I'll have to deal with that if it ever happens. My hair has always been extremely thin & baby fine. It has literally ruined my life & kept me from doing a lot of things. People that have a normal amount of hair don't understand.
  • smootsdce
    0
    I understand completely. It took me a LONG time to make the decision to wear hair. I was so tired of hating how I looked in pictures. No matter what I did, or product I used, I looked horrible. It sounds so vain when you verbalize it, but it really does consume your life. It has restricted activities and relationships. Even now, I don't feel fully free. I cruise quite a bit and I don't know how I am going to overcome the swimming issue. I have read quite a bit about it, but I am still very nervous. I am always the 1%, so if something MIGHT happen, it will to me. I can just imagine myself going down a waterslide and having my hair fall off.
  • animallover
    277
    You both hit it right on the head for me, I say thank you and try to change the subject all the time. Had lunch with some old friends that I don't get to see too much and one must have mentioned how much she loved my hair the way I was wearing it about four different times. I kept changing the subject although I "felt like I should tell her it was a wig".......if we had been alone I probably would have but there were about 12 people present and I just didn't want to get in to it all. I had thick hair most of my life but emotional stress, Hashimoto's and surgical menopause took my hair and for years, YEARS, I was embarrassed and ashamed of how my head looked. I kept a low profile out in public, I actually hung my head. I hid in pictures or refused. I sheltered myself from living. It did consume my life. It wasn't about being vain, it was just pure embarrassment and shame. Shame for what? I don't know, I guess for not being a woman with a full head of hair. People with full heads of hair just don't understand and really, why should they? It isn't happening to them.
    It will be a year this July that I started wearing wigs and I still struggle with a feeling of guilt or fakeness. I am slowly overcoming those feelings but I would be dishonest if I said they still don't affect me. I will never stop wearing wigs.....I love them. I am in pictures again. I live again with my head of beautiful hair held up high. I say thank you, and if I feel the person can be helped by my telling them it is a wig, than I tell them. Only my husband, and a close Uncle and Aunt know. They are the ones who help me with styles and colors when I can't choose. They are brutally honest and I so appreciate that
    I haven't been swimming in one yet but I do ride a motorcyle with a wig on. I use a lot of glue and wear a bandanna tied back or a helmet. I think everyone on this forum is a brave beautiful woman or man!
  • Sunset
    465
    I was actually told by my ex I needed to go see a psychiatrist over my obsession over my thin, lifeless hair. What could a psychiatrist do to have made me accept this horrible hair? They couldn't, so a wig or hairpiece can make me feel better. I feel guilty like I'm committing a sin wearing fake hair, but it's a shame there has to be such a stigma with it. Women wear fake nails, fake eyelashes, push up bras, fake tans ect, and that's totally acceptable. I felt strange when I went to see my accountant. She said at least three times My goodness what are you doing, you actually are looking younger. I told her it must be the glasses I was wearing. (LOL) It felt good to be told I looked younger though. Who doesn't want to hear that? I didn't want to mention I was wearing a wig; then it would turn into that I'm not being real. I still have the same face, same body & everything else, I'm just arriving with a normal amount of hair like I wonder I couldn't have been gifted with. I look around & see all these other women with normal amounts of hair, and being able to wear different styles. I was at an outdoor event yesterday & the wind was blowing. I felt safe with my wig on because it was clipped on, and I thought about what a disaster my bio hair would have ended up looking like. I would have had to of pulled on a baseball cap. Even when I wear a baseball cap I have to spray down the sides to keep my hair from coming out the sides. One man there mentioned about my brother getting a hair transplant in the early 70's and how it looked so bad. I asked this man who has a full head of hair if he wouldn't have felt bad going bald in her early 20's. People just don't understand & it's very sad.
  • VocalEyes
    231
    It’s incredible to read all of these comments! It’s as though I have written each and every one in my head since I began wearing wigs years ago! I lost my hair due to a medication. I fully embrace wearing any style/color that I feel good in. That being said, there isn’t one day that goes by that a single thought will go through my head concerning my hair.
    I am going on my first cruise and am stressing about what to wear when I swim. I’m thinking about wearing one of my older wigs just for that purpose. Any suggestions there?
  • dc21
    327
    Definitely wear older hair. You can put one of those wide exercise headbands like a buff or a Nammu type cap on - or just the wig itself if you prefer. Blue liner tape will hold for extended wear and swimming, but be sure you have the correct stuff to remove it.
  • Happy to ve Retired
    251
    Curious if when you go in the pool are you worried about underwater or wind? I do water aerobics - so I tend to get the back of my head wet - but not totally underwater. I have one clip in each of my wigs. I have not had problems either in wind or doing water aerobics - but not sure how my old wigs would work if I went underwater or on a waterslide.

    Anyway - I used to get really bad sunburns on my head before wearing a wig - and since I always had extremely thin hair - it did not look good at the pool with my scalp showing. So - this is far better. No burnt head and i wear a wig that just looks windblown and undone - as I would wear my hair to the pool.

    The bottom get chlorine in it but since I use old wigs - I don't care.

    Fingers crossed but no problems so far.
  • Happy to ve Retired
    251
    Sorry to hear that your ex is not more supportive - but I am willing to bet that he does things that make him feel better about himself. Wig wearing has become normal for me after about 2+ years of doing it on a full time basis. I do go "naked" in the house with my biohair - but even then I tend to wear wigs at home to look and feel better. It is like I cannot stand to look in the mirror with my biohair. I think wigs are very convenient - and frankly - I wish I had made the change a lot sooner.

    no need to consult a psychiatrist on this issue in my humble opinion.
  • A7X
    74
    I agree with so many of these comments. My thin hair was the bane of my existence for years, I used to envy people who could walk in mist, go to the beach, be out in the wind, etc. and not look totally wrecked because they had normal hair. There were a lot of comments (all positive) when I first started wearing a wig, I just told work people I got extensions to thicken my hair and everyone accepted it. My close friends know I wear wigs. If my hair had been good to begin with, I'd probably be upset at having to wear a wig, but honestly this has solved a problem I've been struggling with for years. I am happy when I look in the mirror now and I feel like my hair "matches" the rest of me if that makes sense. Happy to be Retired, I wear my wig at home too because I hate looking at my bio hair. Glad to know I'm not the only one! I only take it off at night when I go to bed.

    I was just in Florida on vacation for the first time wearing a wig full time and it was awesome not to have to worry about my hair wilting in the humidity. I wore my old one to the beach and felt great - I didn't go in the water, but that was only because I forgot to bring a bathing suit. I only wore my biohair (with a hat) when we took walks on the beach or in the morning for exercise.
  • PennyC
    37
    I recently attended a family party, and there were relatives and friends I hadn't seen in years. Now, in my family, we have curly-kinky hair. I wore a T of B Norah, in a color quite a bit lighter than my natural, and exactly ONE person commented. Not one relative or old friend, but a woman I had met the night before (when I had on a straighter wig). She's my daughter's future mother-in-law, and she hasn't been told about my cancer adventures. I just changed the subject and complimented HER hair.

    My sister and my two daughters both had their hair done for the party, and I just plopped mine on LOL! Did get some nice compliments from the hairstylist though (she has worked in the fake-hair field).

    People have a lot on their minds beside trying to remember what you looked like last week or last year.
    All that being said, I do find wigs uncomfortable, and do not wear them around the house or when it's just my sister or daughters. I get home and off comes the hair, the bra, and the shoes!
  • A7X
    74
    I have a question for you about wig + motorcycle helmet. I ride occasionally with my husband (on the back) and there's this bar we stop at. My wig comes off if I pull my helmet off, because the helmet is tight fitting and a full helmet. So I end up with my wig in a backpack and either put it on in the parking lot or go into the ladies' with my helmet and put the wig on in there. Any trick to making the wig stay on when the helmet comes off?
  • animallover
    277
    It can be a struggle that's for sure. I don't wear glue ordinarily on my wigs but when riding I secure it with Got2be in the front and on the temples, than I wear a skull cap or tight bandanna over it and than helmet (although I do go quite often without helmet as we pretty much stay on country road, slow and leisurely). If we stop to eat or sightsee than my husband will hold the ends of the bandanna or such while I gently try to get helmet off without taking everything with it! It works most of the time. The bandanna and hair stay on, than I either remove the bandanna and fluff hair or I just leave the bandanna on. Hope this helps!
  • A7X
    74
    that does help, I am going to try the bandanna trick next time we go out. Thank you!
  • Banjo
    15
    I did have a stylist that I thought I could trust, but when a friend went to him, I think he told her. She never has said anything to me, but she has never brought up my hair again...so it's tough...this really sucks not having much hair
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