Every year the first Saturday in August is proclaimed 'International Alopecia Day'. Saturday 6th August 2022 is this year's date for raising some awareness worldwide! 

The annual awareness day is the brainchild of a wonderful woman with alopecia, from San Diego (USA), named Mary Marshall. We had the pleasure of meeting Mary at our Big Weekend event in Birmingham 2017, where she spoke of her international awareness campaign. Her idea is a simple one; people with alopecia from all over the world share a photo of themselves on the same day. Any photos emailed to Mary are included in her International Alopecia Day (IAD) YouTube video. 

Alopecia UK has supported Mary's awareness initiative for a number of years now and we're always happy to share your photos on our own Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts on the day. Tag @alopeciauk in your photos if you'd like us to add to our Stories or retweet! 

You don't have to be in Mary's video be part of IAD but if you DO want to be in the annual YouTube video, here are some important instructions provided by Mary: 

1. Try to take your photos ON International Alopecia Day, 6th August. This is meant to be a snapshot of people with alopecia around the world on ONE day. 

2. Please don't send professional "studio" portraits or photos that you've posted on your Facebook page before IAD. Ideally, all photos for the IAD video should be taken on International Alopecia Day, and be natural and spontaneous-looking. 

3. You can be in a wig, bald, with patches or lots of hair, or in a hat or scarf. THIS IS ALL OF US, AS WE ARE! It's your choice. 

4. You can include any friends and family who don't have alopecia in your photo. 

5. If you have a group event, make sure that everyone in your IAD photo understands it will be in a public YouTube video and that they agree to that. 

6. It's great if you make and hold a SIGN saying where you live - and, you can write the sign in your language. Posting in front of a local LANDMARK or scene adds to the international theme.

7. If you make a sign that includes the name of the holiday, please make sure you use the official name: “International Alopecia Day”, and NOT “Alopecia Awareness Day” or other variants. We're trying to raise awareness by having this annual event become newsworthy, so the name needs to be consistent. 

8. Send only ONE photo per person or family - your best and favourite. There are too many submissions to include more than one per person. But, if you're having a group event and need more than one photo to show everyone, you can send more than one. Can't decide which photo to send? You can make a collage in one image to include multiple photos. BUT, remember that your photo will look smaller in the finished video if they're part of a collage. 

9. TO GUARANTEE THAT YOUR PHOTO IS IN THIS YEAR’S YOUTUBE IAD VIDEO, YOU MUST SEND IT TO: [email protected]. Many people like to share their IAD photos on Facebook alopecia groups, including the International Alopecia Day Group, but unless it’s ALSO emailed to the official email address, it won't be included in the video. And, emailing the photos to me is how I can be sure I have your permission to put it in the video. Please don't send me a photo by private message on Facebook, I might miss it. 

10. Please give me your location in the email you send with the photo so that I can put it in the correct place in the video. I'm not grouping the photos by city - I just need your country and regional location. For example, if you're in the UK, I need your county. 

I will reply to all emails (it may take a little time) and this will be your confirmation that your photo was received. The deadline to submit photos is 31st August 2022. The finished video will be online in September. 

Thanks to Mary for all her alopecia awareness efforts over the years! Alopecia UK is currently working on its content for Alopecia Awareness Month in September. We would LOVE you to get involved by becoming a Charity Champion. Find out more here