I have often talked about having Alopecia from the point of view of hearing other people’s reactions or the positive affect it has had on me. However, there are many groups I follow where I see the despair from those who are struggling with their confidence about having Alopecia. Friends or friends of friends who I talk to have claimed that if they lost all their hair they would be devastated. The phrase ‘Crowning Glory’ is a familiar one when discussing hair loss.
Today, I want to challenge the beauty industry and, specifically, bring attention to the video below about hair extensions from Belle Hair. My social media is followed by many wig suppliers – understandably. And, of course, many (I would suggest the majority) of Alopecians are indeed wig wearers. So it is not unusual to come across adverts like this.
But, what is it about this ad that has rattled my normally placid cage?
“Each year we give away thousands of extensions to empower women”
– Belle Amori CEO of Belle Hair
Say Whaaaaaattt??? SHAME ON YOU COSMOPOLITAN for the campaign and SHAME ON YOU BELLE AMORI.
Incredibly, this advert has already had over 11 million views. It’s core message? That a woman cannot feel empowered unless she has long hair. My daughter, Lucy is 11. When I see stuff like this, I ask myself: do I want this message to be the one she hooks on to?
Unfortunately, Belle Hair is not the only company which seems to think that women need to have a certain look in order to be successful. As you can see from the Twitter blurb for Real World Hair! in the screenshot below, their mission is to ’empower women and make them feel beautiful’. Amazingly, this was the second Twitter account to be listed in a search against #EmpowerWomen, the first being Twitter’s own @TwitterWomen account.
I work hard to send a positive message to Lucy that you can be the person you want to be regardless of how you look. I don’t need to tell you lovely readers that hair does not define you but I hope this message will spread wider and reach those people who feel that it is necessary to present a ‘Crowning Glory’ in a bid to succeed in life. I hope they can understand that, whatever they are reaching for, it isn’t their hair that will get them there.
“The beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure that she carries or the way she combs her hair.”
– Audrey Hepburn