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Any tips for buying wigs/chemo caps?

PinkPearl's picture
PinkPearl
Posts: 280
Joined: Oct 2010

Hi all,
I am gearing up for chemo and am trying to do a little shopping ahead of time. I have searched all of the websites and have some questions. I have always gotten a headache after wearing even a headband or cap for even a few hours so I don't want anything too tight. What are some brands of wigs and caps that you have found to be soft and cool to wear? Do the wig/scarf liners work? I sincerely mean it when I say the caps and scarves look cute on the young girls but I am 62, so I need help!!! Hehe! Oh and my husband loves his convertible so what stays on in that condition? I plan on buying the wig in person but would like to order some cute, cool, comfortable caps--am I asking too much :)? Suggestions and hints please!

Pink(for BC)Pearl(my daughter's birthstone)

MAJW
Posts: 2515
Joined: May 2009

My advice is to get your wig before you lose your hair...try a wig shop with an experienced sales person...so that they can see what your hair and style are like. This gives you the best looking wig...my hairdresser said forget human hair wigs...go synthetic. Human hair wigs require the same care as your own...also look for one with a "natural scalp". That's a piece sewn in the front part of the wig that will look like your scalp, thus more natural looking. This is the advice that I followed and couldn't have been happier with my choice..also I found that the little nylon cap that you wear under the wig was to tight for me so I clipped the elastic...much more comfortable! I paid $199.00 for mine but you can get them for less than that. I rarely never wore my wig while at home...instead, I wore caps,or triangular scarves. I AlWAYS wore a cotton cap to bed..your head gets cold!
Also some info for when you start to lose your hair...I had mine buzzed beforehand to avoid hair all over the place...and when that started to come out my head was sore and very tender...no one mentioned that to me!
Once chemo was over my hair started growing back within a couple of weeks..stubble but growing...it came in salt and pepper big time which was quite a shock...and Curly!! I was wig free 5 months after chemo stopped!!! That's been 17 months..had 4 haircuts and the curls remain...never had curly hair...it's called chemo curl...but not everyone experiences this.
I wish you the best as you start your treatment...and chemo,for me, wasn't as bad as I thought it would be..no day at the beach,but very doable.

Hope some of this helps you!
Nancy

Hubby's picture
Hubby
Posts: 325
Joined: Apr 2010

My wife had bought a bunch of different things. She ended up wearing two sleep caps from TLC Direct (this is the American Cancer Society's site). One was called the "Floral Embroidered Sleep Cap" and the other was a Terry Turban. Both were loose fitting. The terry turban was worn around the house most of the time.

Bob

Kylez's picture
Kylez
Posts: 3765
Joined: May 2009

Just wishing you good luck with chemo.

Hugs, Kylez

joannstar
Posts: 346
Joined: Nov 2010

scarves called "Melanie" and "Juliette" available from www.headcovers.com. I bought a wig before chemo from a local wig store which I also found at headcovers (for 1/2 the price I found out after!) but of course, I needed to try it on and my insurance paid. I only wear my wig out to dinner or temple services. At work I wear scarves. I found that the headband scarves looked the best on me--the caps made me feel like my head was a bowling ball. I also bought a gel band which makes the wig a bit more comfortable. I found that the same place had great gel eyeliner which really stays on (my eyes watered a lot so my usual bare essentials makeup wasn't staying on at all).
I'm looking forward to the time I can donate my head coverings and have hair again. It fell out 17 days after my first chemo (9/24) and I've just had my last...so I am anxiously awaiting new growth. By the way, I lost hair all over, not just on my head. Losing nose hair meant that my nose was running a lot (along with my eyes), but I've enjoyed not having mustache and chin hair (I'm 58).
Good luck to you in your search.
Hugs,
JoAnn

Boppy_of_5's picture
Boppy_of_5
Posts: 1138
Joined: Apr 2010

I too always got headaches from wearing caps or scarves.I had a wig I got from TLC.com and one from ACS I had the scalp covers and my wigs were synthetic. I honestly found what I liked best for everyday wear were bandanas from WalMart for $1 each! They were cooler and more comfy to me. Nearly all my bald time was summer and it was to hot for the wigs except on special occasions. I did get to where I could wear caps without a headache too. God Bless
(((Hugs)))

missrenee's picture
missrenee
Posts: 2137
Joined: Apr 2010

Well, I have to say--I absolutely hated wearing the wigs. I got 2 (one I bought locally here in Scottsdale, the other was given to me at a chemo session by a rep from the Amer. Cancer Soc.) They felt like a helmet to me or that I was wearing a Halloween costume, so I really only wore then about 4 times total. I felt way more comfortable in headscarves. They are so pretty and so varied as to colors, materials, styles. Most of mine came from www.headcovers.com. They ranged in prices and many times had cute ones on sale. I also bought a couple of sleep caps (sort of a soft terry cap) for sleeping--my bald head got cold at night. They also came from www.headcovers.com.

Good luck in your search.

Hugs, Renee

Angie2U's picture
Angie2U
Posts: 2993
Joined: Sep 2009

For newbies bumping up

Noel's picture
Noel
Posts: 3101
Joined: Apr 2009

TLC.com is part of the American Cancer Society. Looks like Ritzy and the others posted a lot of sites for you to take a look at.

Good luck and enjoy your rides in your husband's convertible.

Ritzy's picture
Ritzy
Posts: 4384
Joined: Aug 2009

is so wonderful to see all of these websites. I hope anyone that needs anything can find it thru what has been posted.

Sue :)

cocarolyn
Posts: 7
Joined: Apr 2010

http://www.franceluxe.com/i/goodwishesscarves/Good+Wishes+Scarves.html
Please go to this website to order a free scarf or headwrap. Also, please attend a "Look Good Feel Better" class sponsored by your local American Cancer Society. Free makeup with tips on how to cope with chemo side effects, hats, scarfs and wigs. These are both wonderful programs to assist you. I made it and you can do it too!!!!

MyTurnNow's picture
MyTurnNow
Posts: 2694
Joined: Aug 2009

Hi, PinkPearl. I did not even bother buying a wig because I just couldn't get past how uncomfortable they were to me and I was just trying them on. I did buy headwraps from www.4women.com and I believe it was the TLC website. I also wore ballcaps and usually just went topless while I was at home. I'm glad that you are getting ready for this stage and please know that it is only temporary. Good luck!!

Double Whammy's picture
Double Whammy
Posts: 2259
Joined: Jun 2010

Hey, PinkPearl, I'm 63 and I think I looked fabulous in my scarves (maybe I didn't, but ignorance is bliss). My favorite were Beaubeaus (www.4women.com) and Titillating Turbans (www.titillatingturbans.com). Didn't have to fuss with either of these, they're both easy to wear and beautiful. Just plunk one on and go. I always have compliments when I wear them. Hats - got most of mine from www.headcovers.com. Wonderful selection and somehow with a hat or beanie, I feel like people didn't really know I was bald underneath. Again, maybe I'm only fooling myself, but this winter I'm wearing beanies (it's cold!) and so is everyone else I see out and about and I think I look just like them. I treated my headware as fashion accessories. I did not buy a wig.

Suzanne

Ritzy's picture
Ritzy
Posts: 4384
Joined: Aug 2009

And, for those of you that sew or knit..try these

Free Sewing, Knit and Crochet Patterns

deofsf.com Free sewing pattern for caps provided by Design Enterprises of San Francisco.
ProudMommy.tripod.com Free sewing pattern for a scarf called a Snood.
BevsCountryCottage.com Free pattern for knit beanies.
BevsCountryCottage2.com Knit cap.
CancerCant.com Knit hat.
Elann.com Knit hat.
MarnieMaclean.com Knit hat.
Berroco.com Knit cap.
KnitList.com Loose knit cap.
MoreHouseFarm.com Knit mushroom cap.
MarnieMaclean.com Knit cap.
Web.Archive.org Knit cap.
KnitList.com Loose fitting cap.
Smariek.BlogSpot.com
TiaJudy.com Knit ribbed cap.
MielkesFarm.com Crocheted hats
YarnCat.com Crochet cap.
ThinkingKnitter.com Knit pattern for a Do-Rag.

Clementine_P's picture
Clementine_P
Posts: 360
Joined: Feb 2011

They were my favorite too. Pre-tied (I can barely tie my own shoes) and super comfy. Plus they make all sorts. I had warm ones and work out ones and even silky ones for a night out with the hubby!

Clementine

CR1954's picture
CR1954
Posts: 1392
Joined: Jul 2008

I bought pre-tied scarves and lovely hats from CJ Hats.
http://www.cjhats.com/

They are made by a cancer survivor and they are extremely reasonable in price.

I also got a wig from ACS. They were wonderful there...so nice and understanding. I am very thankful for their help.

CR

Rague
Posts: 3260
Joined: Aug 2009

I had 2 wigs - both frosted - a long gypsy shag and a pixie. Here in winter the wind blows a lot and the shag was a cheaper one so when the wind blew it was obvious that it was a wig. The pixie (from Paula Young) didn't blow much being short but when it did it didn't look like a wig.

My suggestion is for a better synthetic wig. (Remember not to stick head close to heat while wearing.) Human hair have to cared for more and are harder especially if you have no experience with them. I had many wigs back in the 70's and was a hairdresser but going through Chemo there was no way I wanted the extra work that a human hair will take. Personally I don't like wig liners - never have.

I had a lot of scarfs - they are so easy to make. somehow the ones I bought just didn't suit me so I'd get a yard of neat looking material and make them. When going to be out for some time in bad weather I usually either wore a watch cap/stocking cap or a fleece Mamba Sok (again ones I made). At night I slept in a stocking cap.

Have you been to one of the Look Good Feel Better classes? Definately worth going to. If you can go before eye brows leave, learning the points to use to make natural lookiing brows is easier. There are certain points that are very similar with all but slight differences due to different bone structure.

Susan

Ritzy's picture
Ritzy
Posts: 4384
Joined: Aug 2009

Here are some websites that you might like to take a look at.

Sue :)

Heavenlyhats.org

Cancer.org

Headcovers.com

Hatsofftochemo.com

FranceLuxe.com Beautiful silk head wraps but expensive. If you are a woman or girl experiencing a loss or thinning of hair as a result of illness or treatment, they will send you a scarf in the pattern and color of your choosing. Free. Click on the "Good Wishes" logo in the upper right hand corner of the page for more information.

OrgSites.com Wiggs for Love is a organization in memory of Mary (Spagnoli) Cron who lost her battle with breast cancer. Her family and friends have formed Wigs for Love, enabling breast cancer patients who have lost their hair due to chemo or radiation to receive a wig at no charge to them.

TheRainbowShop.com If you're looking for a headwrap with a tie dye look, this is good option. 100% cotton and several style options.

al-muminat.com Square cotton scarves. Small selection but good prices.

StarScarves.com 42"x42" square. Small selection good prices.

RadWrapz.com Solid color head wraps. only a hand full to choose from but cheap. Buy two, get one free.

CowboyWildRags.com Generous size, square, silk scarves. Like most silk fabric, they are moderately expensive.

Anokhiusa.com 100% cotton scarves and comes in several sizes. Decent prices for the 30"x30".

Everyone that got a scarf thru FranceLuxe.com absolutely loved them. They were beautiful and free.

Christina2000
Posts: 3
Joined: Jan 2011

www.jemimajackman.com has some very fashionable options for hair scarves and headbands.

Christina2000
Posts: 3
Joined: Jan 2011

Hair scarves are my favourites, very comfortable.

Christina

Texasgirl10's picture
Texasgirl10
Posts: 668
Joined: Nov 2010

Hi, I'm going through chemo right now and like you I got everything prepared in advance. I like my hats and scarves from TLC. I also have a few from headcovers.com. I do have several wigs, but honestly I like the hats and scarves better so I just wear them. I have a sleeping cap from TLC, but mostly I just wear my terry cloth turban to sleep in. Also, be sure to use the johnson's baby shampoo on your head daily. My hairdresser said to use it even after all of your hair has fallen out. I also use conditioner and can tell on the days that I skip it because my head itches terribly. Good luck with chemo

Christina2000
Posts: 3
Joined: Jan 2011

I found this really nice designer hair scarf that worked well for me, it ties at the back so it was not tight around my head. You can check out www.jemimajackman.com. They have some really nice headbands that are great too if you're not looking to cover your entire head.

I hope this helps.

Christina

DebbyM's picture
DebbyM
Posts: 3295
Joined: Oct 2009

I don't think I can think of any more sites, other than the ones that are already posted by the pink sisters. So, just wishing you good luck. You will be beautiful!

Hugs, Debby

RozHopkins
Posts: 444
Joined: Dec 2010

I am bare headed during day. www.headcovers.com were very good for sleep caps and hats. Also got caps for the gym which are super comfy for during day in the home if cold. However, all my female friends prefer me in a www.dormadesign.com hats which come in suede or linen and I matched them all up with lovely narrow scarves. All the scarves can be used later, the hats I will prob donate as I see so many ladies wearing very basic hats out and about when you can have a nice look for very little expense. Surprised also that I bought two hats that covered the head well from T G Max for around eleven dollars each. Hope this has helped.

EllenaMaria
Posts: 69
Joined: Jan 2011

Last Jan when I was diagnosed I was 43 with a 12yr daughter and an 8.5 son.

Insurance referred me to a wig shop. The staff was amazing and so were the customers- both cancer patients and ladies who just like to wear wigs.

Trying on wigs with hair is kinda weird, too tight. The gals assured me it would fit better once my hair was gone. They were right. Mine only came in one size and had tightening straps inside. I just cut them off because they made a dent in my head. I got a synthetic and am happy with it.

My hair started coming out on the 10th day after first chemo (I had chemo infused every 3wks). My part started to become more noticable and each day more and more came out and it just started getting thin. When I ran my fingers through my hair my fingers were covered in hair. I could take a clump at the root and pull it out easily but mostly it came out as if it was just thinning out.

It was spring so I wore caps because I thought it would be a good transition for people to see me wearing hats and such with my hair pulled back. It also allowed my real hair to be forgotten. So when I started wearing my wig everyone thought I had got my hair done. You won't believe how many friends came up to me and asked where I got it done.

Within two more weeks there were hairs all over my car. When I took off my hat it was all inside. I looked in the mirror one morning and no longer saw me. I saw something from a zombie movie. I did not want my kids to have any memory of their mom looking like that. So I put on my wig and my daughter and I went to the shop. The lovely gal shaved all but about 1/4inch. Said it was better that way. About half of that fell out and I had just a bit of fuzz left.

I did get the felt type sleep caps. I got a really pretty colored scarf that has elastic in the back so the tie stays in place. I ended up getting fake bangs to wear with the scarf and actually use it with a snow beenie. When summer came it was too hot for the wig so the scarf was nicer. I only put scarf or wig on if my kid's friends came over or I had to go somewhere.

My last treatment was 7/12/10. I noticed stubble mid Sept. It seems like it took forever to get to 1" but it is now about 2" of med dark brown. My normal color is dirty blonde so this is weird.

I took Feb-Nov off from work last year. I am running into people at work who have not seen me in a year and they all tell me I look great, love the new hairstyle. EVERYONE thinks this is my new hair all grown back.

Anyhoo, you are so funny to say that scarves and hats look cuter on younger gals because I think they look better on "older" gals.

Oh, just remembered. I lost almost all my lashes but never noticed since mine were thin to begin with. I think they are halfway grown back. My eyebrows got about 50% thinner and have pretty much stayed that way. I use a little brow color to make them stand out a bit.

Sorry this is so long.

EllenaMaria
Posts: 69
Joined: Jan 2011

My hubby has a mustang and a jeep- both convertible! I was really surprised that if you rest your head on the headrest you will be fine when wearing the wig with the top down. But the first time we took a drive I put a scarf on my wig and big sunglasses. I looked like Jackie O! He thought I was so sexy! It was actually kinda cool like that in the mustang. But the jeep was another story cause we drive with no doors/windows/tops, nothin. I just used the headrest leaning thing. I always kept the scarf just in case. When I wore the scarf with bangs I never had any issue. I did tie it really tight though. My kids like to tell daddy to drive slow "so mommy doesn't blow her top". They can be so cute.

Alexis F's picture
Alexis F
Posts: 3604
Joined: May 2009

Bumping this up for those starting chemo.

Lex

jendrey's picture
jendrey
Posts: 377
Joined: Sep 2009

Send me your address and I'll make a couple of new headwraps for you. I just made my own because I'm picky that way! =)

I just couldn't ever stand to have a barrette or hairband in my hair for very long before I'd be tugging on it. I wanted something to fit comfortably but yet still not come flying off. Oh, the horror of having my boyfriend see me bald would've prolly have just about sent me over the edge. I wanted a headwrap to be tight enough to sleep in but since I can't stand to have anything on my head well, that didn't help any...I finally settled on a pattern that not only securely stayed put, but also wouldn't come off when sleeping.

I'd be glad to stitch some up for you, if you like.

(I think if you click on my name, then add me as a friend, you can then send CSN Email.)

PinkPearl's picture
PinkPearl
Posts: 280
Joined: Oct 2010

I have had so much fun checking out these sites and styles and food for thought above. When you first go to the internet you don't really know who is best or even still in business so these suggestions really helped. Some of them are really pretty. You are right in that "older" women look just beautiful in their scarves, caps etc too. I see lovely women all the time. When I look in the mirr!or I should not be so critical of myself really. A smile goes a long way on anyone actually!! And I think bc gives a certain compassion and sweetness/kindness to a face too that you see in the eyes and smiles. Thanks ladies... and gentlemen, too! The more tips-the better :).

tgf's picture
tgf
Posts: 955
Joined: Mar 2009

When I knew I was going to lose my hair I went nuts looking for scarves and stuff. I bought several hats and scarves ... mostly from TLC ... but when it got right down to it ... I absolutely LIVED in my denim bucket hat from TLC. I tried scarves but was never talented enough to make them look at great as they looked in the pictures. Instead ... I'd just about strangle myself trying to tie those fancy knots. Finally gave up. I also tried on some wigs ... but they made me feel as though I had a bathing cap on. So ... the old reliable denim hat became my best friend. After my hair grew back I donated all the rest of the scarves and hats to the local Cancer place (chemo brain ... I can't think of the name of it now!) ... but I kept my denim hat ... as a reminder of that part of my journey. Oh ... and even though it's been over a year now ... I do STILL use chemo brain as an excuse for just about anything. Sounds better than "I'm just old and forgetful."

:-)

hugs.
teena

Noel's picture
Noel
Posts: 3101
Joined: Apr 2009

You are right PinkPearl, you shouldn't be critical of yourself. I think smiles on sisters in pink can light up a room. We fight so hard with our surgery's and treatments, that it makes all of us appreciate life all that much more, which makes that smile on our face so beautiful!

♥ Noel

LVG's picture
LVG
Posts: 128
Joined: Jan 2010

Today, I called an online wig store & was so pleased with my experience, I wanted to provide a lot if the details for you and others. They look lightweight and might not be as irritating, these would be great if you happen to have a prescription from your insurance - as I do. My ins. will reimburse me up to $350. for one wig per lifetime because of chemo Tx.
This place can custom make one for you. They specialize in medical grade wigs/prosthetics. She said their custom made medical wigs are all handmade with premium grade remy human hair and they can be parted and styled just as you would your own hair. I am suppose to measure my head and call back there to get started.
Diamond Girl Wigs -
www.myworldshoppers.com
www.diamondgirlwigs.com

Alexis F's picture
Alexis F
Posts: 3604
Joined: May 2009

I am sure that most insurance's will pay for at least one wig. So many pink sisters just don't know to call and ask if they will cover it. Hoping now they will.

Lex

pinkflutterby's picture
pinkflutterby
Posts: 615
Joined: Jun 2009

I was so vain I bought a very expensive wig and have only worn it maybe 3 times! I weat a baseball cap mostly when I leave the house. When I'm home I go topless Ü I could not stand the wig it itched I was so worried it was sideways and it gave me headaches. So does anything on my head thats why I go topless at home :)

Alexis F's picture
Alexis F
Posts: 3604
Joined: May 2009

Bumping for cathg

Hippiechick58's picture
Hippiechick58
Posts: 320
Joined: Feb 2011

Please forgive my ignorance, but what does it mean "Bumping" for someone? Is it like a high-five? I always see these posts but have never asked before what they mean!

Be Well,
Dianne

Kylez's picture
Kylez
Posts: 3765
Joined: May 2009

Dianne, it just means that this post is important and someone just pushed it back up to the top, so, anyone on chemo, or, starting chemo could read this valuable information.

Ask any question!

PinkPearl's picture
PinkPearl
Posts: 280
Joined: Oct 2010

Update: I did order several hats, got a free wig, and bought a couple of cap/scarves with ties. Jendrey's post above got me to thinking that I could make a few and that has been fun. I just looked at my favorite styles that I thought I could copy and made up a pattern. It was really pretty easy and now I can match them to what and had in the closet already. I think McCalls has a pattern also if you want to buy a pattern. The wig?--well haven't worn it yet and I am 6 weeks into chemo and bald but happy. I do like the caps and scarves better and people tell me they(I) look pretty :)! WoW!

1acme
Posts: 77
Joined: Mar 2011

Hello PinkPearl

I also have same issue that most of the headbands were giving me headache, so I order several different items, some are my favourite and some I just wear because they "coordinate" with my cloths :o)

a) I ordered a lots of real SILK scarves from EBAY. They are relatively inexpensive and they are very soft. I actually made also a few silk pillow cases for my bed.

b) also ordered medium and long length WIG as well from ebay. Hair is synthetic, shiny and does not look cheesy. It was quite inexpensive (about $20 a piece) BUT as it come directly from factory in Asia delivery time is about 4 weeks. I love them both. This is their ebay page, they have large selection of cuts and colors - http://shop.ebay.com/lliying123/m.html?_nkw=wig&_sacat=0&_odkw=&_osacat=0&_trksid=p3911.c0.m270.l1313

c) I also ordered, of course from ebay Cotton Hats (summer hat) as this one. Again delivery time about 3 weeks - http://cgi.ebay.com/NEW-Women-Korea-Dot-Wide-Brim-Floppy-Beach-Soft-Hat-Cap-/320659535662?pt=US_Hats&hash=item4aa8cc372e

Good luck
Helen

janelle2011's picture
janelle2011
Posts: 21
Joined: Mar 2011

I ordered some caps from www.slumbercaps.com and I LOVE them! They are very comfortable....in fact, I wear them when I get home and to bed! :o). Most if all, they come in tons of colors and are very affordable! $11 ea or 2 for $20!

Good luck with your chemo! I have my 2nd treatment Wednesday....so far, so good!

Hugs!

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