Due to start chemo soon - hair help!

well its started…and now im frightened to wash my hair think by end of the week i will have had my head shaved already been to hair dressers to pre warn her…god this can only get better, just feel like people will stare wen im wearing hats dont think im gona be going out much…OMG the xmas day photos forgot about that one…

avril5050 - Christmas Day pics - you will be fine. Invest in a big santa hat or simply wear your christmas cracker paper hat all day - christmas is a day you can get away with foolish headwear.

Sophie xxxxx

Hi Avril, I found a good thing to have is a false fringe which clips inside my hats. I wasn’t really a hat wearing person before but in this weather with no hair its a must! I find the fringe just makes it look more normal cos I look like I’ve just escaped from a mental asylum without it!
And I didn’t lose all my brows or lashes but they definately thinned out a lot. Finished chemo last week so have put them on my list for Santa!

My hair fell out bout 5 weeks after my first session of chemo had 4x AC and 4x TAX was very difficult for me to sounds stupid but when you get through the intial shock you think you have nothing left to loose and will get strength from that there is some good wigs about and some realy nice beanies hope this helps it does get better

Hi Pinkrose

I tried the cold cap for 3 sessions but it did not work for me. I had long thick blonde hair which was my crowning glory. Day 17 it started to fall out. I made a mistake of washing it a couple of days later and it end up in such a matted mess that my husband had to cut two massive chunks off it. This was a very distressing day for both of us. My hairdresser did a grand job of sorting out the mess and gave me a fab short do - which I loved! This only lasted another two weeks as by then it started to make me look ill. So I thought to hell with it lets shave it off! Well I loved my skin head! I felt so liberated and back in control. I could not stand the hair being everywhere and got fed up hoovering and sweeping!!! I gained back some of my confidence too.

I have just finished my chemo and my skin head has now virtually disappeared! I resemble a baby photo and have what my mum used to call bumfluff! LOL! I do still wash my head with shampoo and condition my scalp with baby shampoo and conditioner. I find it keeps my scalp in good condition. It did get very dry and flaky before which was horrible.

I have a few wigs but most of the time I go without but always with a hat. I do not have the balls to go out without a hat! I do find that my head gets very cold - I go out in two hats! My little beanie that I wear indoors and sometimes to bed and then a furry ear flap number with bobbles on for when I go outside!!

If you do start to lose your hair then get in cut as soon as you can. Don’t drag out the distress. I have lost half of my eyelashes and whats left is quite stubby but I have enough to get away with it. I still have eyebrows although for some odd reason only half of my right eyebrow has gone!! Luckily I am very fair so you can barely notice it!!

Good luck with your treatment and fingers crossed you’ll be one of the lucky ladies who keeps your hair. xxx

It is distressing - and in some ways I think its more distressing for everyone else. Having no hair is inescapable - its hard to pretend everything is normal.

I cut it shorter in preparation and then shaved the lot off as soon as it started coming out in clumps. Of course it wasnt nice butn ow I have a short hair cut and I have to admit it actually suits me better than my long long hair I was so protective of before. It really feels like it was another lifetime. I didn’t wear a wig. It was hard at first in the office to go without scarves etc but in the end I found a strange confidence in the bald head. I felt like I was saying yeh, I am having chemo and its crap but I’m getting on with it. I didn’t have to explain anything anymore - it was obvious.

All the best, good luck. It will pass and there will be better days ahead!

Thank you so much ladies, this had made me feel much calmer. I think once it’s happened I will feel sooo much better - weird isn’t it!

thanx triphazard99 forgot all about silly festive hats sure i will find one for xmas day pics, buzzy ive got a fringe and think i will feel better with that than a full wig, washed my hair before and not to much came out but i noticed my scalp is quite sore…ive coped well with all thats been thrown at me over last 3 months but i think its because it will be noticable to the outside world that i have cancer the hair loss is geting to me…

had head shaved to number 1 on friday…got sick of hair all over place…and with the weather can wear a wolly hat and stick-on fringe and noboddy knows…

Well done you! I had my first session of FEC on friday, feeling woolly and foggy, but not really sick, thank goodness. As soon as mine starts to come out, the clippers will be brandished! Looking at all the bandanas/scarves/hats I’ve internet shopped for, I’m going to have some explaining to do if I don’t lose my hair after all!!!

Is the fringe good? I looked at them, but wasn’t sure if they’d look good? Where did you get yours from?

Sophie xx

Forgot to say, completely understand what you mean about lack of hair announcing your health status… nothing says chemo like a bald head! Sounds like a Hallmark phrase…

Hi all,
Hope you don’t mind me joining in, but it made me smile reading the comments on hair loss and realising that I have coped with it far better than I thought I ever would in those first tearful weeks.
I have so far had 3 FEC. I used the cold cap on my first cycle, but my hair was coming out by the handful on day 15 and I suffered with a very bad migraine after treatment so did not use it again.
I remember saying that I would hibernate during treatment if I lost my hair, but now make sure that I make the most of the days between treatments when I am feeling well. I have had a lot of problems with sickness and had to be admitted three times so when I can get out I do!
I have got a wig, but up to now have only worn scarves and am managing far better than I ever thought possible. It is really hard when it first comes out by the handful, but there are the advantages of saving a fortune at the hairdressers and it is so quick to get ready in the morning now! Also with the weather so cold everyone is wearing silly hats so you don’t stand out.


hi julie, im starting to feel i dont want to leave house with hair loss, went for walk sat afternoon stoped off in local for a drink someone comented on me having a hat on (they dont know about me and i dont usually wear hats) think i will only go out when i need to,…triphazard99 got fringe off internet its real hair cost about £25 from america, found them since synthetic about £12 think might try one of those…its the same colour as my hair and dose fool folk into thinking its my hair, off for my 2nd lot of chemo at dinner time just hope it gose as well as the 1st…

Hi avril,
Best of luck with your chemo today, I hope it goes well and you bounce back in time to enjoy Christmas. I am a few weeks ahead of you with chemo, but honestly it does get easier with the hair loss (I did not ever think I would say that!)

Take care

hi avril . hope all went well for you today. i am just 2 days behind you! i have my second chemo on the 22nd. I have tried the cold cap but my hair started to fall out yesterday.
i dont know whether i will just lose a bit or all of it. it is good that you are all so positive on this board. have a good xmas and new year everyone. x

morming al,…hi formulads hope the chemo gose as well as mine has done, the hair thing mmmm i did the right thing for me shaving it off even tho i dont like it, god ive had hairstyls its took me weeks to get used to lol, friend i know is having cold cap and said after this lot of chemo shes not gona bother again her hairs still comong out. Julie thanks the chemo went great feel very well apart from being up since 3.15 but at 3.30am i watched scroouge on telly with Alister Syms very christmasey…begining to feel positive again and looking forward to christmas, so much so im going to start to build sections of the “fairy house” ive got for twins then wensday take it up and build it in their garden…dident bet on this weather wen i bought it…

Girls the hair thing was a really BIG deal to me but i got a fab wig and ive never worn scarves or hats its been a godsend and they were lovely and very discreet ( private room to try on etc)
they have branches all over and take NHS wig vouchers they also colour matched and styled it to match my own hair ( so its best to go while you still have it or take a photo )Hope this helps
ps nobody noticed i was wearing mine not even my hubby and daughter ha ha

I am 55, when I was 50 I had lumpectomy, chemo and radiotherapy. i used the cold cap and kept my hair chin length even though it did fall out a lot after the third week. it did work in as much as I kept hair all over my head albeit thin and grey and silver instead of my usual fine thick bleached blond but the little hair I had acted as a buffer to the cap. because the cap was sooo cold I put a wad of tissue over each ear so went a bit bald there but it was covered by the rest of the hair. When I finished the chemo I had my hair cut really short which was so liberating, just a bit of wax, so quick! when my hair grew back I had the ‘chemo curl’ (chemo mangles the hair follicles) which I really liked as my hair was poker straight before! I coloured my hair with organic dye which made me feel better and after 18 months was back to my bleached blond hair.5 years on my hair is back to being thick although it still has a slight wave. Sherbet lemons wine gums and painkillers during chemo worked for me although the steroids left me ravenous and feeling sick! I wish anyone going through this horrible treatment all the best, be kind to yourself rest up when you can and take care x x

Hi all

Not all hospitals provide the cold cap. I would have liked to try but my onc did not feel there is sufficient proof it worked - so cheltenham do not provide.

After my first FEC, I decided to ask my hairdresser to clip it off for me - I could not look but I had to make the decision myself when it was to go. I could not wait until it fell out - thought this would be too distressing.

I have a wig - bought at my local hairdressers. They got a few in for me to try and then cut the wig for me to make it fit better.

I only wear my wig out of the house and wear hats and a “buff” during the day. I got these from Bohemia fashions on the internet. They also do the fringes as well.

I dont like to look at myself without any hair so will always wear a hat or wig. I like to think I don’t have cancer as it has been cut away but when I see myself without hair - it screams cancer at me!!

I cannot wait for my hair to come back.

Rene - can you let me know what the organic dye is called and when you can use this.

Take care
Janette xxx

Ah Janette, sorry you did not get the chance to try the cold cap, I understand how you feel,I totally agree with you, the cancer has gone its just the treatment and its consequences are a reminder. if you look as usual it does make you feel better but then wigs etc are the next best thing and I do hope you will cope. I tried to leave my hair alone during treatment which I found hard because I used to wash it every day before. My hairdresser (mobile) coloured it for me very soon after chemo finished and she deemed my hair to be in good enough condition. I will ask her what she used although if you google organic hair dye there are a lot of them and it may be useful to know of them and compare them with other people. Keep your chin up, you will get your hair back. Take Care xx Rene