Hair donation is a wonderful way to give to a charity. Learn about the various hair donation programs and tips for donating hair.
Growing up I always had long hair (ok besides the Dorothy Hamill phase). I was a dancer and so we always had to wear our hair up. As I grew older, I stuck with my length (hubs- then BF preferred it that way too). But in 2000, right before I graduated from Grad School, I decided it was time for a change. I had 12 + inches cut off and thus began my journey with hair donation.
And in 2012 I even had the opportunity to donate with my daughter. How special was that! She was so excited to send her locks away to help another little girl in need. Update- We gave again in 2015! See how The Spa at River Ridge helped us continue our Hair Donation Journey!
Over the years, I have used several programs to send my hair to. Some specialize in children, some specifically for Cancer patients- but all specialize in touching lives in profound ways. Want to get involved? Here are a couple of Hair Donation programs for you to consider:
Hair Donation Programs
Children with Hair Loss was created as a resource for ALL CHILDREN who have medically-related hair loss. Their mission is to empower these children to become whole again by making hair available to those who may be financially challenged and might otherwise not have a means of obtaining the hair they want and need. (min length is 8 in, more hair donation info here.)
Locks of Love provides hairpieces to financially disadvantaged children under age 21 suffering from long-term medical hair loss from any diagnosis. (min length is 10 in, more hair donation info here.)
Wigs for Kids has been (for over 30 yrs) providing Hair Replacement Systems and support for children who have lost their hair due to chemotherapy, radiation therapy, Alopecia, Trichotillomania, burns and other medical issues at no cost to children or their families. (min length 12 in, more hair donation info here.)
Hair Trade is helping to provide essential education to disadvantaged girls, by selling the donated hair to help orphan and poor girls attend school. Campaigns are ongoing in India so girls donate their own hair and are able to contribute to their education and a brighter future. Hair Trade accepts donations from men and women all over the world! (min length is 8 in, more hair donation info here.)
Hawk’s Locks for Kids is an organization founded by AJ Hawk (former Buckeye lineman, spent most of his NFL career in Green Bay) who is known for his long hair. After his own hair donations, he was inspired to create his own organization to help kids. (min length is 12 in, more hair donation info here.)
Pantene Beautiful Lengths Hair Donation UPDATE: In 2018, the Pantene Beautiful Lengths program was discontinued, see details here. After years of Beautiful Lengths is a partnership between Pantene® and the American Cancer Society®. The role of Pantene is to help women grow long, strong, beautiful hair and to provide the funds to turn this hair into free, real-hair wigs for women with cancer. So far, Pantene has donated 24,000 free real-hair wigs to the American Cancer Society’s wig banks, which distribute wigs to cancer patients across the country. In the past, they have also offered a Give & Get opportunity. The last two years there was a rebate on your salon services, so watch for this offer to come back again.
Tips for Hair Donation
Good things to remember about most programs:
- Minimum length is 8-12 in (please check each program for min length- almost never a maximum length!)
- Hair must be dry and contained (ie secured with a ponytail holder)
- No more than 5% gray or colored (this varies a bit, see each program for details)
- Call your fave salon first! Some salons partner with the specific programs mentioned above and will send in the hair for you or even give you a discount on the cut.
- Take a before and after pic! The programs love to share the pics to encourage others to give!
Have you donated your hair? I would love to hear about your experience. Leave a reply below!
Linda Bailey says
Great! You gave me some great tips. Thanks!!
Hi I would love to donate my hair but don’t know where? I live in San Diego CA
Mary Hoover says
Sarahi- I would check with one of the sites I have listed in the post. They will have information about locations near you.
Congrats on donating and also showing your daughter the beauty of donating too! I think you should add Hair Trade (www.hair-trade.org) to your post. Hair Trade is a non profit that uses hair donations as a sustainable way to help orphan and poor girls attend school.
Mary Hoover says
Thanks for the information Deepa. I will look into this program too. Thanks!