How do you tell people you have Alopecia?
My first day at my new school was nerve racking. We walked into class and everyone was told to take their hats off, so I didn’t think anything of it, and heard a huge gasp from everyone in the class. I was a little shocked, but the girl sitting next to me gave me a pat on the head and said “You’re alright” and everyone started laughing. Making friends was never a difficult task, as my shiny little head was a brilliant conversation starter.
How do you draw attention away from not having eyelashes?
Fake eyelashes made of both synthetic and real hair are widely available on-line, through wig accessory suppliers, chemists or hair salons. With fake eyelashes try using eyeliner and mascara for a more realistic look. Start with simple eyelashes, don’t go too over the top as they will look less natural.
If you feel uncomfortable with fake eyelashes but would like to draw more attention to your eyes, eye liner and eye shadow can both be used. It is best to avoid black and use medium brown or a light brown for fair complexions. Use a fine line for definition on the bottom and top of the eye line. Wiping cotton buds over the line helps to take away the harshness.
How can I hide my bald patches?
If there are just a few bald patches, you could try an eyebrow pencil, cream or spray of the same colour as your hair to make the patches less obvious. This works by reducing the colour contrast between the skin and hair. Or alternatively you could use a grey colour stick (these can be purchased from Hairhouse Warehouse or any local hair shop) they are used to cover up grey hair in between colours but can be used to cover the patches just find one in your hair colour.
Dividing your parting slightly differently can help to cover up bald patches depending on where they are. Try a side parting to give more volume to one side of your head giving the appearance of more hair. Alternatively you could try a zigzag parting to cover patches near your original parting.
Use volumising shampoos and conditioners as these can also give the appearance of more hair and a fuller and thicker head of hair.
You can also buy hats to cover up any patches on the top of the scalp, and for people with little or no hair, hats can be bought that have hair attached.
Or you could try wearing a headband or hats with hair attached for something a little more funky. Even buying hair extensions and attaching them via the clips or double sided tape can be a way to help make your hair look like it has more volume.
If your hair loss is quite severe you could try a wig. You can have them custom made or buy online – refer to our Wigs page section for more information on wigs.
How do you get through each day?
I never let my appearance effect who I was; I used it to my advantage. I have always used humour as a way to deal with my Alopecia. For example I have an older sister who loved and stillloves the jokes I pull. One particular day we were standing on the main road outside of our house waving at cars while dad did the mowing, my sister turned to me and said “Take your wig off when the next car drives past and then put it back on like nothing happened.” Being the jokester I am, I proceeded to pull my wig off as a gentlemen drove past. Well I shocked him so much he nearly drove off the road! My parents have always taught me that laughter is the best medicine, even if it is at your own expense, so I have used this as my life motto.
People in the street stare and tease me about my hair loss – what should I do?
People stare and tease you because they don’t understand. The more we can inform people about Alopecia the more understanding the community will be. We are working on having people be more aware of Alopecia! You just need to be brave and say “I have alopecia, it’s a medical condition that I can not control. I often will go home and look into the mirror and tell myself that I am beautiful and I am proud of myself!” I find that this does increase my self esteem.
People continually call me names. It’s just not fair.
No its not fair! Having no hair or losing your hair is definitely not the fairest thing but on the top of that being called names isn’t much fun either. The best thing to do is to be the bigger person! Don’t listen to the silly names people call you because they are just words and you should know in yourself that you aren’t any of those names your being called! Your gorgeous and strong! So keep your chin up!
Should I shave all my hair off?
Shaving all your hair off is a big step and you have to be completely ready for it emotionally as you do have feelings of loss. But there are benefits. You can change your hair colour as many times as you want! I personally think you should sit down and write a list. On one side state all the positives and on the other the negatives. Then review this list for a week and see if after that you feel you want to shave it off.
I haven’t told my boyfriend or friends I have alopecia should I?
This is completely up to you. I think that honesty is the best policy. Some people won’t be as accepting as others but at the end of the day it is their loss if they don’t want to accept you for something you can’t help. So stay positive and if you’re true to yourself you’ll feel more confident.
I want to try some treatments but am not sure what the best one for me is?
The best thing to do is to speak to a dermatologist, trichologist or your GP about treatments. There are a lot out there you can try, it is just a matter of really researching them and speaking to your doctor about the best one for you. You need to know however that there is no cure today, so understand the consequences of the treatments and the impact that they might have on your life. There are studies into natural treatments as well.
My Family is so upset about my hair loss and I feel like it’s all my fault.
It is definitely not your fault! You can’t help having your hair fall out. I have from time to time felt as though I must’ve done something to make it happen, but as I have gotten older I see that my hair loss has made me the strong confident girl I am today. It has helped me experience things I never would have thought possible, it has helped me be more accepting of others. You will have bad days, but you will also have good days. Your family are upset because of how much they love you and they don’t want to see you in pain or suffering. You need to keep talking to them about how you feel. Keep your head up because you have an amazing family who love and care for you.