Woman with alopecia branded ‘Humpty Dumpty’ by bullies is now beauty queen
A woman who was bullied over her appearance at school has gone on to have the last laugh – as she’s now a beauty queen.
Chloe Ashford-Smith was branded “Humpty Dumpty” by cruel classmates as she lost her hair due to alopecia.
At one point, she was even shamed by a teacher for wearing a hat in assembly to cover patches on her head.
But despite these struggles, the 26-year-old has come to terms with her condition.
The chip shop manager, from Lincs., no longer hides away or avoids talking about her battle with alopecia.
And in a bid to inspire others who have lost her hair, the current Miss Lincolnshire has opened up about her journey ahead of the Miss Great Britain contest.
She told Grimsby Live: "I've had alopecia since I was born. Ever since I was a young girl I've had to deal with it in different ways.
"The hair loss seemed to happen every year for me. If a family relative died for example, my hair would just fall out.
“I began wearing hats and wigs to try and stop it from being so noticeable at school.
"When I was at school, I used to get bullied for my appearance. People would call me names like baldy, Humpty Dumpty and egg head.
"I'd spend ages getting ready and putting make up on in a morning to hide my patches where hair had fallen out. Then when I'd get to school people would call me fake and vain.”
Chloe added: "My worst memory would have to be during a whole school assembly though. I was wearing my hat when a teacher shouted across the hall at me, questioning why I was wearing a hat.
"I froze when she said and in the end another teacher had to tell them that I was allowed to keep it on, I'll never forget that.
"When I was younger I also went through a lot of treatment to try and reduce the effects.
“I’d go to hospital around three times a week for things like steroid injections and UV treatment."
By the age of 17, Chloe had lost 80% of her hair, as well as her eyebrows and eyelashes.
She said: "It was really upsetting for me at that age. I was jut leaving school and, trying to figure my life out.
"When I lost all my hair, it felt as though I'd lost part of my identity too.
"When I was around 21 or 22, I began to just accept the condition for what it was.
“All the treatment wasn't going to cure it so I just stopped caring and now it doesn't bother me half as much as it used to.
"For example, one time at university, my wig got caught in a tree and it got stuck. I didn't worry or panic though, I just grabbed it and put it back on."
As Chloe's confidence grew so much, she decided to Miss Grimsby in 2017.
She said: "Sadly I didn't win the overall award, but I did win the media award at my first pageant.
"When I lost, it really got to me. I said I would never do it again, I ended up having to take time off work because it had affected me that much.
"However, In November last year, I applied for Miss Lincolnshire and got the call in April to say I'd won. I was so shocked when I found out.
"Now, I'm automatically into the Miss Great Britain finals this September and I've been working hard to be as successful as I can in that since finding out.”
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