Telephone Support Line 0800 092 7640

Available Monday to Friday 9.00am-5.00pm

Telephone Support Line 0800 092 7640

Available Monday to Friday 9.00am-5.00pm

Telephone Support Line 0800 092 7640

Available Monday to Friday 9.00am-5.00pm

You may wish to fundraise yourself, with family and friends or within your local group. Whatever the idea, be it large or small, we know you will have a great time raising vital funds for Big C.

Did you know we have 12 charity shops across Norfolk including a dedicated Craft Supplies Shop, Furniture Emporium, Bridal and a high-end fashion Boutique? We are always looking for high quality donations.


We are always looking for volunteers including in our Support Centres, shops and at our Fundraising events. Volunteering is a great way to spend some free time, meet new people, and gain experience.

Help us build a new Cancer Support Centre in Norwich. Support our vision to bring greater cancer care nearer to home. Donate now.

Hair loss advice and support

Hair loss advice and support

Preparing for hair loss during the COVID-19 pandemic

By Dr Melanie Pascale

Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 outbreak our Centres are temporarily closed.

Alongside this, our wig fitter is currently unable to provide the wig fitting service, whilst hairdressing salons and wig making salons are temporally closed too.

This blog will explain what hair loss is and how it is caused by chemotherapy, and ways to prepare for this in our current situation.

What is hair loss and what causes it?

Some cancer treatments can cause your hair to fall out or can cause hair thinning. 

Different types of chemotherapy drugs have varying side effects, while radiotherapy causes hair loss only in the area where treatment is focused.

Hair loss from chemotherapy occurs because chemotherapy is designed to target rapidly dividing cells, such as cancer cells. Consequently it also targets rapidly dividing healthy cells such as hair follicles, the structures in the skin filled with tiny blood vessels that make hair and are some of the fastest-growing cells in the body.

Hair loss from cancer treatment can affect people in different ways. Your consultant and Cancer Nurse Specialist will explain what side effects to expect from the treatment you have been prescribed.

Preparing for hair loss

If your consultant has prescribed a chemotherapy drug that is known to cause hair loss, it may be beneficial to you to prepare yourself for hair loss before treatment begins as early preparation can help you cope when your hair begins to fall out.

Some ways to prepare for hair loss include:

  • Buy a wig or an alternative to a wig
  • Go online hat and scarf shopping
  • Buy sunscreen
  • Join a Big C support group
  • Call our free helpline for further information and support

Things to remember

  • Do not use heat products, hair dryers and straighteners etc. as this can quicken the rate of the hair loss.
  • It’s recommended that when patients start to lose their hair, that they wear a cotton or bamboo night cap. It can feel quite distressing when you wake to find a lot of hair on the pillow, plus the material is also cooling.

The video below by Cancer Research UK provides information about different types of headwear available for those effected by hair loss.

Other hair loss resources

Suburban Turban

Suburban Turban provides chemotherapy hats and stylish cancer hats all handmade to order in the UK.

Bold Beanies

Bold Beanies offer a range of beanie hats, headscarves and wraps for men, women, teens and kids. They are available in liberty prints, plain colours, or you can choose a design of your own choice. There are also gifts and accessories for people with hair loss.

Heads High

Heads High sell a range of hair replacement systems, an alternative to wigs. The hair replacement is designed to be worn with a hat or scarf. The system includes a soft stretchy cotton liner on the top of the head with human hair or heat resistant hair which is attached to the outside of the cap liner, so nothing but soft cotton sits against the scalp.

Wigs are available online for adults and children.

Bohemia Fashions

Bohemia Fashions specialises in head wear for hair loss and offers an online shop for comfortable head scarves, hats, turbans and bandanas for adults and children.

Chemo Headwear

Chemo Headwear provide a range of hats, turbans and ready tied headscarves. They are all hand made in the UK and available in small, medium and large sizes. You can order online or over the phone.

Direct Wigs

Direct Wigs have a large selection of manmade and human hair wigs. The company is online and mail order only.

Hats 4 Heads

Hats 4 Heads supply a wide range of soft, comfortable hats, sleep hats, scarves, bandanas, turbans, buff/stretchy tubes and other head coverings for those experiencing hair loss. Free brochures and telephone ordering available for those without internet access.


Hairware have a large selection of manmade and human hair wigs and accessories such as hair bands.


Annabandana provide a selection of headwear you can order online or over the phone.

Wig Bank

There is a network of wig banks around the UK that offer new and donated wigs for sale and hire. People donate wigs they no longer need. The wigs are washed, conditioned and sold for between £10 and £30.

Wigtopia (F and B Trading)

Wigtopia is an online retailer of wigs and hair pieces.


Buffwear sells a wide range of Buffs, also know as stretchy tubes.

At Big C, we understand that cancer may have a detrimental effect on a person’s self-image, and hair loss and thinning due to cancer treatment can be upsetting and play a significant role in low self-esteem.

Big C is here if you need support. Our Cancer Specialist Nurses and Officers can provide advice and support around hair loss and other changes to your appearance caused by a cancer diagnosis.

Call us at 0800 092 7640 (free to call, Monday to Friday 9am-5pm) if you need support.

Dr Melanie Pascale is the Director of Charitable Operations at Big C. 

Link to resources provided by Cancer Research UK.

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Find out how Big C can support you and your family if you’ve been affected by cancer.

We can help to improve your quality of life, physical health, and mental wellbeing.

Some people take to the skies, run, jump, walk, swim and cycle whilst others make tea, bake cakes or shave heads.

What will you do to make a difference?

Two men from Norfolk who found themselves with cancer and having to travel for treatment, vowed local people would have access to the best treatment and support … and in 1980 the Big C Appeal was formed.