Lock of love

By Jessica Marrella
February 24, 2005

Last year, 177 donors went to “The Shear Touch” salon in Bryn Mawr to donate their hair to the Locks of Love foundation. With each person donating between four and eight ponytails, “The Shear Touch” sends out packages of hair every month.

Locks of Love is a non-profit organization that provides hair pieces to children 18 years and younger who suffer from long term medical hair loss. Because the hair that they use is donated, Locks of Love is able to provide high quality prosthetics. The organization began in 1997 and since then they have helped over 1,400 children.

Locks of Love provides the hair pieces to children free of charge or on a sliding scale based on their financial need. The cost of a custom made hair piece begins at $3,000.

“The Shear Touch” has been participating in Locks of Love for approximately eight years. So as not to be an expense to the donor, “The Shear Touch” pays to ship the hair to Florida where Locks of Love begins the process of turning donated hair into a hair prosthetic. “The Shear Touch” also presents each donor with a certificate of appreciation from the Locks of Love foundation.

Each donated ponytail has to be a minimum of ten inches long, clean and dry. Hair is then pulled back into a ponytail or braided. The ponytail or braid is then cut off, placed in a plastic bag and then in a padded envelope. Permed hair is accepted but bleached or extremely damaged hair is not. Long blonde, black or red hair is in the highest demand right now. The majority of hair donated is from children that want to help other children. Children make up over 80 percent of total donors.

“The Shear Touch” has even gone out to schools and cut hair to be donated on the spot. The salon has gone to Cardinal O’Hara High School for the past three years towards the end of the school year after prom season.

For more information about Locks of Love, visit their website at locksoflove.org.

Jessica Marrella

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