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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at IUP chapter.

I had always been the kid with the beautiful long hair, with the natural highlights that strangers would tell me they were jealous of. The older I got, the darker it got but somehow kept its awe inspiring look to others. I had never cut it more than a trim to get the split ends off.

(Photo by me)

On the outside, it was beautiful. But the people who thought that didn’t have to live with it everyday. They didn’t have to pick the hairs off their clothes every morning or attempt to get the brush unstaggled when there were just too many knots to get through. It was a nightmare for me.

So at the beginning of the year, I donated 9 inches of my hair. It went from being down to the middle of my back to resting just above my shoulders. It was a wonderful feeling to let the weight of my hair go and to fall in love with it again.

(Photos by me)

However, it didn’t last long. I went to college and it became a struggle to find ways to put it up to go to the gym. Or find ways to ensure that it wouldn’t get greasy twice as fast as before. Although I was happy with how much shorter it was, it became even more work than before, and I just couldn’t handle it anymore!

So I just shaved it off.

Let me tell you how scary that was. My hair had been a part of my identity for so long that I was afraid to let it go. I was afraid that people would look at me and think I was ugly. I immediately regretted it. But it wasn’t as big a regret as I thought.

(Photo by Me)

Almost immediately, I fell in love with it. I felt like so many of my problems had been taken away with my hair. People were complimenting me left and right on how much it suited me (I was also afraid I had a misshapen head). Showers were so much shorter and my hair didn’t take hours to dry.

Of course I miss my old hair a little bit. I miss the warmth it brought (thank goodness for beanies) and I miss being able to style it. But I have a newfound confidence that wasn’t there before and I feel so much more able to tackle the world–like I could take on anything!

To anyone out there who’s thinking of doing it, I’ll tell you the same thing that I heard constantly when looking up other people who did it: just do it. It’s just hair and it’ll grow back. Also, you might just fall in love with it.


Gabrielle Bonnar is a current undergrad student at IUP who enjoys writing for HerCampus. She enjoys writing articles as a way to express her opinions and experiences throughout her life. Also, this acts as an outlet for her to write about new interests and ideas that she might not be able to express as well through her other artistic mediums. Being a member of Her Campus has strenghtened her abilities as a writer and she is excited to see where this portfolio of pieces takes her in the future. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter at @typical_guby.