When Others Ask About Your Wigs
Wig Shown Above: Bobbi Wig by Envy in color Silky Beige
I can always count on seeing this question on Facebook, especially from new wig wearers. I had the same question. What do I say when someone compliments my hair? How do I handle critiques from friends or family who seem to want to discourage me from wig wearing? Should I just tell family and close friends? How should I handle telling (or not telling) work colleagues? There is no one answer to any of these questions. Only you know the best way to answer because only you know your level of confidence, and the dynamics of your relationships, both personal and professional. I’d guess that most people have zero knowledge of wigs. I’d bet that the majority of people your meet in a casual or work environment know nothing or little about wigs. So, that puts the ball in your court so to speak. You get to decide.
The other recurring topic is about romantic relationships. How and when, or if—you should bring this up. This is tricky because trust places a big role here. I’d certainly not make it a conversation on a first or even second date. After all, if this is someone that you don’t know well, and may not see again, why put yourself through that stress? Now, the tricky part. If you do progress to a more serious relationship, an intimate relationship, then what—how do you prepare your partner ahead of time, or do you have to do that? Unfortunately, there are no rules about this, and it comes back to you again, your trust level with the other person, and your own confidence that you are more than your hair.
If you do get to that intimate relationship point and are still not ready to have the wig discussion, there is one thing my friend recommended that worked for her and allowed her time to ease her way into having the conversation. She told her partner that she had hair extensions in and to keep his hands out of her hair. Plain and simple, and that is what happened. She offered no other explanation until she was ready to, and that was weeks down the road when she was sure their relationship was one that she wanted to cultivate.
You can do as she did, or you can just say upfront that you are wearing a wig so please don’t mess with it and offer no further information. However, saying that will in all likelihood bring questions, so make sure you are ready to answer them. If you are in the early dating stages there are, of course, ways to secure your wig to keep it looking natural until you do get to a more serious point in your relationship.
What about your work colleagues? That can be handled any way you think best. Depending on your bio hair prior the wig, and how drastic the change will be when you appear one Monday morning looking very different will be the guiding factor. If the change in your appearance is a noticeable one, you will most certainly have someone confront you about it or make a comment. Only you know your work situation. If you have been wearing some other kind of helper hair the change to a full wig may not be very noticeable. This is especially true if you are just going to a lower density wig much like your prior look. Remember, people are much too concerned about their own looks and life to dwell too much on others. We are our own worse critics.
If you love wigs and want to wear different styles and colors to work on a regular basis, that is a different story. Then you’ll have to go for it and tell everyone what you’re doing, and in a week or so, it will no longer be a topic for discussion or comment. This is the jumping into the fire with both feet approach. Some people can handle it, and some rather not take this approach. Only you can decide.
A warning flag here—Be ready for this person: you will run into someone, somewhere, maybe when you least expect it, be they family, friend, or co-worker, who will have something to say. There are people who seem to think that their mission in life is to offer their opinion on everything, whether they know anything about the topic or not. In the case of wigs, I’ve found that it those who know nothing about them that feel they must give their critique. Be ready for them. They will ask questions, comment on the color and/or style, ask you the cost, and in general, make you uncomfortable if you let them. I have found a few well-chosen sentences can usually shut them down. Here are some retorts that I’ve heard used over the years by seasoned wig wearers when they were asked questions about their hair/wig.
“Why yes, it is a wig. Do you have wig or hair styling experience?”
“If you’re really interested, I can send you some information.”
“Costs vary. I can point you to a few good websites if you need more information.”
“People wear wigs for all sorts of reasons. I am grateful that I have such great options.”
“I like being a blonde, but hold on, I could show up as a redhead tomorrow.”
I could go on, but you get the idea. You really DO NOT owe anyone any explanation. How much you decide to “show and tell” is your decision. Don’t let someone force you into it before you’re ready. You should be the one to decide to keep it to yourself or jump in the fire with both feet.
Until next time,
Pull out that little bit of the magical witch in you and stand tall. This is my favorite with, Hazel, holding her mask as she gets ready for fall and winter.