For a model, looks are literally everything. Often perceived as being flawless, they have a lot of pressure placed upon them to continuously look their best. However, one Australian model has proved that looks can be deceiving, embracing alopecia and showing that you can be beautiful even without hair.
After hiding her struggle with alopecia for years, Lisa Kitchen has decided to reveal all in a touching and brave video.
Kitchen reveals alopecia led to depression and anorexia
The reason the Perth based model has decided to bare all is to highlight awareness of how devastating the condition can be. She was diagnosed at just age 14. Her hair started to fall out right before she was due to start high school.
For years, Kitchen struggled with the diagnosis. Initially she thought it was caused by the stress of starting school. So it was a cruel blow to be diagnosed shortly afterwards. She began to wear a headband to hide her receding hairline from school friends.
After visiting four specialists, alopecia areata was diagnosed. She was told that although the hair follicles remained, it was highly unlikely her hair would regrow. She also went on to lose her eyelashes and eyebrows. The condition became so severe she went on to be diagnosed with anorexia and struggled with mental health issues such as depression.
She decided to take charge of the situation, embracing alopecia and investing in a wig after rumours started to circulate that she was suffering from cancer. The wig gave her a lot more confidence, but it didn’t eliminate her eating problems. It became so severe, she ended up battling for her life in hospital. It was then that she developed a new sense of purpose after miraculously achieving a 100% recovery.
Now, six years on from her initial diagnosis, Kitchen is embracing alopecia. She released the video to help other young sufferers realise they aren’t alone and they are still beautiful.
Her message is clear: “embrace what is beautiful about you”. See your differences as a positive thing, rather than battling to change or deny them.
Alopecia areata can be devastating for a young woman. However, as Kitchen proves, it can and does get better and you don’t have to hide the condition to feel beautiful!