Bald’R

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Skylar was an incredibly beautiful girl.  At 17 she had already worked as a model for 6 years, and had a contract with one of the biggest modeling firms as soon as she finished her senior year of high school. Her mother and stepfather both tried to pressure her into going to college before going all in with her modelling career, but Skylar didn’t want anything delaying her ride to stardom.

It was just after Christmas break that she was told that her half sister, Charlotte had cancer.  As devastating as the news was for the family, Skylar was never close with her 2 half sisters, and even though she felt sorry for her and her parents, Skylar was just to wrapped up in her career to let the news bring her down.

As Charlotte started her radiation treatments, besides feeling sick for a few days after, the biggest side effect was losing her hair.  While Skykar had long, sandy blonde hair, she always mocked Charlotte’s hair, which was a medium brown color, just to her shoulders, and was just curly enough to always look unkept.

It was about a week into her treatments that Skylar’s mom and stepfather made the announcement that in support of Charlotte they were all going to shave their heads.  This not only included her parents, but her sisters and also all 8 of their cousins and dozens of girls from her school as well.

The day of the event came and there were 4 hair stylists shaving heads as everyone cheered them on.  The local news had sent a videographer and reporter to cover the event which while it brought tears to a lot of eyes, it became noticed for another reason.  In the back of the room Skylar could be seen arguing with her mother as she refused to have her head shaved…”Mom, you can’t make me do this.  It won’t make any difference whether I shave my head, or not, and I have my career to worry about.”  When the event had ended Skylar sat by herself, her hair still intact.

It was just a few days later, after the video of her had hit social media that Skylar got a call from the modeling agency she was supposed to start working for as soon as her school year ended.  The woman on the phone told her that her lack of support for her sister was a bad look for the agency.  The woman basically went on to tell Skylar that her contract would have to be voided if she didn’t agree on a resolution that made her a viable model again.  Confused at first, eventually a light went on in Skylar’s head…”So, you expect me to shave my head?”  The woman made it all to clear…”I’ll give you the address of where to go.  The barber will be told exactly what needs to be done, so you don’t have to worry about anything.”

Skylar could hardly catch her breath as she hung up the phone.  Her hair was something she always took great care of by using only the best shampoo’s and conditioners on it.  She didn’t see what the big deal was about just one more person shaving off their hair, or why that would make any difference.  The only thing she knew was that her modeling career would be basically over if her contract was cancelled.

The following Saturday afternoon Skylar was nervously lead to the car by her mother followed by her three sisters, all still maintaining their smooth heads.  As her mother drove towards the shop, Skylar held and stroked her long blonde hair, knowing it would be gone before she knew it.  After a 15 minute ride the pulled up to the very plain looking store front.  It was not anywhere where Skylar would even consider going, but now, with her sister Charlotte holding her hand, she walked towards the door…”Thanks for doing this sis.  Hopefully it will only be a few months before my hair starts to grow back and yours can too.”  Just before they walked inside Skylar seemed confused at what Charlotte had said.  Looking at her mother…”Wait.  You mean I have to keep shaving my head?  I thought I only had to do it once.”

Once inside Skylar looked around the strange place.  She was about to break out in tears, but when she saw there was a photographer there she quickly tried to pull herself together and act professional.  To her surprise there was an older woman standing behind the giant chair who didn’t waste any time…”So, you must be Skylar.  Come, have a seat and I’ll take good care of you.”  Charlotte pulled her nervous sister towards the chair.  Skylar started to pull back, at first, but as soon as she heard the camera starting to click off some pictures she smiled as she climbed onto the chair.

Skylar fought back tears as the cape was pulled tightly around her neck.  The barber made a few quick passes with a wide tooth comb before she looked Skylar in the face…”So darling, do you want me to take it all straight off or cut it off in stages?”  Reality set in as Skylar sat there, unable to answer the woman.  Her sister Charlotte spoke up for her…”Why don’t you give her a simple short cut first so she knows what it will look like in a few months.”  The barber didn’t hesitate as took her scissors and started cutting around Skylars head.

There was a loud gasp heard as Skylar watched long sheets of hair fall around her.  It only took seconds for the barber to send all of her beautiful length to the floor…”You certainly can’t call yourself a long haired girl anymore.”  Skylar sat there, her mouth open as she saw her reflection in the mirror.  As the barber continued, a blunt line was forming where her hair stopped.  She started to recognize what the barber was doing and when she started to cut her bangs high up on her forehead she knew she was now wearing a bowl cut.

As much as Skylar hated the cut she was given, she would have done anything to be able to walk out the door, even if it meant keeping the bowl cut from now on.  The photographer was taking hundreds of shots from just about every angle but he was soon done.  Then the barber announced it was time…”Okay, now for what brought you in this morning.”  Skylar tried to swallow, but her mouth was totally dry.  She saw the barber reaching for a dark red clipper…”This will make short work of what’s left.”   Skylar’s grip on the armrest couldn’t get any tighter as the clipper was raised to her forehead.

The barber put her free hand on the back of Skykar’s head, then began to push the clipper towards the back.  Skylar saw a 2 inch wide path of pale white skin where her hair used to be…”See, just like I told you.  It will be all over before you know it.”  Skylar closed her eyes as the barber made pass after pass.  It only took a few minutes and the barber announced that that part was over…”You can open your eyes honey.  It’s all on the floor now.”  Skylar couldn’t believe the face staring back at her in the mirror.  Her beautiful, naturally highlighted locks that she took such good care of was all gone.  She held back the tears as the photographer was again taking tons of shorts of her buzzed head.”

The barber moved towards the end of the counter.  She returned with a rolled towel that was steaming hot…”You’ll love how this feels.”  The barber then placed the towel against her head causing Skylar to flinch at the heat at first, before she quickly began to enjoy the feeling of the moist heat.  She could just see thru the opening in front that the barber was holding a shiny metal tool in her hand.  She watched as the barber worked on the tool before putting it into the pocket on her smock.  Skylar then heard the barber doing something else that was outside of her view.  Next the barber pulled the towel off her head and began smearing something as warm as the towel all over her scalp.  It only took a second before Skylar saw the white foam start to cover the top of her head.

She bit her lip as the barber washed off her hands then pulled the shiny tool from her smock.  By this time she knew that it was a razor, but not one like she had ever used to shave her body.  The barber brought the tool up to her forehead…”Okay honey, stay good and still for me.”  She then used her free hand to pull the skin taught before she started to drag the razor in small movements.  Skylar started to feel sick to her stomach as she saw just how smooth the skin was…”It looks like there was never hair there.”  The barber smiled as she continued to shave the girl…”The hot towel is the secret to getting it really close.”  It only took 5 minutes and Skylar sat speechless at her new appearance.

Knowing she was about to have a breakdown, she wanted nothing more than to get away from everyone.  She hoped the barber would take the cape off so she could get away from all the onlookers and, more importantly, the photographer.  The barber began to wipe her newly bared scalp with cream…”This will calm your scalp down and keep you from getting sunburn.”  The cape was pulled off and although Slylar was ready to leave, the woman from the agency informed her that they wanted to get several after shots outside the shop.

It ended up being hours before Skylar could get away.  She hid in her room the next day and when it was time to head back to school she begged her mother to let her stay home.  This, of course, wouldn’t fly with her mom, who drove her to school, even watching until she walked inside.  Surprisingly, Skylar received nothing but praise for what she was doing for her sister.  All of teachers and friends complimented her on her bravery and insisted she was even more beautiful now.  She, however, didn’t feel the same way and wasn’t feeling any better about losing her long hair.

A few weeks went by until Skylar received a call from the agency…”Skylar, I have exciting news for you.  We sent your pictures to a huge new client that is looking for a model to represent their new product, and they said you were the perfect candidate.”  Skylar couldn’t believe what she was hearing…”So, am I going to have to get a wig to wear for their ads?”  The agent replied…”No, that’s the best thing.  Their new product is for a new hair growth inhibitor called Bald’R.  Your bald head is the reason they picked you.”  Skylar was confused.  She had been counting the days before she could start growing her hair out, but now her best modelling break was because she shaved her head.  The agent went on to tell her she would stop by that afternoon to go over the contract details with her and her parents because the client wanted her to begin immediately.

Later that day the agent met with Skylar and her parents and presented the details of the offer.  Once the agent laid out some of the details Skylar wasn’t so sure she wanted to sign the deal.  It was a two year contract with the company having an option to extend the deal for up to ten years.  Skylar would get to allow her hair to grow back for 3 weeks before going back to the same barbershop to have the new treatment done.  Skylar’s mother asked about the treatment she would receive and the agent laid out the whole add campaign.

Skylar would be depicted as being tired of all the work it took to keep her hair looking good, so she has chosen to be bald instead.  The barber offers her a new treatment called Bald’R, which is the newest long-lasting depilatory and growth inhibitor system on the market.  While her parents thought it sounded good, Skylar was still not on board.  Her mom asked what the product did, to which the agent said…”Oh, it’s a great new product for those wanting to keep there heads nice and smooth.  She told them that it’s a 2 part system where the first part opens up the pores on the scalp so the depilatory gets in deep to dissolve all the hair, and the second part basically puts all the folicles into hibernation and finally closes the pores tight.  The end result means that you’ll maintain the hairless look for a year or more.

Skylar was ready to say she didn’t want to do it until the agent told her the important part of the deal…”They have agreed to pay you at the top model rates due to the exclusivity of their product.  They will also pay an appearance fee for all of the events you will be required to go to.”  This made Skylar start to consider the offer figuring that she could get a real good wig to wear most of the time until she is needed…”Okay, I guess it’s a real good opportunity, so I’ll sign the contract.”

Skylar and her parents signed the dozen, or so forms making up the various parts of the contract.  While she was waiting for the agent to finish up the paperwork, she turned to her mother…”Can you go with me to that wig store I told you about?  I think I’m going to get one in a few different colors.”  The agent had gathered all the papers together and made it a point to remind Skylar about her contract…”Okay, as of this moment you are under contract.  I heard you talking about wigs with your mother.  They are perfectly fine to wear in private, but you are never to be seen in public with anything on your head.”  Skylar couldn’t believe what she was told…”You mean I have to be bald whenever I leave the house?  Mom, did you read that part?”  Her mother, of course told her she had read the whole section about maintaining her public appearance…”Of course you need to show your head dear.  That’s what they’re paying you all this money for.”

In the next few weeks Skylar had several photo shots as they got ready to roll out the add campaign.  Once she finished school her schedule got extremely busy as the company flew her across several different countries.  Besides being sent to every fashion show and product convention, the company had become a sponsor of an Formula One team which meant she was at every event as their representative.  Between this and the heavy presence on every social media platform, it didn’t take long before Skylar’s popularity was thru the roof.

The first year went by with Skylar barely stopping to notice it had passed.  It was only when her agent told her it was time to have the product redone did she even realize how much she missed her long hair.  She sat at the same barbershop where it all began and began to daydream about her hair, only to be brought out of it as the barber told her and her agent…”The product has held up perfectly.  I really don’t see much, if any regrowth.”  Skylar, in some way hoped that the product didn’t really work and she would be allowed to start growing her hair back.

Her schedule didn’t get any easier as Bald’R started to gain world-wide popularity.  She was only about 6 month’s in to the second year when her agent said she had some new paperwork for her to sign.  When Skylar asked what it was for, she didn’t get an answer she was looking for…”It’s big news.  Sales of the product are 3 times what was expected and the company has had to open up another facility to manufacture it.”  Skylar was happy to hear how popular she was, but felt as if the cost was a bit too high, as she had hoped to be done as the second year came to a close.  The agent ended her hopes as she told her the rest of her big news…”The company has decided to exercise their rights to the rest of the contract which means you’ll be getting a huge raise in a couple month’s.”

It took several minutes for the big news to fully hit her.  She would be kept bald for the next ten years whether she liked it, or not.  For someone who would be financially set for the rest of her life, Skylar was not happy.  She had a few weeks off to spend with family and eventually her mood started to improve.  Her half-sister Charlotte’s cancer was gone and she now had a cute head of short hair.  Skylar decided that she would make the best of her situation and when it was time to start her touring again she brought her new assistant Charlotte with her.  Having Charlotte there reminded her that one day she too will see her hair growing back.

As the years passed product sales of Bald’R leveled off.  While she still had regular photo shoots for the ad campaign and was still a regular on most social media platforms, all of the glitz and glamour she had experienced was slowly coming to an end.  Skylar was only 6 months from her 28th birthday when she went to her final scheduled appointment to receive the Bald’R treatment.  While she had long ago stopped daydreaming about growing out her hair again, this time as the treatment was being completed the barber said to her…”You know I don’t think I’ve seen any signs of regrowth on your scalp in the past 2 years.”  Although it would have gotten her all upset in the past, his words didn’t phase her anymore.

She was told that her contract would be allowed to run out as the company was going to stop all advertising of it.  When she mentioned the lack of regrowth to one of the company representatives she was told…”Well our research has shown a small percentage of long term users have experienced partial or total permanent hair loss.  It’s possible that you fall into that small group.  You will be able to tell after 6-8 months of stopping it’s use.  Skylar looked over at Charlotte, the person who was responsible for her first becoming bald, and saw her hair was now almost to her waist.  She then looked at herself in the mirror and could no longer imagine having her hair back again.  That was the moment she knew that she would never again have hair on her head.

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