A man who's turning heads with a bizarre hairdo that has seen him dubbed 'Ring Head' has revealed the heartfelt reason behind his new look.
Having grown long hair and a big, bushy beard during lockdown, Stu Turner, from Cardiff, decided to take the plunge and head to the barbers for the dramatic circular cut.
"It's certainly been an adjustment," he said.
"It's definitely a bit colder than I've been used to - I can feel a draught a lot more easily than I could before.
"At the beginning of the first lockdown I said I wasn't going to cut my hair and beard until we were back working in the office, but what I expected to be three months turned out to be 18 months - so I had a lot of hair to lose.
"Having had a beard on my face for most of my life, I can tell you that nothing really prepares you for the feeling of your own breath on your chin."
Stu's bizarre haircut is for a very good cause, with the 36-year-old civil servant sporting the unique look to support The Little Princess Trust, a charity which provides real hair wigs, free of charge, to children and young people who have lost their own hair from cancer treatment or other conditions.
Not only has he donated his hair to the charity, but Stu has also raised over £1,000 for both the trust and Cancer Research UK from his new haircut.
Having had his hair cut at a salon in Roath last week - a trim which lasted over an hour - Stu had planned to keep his circular barnet on show until October 14 before he shaved it off.
But now he is set to keep it for longer due to popular demand.
"I went out in town the other day, and my hair went down really well," he admitted.
"I started getting quite a lot of respect from people which wasn't really expected.
"The strangest thing was that some people didn't assume it was a charity thing or a bet that I'd lost, a lot of people thought I had some sort of new, trendy Generation Z style haircut!
"When I'm walking around, I'm still quite thankful for my face mask as I'm not quite ready to subject myself to the comments I'd get from some people. But when you do something like this, you've got to accept that people will stare, that's all part of making a fool of yourself for a good cause.
"I think the people who are most annoyed about the positive reception I got were my friends - they're the ones who set out to try - and succeed in making me look foolish."
A key element of Stu's fundraising was allowing those who donated to suggest the hair and beard style that they wanted to see him adopt alongside their donation - with the style with the most money behind it being crowned the winner.His friends and family threw in plenty of left-field suggestions, including: a 'Friar Tuck', a mohawk and handlebar moustache, a buzztop, pineapple and a 'hair island', made famous by football manager Steve McClaren.However, in the end, there could only be one winner and the 'circle hair' style took victory with £316.25 pledged in its name - over £200 more than its nearest competition."I thought it was best to let the people decide," said Stu. "In this case, it was my brother who chose this haircut and when everyone saw his idea they all jumped on board, because it is the worst possible thing that you could imagine."It became the outright leader very, very quickly and nothing I could say or do was going to change it - I wouldn't have minded something a little less embarrassing, like the pineapple."
Stu has previous experience when it comes to embarrassing haircuts, having swapped his normal hairstyle for a Bobby Charlton-esque combover again to raise money for The Little Princess Trust in 2018.The amount raised from that attempt exceeded his expectations, and even that has been greatly surpassed by his latest effort, which has seen him near £1,200."I'm astounded at how much I've raised already," he said. "I never had a target, it was always just seeing how much I could I get - but if it was to go even higher, that would be fantastic. "The Little Princess Trust and Cancer Research are both fantastic causes - I've raised money for them a couple of times before and they do amazing work."I'm a bit of a hair farm really, it make sense to just grow it as long as I can and then give it away!"
Stu is raising money for the Little Princess Trust: https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/LPstu