Two words: Hair loss. Guys talk about it all the time, but women? Not so much, even though women experience it, too, and it can be very upsetting. Now, influencer Dani Austin is speaking out about her own hair loss.
Austin recently posted an emotional video on YouTube. It opens with her crying in the car, saying through tears, "I'm frustrated with myself because I don't want to care so much." She goes on to say, "I'm just embarrassed." Then the camera flashes to outside of the car, and we see that she's sitting in the parking lot of a wig shop.
Austin then explained that her hair has been slowly falling out and thinning for years. She doesn't know exactly what caused her hair to disappear, but she pins the blame on a combination of factors—particularly a habit she had in college of pulling out her hair when she was stressed. After a hair-pulling episode, she would bleach her hair or get extensions to try to cover it up, which she now realizes may have made things worse in the long run.
Earlier this year, she noticed that her hair seemed to be falling out more than usual. So after many tears, her husband finally suggested she look into wigs. "I felt really uncomfortable when he suggested that because I didn't know anything about wigs. It was a totally foreign concept to me," she says in the video.
Getting her first wig was a very tense experience for Austin, as the clip shows. "When I first started to deal with it, I was like, I want to quit. I don't want to show my face on Instagram or YouTube ever again. What are people going to say? They're going to now call me the wig girl, or make fun of it, or maybe sometimes it'll be off [center] and people will say something about it," she said.
But that was a few months ago. Now she owns two wigs (which she named Kim and Stephanie) and is in the process of growing her wig closet and experimenting with different styles. From the beginning, she said she wanted to get to a point where she could share her hair loss and wigs with the world and have fun with her personal experience—and that's exactly what she's done.
"I don't really have any specific talents on my platform," Austin tells Health. "I'm not a singer or a dancer. I'm not really good at makeup or really good at hair. But I was like, this is going to be my talent, it's going to be my thing, just using my life stories and what I go through to try to help other people."
She's added "The girl w/ da wig" to her Instagram bio and posted stories of her trying on different wigs that she ordered on Amazon (including a long pink one). She's also shared her new wig closet accessories, like a wig tripod and, of course, wig hangers.
"I now say that my hair doesn't own me, I own my hair," Austin says. "That Ariana Grande lyric is my new motto. 'You like my hair? Gee thanks. Just bought it.'"
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