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Featherston woman is hair hero

Renee Smith with her new short style after chopping off her hair for the Cancer Society. PHOTO/ARTHUR HAWKES

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Featherston woman Renee Smith has donated 30cm of her hair to the Cancer Society, which will go towards a wig for someone undergoing treatment.

“I just wanted to give back, because someone had done it for my mum, when she was receiving her treatment,” Smith said.

“My mum had treatment for breast cancer, about nine years ago, but she’s been cleared and out of remission for a little while now.”

Renee Smith’s 30cm of donated locks will go towards a wig for a cancer patient. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

Smith said that donated hair had to be free from treatment and artificial colouring, with 25cm the minimum length.

Vivo Hair Salon in Masterton was able to package and send off the hair to the Cancer Society for wig making purposes.

Smith was also keen to highlight the ‘Look Good Feel Better’ programme run by the Cancer Society, where cancer patients meet up and have some food, conversation and a full makeover.

The service lasts around 2½ hours, and is run by beauty-savvy volunteers.

Smith said she went to one of these with her mum when she was undergoing treatment.

“A group of ladies get together and they talk about skincare, and they give them a bit of make-up. That was actually how mum got her wig.”

Shiree Adie, Smith’s mum, said that the ‘Look Good Feel Better’ programme made her feel “like a million dollars”.

“There were quite a few of us that day that got wigs,” Adie said.

“My journey was quite a hard journey because I was misdiagnosed, so when I was finally diagnosed correctly it was a very aggressive cancer.”

Adie opted to shave her head with her family, rather than to lose it in clumps in the shower. She recalled each family member, Smith included, shaved a part of her head together at home.

“I felt that would have been so much harder … This way it wasn’t just me on the journey.”

The Cancer Society put Adie down for the ‘Look Good Feel Better’ programme, and she was allowed to take one family member – “so I took Renee”.

“You fill out a form and they match your skin up with make-up, and they give you a full makeover and then you can have a wig, so that’s how I got my wig.

“When I walked out I felt a million dollars – I didn’t have to wear a scarf, and I had some make-up on – it just made me feel like a human.”

After Adie’s ‘Look Good Feel Better’ session, the attendees were allowed to keep all the make-up, along with the wig – with all the items matched to their personal style and skin tone.

“Renee’s travelled the road with me – and she’s looked after me.

“She’s been a rock, my whole family has. She’s got an amazing heart, that girl. I’m so proud of her.”

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