Amy Dowden has said that she only chose not to wear a wig for her surprise debut on Strictly Come Dancing at the last minute because fans inundated her with love and adoration.
On last night’s episode of the 2023 series, the show invited a special visitor to assist read the terms and conditions for viewers who wish to vote for their legendary performances ahead of Sunday night’s results show.
Amy, who was diagnosed with breast cancer and has been receiving chemotherapy, emerged in a magnificent white sequined gown, grinning from ear to ear as the crowd and other Strictly contestants cheered her on.
‘Amy Dowden deciding not to wear a wig on Strictly tonight has just showed every young girl going through chemo that bald is beautiful,’ said one supporting remark on Instagram. What an inspiration.’
In her Instagram statement, the professional dancer stated that sentiments like those have inspired her to do everything she can to boost breast cancer awareness and educate people to realise that ‘bald is beautiful’.
‘There are no words to describe the pure joy and happiness I felt last night being back with my @bbcstrictly family,’ she wrote.
How to check for signs of breast cancer
CoppaFeel! offers these simple steps on how to check your own chest for signs of cancer.
- Look at your boobs, pecs or chest.
- Look at the area from your armpit, across and beneath your boobs, pecs or chest, and up to your collarbone.
Be aware of any changes in size, outline or shape and changes in skin such as puckering or dimpling.
- Feel each of your boobs, pecs or chest.
- Feel the area from your armpit, across and beneath your boobs, pecs or chest, and up to your collarbone.
Be aware of any changes in skin such as puckering or dimpling, or any lumps, bumps or skin thickening which are different from the opposite side.
Notice your nipples
- Look at each of your nipples.
Be aware of any nipple discharge that’s not milky, any bleeding from the nipple, any rash or crusting on or around your nipple area that doesn’t heal easily and any change in the position of your nipple
‘It is their love and support that gave me the courage to decide last minute to step out and brave the bald. It’s messages like the above which is why I use my platform to raise awareness and hopefully give others confidence #baldisbeautful.’
She continued: ‘Not saying it was easy and I still miss my long hair dearly but gosh did it feel liberating and it’s breast cancer awareness month which gave me that extra push to do it. Can’t wait to back there with the Strictly family again soon.’
Fans and friends left heartwarming messages for Amy underneath her post, with one reading: ‘You are such an incredible inspiration & role model to so many 🥺 you looked beautiful!! it was so lovely seeing you back at strictly last night 💕💕.’
View this post on Instagram
Another person wrote: ‘I remember taking my headscarf off mid dance when I was bald and it was equally the most scary yet empowering thing I’ve ever done. Well done you for being so brave and showing there can be a good life even with a breast cancer diagnosis and when you are looking a little different. ❤️❤️❤️❤️.’
Someone else added: ‘The absolute guts that must have taken is not to be underestimated. It was breathtaking to see you like that, I am in awe of you, you are simply amazing ❤️.’
The Strictly Come Dancing results show airs tonight at 7.15pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.
Macmillan cancer support