Shocked even though i knew it would happen

Three weeks after first chemo and i still had a full head of hair, i lost my pubic hair earlier this week, but wasn’t to bothered by that.

I have woke up this morning with a very sensitive scalp and every time i touch my head handfuls of hair are coming away. I thought i was prepared for this but i have driven all the way to work crying my eyes out. I even get weepy every time i think about it.

The question is to i try to come over any patches or do i shave it off? What have people found less distressing. I don’t fancy picking hairs out of everywhere for the next few days but i don’t know if i can take the plunge.

Help please.

Weepy Lesley


hi weepy lesley
i can’t help but i can totally sympathise. i’m right there with you, with handfuls of hair falling out everytime i touch my head. and the tears are falling as fast the hair. like you, i knew this would very likely come but nothing really prepares for this…i’ve just ordered scarfs and turbans but it hasn’t really made me feel more ready or better. and, yes its hard to know what to do isn’t it? because there is hair today but almost certainly gone tomorrow…
anyway, maybe it helps you to know you are not alone…it has helped me to find your post at this time.

Morning Weepy :slight_smile:

Mine came out in clumps a fortnight after first chemo, running my fingers through it I was taking chunks out and when I went outside it was a windy day and I could see it floating away on the breeze… I shaved my hair that night (or got hubby to). I HATED seeing it come out like that - for the first time it really hit me what was happening here. I felt much better after getting rid of it all, much more in control and ready to face the day without worrying about what was going to happen next!

I did have a couple of weepy bits - mainly seeing myself in a full length mirror after a shower - a bald, fat, one breasted woman does not put a smile on your face exactly :slight_smile: But I can honestly say that you really will get over it, your hair will grow back and life does go on!

Come on weepy, dry the tears and think about the funky hats out there :slight_smile:

Hiya Lesley,

Im sorry you are having to go through this awful process, please remember its not forever.

When I started having my chemo I cut all my hair short (number 3 on the shaver). It used to be really long and I knew I would find it very distressing to watch it falling out.

When my hair got the stage where it started to fall out I cut it shorter (grade 1 on shaver)

When my hair got to the painful stage I shaved it off completely (no guard on the shaver).
It felt sooooooo much better.
The only problem I found was my hair was now like velcro! It was sticking to my bandanas and my pillow!

My stubbly hair was still coming out, I was finding teeny tiny hairs stuck on the head rest of the settee, on my pillow, so one night while in the bath I rubbed my head with the flannel, that removed all the loose hairs and unfortunatley gave me a very bald shiny head!!

My hair started coming back part way through my chemo (which I finished 4 weeks ago), I now have about 1cm length.
I know its not much but not bad considering I was still having treatment.

So to sum up what im trying to say is shave it off, it will give you a sense of relief and will be less distressing.

Take care love and try not to get too upset over it.

Julie. x x

Hi - My hair started coming out exactly 14 days after 1st chemo. I ran my hands through my hair and had a handful. I sat and cried my eyes out. It starts with your head being so sore then it comes out. I always knew that when it started to out in clumps I would shave it off. My daughters were due to be at home on the Sunday so didn’t want to shave it before then as I wanted them to be part of it. I stood in front of the mirror on the Friday and pulled all the loose hair out. I was left with lots of straggly bits but longer on the top.

It was horrible that I left hair everywhere. Was hoovering the bed and floor every day. On the Sunday I put it off til lunchtime. I sat down - hubby holding one hand, eldest daughter holding the other and the youngest (23 and 20) cut what was left of my hair and then shaved my head. I have to say that I love the way I look and only wear my wig when I go out. I still have stubble and thats on the pillow every morning and will be glad when I have my shiny head. Might try the flannel method Julie ! I wish I had enough courage to go outside without my wig but I don’t as yet.

Brenda xxx

Hi Lesley

Sorry to hear about your hair and that you are so upset. But it is only natural. My hair started coming out just before my 2nd chemo, and I hated finding hair on my pillow and everywhere around the house. I couldn’t wash or comb it much, as clumps everywhere, so finally took the decision to shave it off. It was very hard to do, was OK while it was being done, but after the event I was very emotional, cried for ages and wouldn’t take any phone calls that night. I had to cross this hurdle though to move on and continue to be positive, as was getting very depressed and upset about my hair. I did have a wig ready, which I bought straight after my first chemo to be prepared.

It is now over 2 weeks since I had it shaved, and although hate seeing myself in the mirror (don’t look that often) I am getting used to wearing my wig and everyone says it looks fab and very real.

I think you need to decide when it is right for you to shave your head and go with it. You will be emotional and you will find it hard, but then once it is done you will come to terms with it and move on. And believe me, it is so much quicker having a shower or bath now …

Funny little story to make you smile too - my daughter was due a home visit for her new preschool (as changed her this term) and I thought it was Tuesday morning. Anyway, Monday morning had hovered, everyone dressed (me, my 3 yr old daugter and 9 mth old little boy), and waiting for tesco delivery, when looked at calendar and saw “MONDAY - SOPHIES SCHOOL TEACHER VISIT - 9.40” this was at 9.30. So I had to leg it upstairs to PUT MY HAIR ON … how funny is that … couldn’t be seen without. Made everyone chuckle that I have told.

You will get through this, and we are here to help you, whether it by laugh or cry.

Let us know how you get on.
Take care

Thanks for all your kind comments, i have managed to stop crying for a whole 5 minutes and i now don’t feel as much alone. If it keeps up at this rate i think i will need to shave it off, i don’t think i could go through days of this.

I will wash it tonight and see what happens in the shower, might not be anything left.

Thoughts to all who are going through this.

Take care

not quite as weepy



Had to laugh Dawn when I read your post then. I’ve just flown upstairs to put my hair on as a van pulled up and I thought the man was coming to my door. I usually have a bandana about but can’t find it this morning.

I sat and cried all day when it was shaved off but as my daughter said look at it as it’s your one step nearer to getting better. I went into the bathroom to look at myself and the girls followed me. We just stood there arms around each other had sobbed. But you do get used to it. So Lesley my personal experience is that it’s better to shave it rather than it coming out in the shower etc which must be more upsetting.

Take care

Brenda x

Morning Lesley

I really do feel for you. My hair started falling out exactly 2 weeks after my first chemo even tho I used the cold cap. I ended up with a big bald patch on the top (within 3-4 days) and the sides started to come away. There was still handfuls of hair coming out all the time. I asked my OH to take his clippers over at the weekend but couldnt pluck up the courage. I then text him on the Monday to tell him to come over straight after work to ‘do the deed’ . I think I just knew the time was right and it was so upsetting having clumps of hair coming out all the time. The tears just fell down my face continuously while he was doing it (I had shoulder lenth hair), when it was finished I put my bandana straight back on and waited till he had gone to have a look. It really wastnt that bad.
That was now over 3 weeks ago and dont get me wrong I had one wobble where I looked at myself in the mirror and saw a stranger and had a major wobble - but have also got other stress in my life just now. I still have some hair which is a number 1 or 2, I have a wig which is pretty good but I have never worn it - instead I use beanies and bandanads and feel quite comfortable.
It is by far the most upsetting bit of this but after it was done I felt much better. I just put on my make up every day and hold my head up high - why should we not??
You will know when the time is right.
Thinking about you

Hi Lesley… I waited until I went to the hospital sick with low nuetrophils and fever to let my hair start falling out…wanted to pick the nicest time and place HA!.. being on a rough hospital pillow made it just shed terribly. I was getting all over the place… the mouth, face…drove me nutz so I asked my hubby to bring scissors to the hospital and we cut it off as close to the scalp as possible… I thought I would cry but after that amt of shedding I was saying get that crap off my head it’s driving me crazy…

Also… I had bought little knit caps and bandanas but I must admit… I sleep and daily wear these tubes of soft soft knit… like single layer too… they are called BUFFS and they are so comfy… U can double them if u want a warmer cap… several ways u can wear them. I just wear my single layer… so comfy.

I don’t know if I am suppose to put websites on here but this will show u what they are like:

Take care…*big hug*



Thanks, i have purchased a couple of buffs ( my 10 year old wears them all the time). As the day is going on and my hair continues to fall on to the key board, i am bracing myself for a close shave. The hubbie has been away on business since Monday but is due back tonight. I will probably leave it till after his return that way he can hold my hand.

It’s at times like these that i curse the onc for his total ban on alcohol, a glass or 2 of wine may have helped with the process.

thanks for all the support and i will let you know when the deed is done. Just one question at the moment my scalp is really sensitive and itchy, does this stop when the hair is gone.

Take care.




I think that the sensitivity/itchiness varies with different people. I had very little once the shave had happened. Although it was a shock to be bald, I felt it was another step achieved on the BC road and started to look forward to hair regrowth. Thinking of all of you who are contemplating baldness or have already gone bald. I know it’s hard.

Margaret x

Hi Lesley,

Im shaved grade three, 2 EC down but know EXACTLY what your going trhough right now. Its my 2nd day wearing my bandana… I was so distraught as prob like all the ladies on here. Im still upset as I know ive got more to shed, but I feel a bit more positive knowing ive spoken to the ladies on here and all of there wonderful posts that keep you going…

My head is still itchy and sore but not half as bad as it was when I dint shave it.

I just wanted to pass you my best best wishes.


Hi Lesley

Thinking of you, I know this is such an emotional time of the treatment, at the same stage, Had hair to my bottom till Sunday night and got sick of picking it up everywhere so cut it to my shoulders, am upset but feel that being as I know it will not be long b4 need to shave as itching a lot as well, think this weekend, it does feel more doable doing a bit at a time. I ordered from Bohemia Fashions a couple of lightweight jersey bandana type headwear to wear at night as think beanie would be too hot, they have small tie at back and a little elastic for security and were only £3.50 + p&p, only ordered Saturday evening and came Tuesday, very comfortable and light.

I am not a vain person as not exactly an oil painting, just average, so my very long hair was the only physical thing I was a little vain about so is upsetting but as others have said it will come back and it does mean the treatment is working.

Wishing you well and hope you decide what is right for you. Keep posting for support and we will be there for you.

Take care



Hi Lesley

I really feel for you - losing your hair is awful and so upsetting. When mine started to fall out (and the kids kept finding it in their dinner), I got my husband to shave it off (this was after I’d hacked at it myself with scissors, whilst sobbing my heart out). Yes it was very hard at first, and I avoided the mirror at all costs - when I did catch sight of myself, I shouted abuse at the “freak” looking back at me. As for the soreness/itchy scalp, that went as soon as my hair did.

I know its hard at first, but I promise you, you will get used to it. I did buy a wig, but never wore it, preferring bandana’s instead. The first time I went out with one on was very scary, especially taking my youngest to school, and facing everyone at work, but again I got used to it and it doesnt bother me at all now.

On the bright side, I can be in and out of the shower in seconds now - nothing to shave and no hair to wash ! (and hubby happy because I’m not using his razor on my legs any more).

Let us know how you get on, and try not to get too upset - as we’ve all heard a trillion times, “It’ll grow back” !!! Grrrrrrrr!!!

Sending you lots of love, a big hug, and remember we’re all here for you !

Julie xxx

Hi Lesley,

TOTAL BAN ON ALCOHOL??? Oh, that sounds like a nightmare, never mind the hair loss!!! MY onc has banned me from alcohol for the first 48 hours after each treatment but after that anything goes!! To be honest, I never really feel like booze for the first few days anyway but after that I do enjoy a nice drop of wine or cold cider. I don’t think I could’ve got through chemo so far without it!! I started in May, and am on E-CMF, I have never got totally drunk as apparently chemo hangovers are immense! But, I do have a good few. Oh I don’t envy you at all Lesley.

Anyhoo, re the hair issue. It is totally horrid I know but once its gone your scalp will no longer be sore and you will feel relief on that score. Mine had been shaved before it started coming out properly. Once it did I was finding it everywhere so one day I just got the shower hose, tipped my head over the bath and rinsed it until it had all come out. This prob took a good 10 mins but was worth it as I stopped finding my hairs all over the place!! I was gutted and cried all day and night. However, I was amazed at how quickly I got used to it, and now I have almost finished my CMF my hair is growing really quickly!

Take care,


Dear All

I have came to work this morning wearing a hat with a few tufts sticking out the front. Tonight is the night, my friend who is a hairdresser is going to come with her clippers and we will get rid, She is suggesting i go to a number 2 so its not a total shock and she has offered that the kids can have a go.

Hoping this might help as my youngest age 7 is just as upset about this part as me. I will definitely ask the onc again about the odd glass of wine we i see him next week. I have no intention of getting legless but a glass of wine would have helped with the forthcoming shave.

Thanks for all your kind thoughts and i will let you know how it goes tonight.

Take care



Hi Lesley

I had long hair but cut it short b4 I started chemo as I thought it would be less of a shock to my kids who were 4 & 5. As soon as I noticed hair coming out I shaved it off and kids thought it was hilarious. They spent next few weeks telling everyone that “Mummy looks like a boiled egg!”

I found scarves and bandanas gave me a headache, and a shopping trip with a good friend just proved that I looked like the village idiot in a hat, so I ended up going bald and proud! It was quite scary the first couple of times I went out but I soon got used to it.

It has grown back now and I find that friends kids are more surprised to see me with hair than they were when I had none!!

Hi Lesley
I got a no. 2 this morning and its not as dire as I thought it might be. I ran into my nearest hairdressers this morning just unable to bear any more bloody shedding and the guy I talked to told me he couldn’t do it as he had a client coming soon. I explained my horrible predicament (I was a bit over the top maybe and near tears!!) and he was a complete star and just did it there and then. He said he’d had quite a lot of experience with girls like us…I do have one nearly bald patch on the right hand side of my scalp and I’m sure it won’t be long before everything comes but it feels right to do it in stages. I’ve just bought a couple of hats from M&S and Accesorize…I’m getting my head around this slowly (nearly some kind of pun there…). We’ll see what my daughter thinks of it all when she gets home from school…At least the mountains of hair on the pillow his morning made it clear that something needed to happen.
Peejay, not sure I’ll manage bald and proud but great, great, great that you did.

Hi Lesley

My hair started coming out in handfuls a week ago and I couldn’t bear it, it was the most distressing day and my little baby was covered in hair everytime I picked him up!! So I got my friend to shave it that evening and it was soooooo much better -my scalp didn’t hurt and I felt so liberated and more in control!!

I told my 2 year old that my hair would be going and when I went in to him the next morning, he was so good about it, just laughed and said ‘mummy’s hair gone’, then he saw my wig and thought he’d found my hair and told me to put it on!! Kids get you through this as they just take it in their stride! I’m going to get a buff too and some wooly hats for the cold nights.

And … you should let yourself have a glass of wine -its important to relax too!!! my oncologist has said I can drink whatever I like and whenever I like (in moderation) -the chemo is so powerful, there’s not a lot that will affect it!! Its best to stay hydrated though so drink loads of water too.

Let us know how you’ve got on