How do you tell a potential partner that you wear wigs? Part Two

 
Click to subscribe to the CysterWigs blog in your favorite reader app

Part one of this article is available here.

PART TWO: My personal rules for handling this

NOTE: These are my strategies. I definitely advise you to experiment a little to come up with a solution that you are comfortable with. Everyone’s different and what works for me may not be a comfortable solution for you. 🙂

    1. Come up with a game plan in ADVANCE. This involves asking yourself some pretty tough personal questions about where your boundaries are in terms of how far you are willing to discuss things and how much curiosity you are willing to indulge. You will also have to determine what kind of negative reactions you are willing to accept, if any. I, personally, will not date anyone who is judgmental of wig wear in any negative way whatsoever. It’s just too big of a part of my life! I will literally drop a $20 bill on the table (or however much pays for my meal + tip) and GTFO because as a very wise woman once said, “Ain’t nobody got time for that.”
    2. Because of my strong stance, I tell potential partners right away. For a lot of people – especially heterosexual men – profound hair loss can be an absolute deal breaker. (Again, go back to my point above about cognitive dissonance. I wish this weren’t the case, but it absolutely is.) By putting it out there right away, you can weed out all the people who would make a big deal out of this right away before you would end up in a situation where you would have to tell them face-to-face. If on an online dating site, you can post this right in your profile. This can be done relatively discretely by posting pictures of yourself in various wigs and waiting for people to ask you directly about why your hair changes so much. This can also be done overtly by putting a statement about it directly in the text of the picture captions or body of your profile.
    3. If you make this public knowledge up-front on your dating profiles, be aware that you DO NOT have to pay attention to every question people ask you about your hair. You can (and probably should) ignore people who want to reduce you to a sideshow attraction. Those trolls can just as easily google wigs, so let them and save your energy. (Hell, send them a link to my blog or this article and maybe that’ll sort them out! LOL)
    4. When on dates, try asking fun questions to the other person about their opinions about hair. This can be about specific hair cuts, colors, social views about hair, women who change their hair a lot, etc. All of these can make fun topical segues to help you break the ice about your wig wear.
    5. Frame the situation as something that plays to their advantage. (Appeal to their fantasies.) I have historically always framed it as the opportunity to “look however I want, whenever I want.” Your partner wants to date a blonde for a day? PRESTO! You’ve got the hair for that. How about a redhead? No worries, you can accommodate that too! Make them a part of the process. It becomes much more fun for both of you that way and then they are much more likely to embrace your wig wear . . . and they may even become part of the purchasing process! (We have husbands buy wigs for their wives in this store all the time, for example.)
    6. If someone makes a rude comment, try your best not to take it personally. It’s difficult. I know that. However, you’re better off knowing they’re a knuckle-dragging troglodyte sooner rather than later. Internally thank them for saving you the guess work and cut your losses. 😉
    7. Do NOT try to convince someone to change their mind if they are opposed to dating someone with hair loss. People have extremely specific and individualized notions of what they consider attractive. Honestly, I don’t get down with the PC police. I think that telling people they’re wrong for liking what they like is misguided. Instead, we should focus on not barking up the wrong tree to begin with to avoid the headache. (IMHO)
    8. Likewise, do NOT feel obligated to “educate” someone who is rude or overly curious about it if you are not comfortable talking about it. You get to dictate the boundaries about your own hair loss and how you talk about it. (Remember, you’re She-Ra: YOU have the power.) You don’t OWE it to anyone – particularly a total stranger in the beginning of the dating process – to disclose more or less information than you are comfortable discussing. Once you establish your boundaries in step #1, stick to them!

Hopefully this article is helpful to some of you! 🙂

This is an excerpt from our CysterWigs Knowledge Base. Check it out on our private site to see over 500 articles all about our store, wigs, and how to wear the hair!

How do you tell a potential partner that you wear wigs? Part One

 
Click to subscribe to the CysterWigs blog in your favorite reader app

From a customer e-mail:

Heather,

A personal question for you. How do you bring up to a new person you’re interested in that you wear wigs? I’m sure it’s easier for you because it’s your livelihood, but I’ve heard some horror stories about people freaking out when you tell them. I’m just worried when I meet someone I really dig that it’ll be hard to tell them. Anyway, sorry for all the angst, just wanting some advice. Have a great day!

This is an AMAZING question and one to which there is no one bulletproof, sure-fire answer, unfortunately.

I am going to discuss this in two very different ways. First, I am going to go through my philosophical stance on the matter. Secondly, towards the bottom of this article, I will dole out some concrete, practical advice for how I handle this. I think are both are important, though, so I will address both as thoroughly as possible.

PART ONE: My philosophy on this

The truth: Dating is BRUTAL. People can be a-holes. There is always the possibility that someone, somewhere, will be super-immature and get freaked out by the fact that you wear helper hair.

You can’t control other people or how they respond to this information. You can’t help how they react to your reality. STRANGERS CANNOT BE EXPECTED TO BE AS STRONG AS YOU ARE. It is in moments like this that you see what they’re made of…and it’s their weakness and intolerance that shows, not yours.

I’m not going to say something trite like, “Well, it’s their loss.” (Even though it’s true.)

What I will say, however, is that you need to focus on the one thing you do have control over in this situation: YOU.

You can either let their weakness and insecurity leave a mark on you and define how you feel about yourself . . . or you can choose not to let it mar your spirit or damage your heart. YOU are in control of this. Never forget that you always have the choice. Don’t get me wrong, here! I am a sensitive person. I know that the initial sting happens subconsciously, whether or not you intend it to. This is a process and it takes practice. The more you build up your own confidence, the harder it is for other people to tear it down without your permission. It won’t happen overnight. Give yourself permission to be hurt when someone hurts your feelings . . . but also know when it’s time to face that insecurity head on. 😉

One of my favorite quotes about this (to put in your pocket for a rainy day) comes from Eleanor Roosevelt:

Give yourself time and space to experience the emotion, and then ask WHY that person’s opinion matters so much to you. A lot of us run away from the answer and place all the blame on the other person for being a douchecanoe when in fact it was our own inner mean voice that was doing most of the abuse on our behalf. We give away all of our power when we do this!

Most of the time, you’ll find it’s not because the person who said something about your hair really mattered at all. The only real crime they committed, aside from being an insensitive jackass, was that they gave voice to an insecurity that we hold secret deep down inside ourselves, a tiny, hidden voice that we are desperately afraid other people will hear:

“I am ugly because I have no hair . . . and because I am ugly, I am a lesser person.”

DUDE.

You are soooo wrong.

First of all, if this is something you wrestle with, I just want to say I love you and I send you EPIC internet love. <3 <3 <3

This is a very common thing. Most women with alopecia struggle with this flavor of Hell at one time or another. You are in excellent company . . . and almost ALL of us are beautiful with or without the hair, for the record!

This insecurity is normal and makes complete sense. It crops up because of the social stigma surrounding hair loss, especially in women. Hair is our “crowning glory” (I freaking hate that term!) and is a secondary sexual characteristic that helps people separate the masculine from the feminine in social situations, even in the progressive 21st Century. Frankly, it would be weird if you DIDN’T occasionally feel the pressure to conform to this social norm! The fact that this makes you insecure just means you have eyeballs. You are a normal, thinking, feeling, observant member of Western society.

For just a casual, strictly non-scientific example of this, look at the picture I just took (below). (I am at a Panera Bread, writing this article for you and drinking some delicious hazelnut coffee.) The people with their backs turned to me all have long hair, except for the older one at the end. This signals to us socially that these people are 1) women, 2) young-ish, and 3) relatively healthy . . . all without them turning around to show me their faces. The woman on the end, on the other hand, has short grey hair, which signals that she’s 1) probably female based her build, 2) mature-ish, and 3) you can’t draw as many conclusions about health from short hair as you can long hair.

So, like I said above, when it’s ALL AROUND YOU, it is very difficult to avoid feeling the pressure to conform and a lot of insecurity when you CAN’T.

Have you ever heard of the term cognitive dissonance? This is a term social psychologists use to describe the discomfort associated with being confronted with an opinion or fact that deviates from our own inner narrative or world-view. The discomfort is the result of us having to adjust our own interpretation of reality in the face of this new information.

For a lot of us, especially during the initial stages of our hair loss, we construct a careful inner narrative where, if we hide everything perfectly, no one will ever know. We clutch onto this belief like a security blanket: our newly-purchased hair is our life preserver, our gateway to normalcy; as long as we keep everything locked down and spend oodles of cash on high end hair, no one will ever know. The truth is SOMEONE, SOMEWHERE will always know that you’re wearing helper hair, whether that’s a significant other, your mom, a best friend, or just some little old lady you run into in the frozen foods section of the grocery store who just beat breast cancer and, having been a wig wearer herself, can spot even a good lace front from 40 paces away.

Cognitive dissonance can also result when we try to force our world view into existence when it is clearly impossible. In this case, I am referring to the wishful thinking that people will universally be kind and accepting of our hair loss simply because it would be hurtful to us to think otherwise (as I outlined above). I would love to think people have the capacity to grow and become this fabulously open-minded . . . but I am a realist and know that the people around me can be kind of ignorant sometimes and, for better or worse, have limitations.

We must be prepared to cope with life in the world we actually live in, which is not the same as the world we wish it were.

Much of the discomfort we experience in these initial transitional stages is the result of this cognitive dissonance. Our world view is a fantasy. We can never hide enough to shield ourselves from occasional bitter moments 100% of the time. We must be prepared to talk to people about it when they “out” us – and we must also have an internal, emotional strategy in place to deal with these incidents when they occur . . . because they will.

Click here for Part Two.

This is an excerpt from our CysterWigs Knowledge Base. Check it out on our private site to see over 500 articles all about our store, wigs, and how to wear the hair!

Wigs and Dating: Trimming the Stigma

 
Click to subscribe to the CysterWigs blog in your favorite reader app

By Morgan

The dating game isn’t the easiest to play. There’s a lot of effort that goes into the first few months of getting to know people and choosing how much information you give up in the process (old exes, your punk rock phase or the slight obsession that you have with cats) is ultimately up to you. But there are a few things you should never be shy about. One of those things is how you express yourself. And self-expression includes your wigs.

Dating with Wigs

When it comes to your makeup, shoes, clothes and accessories, you should feel completely comfortable with flaunting your innate style with anyone surrounding you! And the same rules apply if you like to wear wigs.

Wigs, like any other accessory, outfit, or hairstyle, are a part of your personality. And they’re becoming increasingly popular not just for hair loss, but for stylistic flexibility that allows for both men and women to bounce between looks. And when it comes to dating, just like removable makeup, wigs are just another extension of yourself.

Finding Confidence While Dating with a Wig

If you’re a little nervous about how your date will react to you wearing a wig, you can arm yourself with the basic fact that a wig is just another element of style. It’s as simple as that.

But honestly, there’s no need to explain yourself. In any dating situation, if the opposite party doesn’t accept you for who you are or what you wear, it’s time to move on and find someone better. Because odds are, their own lacking confidence and questioning the decisions of those around them isn’t going to be a great contributor to a new relationship.

Already Dating Someone and Want to Start Experimenting With Wigs?

If you’ve been wanting to step into the wig world and see what this delightfully hairy business is all about, you may have been a bit nervous to begin—especially if you already have a partner. Wondering what they’d think about you wanting to try a wig may be preventing you from taking new stylish steps.

When you’re feeling up to the conversation, it’ll be much easier than you think. It can go like this:

“I wanted to start exploring different hairstyles, and have been thinking about trying out a few different wigs or wig toppers. How do you feel about that?”

Odds are, there will be no hesitation. But if you get any negative pushback, that’s a bit of a relationship red flag. Remember that if you want to do something—wear a wig, get a piercing, or take up something new—don’t let anyone or anything hold you back. Stick to your roots, and let your true self shine through!


You can see all of Morgan’s posts here.

An epic wig life dating tale by Nicole

 
Click to subscribe to the CysterWigs blog in your favorite reader app

I have always had the hardest time with my hair. It’s unruly, curly, frizzy, and all over the place.

My solution has always been to wing it with a flat iron, lots of hair product, and a prayer. Then my hair disagrees, yet again, split ends ensue and the almighty hair trim is in order.

I have dumped eggs on my head in an attempt to invigorate it with more protein. I have slathered on coconut oil, olive oil, castor oil. All that stuff is great, and I’m sure if I had the patience to sit around in a hair cap several hours out of the week, I would really see some amazing results. The thing is, I don’t have time for all of that. Who does? I marvel at the super women among us who seem to have this hair stuff all figured out. I half suspect that they’re all wearing wigs these days, but that’s another story for another day!

This has been a life-long struggle. I’ve got so many stories!

One time, I told my current boyfriend I would be using eggs on my hair weekly for hair treatments.

Casually sitting in bed, fiddling with our phones before clocking out for the day, I said, “Hey babe, so I know my use of cooking ingredients in the bathroom is pretty different, but I’m going to be doing egg treatments on my hair weekly, so try to save a few eggs for me, ok?”

A moment passed, he laid his phone down, staring straight ahead and asked “Why are you doing…what are you saying…huh?” and things along those lines, with lots of very long pauses in between.

That’s how men typically seem to regard the “mystique” of female beauty rituals. Crickets. It must be nice to live in a world where all your partners are conditioned to like you just the way you are, bald heads and all. You would think that would make guys a little more open minded, but alas, some are much happier living with double standards over in fantasy land.

I went through a stage where I wore hair extensions for about a year. I absolutely loved them. I never had hair that covered my tata’s and went down to my waist before. It was a revelation – and my first pass at helper hair.

That was short lived, though.

One of my dear friends from high school had her extensions sewn-in. Not only did it cause irritation on the scalp, but when she had them removed, the hair that was attached went away with them too. NIGHTMARE OF ALL NIGHTMARES! The memory of that has made me very slow to do any more experimentation with these things, personally.

I’ve discovered that one way to have my cake and eat it too is by switching to wigs. I get better coverage and the silky hair texture I’ve always dreamed of without the creams, oils, flat irons, and split ends. I also love that I can take my wig off at the end of the night, so sleep is much more comfortable! They are also MUCH easier to apply and remove. No nightmare scenarios where your hair gets ripped out, which is a major relief to me!

I credit my Shilo by Noriko for the most epic turn-down of a dude in the history of my life.

This guy – let’s call him Bart – was type of guy who was cool in high school. (Boy, was I crazy about Bart in high school.) After we graduated and he found himself single, he immediately started messaging me. Like, nonstop. We go and hang out, at his house, and he can’t take his eyes off me.

“I love your hair”, he kept telling me. Oh boy. Here we go.

Here comes the dilemma: to tell or not to tell. That is one of the most epic questions when you’re dating! Is Bart part of the inner circle just because I’m crushing on him? Or do I have to play it cool and wait to see if he can handle all this epic faux hair T?

I decided to play it cool and see what Bart was like. After all, this was about 1 year after graduation. People can change a LOT after high school!

As it turns out, this guy was a pretty big snooze-fest. He also had really bad breath. Like, peel-paint-off-the-wall bad. Like, cartoon-characters-with-clothes-pins-on-their-nose bad. Like, how-can-a-living-creature-that-isn’t-a-komodo-dragon-have-breathe-like-this? bad.

We’re were cuddling and kissing when I realized I couldn’t stand it anymore. I even faked falling asleep for a second because I was literally gagging and needed to remove my head from the line of fire.

He didn’t fall for it. He kept trying to move in for more lip action. I dodged it with expert level skill and got up from the couch in one super slick, wish-it-had-been-videoed move.

“What’s wrong with you?” he asked in possibly the least helpful tone ever. It was kind of accusing, as opposed to concerned.

In my head we had an entire conversation about it, unbeknownst to him. It went something like: What’s wrong with me? What’s wrong with you?! How the mighty have fallen! You were my #1 crush just a year ago – the ultimate in unobtainable hotties. What happned to you? You clearly put no thought into what you look like or what you’re doing with your life, but you think it’s totally ok to date me only because I have amazing hair? It’d better be amazing, for how much I paid for it. However, it’s not really a good reason on its own to date someone. (NOTE: Not digging on CysterWigs; their prices are actually very good; it’s just that this unit isn’t a bargain basement el cheap-o kind of style!)

I casually adjusted my wig with pinache, no longer caring what this guy thought of the matter.

“What’s wrong with your hair?” he shrieked in a childish, idiotic manner, horrified.

He just stared at me, stunned and befuddled, as I grabbed my jacket and headed towards the door. The look he gave was deeply incredulous, his mouth agape with great green wavy streams of stinky air coming out of it. (Ok, so I made that last part up.) This was the moment I realized my crush on Bart officially died. RIP. So much for high school crushes.

I almost asked him what was wrong with his hair. It was thinning a lot for a 19 -year old. I decided to stop my silent internal conversation with him, though, and leave like a lady instead.

“Well, look Bart, it’s been great. I really have to go now. My pet hamster is in town, and I have to take him on a walk and catch up.”

“What does that even mean?!” he asked, still not quite comprehending that I was no longer an 18-year old girl desperate for his approval. I was 19 now, thank you very much, and I had just realized that I had much better options waiting out there for me. I was worth better treatment than settling for a guy who only wanted me because he fell head over heels in love with my wig.

I grabbed my jacket and walked out the door. I never looked back. Bye-bye Bart.

Now, for the sake of my sanity, I tell people about my use of wigs early on in the dating process. It’s a test of their virtue – but is not a test of my realness. I feel like I’m being ultra-real by even bringing it up!

If a guy can handle my beauty routine, then he passes the test and is possibly worthy of epic smooches. If the guy is a Bart, then he can join the other Barts in their little fantasy world where women are cool with insane beauty and hygiene double standards.

Non-Barts aren’t that rare. Men are getting better about this, at least in my experience. It is definitely appreciated. In exchange for them being cool, I am willing to overlook any number of flaws, including beer bellies, flatulence, and, yes, even some bad breath. This has to be a two-way street though. I will never be cool with some dude expecting effortless perfection from me while forcing me to hold my breath while we make out.

I’m a grown lady now and ladies have standards.