Chip Gaines’ bold new look is for a good cause.
The “Fixer Upper” star, who made waves with his shoulder-length locks earlier this summer, shaved his head after raising more than $300,000 for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, according to a release shared with TODAY.
The new look is quite the shock — Gaines is entirely bald, though he’s kept his short beard and mustache intact.
The change comes after Gaines issued a fundraising challenge on Instagram last week. When fans revealed they weren’t pleased with the shaggy new look, Gaines offered to get rid of it — for a fantastic cause, of course.
“Turns out some of y’all really don’t like my hair!” Gaines wrote on Instagram. “But I can take it because I’ve been growing it out for a good reason. So now’s your chance to put your money where your mouth is.. I’m going to cut my hair, and I’m asking you to cut a check — and let’s see if we can raise a boatload of money for the kids at @stjude.”
Gaines said that he would also donate his cut hair to Children with Hair Loss, an organization that makes wigs for children in need.
When it finally came time for the chop, Gaines sat alongside 16-year-old Bailey, a former patient at St. Jude’s who was treated for bone cancer at the age of 12. Gaines spotlighted Bailey in a recent Instagram post.
“(Joanna) and I met Bailey back in 2017, and seeing him now as a healthy young man reminds me why we were drawn to St. Jude,” Gaines wrote.
2017 was the first year Gaines issued a fundraising challenge tied to his hair. That fundraiser raised $230,000 for St. Jude’s.
Gaines and his wife, Joanna, have also donated their time and skills to the mission of St. Jude. In 2017, the Gaineses worked with Target to renovate the patient family dining room at one of St. Jude’s long-term residential locations, and in 2019, Gaines led the “Chip in Challenge” on social media, which raised $998,000 and was supported by other major celebrities. Later that year, the Gaineses built and revealed a garden-themed playhouse designed for St. Jude’s kids. That’s where Gaines connected with Bailey.
“Chip and Joanna Gaines have provided an incredible amount of love, kindness and support to the kids at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital over the years,” Richard C. Shadyac Jr, the president and CEO of ALSAC — the fundraising and awareness organization for St. Jude’s — told TODAY via a press release. “… We’re thankful for Chip and his generous fans, whose giving determined his bold new look. Their support in funds generated will help St. Jude accelerate research and treatment for catastrophic childhood diseases worldwide and ensure that no family ever receives a bill from St. Jude.”
Kerry Breen is a reporter and associate editor for TODAY.com, where she reports on health news, pop culture and more. She holds a master’s degree in journalism from New York University.
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