That's right. Locks of Love has given people the impression that they are a charity that donates human hair wigs to children who have lost their hair due to cancer treatments, and they are certainly benefitting by allowing people to continue to believe this. Lets examine this statement one piece at a time.
Myth: the wigs are donated
The recipients pay for the wig. The cost is somewhat based on family income, but there is a cost involved.
Half-truth: the wigs are for children
Human hair wigs can be itchy and are incredibly hard to care for. Synthetic wigs are better suited for children. Or a scarf or hat.
Myth: the wigs are for cancer patients
Many people with hair loss due to cancer will be denied assistance. The primary target of Locks of Love is people who have permanent hair loss due to alopecia. Hair loss due to cancer treatments is considered temporary. The Locks of Love website itself says that people with temporary hair loss are given synthetic wigs.
Myth: Hair donations are needed
Locks of Love receives over 104,000 hair donations every year, but has created only 1,000 wigs since 1997. Even at 10 donations per wig, that's a lot of hair unaccounted for.
Half-truth: Locks of Love is a charity
While classifed as a charitable organization by the federal government, they have failed to meet the standards for charitable accountability. Locks of Love has been shady with their books, not allowing the Better Business Bureau to see how exactly they manage to bring in over $350,000 via donations and produce 113 human-hair and 39 synthetic wigs in one year. More than a third of that income came from selling donated hair.
The Locks of Love organization never officially says that they give free wigs to pediatric cancer patients, but they allow such notions to spread unhindered. They also allow people to believe that hair donations are still needed, when most of the hair will end up sold or in the trash. Look at how many people in my previous journal entry erroneously believe that they can donate hair to cancer patients via Locks of Love. While failure to dispell misconceptions is neither evil nor a crime, it is dishonest and reprehensible.
Children with cancer do not benefit from you chopping off your hair. Even if you believe that Locks of Love serves people with alopecia well, they will almost certainly not use your hair in a wig. If you want to help people with cancer, donate money to a more reputable organization, or sell your hair yourself and give the proceeds to a cancer research fund.