HGTV's Nicole Curtis Chopped Off Over a Foot of Hair to Create Wigs for Children with Hair Loss

After months of growing out her hair to her hips, Nicole Curtis finally cut if off to create wigs for children

Nicole Curtis made a major hair change — and it’s all for a very good cause.

The HGTV Rehab Addict star has become known for her flowing, waist-length locks, but Curtis decided she was ready to chop it off, and use the hair to create two wigs for children suffering from hair loss.

“I finally cut my hair (over a foot!) to donate to children with hair loss, all in time to go back to work shooting a new pilot with HGTV,” Curtis tells PEOPLE exclusively.

Nicole Curtis

She continues, “We took donations from my fans to create two wigs for children (including my hair ) and provided the funding in honor of #tessaprothero [Curtis’ lead contractor Bobby Prothero’s daughter who lost her battle with cancer in 2017], who would be 11 this month.”

Curtis teased her monumental cut earlier this week on Instagram, and explained that it had been her plan to chop and donate her hair in Tessa’s honor all along.

“I didn’t just grow it for the hell of it. Trust me, it’s heavy, it’s so long I sit on it, the only style is braid, braids or more braids and I’ve had to resort to my natural color,” she said.

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“In honor of our favorite little mama, my cousin, Lauren (she’s brunette) and I decided to rally and donate our hair. It takes 15 to 20 ponytails to make one wig. I asked for donations from fans on Instagram and we have enough to make two wigs for children. We also are raising funds to cover the cost to make them,” Curis tells PEOPLE exclusively.

She then posted one final photo of her grown-out hair as she announced that she’s working with Children With Hair Loss to donate and construct the two wigs.

“They take colored hair. they provide services at no fee for these children. Go back to number 2 ! Insurance does not cover such a thing, it’s all donated money and hair . We want to turn over the hair and the funds to make this possible for 2 children,” Curtis wrote of the Michigan-based non-profit.

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After one final quick photoshoot with her long hair, Curtis went to the Kevin Paves Salon in L.A. to cut it off.

The next day, Curtis debuted her new look with a selfie on Instagram. Even with more than 15 inches gone, she loves her length.

“My first morning without the braid. If I just chopped it for a new look, I know I’d be thinking damn, I went too short. However, every inch (over 15) is going straight to one amazing child…And the bonus is that my cousin donated hers too, so we got a blonde and a brunette covered,” Curits said. “I can’t think of a cooler way to honor #tessaprothero than by making other kids smile ….#cwhl_org (and to the peeps chastising me for not going shorter -really 🤷‍♀️).”

–reporting by Emily Strohm

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