Everything You Wanted to Know About Wigs But Were Afraid To Ask

Ooh La La !

A wig is a curious thing.  I have learned that there is a real art to selecting and wearing a wig.  And when you do it right, it is a sight to behold!  Wigs come in real hair and synthetic hair and there are so many options – long hair, short hair, extensions, curly hair, straight hair, blonde hair and purple hair.  And the price range for wigs is all over the place.  There are some places where you can get donated wigs for free and I spoke to someone today who paid $700 for her wig and then added extensions on them so the total cost was a couple of thousand.

Checking out the inventory

I enlisted the help of my hairdresser, Afsan, and my daughter, Sabrina, to help me find the perfect wig.  Like people on a mission, Afsan and Sabrina walked up and down the aisle bringing first one wig, then another.  The store had a silly policy of “try no more than 4 wigs”‘ which they waived for us because they could see that we meant business.  I ended up buying 3 wigs.  One that looks like my own hair, complete with gray hair!  One that is a bit funkier which has a mind of its own (I’m not sure I like its mind so we are learning to cope).  And a blonde wig that makes me look like J. Lo!  Total cost for all 3 wigs:  Less than $200.   Cancer has not taken away my ability to bargain!  And then I found out that our Insurance Company pays up to $200 for wigs.  Oops, I threw away my original receipt, so really have no choice but to buy more wigs.  Cancer has not diminished my love of shopping!

Afsan working her magic

Buying a wig is one thing.  Wearing it correctly is a different story.  Over to Afsan, to get the technique right.  There are 3 points you have to focus on:  the centre of your forehead, and the two points beside the top of your two ears.  If you get these 3 points right, you know that your wig is exactly where it should be on your head; slightly off  and it doesn’t quite work.   You also need to make sure that the wig sits behind your ears and not on it as I found out painfully when I ended up with real sore ears.  Then you need to ensure that your wig is secure at the back of your head – and there are clips to help you do this – so that if you are a hugger like I am, your wig does not fall off!  I also found out that you can straighten and curl your wig, wash it, cut it (what?) and put hairspray on it.  

 I still find it difficult to comb the wigs as you have to do it on a mannequin, as opposed to on your head — which is a bit unnatural (and I am not a hairdresser).  But I am slowly getting a bit more comfortable.  

The Bohemian Look

To take it one step further, I spoke to a designer friend of mine, Justine.  I lamented to her that I have yet to find a hat that likes me.  She agreed vehemently and told me to give up the quest.  She suggested I go with a bohemian look and got me funky scarves and headgear that she sourced from Korea.  I am sharing these with other people who have cancer and they too are adopting the bohemian look. 

Thank you to so many of you who encouraged me to explore and experiment with wigs and other head gear.  Wigs and head gears give you a chance to play, reinvent yourself and have fun at the same time.  As Shakespeare said, “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players…”, and with these wigs, I have many opportunities to play! 

44 Comments

  • Anonymous , April 29, 2012

    tommorrow is a different day,
    every day is different so heck it out ,it will be different and better each day…..
    soon all the days will be memories of past …..

    • Premji Family , April 30, 2012

      You are so right. Everyday is a different day. I hope to come to a place where all the days will be memories of past………….Munira

  • Anonymous , April 28, 2012

    I thought about you during my holdiays with my mother and prayed for you even outside TORONTO

    KEEP GOING !!!!

    Sometimes we just have to keep moving with the flow …..

    • Premji Family , April 30, 2012

      Thanks for the encouragement and for reminding me to go with the flow. Much easier to go with the flow, than against…..Munira

  • Anonymous , April 27, 2012

    Munira, this is Patti – so happy to read about your wig experience, and glad you made it through Monday’s chemo and Tuesday’s transfusion. I like the wig/beret combination you have in the picture – it looks just like your own hair – amazing! The beret definitely works – as a person who also looks terrible in hats, I suggest you keep the beret – that is a good look for you!

    • Premji Family , April 27, 2012

      Thanks Patti. I now have a black and a red beret. You can never have too many berets!

  • Saira Nasirdin , April 27, 2012

    Mukhiani Ma,

    You look gorgeous! i am originally from Nairobi Kenya, located in seattle wa! moved here in 2000. Once again you are beautiful! mashallah.

    • Premji Family , April 27, 2012

      We live in such a virtual world, don’t we? Munira

      • Saira Nasirdin , April 27, 2012

        Yes we do! take care and enjoy your weekend.

  • Anonymous , April 27, 2012

    Dearest Mukhianima,
    Always a pleasure to read your blog! You are such a happy person! Stay that way.
    Sending you special prayers always, would love to come by for a visit. Let me know when please!

    Love Always,

    Rashida

    • Premji Family , April 27, 2012

      Thanks again for your support. Munira

  • mylegacytoyou , April 27, 2012

    Scarves are great… try without Munira. In summer you are sure to appreciate it. When I went bald (by choice, twice) I didn’t even bother with a scarf. My head felt so light and I used to enjoy those warm summer days more.

    Ok. So it takes mastery to wear a wig and to wear it with flair!
    If you take the stance of “No Matha Kuti” and not wear a wig, a hat, or a scarf, and instead embrace your shaved look; let’s look at the pros and cons of it.

    Pros:
    More savings on hair products and head accessories. You are richer than you think!
    Less stress and time savings, not having to set your hair daily in that perfect style you like!
    You never have to complain about a bad hair day ever again!
    You’ll be the first to feel the wrath of the scorching sun-rays, raindrops, and snowflakes! (Don’t need no weather girl no more.)
    Can ride in “My Car” with the roof off, windows rolled down, gangster music blasting, and looking elegant and hip hop at the same time.
    Your facial features have made a big come back! (Your eyes look prettier. Your lips look fuller. Your cheekbones look higher. Your nose look graceful-ler…
    Your funky earrings make more of a stunning statement!
    Need I go on? The list goes on…

    Cons:
    No hair to pull when you get angry! Oh, but that’s a once in a blue moon for you.
    It gets a bit cold… Ah, but the warm weather is on its way!
    Not everyone’s head is shaped or meant to carry bald gracefully. Yes, true but yours is!

    You will carry any look with grace Munira…with your endorsement; shaved head is so “in!

    Deva

    • Premji Family , April 27, 2012

      Mylegacytoyou – – You are way too smart for me. Great analysis both ways! Munira

  • Parin Sunderji , April 27, 2012

    I just love your sense of adventure. Way to go!! You are in our prayers EVERYDAY.

    • Premji Family , April 27, 2012

      Thank you . YOur prayers are keeping me strong. Munira

  • Lynda Cavanagh , April 26, 2012

    Munira,
    Before we know it, you have a training course organized for women who want to purchase wigs. What a great story that only you could tell. Hang in there and know that you are in our prayers and thoughts.
    Lynda and Dave

    • Premji Family , April 26, 2012

      Thanks Lynda Cavnagh – – I am just writing a blog about the 10 darnest things people have told me after they found out I have cancer. If it were not so sad, it would be very funny. I tell you, cancer is so educatonal! Thank you for your beautiful cards and I loved the photo of you with ’em kids! Munira

      • mylegacytoyou , April 27, 2012

        I would love to read it! Your humor and the story-telling flair will make it a master piece of writing… Can’t wait to read it.

        Deva

      • Premji Family , April 27, 2012

        ok I will get right on it!

  • Julie , April 26, 2012

    Try the purple one!!!

    • Premji Family , April 26, 2012

      Ok Julie — You asked for this! Your innocent comment reminded me of a purple song I used to sing to the kids. Here are some of the words. Do you know it?

      “Well I saw the thing comin’ out of the sky
      It had the one long horn, one big eye
      I commenced to shakin’ and I said “ooh-eee”
      It looks like a purple eater to me

      It was a one-eyed, one-horned, flyin’ purple people eater
      (One-eyed, one-horned, flyin’ purple people eater)
      A one-eyed, one-horned, flyin’ purple people eater
      Sure looks strange to me

      • Julie , April 26, 2012

        Yes I know it! You are so amazing to share your journey and to reply to all these comments. It’s great to stay connected to you through this. Miss you xoxoxo xoxo xoxoxo

      • Premji Family , April 26, 2012

        Miss you more, my get up and go Julie!

  • Saira Nasirdin , April 26, 2012

    You are a beautiful human being inside/out! very rare to see people like you. I feel very privileged to have met some one like even though if it is just on line. I will look you up the next time i come to Toronto I have lots of family there.

    • Premji Family , April 26, 2012

      I will look forward to meeting you too Saira. Where are you located out of curiosity? Munira

  • Dilshad Nathoo , April 26, 2012

    Munira Mukhiani,
    I was so looking forward to seeing a picture of you in the blonde wig!!!! I am enjoying the blogs but would love to see more pics of you and the family!!!
    Special love and prayers to you and the fam.
    Would love to see you soon when you’re feeling a bit better and have a bit of energy for a visit!

    D

    • Premji Family , April 26, 2012

      Ok i promise to post some pictures tomorrow – you’re right – a picture speaks a thousand words! Trying to attach them but am having difficulty for some reason. Munira

      • mylegacytoyou , April 27, 2012

        Yes, definitely more pictures of you and your family Munira… Thanks for sharing your life with us.

  • mylegacytoyou , April 26, 2012

    Last year I bought a wig for my aunt, firmly ignoring the fact that she asked for a simple style with no curls, highlights, or bangs. The one that I picked, looked so good on me that I wanted to keep it. Knowing that if I ever need to look different, I can look better felt great! So I can imagine you trying on many new looks, not wanting to settle for just one or two. Your attitude towards life is just too infectious Munira… one of the reasons that I idolize you.

    Love always, Deva

    • Premji Family , April 26, 2012

      Can’t wait to show you the new looks Deva. Honestly, sometimes i find it easier to just don a scarf and putter about. But embracing the journey is about learning about wigs and making that part of my repertoire. So I will make the effort to dress up! Munira

  • Karima Mulji , April 26, 2012

    Dearest Munira Mukhiani
    Glad you are home after your chemo. I am sure you look gorgeous in all 4 wigs, as always, the best dressed in JK. Always thinking about you and praying for your good health.
    Big hug……..

    • Premji Family , April 26, 2012

      3 wigs at the moment. Pershaps 6 by tomorrow!
      This week was tough with chemo on monday and a blood trasnfusion on tuesday. So i am resting today and getting caught up on emails, etc. Thanks for the big hug. Munira

  • Anonymous , April 26, 2012

    Very nice!! Glad to seee your spirits are up
    Keep it up!! Gulshy Atlanta

    • Premji Family , April 26, 2012

      Hello Gulshy from Atlanta! Feeling good today. Munira

  • Saira Nasirdin , April 26, 2012

    Mukhiani Ma,

    You are something out of this world!! where do you get all the courage and positivity.! Mashallah
    May you all remain this way.

    • Premji Family , April 26, 2012

      Nice hearing from you Saira. Today is a good day. Munira

  • Zara Kanji-Aquino , April 26, 2012

    Muni, yes playing is fun. I have a pink scarf on today as the wig was making me hot and itchy yesterday :). Please post some pictures :).

    Love you sooooooooooooooooooooooooo much. There with you in heart and spirit.

    Zara

    • Premji Family , April 26, 2012

      I know about itchy. I wear this blue, hoser cap to sleep because I can’t handle the itching when my head hits the pillow. Ouch! Ok I will post pictures tomorrow. Love yo so much Zara

  • Naseem Ismail , April 26, 2012

    Mukhiani Munira, that is such an entertaining piece! Learning so much from you – taking everything in your stride and making the most of it. Our prayers are with you.

    • Premji Family , April 26, 2012

      I am finding the whole wig thing quite entertaining. I had been resisting it for a while but will start wearing them more now. Munira

  • Isabelle , April 26, 2012

    Happy to see that cancer has not taken away your ability to bargain! I often talk about what great deal you bargain for us with Harvard… 🙂

    I wore the scarf you gave me yesterday… I got a lot of good compliment.. Another reason to talk about you….
    I miss you.. Take care…

    • Premji Family , April 26, 2012

      Bonjour Isa! Call me tomorrow. I would love to get caught up on everything.

  • BJ , April 26, 2012

    Oh Munira, your sense of play makes me so happy. I can just imagine you kindly, playfully and firmly ignoring the “4-wig limit” and finding your look(s). I bet you look gorgeous in each. xoBJ

    • Premji Family , April 26, 2012

      Love hearing from you BJ. Like you, I like play! Munira

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