On Donating Your Hair

I made a big change last night …

I cut off over 8 inches of beautiful, thick, brunette hair from my head.  OK, I didn’t cut it myself, but a lovely hairstylist at my local salon did.

I change my hairstyle and color quite frequently, but have not dyed (or even cut it, which I’m ashamed to admit) in over a year.  I was trying to grow it out long.  But after it got to a certain point, I was so over it because my hair is so thick that it was getting to be a bit much to handle.

So I did the logical thing and made the decision to donate my hair!





My hair has never been long enough to consider donating before, but once I realized that it was so crazy long and that I’m comfortable going really short, donating sounded like the smart, honorable thing to do.  Otherwise all that hair was just going to go into the garbage, so why not put it to good use?

The program I chose to use is Pantene Beautiful Lengths.  I primarily choose this one because they only required 8 inches, whereas other programs required 10 or 12 inches…and I couldn’t wait any longer.  Also, Pantene is a P&G product which is based in Cincinnati.  So it seemed to be more of a local choice for me.

You can visit the Pantene Beautiful Lengths website for all the tips on how to prepare your hair for donating and where to send the hair, but here are some of the basic requirements:

  • Bleached, permanently colored, or gray hair is restricted.
  • Hair should be placed in a ponytail (and braided, if you choose) with an additional ponytail holder tied at the bottom of the ponytail.
  • The cut should be made above the top ponytail holder so the hair all remains together.
  • Place the ponytail in a plastic bag and send it off to the donation program of your choice!

My stylist actually put my hair into 4 separate braids to cut off.


When I got to the salon and told my stylist that I wanted to donate my hair, she said that if I went through one of the programs their salon uses, I would get a discount on my haircut!  However, each of their designated programs required 10 or 12 inches at a minimum.  So if it’s something you’re considering, you should see if your salon offers a discount.  Otherwise maybe you can get a tax deduction? #doubtful

Where does the hair go?

After you mail in your hair to the Pantene Beautiful Lengths Program, wigs are made of your hair combined with the hair of other thoughtful individuals like you.  The wigs are then distributed via the American Cancer Society to women who have lost their hair due to cancer treatment.  And the best part is that these wigs are given to the women free of charge.  One woman’s trash is another woman’s treasure.  Hey, maybe men can even donate their hair once the man bun fad dies down?

If I can come up with some good styles (especially for running with short hair…)  I’ll be sure to post about them.

Have you ever donated your hair?  Or would you consider it?

Anything else weird that you have donated?


8 Thoughts on “On Donating Your Hair

  1. It looks SO SO SO good!!!! Awesome that you were able to donate your hair! I’ve done that once and it was such a rewarding feeling :)

  2. Your short hair looks super cute! My hair has never been long enough to donate, but I would consider donating if it was. I’ve found that a tiny ponytail, one million bobby pins, and a headband keeps short hair up while running!

  3. Colleen your new cut looks so good on you! I’m actually cutting and donating mine tomorrow! I haven’t gone short in so long so I’m super nervous but it’s so nice knowing I’m donating it.

  4. Oh wow, what a change! Short hair looks great on you! Have you gotten a lot of double takes since you did it? I cut nine inches off my hair in 2011 (I had been growing it out since January 2009!) and didn’t tell a single person I was going to do it, which made everyone’s reactions SO fun for me haha. I don’t think I’ll do it again, not necessarily because I didn’t like doing it, but because my face does NOT look good with long hair…at all. Plus my hair is really thin, so it gets all scraggly and broken when I let it get that long.

    • Thanks Bethany! I actually had one of those moments yesterday where I saw a guy from my running group and went up to say hi and he didn’t know who I was. But this could also be because I was bundled up in thousands of layers when I was running with that group this winter…

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