Beauty

Ricki Lake has shaved all her hair off for a very relatable reason

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Lucy Partington
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The former chat show host uploaded a candid caption to Instagram explaining the reason why she decided to shave her head.

Ricki Lake, the OG of chat show hosts, who more recently made an appearance on last year’s The X Factor: Celebrity, has started her new year by shaving all of her hair off.

Taking to Instagram and Facebook to share her news, Lake posted a candid picture of herself alongside a heartbreaking caption that explained the reasons behind her very brave decision.

“Liberated and Free, Me.” She began. “First things first, I am not sick. (THANK GOD.) I am not having a mid-life crisis. nor am I having a mental breakdown, though I have been suffering. Suffering mostly in silence off and on for almost 30 years. AND I am finally ready to share my secret.”

The caption continued, “I have been struggling with hair loss for most of my adult life. It has been debilitating, embarrassing, painful, scary, depressing, lonely, all the things. There have been a few times where I have even felt suicidal over it. 

“Almost no one in my life knew the level of deep pain and trauma I was experiencing. Not even my therapist/s over the years knew my truth. I know that by sharing my truth, I will be striking a chord with so so many women and men. I am not alone in this and my goal is to help others while at the same time unshackle myself from this quiet hell I have been living in.” [sic]

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Lake isn’t alone in suffering with hair loss or thinning though. According to Viviscal, 41% of women nationally are experiencing, or have previously experienced it in some form.

The reasons behind hair loss are extensive and there are multiple things that can cause it, but Lake puts hers down to “yo-yo dieting, hormonal birth control, radical weight fluctuations over the years, [my] pregnancies, genetics, stress, and hair dyes and extensions.” She also says that while she played Tracy Turnblad in the original 1988 version of Hairspray, her healthy virgin hair was “triple-processed and teased” every two weeks throughout filming.

Despite trying a number of treatments, including steroids and supplements, Lake says nothing worked – which is what led her to shave all her hair off. It’s no secret that hair acts as a safety blanket for the majority of women, so it was never going to be an easy decision to make. 

Ending the heartfelt caption, Lake wrote: “I will on occasion choose to wear hair, but now it is for fun, not because I am hiding anything. I am so done with hiding.”

Naturally, she looks incredible with and without a wig. We wholeheartedly commend her decision and applaud her raw honesty – here’s hoping this revelation not only helps other women who may be in similar situations but also makes people realise hair loss is normal and not something to be embarrassed about.

Hopefully this post is setting bar for the type of honesty and transparency that we’ll be seeing more of in 2020.

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Main image: Getty

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Lucy Partington

Lucy Partington is Stylist’s beauty editor. She’s obsessed with all things skincare, collecting eyeshadow palettes that she’ll probably never use, and is constantly on the hunt for the ultimate glowy foundation.

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