Breast Cancer Clothing: Bras, Scarves, Accessories, and More
Women with breast cancer today have a mind-boggling array of options, from wigs and scarves to specialty bras and swimsuits.
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In addition to wigs, you can also buy several styles of "hat hair."
Those are hairpieces that don't cover the whole scalp, but are designed to be
worn under a hat, giving you bangs or a ponytail to frame your face. "These
too have become a lot more sophisticated," says Kelly. "The hair may be
on a headband, so you can switch it with different hats. We're strongly focused
on having the patient not look like a cancer patient, so these styles make more
of a fashion statement."
Many women end up wearing their wigs out in public, but relaxing in a hat or
scarf (or no head covering at all) at home. "Hats can be a big
accessory," says McLeod. "You can wear formal, dressy, velvet ones with
pins, or wear a baseball cap all day, all summer long. We have everything from
solid turbans to ready-wear caps with a short bandanna attached." Most hats
for women undergoing chemotherapy are soft, to be gentle on sensitive bare
skin, and have drawstrings inside to resize and accommodate wearing with or
without a wig.
"I lived in my scarves," says Rubien, a four-year breast cancer
survivor herself. There are long scarves you can wrap up, standard squares you
can tie in a triangle, and even ready-mades that pop on your head and adjust
with a cord. Worried that your scarf will slide off your bald head? Most cancer
boutiques sell light "sleep caps" or padded "scarf filler" caps
that keep even slippery silk scarves in place.
Breast Cancer Awareness Accessories
And of course, no guide to breast cancer accessories would be complete
without a look at awareness accessories. Today, you can literally buy almost
anything with the famous pink ribbon on it, from hats and socks to bookmarks,
dog collars, and eyeglass cases. But the perennial favorites, says Kelly, are
pink ribbon lapel pins and silicone bracelets a la Lance Armstrong, along with
baseball caps and sweatshirts. "I do believe that women who've had breast
cancer are on a mission for awareness, and rightfully so. And this can be their
way of advertising it."