What's the best headwear for chemo? Here are my top 10 picks and tips for choosing hats to suit your style and season.
Choose hats that aren't actually typically associated with chemo - that is, hats that look like hats, not chemo headwear. Add a Hair for Hats hair piece, and no one will know there's no hair under there!
Best Chemo Headwear - Top 10:
1. Basic Bamboo Beanies
A couple of light bamboo beanies are an essential basic - great for sleeping in, lounging at home in, and for wearing under scarves for extra security. I found black and brown to be the best, white, navy and grey are also lovely.Google "Jon Renau softies" and House of Christine.
2. Winter Beanies
Beanies from surf shops won't have the 'cancer' look - grab one online e.g. Ripcurl do great ones, or General Pants shops have a great range. If it's winter, no one will blink when you walk around in a woollen beanie. It'll keep your head warm too!
3. Sun Hats - including Fedoras and Panama Hats
Look for wide brimmed sunhat that have depth so that they conceal the sides of your head (the no-hair give away). Helen Kaminski make beautiful sunhat that often have the depth you want.
4. Baseball Caps
When looking for a baseball cap find one that doesn't have a hole at the back (usually where a ponytail goes through). I found one in a surf shop.
Scarves are a great option for wearing to the office and out for dinner or drinks in the evening. Wrapping scarves is made easy when you just tie it on top of a soft bamboo beanie.
6. Fashion: Newsboy Hats, Baker Boy Hats, Bareas and Bucket Hats
Like in the photo, my favourite hat during chemo was a newsboy hat I'd picked up in Chile a decade ago. Terms like "slouchy newsboy hats" "baker boy hats" are useful for finding similar options on Etsy and Google.
7. Head Wraps and Headbands
House of Christine Boho headbands are a perfect accessory to dress up your bamboo beanie. Jon Renau softie wraps are a great option too - so easy to put on, and perfect for the office too.
8. Work Hats
Do you usually have a hat at work, for example a chef hat, nurses hat. If it's got enough depth, perhaps it can work with a hair piece?
9. Religious and Cultural Headwear
Do you have a religious or cultural headwear that could work with a hair piece?
10. Tune your Hippy and Boho Vibes
I really liked teaming my hairpiece with hats that have a hippy vibe - "slouchy beanies", "summer beanie", "slouchy hat", "boho head wraps" are some useful search terms on Etsy. Vintage kantha fabric wraps made by BrooklynRose on Etsy tied over a bamboo beanie are a stunning option. Add sunglasses and feel like a superstar!
Further tips: Borrow, if you can
Ask your friends and family if they have any hats, scarves and beanies that you can borrow, or visit your local wig library - they have lots of hats as well as wigs. You will only need them for 6 month to a year, and they are probably sitting in their wardrobes unused. and borrow them while you go through it. Save money, and add options so you can vary up your look. Also great to be able to try hats on before buying them - that's the problem with online shopping, it's all a gamble.
Add your hair piece!
All of these hats, and more, can be teamed easily with a Hair for Hats hair piece and presto - no one knows there's no hair under it!
Try your hair piece, and let me know how you go. If you have more tips about hats and hair, I'd love you to share them with me - I'll add them for others to read here as well.
Chemo's a lifesaving treatment, but it sucks... and it takes strength and stamina for your mind and body to get through it. Wishing you all the very best for your treatments, and a long and healthy life ahead.