So how long does your hair have to be to donate? Answering that question is the main focus of this article.

Donating your hair to a great cause is one of the simplest and most cost-effective ways to donate to charity. The hair that is donated is often made into wigs for cancer patients who lost their hair from chemotherapy. Both men and women, boys and girls, can get in on the great cause, but there are requirements that need to be met before you can donate your hair. Keep reading to learn about how to promote hair growth, what length and condition requirements need to be met to donate, and what you can do with your hairstyle afterward!

In This Article

  • How Long Does Your Hair Have to Be to Donate?

  • Tips to Make Your Hair Grow Faster

  • Organizations That Accept Hair Donations

    • Minimum Length Requirement
    • Is Dyed Hair Accepted?
    • Is Bleached/Highlighted Hair Accepted?
    • Is Gray Hair Accepted?
    • Additional Information
    • Shipping Information
  • After the Cut: Short Hairstyles to Consider

How Long Does Your Hair Have to Be to Donate?

How long does hair have to be to donate? The minimum length to donate hair is eight inches. That’s the least amount a place will consider. Though some organizations require 10 or 12 inches. For reference, the average human grows six inches of hair per year. This means you most likely can only donate once per year.

Tips to Make Your Hair Grow Faster

Now that you know the minimum length to donate hair, the biggest challenge now is being patient enough to let the hair you have left grow to a considerable length. While everyone’s hair grows at different rates, the average person’s hair grows approximately half of an inch per month, or six inches per year. Of course, certain factors, such as stress, illness, or diet, can affect your hair growth, but there are some things you can do to try to keep your hair healthy, thus speeding up the growing process.

  • Condition your hair regularly. Every time you get your hair wet, whether in the shower or the pool, you need to apply a conditioner. A great-quality conditioner will make your hair shiny and strong.
  • Skip the shampoo once in a while. Shampoo strips away dirt and oil, including the ones that keep your hair healthy and strong. If you simply can’t skip the shampoo altogether, just use it on your scalp and allow it to slide down your hair as you wash it out.
  • Use an oil or other deep treatment on a weekly basis. If you’ve been growing out your hair for some time, the ends of your hair are older than the hair near your scalp, and therefore, they need more moisture and attention. Applying an oil or deep conditioner to the ends of your hair once per week will help keep them as healthy and shiny as your roots.
  • Amp up your vitamin intake. Vitamins like vitamin A, B, C, D, and E as well as minerals like iron and zinc are said to promote hair growth. Of course, you don’t need to go to your local drugstore to find them. These are naturally occurring vitamins and minerals found in everyday foods, but if you feel you aren’t getting an adequate amount, a high-quality multivitamin can provide your body with the nutrients it needs to grow long, healthy hair.
  • Regularly trim your hair. Over time, ends can become damaged and brittle, which can work their way up the hair strand. Trimming your hair won’t necessarily make your hair grow longer, but it will keep it healthy longer.

For more tips on how to help your hair grow longer more quickly, watch this video; you’ll learn about caring for your hair and for your body so both can be as healthy as possible.

Organizations That Accept Hair Donations

1. Children with Hair Loss

  • Minimum Length Requirement: Eight inches
  • Is Dyed Hair Accepted? Yes, as long as hair is in good condition
  • Is Bleached/Highlighted Hair Accepted?: Yes, as long as hair is in good condition
  • Is Gray Hair Accepted?: Yes
  • Additional Information:
    • Hair must be clean and dry.
    • Place an elastic band on each side of the ponytail.
  • Learn more about Children with Hair Loss donation requirements here.
  • Shipping Information: Fill out the mailing form, place your donations in a re-sealable bag, and send it to:

Children with Hair Loss
12776 Dixie Hwy.
S. Rockwood, MI 48179

2. Hair We Share

  • Minimum Length Requirement: Eight inches
  • Is Dyed Hair Accepted? No
  • Is Bleached/Highlighted Hair Accepted?: No
  • Is Gray Hair Accepted?: Not specified
  • Additional Information:
    • Hair must be clean and dry.
    • Put the hair in multiple ponytails before cutting.
    • Cut one inch above the rubber band.
  • Learn more about Hair We Share donation requirements here.
  • Shipping Information: Seal the hair in a re-sealable bag, and send your donation to:

Hair We Share
4 Expressway Plaza Suite LL14
Roslyn Heights, NY 11577

3. Pantene Beautiful Lengths

  • Minimum Length Requirement: Eight inches
  • Is Dyed Hair Accepted? No
  • Is Bleached/Highlighted Hair Accepted?: No
  • Is Gray Hair Accepted?: Yes, 5% gray hair is acceptable. (Most stylists can tell you this percentage.)
  • Additional Information:
    • Hair must be clean and dry. View detailed instructions for cutting your hair here.
    • Ensure that the ponytail is completely dry before sending.
  • Learn more about Pantene Beautiful Lengths donation requirements here.
  • Shipping Information: Place the pony tail in a re-sealable bag and then in a padded or plastic envelope, and send your donation to:

Pantene Beautiful Lengths
Attn: 192-123
806 SE 18th Ave.
Grand Rapids, MN 55744

4. Locks of Love

  • Minimum Length Requirement: 10 inches. Curly hair can be pulled straight to meet the minimum.
  • Is Dyed Hair Accepted? Yes. Locks of Love also accepts permed hair.
  • Is Bleached/Highlighted Hair Accepted?: No
  • Is Gray Hair Accepted? Yes, Locks of Love accepts gray hair, which is sold to offset wig-manufacturing costs.
  • Additional Information:
    • Hair must be clean and dry.
    • Layered hair is accepted if the longest layer is 10 inches or longer. All layered hair must be separated into multiple ponytails.
    • Hair that has touched the floor is not acceptable.
    • If you are shaving your head, Locks of Love asks that you section your hair into multiple ponytails and cut them off before shaving.
    • Hair that was cut years ago is acceptable if it was stored in a ponytail or braid.
    • Locks of Love cannot accept dreadlocks, wigs, falls, extensions, or synthetic hair.
  • Learn more about Locks of Love donation requirements here.
  • Shipping Information: To donate, fill out the mailing form, and send your donation to:

Locks of Love
234 Southern Boulevard
West Palm Beach, FL 33405

5. Wigs 4 Kids of Michigan

  • Minimum Length Requirement: 10 inches. Curly hair can be pulled straight to meet the minimum.
  • Is Dyed Hair Accepted? No
  • Is Bleached/Highlighted Hair Accepted?: No
  • Is Gray Hair Accepted?: Yes, 10% gray hair is acceptable. (Most stylists can tell you this percentage.)
  • Additional Information:
    • Hair must be clean and dry.
    • Layered hair is accepted. All layered hair should be separated into multiple ponytails.
    • Wigs 4 Kids accepts hair from people of all ages all around the world.
    • Wigs 4 Kids cannot accept hair that was cut years ago or swept off the floor.
    • New human or synthetic wigs or extensions are not acceptable.
  • Learn more about Wigs 4 Kids donation requirements here.
  • Shipping Information: Fill out the mailing form, and send your donations to:

Wigs 4 Kids
30126 Harper Ave.
St. Clair Shores, MI 48082

6. Wigs for Kids

  • Minimum Length Requirement: 12 inches. Curly hair can be pulled straight to meet the minimum.
  • Is Dyed Hair Accepted? No, the only exception is temporary coloring that washes out. All temporary coloring must be washed out prior to cutting.
  • Is Bleached/Highlighted Hair Accepted?: No
  • Is Gray Hair Accepted?: Yes.
  • Additional Information:
    • Hair must be clean and dry.
    • Tying your hair into four to six sections will result in a larger donation. By putting all of your hair into one ponytail to cut it, you can lose up to four inches.
    • Make sure the hair is tightly secured using multiple rubber bands down the entire length of hair. Shipping tends to loosen up the rubber bands, and any hair that comes loose is unusable.
  • Learn more about Wigs for Kids donation requirements here.
  • Shipping Information: Wrap all the ponytails in one piece of tissue paper, seal them in a re-sealable bag, put your donation in a small box or sealed envelope, and send it to Wigs for Kids:

Hair Donations
24231 Center Ridge Road
Westlake, Ohio 44145

After the Cut: Short Hairstyles to Consider

Now that you’ve donated six, eight, or more inches of hair, it’s time to think about yourself for a little bit.

One of the most exciting things about donating your hair, aside from helping someone in need, of course, is experimenting with your existing hair. Depending on how long your hair was and at what length you cut it determines what you do with it. For example, if your hair was 24 inches long, and you only donated 12 inches, you still have a considerable amount of hair and many hairstyles from which to choose.

You could leave it at the current length, add some layers, or trim it to a shorter length. However, most hair donors only grow out their hair to the required length, leaving them with short hair. For hair that falls halfway between your shoulders and ears, you might want to consider a bob. A bob can be cut in many different styles such as an asymmetrical bob, a bob with layers, or an A-line bob. You could also add some fun embellishments to your bob like a partial shave or thick, bold bangs.

If you’re not a fan of the bob or have just-below-ear-length hair, you might want to consider a pixie cut, which is super short on the sides and in the back and slightly longer on top. Some people like a tousled look while other like the spiked look. Like the bob, pixie cuts are extremely versatile and can be styled many different ways.

In Summary

So how long does your hair have to be to donate? At many places, you can donate as little as eight inches of hair — although minimum length requirements vary.

Growing out your hair for donation is a long and, sometimes, emotional process. However, it’s a great way to give back and is something that anyone can do. Another great thing about donating your hair is that you can make a huge impact on someone’s life without having to pull out your checkbook. Hopefully, we’ve provided you with everything you need to get ready to donate, including useful tips for growing out your hair, a plethora of places that will gladly accept your donation, and some fun hairstyles that you can try out after you make the cut, so you are fully prepared to make the most of your wonderful, selfless donation.