Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Exercising In Your Wig

One of the most common questions I get asked at the moment is….  

What do I do when I exercise in my wig?

So many of us (me included) do not feel comfortable to go without our wigs even when we exercise… although it would make life a whole lot easier and more comfortable!!  

In the past I have either set aside a wig just for exercising in… I have an old one that I do not use anymore or a synthetic style that can be quickly washed and the style dries quickly.  I make sure my exercise wig has a base that is not made with any polyurethane inside.  The polyurethane is the smooth shiny material inside your wig that you attach wig tape to or it grips to your skin.  This stuff makes my head so hot so I avoid anything like this.  I am trying to move away from this material all together but for now it is what is inside my favorite wigs.

I have been thinking of another option...  I have not tired it but you could get a wig that has an integrated head band section at the front.  It would be much cooler than a full wig and there would be no hair getting in your eyes.  I am tempted to give it a try...

I use to run first thing in the morning before work so it was much quieter and I felt more comfortable just wearing a head scarf or a hat in the winter.  I have not got any magical suggestions but just knowing that we are are all finding it difficult is kind of nice to know in a funny sort of way!? If anyone else has some suggestions that would help us all out it would be great to hear from you.

I would like to start running in my lunch hour at work, with a baby I no longer have time in before or after work... I can't help but worry about what I would do with my hair.  The main issue is that the hair I wear in work is very different to the hair I would run in and would be totally obvious to any colleagues passing me.  I tell myself off in my head... pull yourself together Aimee you are Mrs Alopecia Beauty Tips!  But it does not stop me from wanting to keep my look consistant.

I am about to be sent some samples from a company called iwig who make wigs with a material in the base that keeps your head cool and dry.  I am really excited about this and will keep you all informed if its any good.

Please visit my website where you can see how my story has been in the Daily Mail, GMTV with Lorraine Kelly, Marie Claire and how i have worked with the little princess trust charity and Trevor Sorbies Charity 'My New Hair'

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

My Wig History

I have been wearing wigs since I was 16 years old I thought I would talk you through each one so you might learn from my experience.

My first wig was an off the peg synthetic wig from a really old fashioned wig salon.  Even the man who fitted it looked like he was out of the 1970's!  I cried when he fitted it as it was just so awful… they kept bringing out more styles for me to choose from but each one was worse than the one before.   I went home with the wig in a bag and I never even wore it.

My mother and I then went to the hospital and I was given a prescription to take to A&A wigs in Edinburgh as I lived in Scotland at the time.  A&A were fantastic and the girl who did the fitting was really lovely, fashionable and young.  She fitted me with a wonderful human hair custom made wig that was so comfortable.  It was really long and the dark brown colour was gorgeous.  It took me a while to actually wear it out in public… I started just wearing it to the shops and walking the dog and finally I wore it to a party and I got so many compliments!  Ever since then I have not looked back and just got more interested in wigs.

I wore A&A wigs for a few years but then I moved to Manchester to go to University.  I was worried that I would have to keep traveling back to scotland for my wigs but I was put in touch with Hudsons who are part of the brand Trendco.  Although I did not find Hudsons until my current wig was on its last legs, so my once dark brown hair had lightened beyond recognition to an unsightly orange colour and had lots of things wrong with it!  My wig from them was the most eagerly awaited wig ever!  Unfortunately the NHS system in Manchester was not the same as in Scotland so I did not get a prescription and had to pay a whopping £2000 per wig.  I was a struggling student though so my family helped me out.  One wig tended to last 2 years if looked after well.  So once you divided it up over time it was about £80 a month… the same as what most women pay every 4-6 weeks to have their hair  cut and coloured.

I wore wigs from Hudsons for years!  I have such a petite head size that I could not buy off the peg wigs.  I needed the ones that were custom made to measure.  Every year I would order the same style, colour and length.  I daren't try anything too new or different as if I did not like the style it was a very costly mistake.  

I learnt that if I ordered the hair colour to be too light that by the time the following year came round the hair had lightened so much I was nearly blonde!  So I would always order my hair colour to be very dark brown so it just lightened naturally over the year and was much cheaper to maintain.  

I decided to try something new from a wig company called NU Hair Technology and that was just a disaster.  The whole base of the wig was made with PU and my head just got so hot that after wearing for half and hour it was sliding all over the place.  The way they knotted the hair into the PU at the base made the hair look a mess in seconds.  For expert wig makers I was just so disappointed in the wig and felt like I could have done a better job!  They would not even give me my £2000 back and just made me another one which still had the same problems as the first.  They were based in New York and I just kept calling them and eventually I found the whole thing so upsetting I gave up and wrote it off as a mistake that I would never make again!  

Once I set up Alopecia Beauty Tips and went on GMTV and was in the Daily Mail I had a few wig salons that gave me some made to measure wigs.  There was Optima hair in Birmingham… They were great but I felt I still preferred my Hudsons wigs but they were free so I tried to wear them as long as I could.  Then I had an offer to wear a wig from Hairoom in Leeds as they were developing a new wig they they wanted my feed back on.  This too was ok but still no where near as nice as my wigs from Husdons.

When I appeared in Marie Claire Trendco Provided an off the peg wig that Trevor Sorbie styled for me… it was so exciting as I decided to go for a short style as I wanted something different to my usual long hair.  It was fantastic.  I was just about to get married and was going on Honeymoon to lots of different places all over the world and this off the peg synthetic wig was so easy to look after.  It meant I just washed my hair quickly and it was dry and styled in minutes.  Perfect holiday hair. 

The next year I moved to a different area just outside manchester that provided real hair wigs on the NHS!  I was so excited and I was given a prescription that I could take with me to Hudsons.  I found it funny that all those years I purchased my wigs from them thinking there was probably something even better out there I should try… I tried loads of different things and found that what I had been wearing all along was the best.

Although I feel I have found the best I am still on the look out for an off the peg option.  My dream is to have a wig wardrobe with blonde, brunette, long, short, curly straight!  I would really like to find a company that can provide a perfect fit for my tiny head off the peg so I can have some fun with my hair.

Please visit my website where you can see how my story has been in the Daily Mail, GMTV with Lorraine Kelly, Marie Claire and how i have worked with the little princess trust charity and Trevor Sorbies Charity 'My New Hair'

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

I have my down days too...

I always try my best to be a positive role model for anyone coping with Alopecia.  Helping others with my Alopecia Beauty Tips website has been the driving force behind my own acceptance.  The response I get from so many people on a daily bases really motivates me to continue creating positive awareness, but it also helps me when I experience any negative feelings about my own Alopecia. 

For the majority of the time I am very accepting of my Alopecia, but sometimes I can go a bit quiet on my blog, Facebook or tweets… this is mainly due to being a busy working mummy, but recently this has also been to do with experiencing a few negative feelings.  I feel that I need to stay positive for everyone else, but to be positive when I am feeling down myself is hard.  I have recently come to the conclusion that many of you would love to hear that I too have my down days.  

I am a very positive and sunny person.  So when I am a bit down my Husband, Family and Friends naturally worry.  I don't like to worry people so sometimes I keep my feelings to myself. But this is no good as keeping feelings bottled up inside over a period of time makes everything worse.

The most important things in my life are my Family, Friends and my Hair!  I don't like to admit that but it is true.  It just feels so vain but it is important to me.  When my wig is looking its best I am at my most confident, but when my wig is not right I feel everything else suffers.   

I took a trip down memory lane and was looking back on the most positive points of my life so far and the wig I was wearing at the time... I realised that my wigs were not always the best and had their issues, but I was happy and didn't care.  

So I have come to realise it is not always my hair that is getting me down, but my Alopecia is first on my list to blame.  I think from now on when I get down about my wig or my Alopecia I am going to try and take a step back and ask myself is my Alopecia really to blame here?

I am sure anyone with a body image insecurity can relate to this.  I am not able to change how I feel but I know it is only natural to have these feelings.   
The supportive e-mails that I get from all my followers has been so amazing over the past 5 years and I am sure I would have a lot more down days without you all by my side.

Please visit my website where you can see how my story has been in the Daily Mail, GMTV with Lorraine Kelly, Marie Claire and how i have worked with the little princess trust charity and Trevor Sorbies Charity 'My New Hair'