Sarah Beeny says she wants to change the stereotype of those with cancer feeling “ashamed of their bald heads”.
The 50-year-old presenter and property expert revealed her own breast cancer diagnosis in August, and has admitted she had used dog clippers to shave her head.
She is best known for her work on UK property programmes, including Help! My House Is Falling Down and Sarah Beeny’s New Life In The Country.
Speaking to the Daily Mail’s Weekend magazine she said people with no hair are often seen as ‘victims’, ‘angry’ or suffering some form of ‘punishment’.
“Having no hair often seems to be associated with anger,” she said.
“You’re a victim or it’s a punishment, like Fantine in Les Misérables, or Cersei Lannister in Game Of Thrones. People are ashamed of their bald heads.
“The more I talk to people in this boat, the word I keep hearing is ‘shame’ and I thought: Why?
“If you’ve got breast cancer and you’re having treatment, the fact you have no hair is not a reason to be ashamed.
“I don’t want to be ashamed. I don’t want other people to feel ashamed. I want to change that stereotype.”
Back in August she revealed her diagnosis by sharing a picture of herself and her sons cutting off some of her hair, later revealing to the Mail she had used clippers also used to trim her dog.
“A little pile of not very good condition hair on it’s way to @officiallittleprincesstrust – my trainee hairdressers cut off my hair on Friday night – getting one step ahead after first chemo treatment for breast cancer on Friday – the exclusive club you’d rather not be a member of!” she captioned the post.
Despite her diagnosis, Beeny has said she will continue to work and is focused on a new Channel 4 series and book she has planned for later this year.
She told the Daily Mail that two weeks later she started chemotherapy treatment which was “really traumatic” when “handfuls” of her hair began to fall out.
“That’s when I cried. I thought, ‘Oh God, this is it. It’s happening’,” she said.
When she was 10, Beeny lost her mother, 39, to breast cancer.
Beeny has four children – Rafferty, Laurie, Billy and Charlie – and married her husband, artist Graham Swift, in 2003.
In 2010, she began to chart the renovation of Rise Hall, a Grade II-listed stately home in Rise, East Yorkshire, as part of Channel 4 series Beeny’s Restoration Nightmare.
Beeny and Swift worked to renovate Rise Hall as a family home and wedding venue, then sold the property in 2019.
In March that year, she revealed she was quitting London to move to a seven-bedroom house in Somerset with Swift and their sons.
The couple bought the 220-acre sheep farm in August 2018 and Beeny later said she had decided to make the move permanent after considering her children’s education.