Hair is a significant part of beauty standards, and losing it can be traumatic for anyone. Neehar Sachdeva, a resident of the US, was diagnosed with alopecia — a condition of losing hair from different parts of the body when she was just six months old.
Neehar wore a wig whenever she went out, even while attending school, as her family wanted to keep her condition a secret. She was severely bullied for her looks.
“The fact that we belonged to South Asian culture played a huge part in my family being so scared and secretive. At no fault to my parents, because that was just how they were raised,” she said to Browngirl Magazine.
Even though she spent years hiding the condition, Neehar decided to shave her head and celebrate it. Being a content creator, this act won her great respect and support. “My bullies became my biggest cheerleaders,” she says.
Last year, she collaborated with Brown Girl Magazine in the #TheBaldBrownBride campaign to normalise a bald look for brides.
She wrote in an Instagram post, “Accepting myself for who I am and my situation for what it is was the first step I needed to take to truly live my life the way I wanted to, freely and authentically.”
Neehar also shared that by shaving her head and appearing in front of the camera as a bride, she understood self-love better. Today, she feels beautiful and confident and hopes that she will be able to inspire other women and break the stereotypical beauty standards.
Watch Neehar’s tale here:
(Edited by Pranita Bhat)