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Financial Confession – I Sold My Hair

About 5 months ago, I mentioned that I cut my hair (you can see the ponytail pics on that post) and planned to donate it to Locks of Love.  Well, I didn’t.  While looking up their address, I found their FAQ section.  It takes 6-9 ponytails like mine to make one wig.  I decided I rather sell my hair than let it wait around for 5-8 other redheads to send in their hair.  But then life popped up, I forgot about my hair, and it got put in a bag on a shelf downstairs.

Selling My Hair

I found my ponytail on that shelf last week and decided to finally attempt to sell it.  I checked out Craigslist first, but there is no local market for human hair.  I was not surprised.  Then I checked out Ebay and found a ton of human hair for sale.  In fact, some of the auctions that were complete sold for $30-$60.  I figured that my red hair with natural highlights had a fighting chance for the high end of that scale, so I went ahead and listed it.  Here was my post:

———-

Human Hair Ponytail – Red, Never Dyed, Never Treated!!! 

This is literally the hair off of my head! 

As you can see from the picture, the ponytail is 14 inches or longer but the wave makes it curl at the end and look like a solid 12 inches plus a bit.  Here are the rest of my details:

  • I am Caucasian
  • I am categorized as a strawberry blonde red head
  • My hair has a natural wave
  • My hair has never been dyed or chemically treated
  • I use Pantene ProV Shampoo and Conditioner
  • I do not smoke and live in a smoke free home
  • My hair has more natural blonde highlights than the picture could capture
  • I grew this out from age 24 to 28 before going back to a shorter hair cut

I do get things shipped out in 2 days or less!  My ponytail will be placed in a plastic bag and then shipped in a well-padded envelope or box.

———-

I included a few pictures, set the post for 7 days, and listed the starting bid at $9.99 on Saturday, August 13th.  It received a bid for the $9.99 within the first few hours of being up, so I was pretty hopeful.  But then nothing happened for a couple of days. 

My Hair Auction

When I checked in last Wednesday, it had received another bid and was up to $15.51.  That made me feel a little bit better about offering free shipping, but I didn’t check in again until last Friday.  It had gotten up to $31.01.  I was happy it had finally broken the $30 target, but I was still thinking it was being under-valued since my hair is thick, soft, and actually one of my best attributes.

So last Saturday, August 20th, I started checking in on the bidding between blog duties.  I’d answer a few emails and then check the listing.  Still $31.  I’d write a few paragraphs for staff writing and check my listing.  Still $31.  Grrrr.  Finally, 30 minutes before my auction was up, a few more bids came through that took my hair from $31 to $42 to $51.51!  Woot!  I was finally at the high range for recently sold hair! 

I was pretty happy and went and finished the staff writing post I was working on.  About 45 minutes later, I realized I had not checked in to see how much my hair finally sold for.  My husband actually brought it up. 

I literally said, “It was at $51 half and hour before wrapping up, let me see…it sold for…HOLY MOLY, IT SOLD FOR $101.99!!!”. 

My husband asked if I was kidding, but I wasn’t!!!  My hair sold for $102!!! 

There was a little bidding war right at the end and a nice woman from Reading, PA won my hair!  She had even already paid!  I immediately packaged up my hair for USPS and then emailed her to say thanks and to let her know I was shipping it out first thing Monday morning.  She replied that she appreciates the speed since she was in the middle of finishing a couple of baby dolls for a customer.  So my hair is going to some dolls.  :-)

I asked if hair normally sells for that much and she said that red hair is more expensive than the rest and most hair is usually sold for $30 or more an ounce.  My ponytail was 3.6 ounces and being sold all at once, so she thanked me for getting a good deal!  Who knew?!

My Profit

After Ebay took their 8%-9% cut and Paypal took their little 3.9% bite as well, my $101.99 became a grand total of about $89.  Oh well, it was $89 that I didn’t have before and a doll maker in PA is pretty happy.  :-)

Have you ever thought about selling your hair?  I will admit that I am impatient to grow mine back so I can sell it again, lol.  Only about 3 years to go…

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66 comments to Financial Confession – I Sold My Hair

  • I have never thought about it since I am a guy. My daughter did donate to locks of love. I think she had 18 inches of hair to send in. I bet it was going to be used for extensions. That is one of the big things right now it seems like.

  • This is crazy! I would have never thought of selling hair. Of course mine is chemically treated and naturally frizzy, so it is probably not worth much. :) I would have loved to have seen the auction picture.

  • What about donating it to Locks of Love or something like that? I know having the extra money has to be nice, but the stories you read about people receiving that hair and how it can impact their lives would make me forgo the bucks if I had long hair. But I’m a guy and tend to keep my hair trimmed pretty tight.

  • Last time I checked, nobody was looking for my boring shade of brown hair with uncontrolled waves! :)

    I had never thought of selling hair before, and it has never been long enough to donate. (It seems to stop growing after a certain point.)

    I guess you just never know what will sell. I got through college selling a lot of plasma, but I couldn’t send that in the mail…

  • SherryH

    I thought about it a while ago, and even bookmarked several sites devoted to selling hair, but I wasn’t sure how trustworthy they were and the dollar amounts seemed really high to me. I never thought about Ebay.

    (Actually, I’ve never sold on Ebay. Don’t they have some restriction on selling body parts? Or maybe hair would not count, since it’s… hm… renewable?)

    I’m not sure mine would sell. It’s a fairly common brown, pretty fine, and tends toward split ends. On the other hand, I don’t smoke, dye, or use styling products on it, so maybe.

    You’ve given me food for thought… thanks!

  • I used to have hair past my rib cage, until I cut and donated it to build a more “corporate” look.

    I should start growing mine out and selling it. It’s fine and soft, though just brown. It grows a foot per year, so I could almost be a hair farm.

  • That is crazy! I’ve always been a clean cut guy, but I will definitely mention this to some of my friends who do “shave your head for…” for different events.

  • Thats crazy that there is a market for human hair! I also cant believe that it costs so much! Great way to earn a buck though.

  • This is possibly the craziest and most awesome story I’ve ever heard! I’m kind of weirded out by the idea that someone actually bought your human hair…but also really impressed that your locks went for over a hundred bucks!

  • Well, it certainly seems a lot less invasive than selling your plasma. I didn’t know you were a cute redhead. I always pictured you in my head as a brunette. My hair would never sell, it’s gray and chemically treated to look blonde.

    Way to stay creative in your pursuits of frugal living. You’re always ferreting out new ways to make money. Self employment definitely suits you.

  • Ann

    Awesome. This is like the modern version of what Jo did in “Little Women.”

  • Well… you learn something new everyday. I tried to sell my fingernail clippings on ebay once – no takers. haha. Just kidding.

    I did donate to Locks of Love once, my hair salon did it for me. Never even considered selling it. Didn’t know that was an option.

  • I don’t think anyone would pay for my black curly hair. It is so awesome that you got more than $100. Who knew it is such a high paid market… I didn’t know the dolls had real human hair. Have to admit that now I feel a little weird about that though.

  • JT

    Watch out! Someone is going to take your DNA and clone you. :P

  • I have never heard of anyone selling their hair before. Nice little money-earner for you!

    I doubt that my bleach-bashed hair which has been fried over several years of straightener use would quite reach that dizzying price!

  • I have never thought of selling my hair! Didn’t realize there was a market for it! I did donate my hair to Locks of Love once though. Your description of your hair matches mine almost exactly. Although I did spend the 80′s & 90′s perming my hair, it has gone chemically untreated for over 10 yrs. I also have red hair with natural blonde highlights. Of course now I have a few greys coming in, but it blends nicely so far. I’ve let my hair grow this summer, I may have to think about doing this whenever I decide to cut it. Congrats on the big payout!

  • I will admit to having sold, as part of my business, human hair wigs on eBay. Mine wigs have sold for over $200. :) I will say that hair like yours always commands top price. It’s what’s called virgin human hair and as a natural redhead you get top dollar! A wig made from hair like yours lets say would go to 10 inches from the crown and sell for roughly $250-$300 or so. Sigh. We coulda made some money Crystal. Oh, and if you were Jewish $500.

  • Who knew?! I donated mine to Locks of Love a few years ago, but now I can re-grow it and sell it :-)

  • Have you seen Chris Rock’s documentary called “Good Hair”? I think you’d like it. It’s all about the market of selling human hair. Never sold my hair. Would consider it though.

  • I think you need to start a hair farm. Eat lots of protein! hahahahaha:).

  • @cashflowmantra, 18 inches is dang long! Extensions are big right now…

    @Mom’s Plans, I’ll send you the 3 photos I used. One is just of a ponytail though.

    @Money Beagle, that was my initial intention as I wrote, but I was turned off by the idea that they wait around for 7-8 similar colored ponytails before making a wig. So I sold it instead. :-)

    @Everyday Tips, yuck…mailed plasma, lol.

    @SherryH, hair is okay on Ebay (it had it’s own category). You can always donate to Locks of Love once you have a ponytail 10 inches or longer I think…or try Ebay and then use Locks of Love if it doesn’t sell (that was my plan). :-)

    @Jason, you could clean up! What is with all of you brunettes being down about brown? I really wanted to be a brunette when I was a teenager. Now I think blondes are gorgeous. Everybody has a hair color that someone else wants. :-)

    @My University Money, hahaha, college frat dudes will be clogging up the Ebay hair market…

    @Jeff, thanks!

    @Melissa, it was weird to me too…I was really hoping my hair wasn’t bought by someone with a redhead fetish…dolls are a little less creepy. :-)

    @First Gen American, yep, cute redhead right here, lol. I think you’re very pretty. I sort of don’t mind the idea of going gray since the other redheads in my family go stark white. I like white.

    @Ann, okay, I’ll admit it…I’ve never read or saw Little Women. Did Jo sell her hair too?

    @Ashley, Locks of Love is great. If I could have found a hair salon that would mail it in for me, I would never have looked into Ebay, lol.

    @Suba, black curly hair is gorgeous and would look great on a doll! Not all dolls use human hair, just some of the hand made ones. :-) Barbies are safe.

    @JT, hahaha. Seriously though, as a Star Trek fan, I have thought about clones. My opinion is that every individual being is a different person, so a clone of me isn’t actually me so I wouldn’t care. I also wouldn’t think of a kid as “mine” if I donated my eggs and someone else had it. Whoever births a kid or raises a kid gets full credit, lol.

    @Harri, lol, maybe not, but I am imagining some beach girl dolls now, hahaha.

    @Erica, you are sweet for donating and I did not mean to talk anyone out of it. I just got greedy. :-) And hi from a fellow redhead!

    @Sandy, two questions: How much of my hair would you need to make a $300 wig? Why is Jewish hair worth more than raised-Catholic hair? ;-)

    @Christa, now I feel bad for Locks of Love…oops. Anyway, good luck with the regrow!

    @Jenna, I’ll have to YouTube that…

  • @Amanda, you laugh, but I am drinking more milk…I already have 2 inches, just 10 more to go. ;-)

  • That’s so crazy, I’d never think about selling hair on eBay. Good for you Crystal. I could never do this, I’ve been coloring my hair since I was 11. You on the other hand have some gorgeous hair, if I was that lucky I’d never color it either. Have you thought about taking some (or more) vitamins to make your hair grow faster so you can keep selling it every so often?

  • @Jen, I am drinking more milk. :-) My hair naturally grows about an inch a month, so I should be able to do this every 18 months (I get one-inch trims every few months to keep down on split ends).

  • I check out that photo of the ponytail and your hair is a beautiful color! Most women would do anything for that hair color (and most have to actually color their hair to achieve a color they like. :) ) I think I agree with Amanda, you should start a hair farm!

  • Wait wait wait, this brought up so many questions….ah who has the energy :)

    I will say though that I typically list EVERYTHING at .99. Who doesn’t have 99 cents? Which starts the bidding wars early and gets the price to jump just a tad bit more when all things are said and done. Then I always offer free shipping. It doesn’t matter what it is, I don’t buy anything online without free shipping and I’d assume the same from anyone else. I’ve been selling on ebay for a long time and my tests confirm it helps sales. And one last thing, how yours went down is pretty typical – a few bids come in early, typically the amatuers :) and in the last 20 minutes the price will double on most things.

    Anyway, congrats! That’s great. I hear prenatal vitamins and brushing your hair often will help it grow faster.

  • Misspelling “amatuer”, that’s ironic…

  • @Little House, thank you! I do like my hair now. I was just a normal teenager acting out, lol. :-)

    @Jesse, hehehe, I started at $9.99 just because that’s where all the other hair was starting. I agree that all Ebay items should be with free shipping. And no, I will not be taking prenatal vitamins…that’s just asking for trouble… ;-)

  • Mom

    I disagree. Take those prenatal vitamins, lol! You should tell your cousins about this one. Can you imagine how much Tim or Alice’s kids could get. Just too funny.

  • dang! I just got my hair cut…. :(

  • No one would want my hair as it is gray. Also I’d have to stop coloring it for this & I’m not ready to do that. Not sure when I’ll be ready for that.

  • Dead skin cells sell! That’s crazy; my wife has auburn hair, she could probably get a similar gig but could never part with her long hair. So, what made you take the leap to chop it off?

  • That is hilarious. I have thought about giving my hair away(curly, dyed red). My hair does it’s own thing so I keep it short let it grow out for about a year and than my husband gives me his world famous short cut-similar to the short cut I spent $75 on 10 years ago!

  • Haha! That’s amazing! I wish I could get someone to pay $30/ounce for all the dog hair I have to sweep up everyday. I’d be a millionaire! LOL

  • Wow that is nutty! Congrats on the sale I had no clue about this market

  • hehe looks like your Mom has a hidden agenda :)

    Prenatals are just vitamins anyway, they won’t do you any harm….haha

  • @Mom, lol, I doubt my male cousins would want to grow their hair out 14 inches. Your siblings wouldn’t like it for sure. ;-)

    @South County Girl, that’s what I said about the 3 other big haircuts that I just tossed away! Don’t worry, it grows back usually. :-)

    @Maggie, lol, it’s not for everybody.

    @Darwin’s Money, I chop it all off every few years. I like seeing a huge change once in a while. :-)

    @Molly, I don’t think I’d want my hubby near my head with scissors…neither one of us can cut on the line…

    @Kyle, holy moly, me too! Anyone need a Pug fur ball?

    @Evan, thanks!

    @Jesse, I know they are just uber vitamins, but I am not tempting fate…

  • What a fun story! Booyah for you!!!

    I bet you’ll look at your hair differently the next time you get it cut ;)

  • That is the coolest and craziest thing I have ever heard of! Good for you for making a few bucks! I highlight my hair, so probably not good resell material.

  • There’s a HUGE market for human hair. I use it for extensions, but I definitely recommend donating it. I didn’t think there was a market for it on eBay. I go to hair shops to buy mine. Congrats on your profit!

  • It’s amazing what people do buy. I’m always leary about everything though- and would wonder what someone would be doing with my hair.LOL

  • jim

    I think the Jewish hair may be worth more for people making ‘sheitel’ which are wigs worn by some Jewish women.

  • I can’t sell mine because it still has dye from years ago in it :/

  • SherryH

    Crystal, you wrote:

    “What is with all of you brunettes being down about brown?”

    LOL – not down on it at all! My thinking was just that my fairly typical brown locks probably would not command the kind of prices more unique hair might, both because there is more of it out there and because people buying wigs/extensions might want something more colorful.

    To those who buy hair, do you know if it matters how long ago it was cut? Somewhere around here, we have a ponytail of my husband’s hair when he cut it short years ago – we were going to donate it and didn’t get around to it, and now I don’t know if it’s still usable. If it is, someone might as well benefit.

  • Jim is right! The wigs worn by Jewish women command sooooo much more money. A minimum of $500. And to make a decent wig, with a good amount of density you’d want your hair plus maybe another 1/3. It all depends on how many ounces. Some hair is just thicker than others. But yours looks quite lovely…and profitable.

  • When you get a free night, I highly recommend you watch Chris Rock’s documentary, Hair. It’s obviously hilarious (it’s Chris Rock) and super-educational (it’s a documentary about hair — specifically about the buying and selling of hair in African-American communities). He mentions in the documentary that a lot of wigs, weaves, etc., are made from Indian hair, which is black, thick, soft, and lush.

    I have exactly that … Indian hair (well, Nepalese hair, but same thing) that’s long, black, thick, soft and wavy. Of course, my hair has been long my entire life and I would never dream of cutting it. I plan on being the 80-year-old-woman with waist-length hair.

  • I have never thought of selling hair but after reading your post I bet there are plenty of others who will now consider it. I guess not treating it and growing it out long is your insurance for getting the most money!

  • Hi, I’m totally late to the party but I just wanted to comment that I just did this for the new year. I didn’t donate to Locks of Love (don’t like that organization) but I did donate it to Pantene’s Beautiful Lengths program. It does still take more than one ponytail to make a wig, but at least with that program they offer the wigs for free to women (not just children, like Locks of Love – and LoL makes them pay for the wigs. Why would I want a cancer patient to have to pay for something that was donated in good faith?). Beautiful Lengths is also supported buy the American Cancer Society. Anyway, just FYI in case you think of doing it again and want to donate it instead of selling it – although that’s a ton of money for your hair! Crazy. What a good sale.

    (not affiliated with either organization, I just did a bunch of research on the donation process and sort of feel strongly about it.)

  • Hi everyone, you can sell your hair on http://www.sellhairstore.com/, it’s much easier than ebay and helps you get targeted hair buyers.

  • Hello, selling hair can be tough. You can sell your hair at ebay, buyhairsell <<< whatever….. but you got to pay always something to them and they dont do anything. Take a look at http://www.hairclassifieds.com they are offering free listings for a limited time, don't miss it.

  • Hyla saltz

    I am a wig maker wanting to buy hair over 15ins.
    Please contact me at Hylasaltz@msn.com

  • Just so you know there are dedicated hair auction websites. They actually have a lot lower fees than eBay as well. The two I have used before are http://www.OnlineHairAffair.com and http://www.Hairworks.com. These two websites have been around a long time.

  • I buy hair and pay well for you to model your hair makeover. If you are neat the twin cities and willing o have before/after pictures or video taken, contact me. Much more information available.

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