MOST people visit the hairdressers for a quick trim or short back and sides.
But mother-of-three Nikki Cowan is set to have almost four feet chopped from her long brown locks today, which she will donate to a children’s charity providing real-hair wigs for boys and girls across the UK and Ireland who have lost their own hair through cancer treatment.
The 33-year-old real-life Rapunzel hasn’t had her hair cut for four years, with her super-long locks now stretching as far as her derrière.
Nikki, who lives in Swanston, decided to shed her thick hair for the Little Princess Trust after her late auntie Fiona Hutson, 52, who lived in Livingston, was diagnosed with breast cancer around 2009. She passed away on Boxing Day 2011.
Nikki came across an article in a magazine around 18 months ago about a child with leukaemia and another charity that makes real wigs for children who have lost their own hair. It was around the same time that Fiona had lost her hair after undergoing gruelling chemotherapy and radiotherapy, and it was at this point that Nikki decided to continue growing her hair.
“These things kind of hit you and I thought, ‘what if my child was going through it?’,” she said.
“I think donating my hair will be a lovely thing to do.
“My auntie had a real-hair wig and it made a huge difference. She felt she could do her normal hairstyle with it. She didn’t like the synthetic wigs – they were itchy and she couldn’t style them.”
But housewife Nikki also has another reason for wanting to donate her locks to a good cause – her 12-year-old daughter Rebecca had to have her hair shaved before undergoing life-saving brain surgery when she was just two years old.
The Firrhill High pupil was diagnosed with cranial stenosis when she was six months old.
Nikki said: “The bones in her head hadn’t fused properly so her face was going a bit squint. The operation cut and rearranged the bones in her skull because they had fused wrong.
“The doctors were going to talk to her about getting a wig but her hair grew back quite quickly.”
Nikki, who is set to get her hair cut at Harlequin Hair Studio on Colinton Mains Drive at around 3pm this afternoon, hopes to raise around £100 for the charity and will post her hair to the charity inside an envelope after the big chop. She will be left with a chin-length bob after her 90-minute session in the salon chair to cut and style her locks.
“I’ll be quite glad to get rid of the hair, it’s doing my head in now – trying to dry it is a nightmare,” she said. “I’m glad I’m doing it, and it’s a good charity to do it for. It will be a weight off my mind!”
Meanwhile, Nikki’s mum – also Fiona Hutson, 51, who lives in Oxgangs, added: “I think what she’s doing is amazing. She has persevered with this amount of hair down her back for a long time. It’s good Celtic hair – it is nice and thick, and she has kept it in wonderful condition.”
To make a donation, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit www.littleprincesses.org.uk for more information on the charity.