Post-Chemo Hair Growth & Styling Tips


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The number one thought on most people’s mind post-chemo is how quickly will their hair grow back and what will it look like. Though I became quite fond of my bald head, the day chemo was over, I threw that love to the wind and put all my energy into regrowing my hair. After many nights of research, I settled on Biotin as my first plan of attack. I started taking the Biotin supplement the day my chemo ended (with my doctor’s approval) and I was so amazed by the results. My hair grew like weeds. Though I was thrilled to have hair on my head again, I was not so thrilled about the hair that quickly sprouted EVERYWHERE else. One day, I even found 2 long hairs coming out of my cheeks! It was also around that time that I experienced a horrible bout of cystic acne so I decided to take a break from the Biotin and exercise some patience.  I have since gone back on a lower dose of Biotin and have had no side effects (2,000 mg/day).

Now I am about 13 weeks out from chemo and I am finding creative ways to style this odd little mess of hair on my head. As someone who has always had long hair, this is a new beast for me to tackle. As a beauty addict, I am taking this as just another beauty challenge. It’s a chance for me to try new styles, experiment with new products and build my confidence along the way.

As I started looking for information on how to style post-chemo hair I found that Google was greatly lacking. There were lots of articles on the topic, but  very few photos. I wanted photos, real photos of real women post-cancer.  So after many unsuccessful searches, I finally stumbled upon Leo With Cancer. This blog was everything I was looking for, beauty, fashion, hair and Dena is a breast cancer survivor. Jackpot!

So in the spirit of growing the post-chemo hair inventory on Google, I figured I would dedicate a whole post to tips for hair regrowth, a hair growth timeline and tips for styling your fresh new baby hair. And lucky for you, this post will be FILLED with tons of hair photos.

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Set yourself up for success with a few key items as you move into the hair regrowth project. Having these items on hand will help you tame the mane each morning and feel more confident about your ever changing ‘do.

Hair Regrowth Checklist w. watermark


So now that you have set your expectations for the timeline and you have your key products on hand, we can dive into styling tips and inspiration. There are tons of celebrities rocking the pixie cut who we can turn to for inspiration.

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There are also a few easy things you can do to “feminize” your look and take it from bald beauty to  sassy seductress.

Styling Tips

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The Faux Hawk 

As your hair is beginning to grow in it will still be patching and the middle may be longer at first. Using water or hair paste (more effective) mold the middle into a mohawk with your hands. This is a way to add a playful fun touch to this length.

 

 

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Headbands 

Headbands are fantastic during this time. Look for headbands with thin sparkly bands. This will add some dimension to your hair and dress it up.

 

 

 

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The comb over

Using hair paste comb your hair over to the side and define a deep side part. This will be easier the longer your hair looks. When we hear “comb over” we general think balding old men, but this look can actually look can actually be very feminine.

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Fringe

The inclination when you are growing your hair out is to cut the hair around your ears, because it’s so dang annoying and somewhat unsightly. If you plan to grow your hair out longer, stay away from the scissor. Instead ask your hair stylist to feather that area. This will take away some of the weight and help the hair lay smoother, while still keeping the length.

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Strong Eye Makeup & Brows

Strong eye makeup and brows can really balance out your face with a short hairdo. Strong brows  in particular will bring definition to your face.

 

 

 


Check out my updated Post-chemo hair styling article on I Had Cancer

This post was created by Anna Crollman and was originally published on Lacuna Loft

Lacuna Loft is a 501(c)3 nonprofit that encourages, empowers, and connects young adult cancer and chronic illness survivors and caregivers around the globe, 24/7.  Lacuna Loft provides online wellness support resources, lifestyle encouragement, and peer support community that young adults need to overcome their challenging health and life circumstances, and thrive. I met the founder Mallory at the YSC conference and I am very excited to be a contributor for the Lacuna Loft community.

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22 comments

  1. Stephanie Powell says:

    Thank you for sharing! This was extremely helpful and gives me hope ! I was diagnosed with breast cancer 1/5/16 I just completed my last chemo 5/5/16 .

    • Anna says:

      Stephanie, I am glad to hear this post helped you find some hope. It is a tough process, but I found myself finding some much inspiration in the other cancer survivors around me. I hope you continue to follow and reach out on social media. I love to connect with other survivors. I hope your healing process post-chemo goes well.

  2. Julia Garcia says:

    Thank you so much for this post! Having just finished chemo, it is so helpful to see how I can style my hair as it grows back.

    • Anna says:

      Julia,

      Thank you for following. I am so glad you found this post helpful. I was so excited to see other women’s hair inspiration as mine began to grow back. I would love to see pictures of your new hair. Post some on our FB page!

      Anna

  3. Lisa says:

    Thank you soo much for this.post and pictures. I finished chemo on 8/29. Chemo was a breeze compared to losing my hair (on my head).

    • Anna says:

      Losing our hair as women can be the most traumatizing. I agree that chemo was less intense than the hair loss. Congratulations on finishing chemo! That is a huge milestone. I wish you healing and peace as you begin life after active treatment.

  4. Michelle says:

    Thank you for posting the pics!!! I felt much like you; I embraced the bald hair (and no hair worries), but after my last chemo (October 7, 2016) I was looking forward to some hair again!! I had my double mastectomy November 7, and I am about to start my radiation. I know my faith, family, friends and other survivors have helped me fight this battle! I am choosing to smile like you!!

  5. Danielle Bosserman says:

    Hello Ms. Anna
    My name is Danielle I was diagnosed in March of 2016 with stage 3B breast cancer I since then have finished all of my treatments, surgeries, and radiation. My last chemo treatment was on August 17 I am now 23 weeks out and I have found just like you it hard to style my hair after being use too have hair that was 28 inches long. I am at the Faux Hawk stage, and getting excited about the new ways of styling and coloring my hair. Thank you for sharing your journey thus far. Continued prayers for protection and healing to you. God Bless you.

  6. Katina says:

    Thank you so much for posting these tips. Have never had short hair but ready for my hair to grow back. Will be done with all of my treatments in October but it has started growing back already, peach fuzz. Looking forward to starting this new phase in my journey.

  7. Terri says:

    Thank you for the tips and the pictures! I’m not sure I can rock this look as well as you! You are so pretty. But I am excited to see hair again! I finished treatment at the end of December 2016.

  8. Tami Lewis says:

    Hi, I just finished AC chemo 2 weeks ago. And I’m looking for resources to help me. I’ve Go the biotin that I’ve been taking. And I love all your pics. I guess I’m just playing the waiting game. Thank you for posting. You are gorgeous. You give me hope.

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