The coronavirus lockdown is making a lot of people finally answer the call to shave their heads.
Take a look on Twitter and Instagram right now and you’ll see piles of before and after photos of previously long-haired types now rocking a buzzcut.
We’ve explored the psychology behind this phenomenon, but now we reckon it’s time to chat to the people who’ve taken the plunge and done a quarantine head shave.
These are their stories (and the compulsory before and after pics, because we’re not tired of those yet).
Professional rugby player Alex, 27, is the creator of shavedonatenominate, a fundraiser that has already gathered up more than £19,000 for the NHS during the pandemic.
It’s a simple concept. You shave your head, donate to the page, then nominate your friends to do the same.
‘As I have so much time now I wanted to try to do more to support the NHS whose commitment to work tirelessly for our nation’s health is inspiring,’ Alex tells Metro.co.uk.
Alex has shaved his head before so knew what to expect, but this time roped in his mum, who he’s self-isolating with in Bristol, for help to tidy up the bits he couldn’t see.
‘I love the feel of it,’ he says. ‘It’s low maintenance too.
‘I had been contemplating shaving my head but this gave me a good excuse as I knew the barnet would get a bit ropey over time in lockdown.
‘I’d already tee’d up a few pals to do it with me so it was a kind of mob mentality of all doing it together. Most importantly I was motivated about raising money and awareness for the NHS workers.’
Frankie, 30, a receptionist from south London, had wanted a dramatic haircut for a while. When the lockdown boredom hit, a full shave seemed like an obvious solution.
‘I thought if I sent my best friend a ponytail in the post it would cheer them up (it did),’ she tells us.
‘I was talking to my best friend on FaceTime and they were a bit down. We normally spend all our time together so this has been really horrible and weird.
‘My flatmates helped me shave it, one of them went in with the scissors and the other one used his clippers. It took ages… there was a lot of hair.
‘I felt great after! The boredom was definitely alleviated for a while and I was really pleased my head wasn’t a weird shape.
‘I always wondered what it would look like. My aunty had a shaved head when I was little and my sister shaved hers a few years ago – they both looked stunning, so I’d thought about it on and off for years but always worried it would look awful.
‘I wouldn’t have done it if we weren’t in lockdown. I figured if it did look terrible I won’t be going anywhere for weeks and it’ll grow back a certain amount by the time I see anyone.
‘I don’t think I’ve made any other impulsive decisions. I haven’t even texted an ex (very proud of myself). I’ve mostly been watching Disney + while my housemates do lots of impressive gardening/baking/embroidery.’
Full-time YouTuber Alvin Sheldon, from Newark in Nottinghamshire, decided to shave his head live on camera to raise money for NHS workers – and ended up raising more than £5,000 as a result.
He had never considered a full-head shave before this, so he’s got the definition of a lockdown haircut – but he has no regrets.
‘I was a little in shock [afterwards],’ Alvin tells us. ‘I was just open-mouthed and lost for words.
‘We raised over £5,000 for the NHS so it was worth it.’
You can donate to NHS workers through Alvin’s GoFundMe.
‘By week two of lockdown I’d already taken some orange dye to my hair, which didn’t quite scratch the itch, so shaving it all off seemed like the logical next step,’ says Megan, 25. the producer of Matchbox Cineclub.
‘My boyfriend is a fellow bald person so I took his electric shavers to it myself, after putting my hair in three bunches and cutting them off with scissors first to get rid of the bulk. My boyfriend then tidied the sides and back up for me, but I think I did a pretty good job myself.
‘Afterwards, I felt like I had some sort of shaved head superpower. It felt really liberating, and a little chilly.
‘My only regrets are that I didn’t do it sooner and that I’ve done it during lockdown so no one gets to see how good it looks.’
Shaving his head gave Spencer, 21, a sense of control in very uncertain times.
‘I saw a trend growing on Twitter where a lot of gay men were beginning to give themselves buzzcuts in order to avoid any ‘bad hair days’ during quarantine,’ he says. ‘While no one was going to see me for a number of weeks I decided change was good.
‘Having lost all of my routine, social interaction and travel plans I wanted to regain some control over my life but also over the hectic and unpredictable situation we are in.’
The freelance photographer and studio manager toyed with the decision for a number of days before finally going for it, grabbing an electric razor and shaving off the middle chunk of his hair.
He’s so glad he did.
‘I felt completely empowered,’ says Spencer. ‘With being at home I finally had time to delve back into makeup tutorials and self-portraiture and having a fresh canvas to paint on made it a whole lot easier.
‘Being able to use self-isolation as a space to express myself creatively and shape a new image is incredibly rewarding in a time when there doesn’t seem to be an end goal.’
This isn’t the first time Spencer has gone for the shave.
‘I have a testing relationship with my hair,’ he says. ‘A few years ago I wanted to act a little selfless after the realisation that I had been consuming and taking more than my fair share of money and support from others.
‘I had stubbornly grown my hair for a year or so, refusing to get it cut at every opportunity and so I put the two together and managed to raise over £600 for Macmillan Cancer as I braved the shave.’
Kim, 36, had to cancel her planned holiday due to coronavirus, so needed some excitement.
The digital marketing manager grabbed a pair of garden sicssors and had at her hair, with her wife on hand to help tidy it up.
She tells us: ‘I thought “why not? now is a good opportunity to look a bit strange”. They say change is as good as a holiday and our holiday to South Africa was cancelled, so a shaved head was the next best thing!
‘I was a little bit nervous. I was on my way to brush my teeth and get ready for bed, I looked in the mirror and thought “now is the time”.
‘I went into the kitchen, found the garden scissors and started chopping. The cats thought they were next.’
Post-shave, Kim says she feels ‘wonderful’ and ‘liberated’ and has zero regrets.
‘It’s only hair, it will grow back,’ she says. ‘I have always wanted to shave my head but I’ve never really had the guts to do it.’
Have you made a dramatic hair change during lockdown? Share your pics in the comments section below.
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