A woman who used to suffer from alopecia has recovered to grow incredible long, flowing hair, resulting in her being called a “real life Rapunzel.”
23-year-old Russian Anastasiya Sidorova suffered from baldness until the age of 18 but now has hair that reaches her mid-thighs.
She’s also worked as a model, appearing in adverts for haircare company Pantene in Russian magazines.
There are various different types of alopecia, but Sidorova was diagnosed with androgenetic alopecia as a teenager.
This meant that her hair fell out leaving large bald patches.
According to the British Association of Dermatologists, androgenetic alopecia is the most common type of progressive hair loss. It affects about 50 per cent of men over the age of 50, and about 50 per cent of women over the age of 65.
Suffering from the condition as a teenager, then, is rare.
Many cases are stress-related, but it can also be hereditary.
Alopecia is, however, treatable, as Sidorova proves. She went to see a trichologist, who gradually cured her alopecia, restoring Sidorova’s confidence at the same time.
Sidorova has now decided to train as a trichologist herself.
On her Instagram account, Sidorova has shared her top tips for healthy hair, including never straightening it, allowing it to air-dry 60 per cent before using a hair dryer, and using a keratin mask after every wash.
September is Alopecia Areata Awareness Month, when more people bring the condition to the public eye.
Dr Omar Milhem, Pharmacologist and spokesperson for the National Hair Council says “The impact that hair loss is having on British women’s lives is huge.
“Knowing how common hair loss is and how important self-image is to most women, it’s concerning that they feel less attractive and avoid certain social circumstances when suffering.”
Of course, self-image is important to men too, who also suffer from the condition.
But as Sidorova proves, if alopecia is negatively affecting your life, you needn’t suffer unnecessarily.