Easy Ways to Donate Hair to Child Cancer Patients

I have donated my hair a few times through the years and so have both of my daughters. We have donated to Pantene Beautiful Lengths and to Lock of Love in the past, but I always research each time to make sure it goes to the best place possible.

I have kept my hair short for the last few years, so this time it is my youngest son’s turn to donate his hair. He’s 15 now and started growing out his hair when he was 12. He finally decided it was time to cut his hair when his sophomore gym class caused him to “look like a caveman” for the rest of the day at school.

When he decided it was time to cut his hair, he wanted to donate it. He got it cut, brought it to me, and now it’s my turn to research where the best place to send it would be. (I didn’t research it first because I had already donated in the past.)

We want to make sure that it goes to an organization that makes wigs for children and gives them the wigs at no cost to them. So off to Google I went!

First, I found some suggestions from cancer.net about what to do to donate your hair: 1–choose where to donate your hair, 2–read the directions on what that organization requires, 3–make sure your hairstylist follows the directions.

Then I found several organizations to look into:

Locks of Love

Locks of Love makes wigs for children at no charge to the child’s family. They require:

  • The shorts part of the hair has to be at least 10 inches long
  • Hair has to be in a ponytail and can be braided
  • Permed and colored hair is acceptable
  • Hair cut years ago is acceptable, as long as it has been stored in a ponytail
  • No loose hair can be accepted
  • Hair that is too short will be sold off to help cover costs of making the wigs
  • Gray hair will be sold off to help cover costs of making the wigs

Locks of Love has a hair donation form that asks you to provide your name, address, and other personal information, as well as giving you the option to make a financial donation as well.

Pantene Beautiful Lengths

Pantene Beautiful Lengths no longer takes hair donations as of 2018.

Wigs for Kids

Wigs for Kids makes wigs for children at no charge to the child’s family. They require:

  • Hair must be 12 inches long
  • Hair 14 or more inches long is preferred
  • Measure from the ponytail to where hair begins to make layers or thin due to split ends
  • Hair cannot be permed, colored, or high lighted
  • Hair must be washed before it is cut
  • Gray hair is accepted
  • Ponytails must be sealed in a ziplock bag

You can find the Wigs for Kids donation forms here. You can choose between the hair donation form, hair donation and financial donation form, or hair and request for Girl Scout patch form.

Walgreens Trust 234x60

Chai Lifeline

Chai Lifeline offers many services for families of ill children, besides just making wigs for children at no charge to the child’s family. Besides hair donations, they offer activities for families, trips, counseling, education assistance, and much more. For their hair donation, they require hair to be:

  • 14 inches long
  • Cut dry
  • Braid or ponytail
  • Once braided or in a ponytail, placed in a zip lock back once cut

You can find out where to send your hair donation to Chai Lifeline here!

Children with Hair Loss

Children with Hair Loss collects hair to make wigs for children who are ill or suffer from trichotillomania. They require:

  • Hair must be at least 8 inches long
  • Clean, dry and in a ponytail or braid
  • Rubber bands need to be placed on each end of the ponytail or braid
  • Non-chemically treated hair is preferred
  • Gray hair is accepted
  • Place braid or ponytail in a ziplock bag

You can find the hair donation form on their website and need to include that in the envelope with your ziplock bag of hair. They also give ideas for other ways to help their program, such as host a hair-cut-a-thon or host an online fundraiser for them.

My son’s years of hair growth in pictures!

2016 Aaron
August 2017
June 2018
August 2019 Aaron's hair
August 2019

He chose to donate his hair to…..

After his hair cut!
The long hair is all gone!

You can check out more about family traditions here!

35 thoughts on “Easy Ways to Donate Hair to Child Cancer Patients”

  1. This is awesome. I usually donate my hair to locks of love. It’s almost that time again…. I don’t dye or perm my hair and no gray at almost fourty!!

  2. Donating hair is such a simple, beautiful way to contribute!! It takes awhile, for sure, but it’s such an amazing feeling once you’ve reached the point of being able to cut that braid. It is even more heartwarming when I see kiddos take the initiative and want to help in this way. Kudos!!!!

  3. When my son was 18 he cut his very long 14 inches off and donates it to Locks of Love. I love that you shared this and a list of reputable places to donate hair. Thank you for this post.

    1. I thought it was neat that they mentioned that. I honestly would not have thought it would matter, but it’s great that they are specific like that.

  4. I love this. When I was young, my sister passed away from Leukemia (1968). Prior to that our school bus driver collected money so that my parents could purchase my sister a human hair wig. It was the most wonderful thing for her to have and she wore it proudly. Please give your son a big hug for me, and tell him that someone who knows first-hand how important it is, is thinking of him!

  5. My daughter has donated to Wigs for Kids, and I have donated to Locks of Love in the past! Thank you for calling attention to such great causes!

  6. What a great kid! I love this. Thank you for searching for all these organizations. I know people who have wanted to do this but at a loss as to where to start,

  7. Wow, this is great information! I bet he feels so much better with all that hair cut! What a great cause! Our little kid cut place will send hair in for us!

    1. I’m sure most salons are aware of options, but many may only know Locks of Love because they tend to have the most publicity (at least where we are from in Indiana).

  8. I have donated in the past and the experience was wonderful. Such a great thing to do. Thank for sharing your sons experience.

  9. Any way we can instill generosity into our kids–or encourage them when it’s their idea–is awesome and what this world needs. Thanks to both you and your son for being good examples of generosity (he could have come home from gym, buzzed it off, and thrown it away!), and for the great list of hair donation choices!

    1. I never look at it that way, to be honest. Very true. Of course, that is my kid that has been 40 since he was 4.lol

  10. I think this is so cool for the kids especially to do . It really says alot when you let your hair grow and then cut it all off to benefit someone else who has no hair.

  11. I knew I was probably going to lose all my hair going into my stem cell transplant, so I donated it to Wigs for Kids. Great Clips cut it for free, both because I had cancer and since it was going to Wigs for Kids. I ended up losing all my hair and, as hard as it was, I couldn’t imagine being a child going through the process. I encourage everyone to donate hair to these organizations. Thank you for donating and for the post to bring awareness!

  12. What a lovely thing to do. I am glad to hear that some do accept dyed hair, just in case some day I cut mine short since I have highlights. Plus his new hair cut looks great!

  13. Great information! My son’s hair didn’t get quite long enough to donate, but he finally cut his short for high school. I love the color of your son’s hair. 🙂

  14. My daughter donated her hair when she was younger (now colors it too much to do it!) and her cousin just did it! Such a great thing to do. Were your son’s friends shocked at his new look?

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