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BB Blog — Hair Loss

Hair loss an effect of Coronavirus...

Posted by Emilienne Rebel on

Hair loss an effect of Coronavirus...

Hair loss has been identified as a surprising side effect of Coronavirus

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One day at a time...

Posted by Emilienne Rebel on

One day at a time...

Hello to all, 

I hope this message finds you safe. In these unprecedented times, whilst I personally feel the Bold Beanies website and products are a necessity for many, they could be considered as non-essential. However, I'm doing everything I can to preserve jobs and morale of our small factory team and continue to offer our comfy, stylish cancer hair loss headwear as well as other chemo Alopecia products and gifts to those that need them... enabling loved ones to show they care and offer practical help from a distance. 

Please allow extra time for orders to be processed and delivered whilst we adapt to a new way of working and take into account the personal family commitments of our staff and the government regulations. We are working to the strict sanitary guidelines as well as contactless delivery.

Please understand that at this current time, we are unable to offer customisation for our cancer hair loss headwear and gifts. Customers will be notified quickly of any issues with the delivery of their order.

Our thoughts are with the amazing NHS and all medical staff, carers and helpers and countless key workers across the country whilst we all work together to support them against the Covid19 Coronovirus. 

Let us seize this strange suspended moment in time together as a call to love and to HOPE. A moment to look at the world differently and imagine a better tomorrow.

I'm offering 50 complimentary copies of my book HOPE to the first 50 people to email info@boldbeanies.co.uk sharing with me what hope means to them at this difficult time.

Keep Safe, Stay At Home and kindest regards from my family to yours, Emilienne X

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Why are Bold Beanies Cancer Hats So Special?

Posted by Emilienne Rebel on

Why are Bold Beanies Cancer Hats So Special?

For most it's the sheer sense of relief of having a soft comfortable hat that is snug enough to stay in place but not tight at all. One less thing to worry about when life can be difficult and complicated

Everyone loves the pretty and/or fun quality patterns and wide variety of customisable plains to match any outfit, style or mood. A style to suit everyone, day or night wear.

Bold Beanies hats are constructed from the highest quality thin stretchy natural cotton breathable Liberty Prints, famous for their beautiful designs and timeless patterns. Limited seams and with the label on the outside, give the wearer the most comfy fit and keep the head at an even temperature (warm in winter and cool in summer). Our head covers are sustainably made in the UK in a small factory on the borders of the UK and Wales. All Bold Beanies chemo sleep caps and headwear are all eco friendly products with a careful eye on carbon footprint. 

Our cancer hats are perfect to wear on their own during the day or night as a pretty night cap or layer up under scarves, head wraps helmets, hard hats to hijabs.

The idea for Bold Beanies was born out of necessity when Emilienne Rebel lost her hair at age 31 with chemotherapy treatment for grade 3 advanced breast cancer. Her head felt cold, especially at nigh-time when scarves would slip and woollen hats were itchy and too hot. As a younger person going through cancer she found the hair loss headwear available online too fussy and outdated and craved a simple, snug, breathable, comfortable hat which is easy to put on... but also something stylish and pretty to make her feel feminine again and keep covered up for her young family. She found her wig very uncomfortable and felt more self conscious wearing that head covering than anything else. Loosing her hair she felt very self conscious her whole face looked different having lost not just the hair on her head, but eyebrows and eyelashes too... not to mention puffy and bloated from the steroids. 

The Bold Beanies headwear range has extended to include Headscarves, Head Wraps, wonderful cancer Alopecia bouquet flower gifts and PICC line cover sleeves. All our cancer headwear is available for children, teenagers, ladies and men suffering from hair loss, hair thinning, Alopecia Areata or simply for those who just want to cover up and keep ears warm during outdoor sports or under all types of helmets, such as cycling or ski helmets and hard hats.

Emilienne prides herself on her business's caring customer service and will always do her best to accommodate personalisation requests. 

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My cancer story, twelve years on... Lotte is now a teenager!

Posted by Emilienne Rebel on

My cancer story, twelve years on... Lotte is now a teenager!

Olivia was 3 years old and Lotte just 7 months old (still being breastfed) that fateful Wednesday twelve years ago when I was told I had cancer. My 'Cancer Journey' is very much linked to my children and being a mum 

Joking with the Breast Surgeon that I hadn't come to my appointment to get the results of the previous week's biopsy on my own... I had the baby with me! I had found the pea-sized hard lump under the skin whilst breast feeding and knew this wasn't 'my normal'... but still I wasn't really worried. I had no family history, I was not overweight, I'd never smoked, drank little, vegetarian and breast fed both my babies... couldn't be anything right? Wrong.

Investigations, lumpectomy and lymph node removal and various scans proved the cancer was aggressive... I had Grade 3 advanced Breast Cancer. Without intensive and immediate action my life was in danger and I wouldn't get to be a part of my children's lives; I wouldn't get to be their mummy. The worst thought for me personally was that they were too young to remember me. 

I had to do everything I could to ensure every year possible... to get to an age where they would remember me... feel my love for them and know how precious they were to me. I repeat, my cancer journey' is very much linked to my children.  

Twelve years ago this weekend just gone Lotte had her 1st birthday and whilst I was too ill to arrange a party for her we started our new tradition of 'Birthday Breakfast' and I vowed to make every other birthday very memorable for them.

I had my second chemotherapy infusion on that day at home. My hair had already started to fall and I'd shaved it in preparation. Quite a traumatic experience and I with hindsight urge any woman needing to shave her head to entrust this to someone they trust and is very sympathetic, whomever that may be (which may not be the obvious choice).

Losing my hair with Chemo whilst it was difficult to deal with at the time with my young family. I looked very ill. I lost the hair on my head and all over, including my eyebrows and eyelashes and combined with the bloating from the steroids, I looked very different.

My hair loss however set me on a path to start my business Bold Beanies and make a range of cancer alopecia headwear and gifts to make a terrible situation a little bit more bearable. I designed them with younger cancer patients in mind with an emphasis on style as well and for comfort and ease. 

I was unable to lift my arms for long after my mastectomy and lymph node removal and therefore tying traditional headscarves was too difficult for me. I needed something soft and simple to slip on and get on looking after my children. I also felt incredibly cold at night. The wooly beanie hat I wore was itchy and often got too hot, so I would take it off and then I would get cold quickly. My chemo headwear needed to be made from thin natural cotton material, soft, stretchy, breathable and temperature controlling. Its so much easier to face the side effects of cancer when you're able to get a good nights sleep. 

Having received a lot of flowers by post from well meaning friends and family, I also felt it very important to provide gift solutions for cancer patients, helping those around them feel less helpless. 

With every year that passes I gain strength in the bond I have with my girls. I teach them, I guide them to grow into confident young women who very much know they are loved whether I am with them or not.

Whilst I continue to battle with making my life count, battling the feelings of borrowed time, a bucket list of dreams and the normalities of being a single parent with a growing business and people in my life who are determined to make it harder than it needs to be... I hope that others who are at the start of their story with cancer that they get some comfort from my 12 years... sharing the positive stories is so important. I'm still here and enjoy every day with my children and look forward to the exciting times in their lives that I get to be a part of. 

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Jo Tucker is a ' baldmothertucker ' & raising Alopecia Awareness

Posted by Emilienne Rebel on

Jo Tucker is a ' baldmothertucker ' & raising Alopecia Awareness

Jo lost 90% of her hair in two weeks after her third pregnancy... "Losing 90% of my hair in 2 weeks redefined my thoughts on beauty" she says. 

39 year-old, mother of three, Jo Tucker lost 90% of her hair in two weeks after her third pregnancy. What followed was a journey of self-acceptance, a love affair with wigs, and a redefinition of what it means to be ‘beautiful’. Ahead of Alopecia Awareness Month, she’s sharing her hair loss story.

It was just before Christmas. I had just returned to work after my third child and I wasn’t sleeping. Without any warning, I noticed that a small area of hair loss was turning into rapid hair shedding and whole clumps began falling out in the shower.

I booked an appointment at the doctor and I was diagnosed with alopecia areata and sent on my way with a leaflet. I was devastated and confused as my blood tests were healthy. It’s incredibly frustrating to know you’re broken, but not sure which bit or how to fix it.

Christmas came and went and by the time I went back to the doctors I had lost 90% of the hair from my head in only two weeks. I bought shampoos, hair growth serums, treatments – but nothing slowed the loss. By April, I had lost all hair on my head and my body. A dermatologist told me that the more you lose, statistically the less likely you are to get it back. I had reached the most extreme Alopecia Universalis and my odds didn’t look good.

I knew I’d need to return to work after the Christmas holidays but I wasn’t ready to be bald. Suddenly I felt like a wig was my only option. My mum knew of a hairdressers which made wigs and I booked an appointment. I was taken through all the different types of wigs, the construction, materials etc. I had no idea it was so complicated – or so expensive!

I instantly loved the confidence that wigs gave me and I soon became obsessed. I enjoyed the different looks you could achieve so effortlessly. And the more I bought, the more styles and colours I tried! I wasn’t shy about wearing a pixie one day and then long hair the next. I embraced this as one of the positives. Before losing my hair, I was always in that awkward growing-out stage between a pixie and a bob and the wigs looked much better than my actual hair ever was!

I own a lot of different wigs now but I have three favourites that are my go-to: a classic long bob, a pixie cut and long, beachy waves. I never had long hair before, so it’s still a novelty and I like being able to wear it back in a plait or up in a messy bun. When I first started wearing wigs, they were really itchy but there are bamboo and fine mesh caps that put a barrier between your scalp and the material the wig is made from to prevent any itch.

Alopecia has been a huge learning curve. Learning to look at myself in the mirror and appreciate what I see. When it first happened, as it was so sudden, I felt incredibly lost. I dreaded seeing people I hadn’t bumped into for a long time and them seeing the difference in my appearance.

But now I’ve learned not to place as much value on appearance and looks. It doesn’t change who you are inside. Beauty really does come in all different shapes and sizes, and I don’t feel less beautiful. I feel like I’ve gained so much. If anything, it makes you a stronger character.

Since starting my Instagram @boldmothertucker, I get lots of messages from other alopecia sufferers. It’s so lovely to have found a community where you have that common ground and there are charities like Alopecia UK which offer support and advice and private Facebook groups and wig chat forums which act as a safe space to share concerns, worries and ask questions.

[Bold Beanies also supports Alopecia UK and are the perfect complimentary alternative headwear for when you don't want to wear a wig... around the house or in bed for example.]

 

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