Sunday, August 18, 2013

My Hair Donation

Many of you - my lovely followers - may be aware of the fact that over a year ago I decided I would donate my hair! After the long process of growing it out, on April 6th, 2013, I cut off 8 inches! Yes. That's how long it took to grow out a healthy 8-inches of hair. My hair is very fine and breaks and splits very easily - I tried to get trims around every 3-4 months. May I mention I hadn't had my hair this short in over 3 years?!
It was quite a scary decision. I grew very attached to my hair while growing it out, and very addicted to doing french braids down my back. I hadn't even planned on cutting it all off that day; it was just supposed to be a trim! But it did teach me that being spontaneous (something I am never) can be a good thing. I do have to admit though, there was a lot of hesitation before it was cut off, and a lot of "its so short"'s afterward. It took a lot of getting used to; but I'm finally truly  embracing it. And honestly, having such long hair was a PAIN. It's grown about two inches since then, and I think I finally found the right shampoo to use with it; which has made a big difference. 
Let's talk about why I love it being shorter:
1. It takes less time to do in the morning
2. It doesn't get tangled as easily (and its easier to de-tangle)
3. I go through less shampoo, conditioner, and hair product in general
4. My natural color is all growing in
5. It dries faster (naturally and with a blow dryer) 

Now; the big question. Emily, what organization did you donate to?
I'm going to be honest and say that I originally was going to donate to Locks of Love but I didn't cut enough off to fit the criteria, and if I'd known about it sooner I'd do the whole #hairforhazel thing happening now. I went with the Pantene Beautiful Lengths program. Which gives hair to specifically women who've lost their hair. 
The timing couldn't have been more perfect; I ended up sending away my hair on the 17th anniversary (August 2, 1996) of my aunt passing away to breast cancer. You heard that right - 17 years - the age I will be turning in November. Hence why my middle name is Deborah, my aunts name. Obviously I never knew her but I've heard about how great a women she was and so I donated my hair in her memory along with the memory of my cousin Amanda, who passed when she (and I) was just 12 of Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma in 2009. She actually passed 5 days before my birthday, and it was the same illness my grandmother passed away from in 2010. (Her name was Jean which Amanda was named after as her middle name was Jean - so many connections!)
sorry for the story time - didn't expect this blogpost to turn into that. 
But this is a happy post because some brave, beautiful women is gonna get that hair I grew out! It makes me feel so good inside to know that. 
So what products have I been using?
When I first cut my hair, I was using the Pantene Aqua Light Shampoo and Conditioner. I thought it was working really great; it didn't have any extra chemicals in it, it just left my hair feeling normal. But after a while I noticed that it just left my hair natural. And my natural hair tends to be very frizzy and poofy. Although, I am glad I went with that shampoo in the first place because it felt really nice to just cleanse my hair and give it a fresh start. But once those bottles were empty, I switched to the Head and Shoulders Smooth & Silky shampoo and conditioner and I like it much better! My hair is much more smooth and easier to work with. Head and Shoulders is obviously a brand that helps with dandruff, etc. and I find that it does help with flaking, but my scalp still feels itchy and a little dry from time to time. I've also gone back to using my Herbal Essences Long Term Relationship Split-End Protector just to keep my ends in check now that my hair is getting longer. Tip: just because your hair is shorter, doesn't mean you still can't get things like split ends and breakage.
The verdict? I will definitely donate my hair again if it ever gets long enough. But I think before I do it again, I'm gonna have fun doing different things to it!
x Emily
PS If you'd like to see some back to school videos on my youtube click here to go to the playlist I made

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