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How Wigs Set Me Free

Hair Freedom

I know, you hear it all the time: Wigs are so uncomfortable. They are hot and so annoying. But they gave me the chance to have a little fun and realize, I don’t care what other people think.

Fashion has always been a passion for me. I studied it in college, read all the fashion magazines and even became a handbag designer while going through my breast cancer ordeal. Bright colors, prints, and mixing and matching has always been fun. Soon I didn’t just want my clothes to have color but also my hair. About 15 years ago I even had some hot pink hair, but it was hidden underneath the brown, so you couldn’t always see it. You know, because of work and trying to be professional.

Hair Perspective

Then cancer happened and turned my life upside down! It didn’t matter what color my hair was or what I was wearing, as long as I felt good. Once I knew chemo was a definite, the wig research started. I checked out a local wig maker and mentioned I wanted pink, purple or blue.  The guy was so surprised! Then when he told me the price of the wigs… $1,900 to $2,500, I almost had a heart attack. Back to research! So I found an online wig company that utilized real hair in any “normal” color with a wide variety of styles. These wigs were in the $250 to $300 range – much more affordable. Heart attack averted.

I talked to my hairstylist and she recommended I get blond wigs so she could add whatever color I wanted. So I picked out a couple of styles and actually got excited about something! I would have hair again! And it would be the coolest freaking hair ever! I started with a short blond bob, a long, wavy dirty blond wig, and a red, long-haired wig that I called Ariel. I took them to my stylist and we decided on colors. Purplish-gray with pink highlights for the bob and blue, green and teal highlights for the dirty blond wig. She also trimmed them up so they flattered my face a little better – a very good idea even if you don’t use human hair because they will never be perfect for all faces.

Feeling Myself

Now I could match my hair to my outfits, to my mood and I finally realized I truly felt like me. I would forget the crazy colors until I got a strange look, but I would just smile and know I was comfortable. It didn’t matter if my crazy sense of fashion made others uncomfortable. I didn’t hide behind the cancer excuse – if people wanted to believe it was my real hair, I wasn’t going to tell them differently. Because I had finally found my self.

Since my hair grew back in I bleached my hair and have had gray, maroon, green, pink and blue at different times. Now I’m just going to keep it blonde so whenever I want I can be whoever I want to be!

  • Handbag designer, Heidi Kelly is a graduate of Philadelphia University with a BS in Fashion Merchandising. Now a breast cancer thriver, Heidi designs and produces limited edition and one-of-a-kind funky, printed fabric handbags made in the USA. Heidi Kelly is located in Kutztown, PA and is Designer/Partner of HKelly designs. She does the designing, the sewing, the marketing and much more. Her bags can be found at www.HKellydesigns.com.

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