It had been 37 years since one U.S. woman had changed her appearance. Her daughters thought that her style was aging her, but to her it was part of her identity. In the end she appeared on a TV show that transformed her, and her daughters simply couldn’t believe their eyes.
Joan Irvine is an American woman who, over a decade ago, enjoyed her 15 minutes of fame on The Oprah Winfrey Show. There was one particular reason she ended up on the popular daytime show, and it was all to do with her appearance.
Irvine’s daughters, Christine and Cindy, introduced her to the show in 2003 because they thought that there was something that Oprah could do for their mom. The two daughters had watched their mom follow the same routine for years and decided that something needed to change.
Their mom first started doing something to her appearance nearly four decades go, but all those years later they were amazed that her mom hadn’t updated her look at all. Christine and Cindy had an issue with the way that their mom did her hair.
Irvine had been pulling her hair into a tight bouffant for 37 years, without ever adapting to new trends. Not only that, but her outdated hairstyle took a whopping four hours to perfect. Irvine told The Oprah Winfrey Show how she’d get up at 5:30 a.m. every Wednesday to tame her locks.
Her daughters explained how rarely they’d ever get to see their mom’s hair loose when they were growing up. They also commended her on her ability to swim with her head high above the water’s surface, to protect her bouffant. But they still wanted it to go.
But it seemed that Irvine was quite attached to her hairstyle. After all, it took a lot of work, and after 37 years, she had become an expert. Each time she did her hair, she’d have to tease it, wash it in the kitchen sink, put rollers in and then sit under a hairdryer for 45 minutes.
After that, Irvine would take the rollers out, brush her hair through, tease it again, and then spray it with lots of hairspray. To finish it off, she’d insert 12 hair grips to keep it all in place. The finished product was described by her daughters as a “fine chiseled feature on top of her head.”
And in their opinion, it was time for it to be updated. “She needs a makeover, big time,” her daughters told The Oprah Winfrey Show, before adding that, “the beehive thing – it’s gotta go!” They also wanted her wardrobe to be revamped to make their mom look younger.
So before Irvine knew it, she was starring on the popular daytime show, hosted by Oprah Winfrey, ready to undergo a makeover of a lifetime. Before it was time to reveal her new look to the audience, which included Irvine’s two daughters, one of the makeover team said something remarkable.
“Your mom now looks like your sister,” the team member claimed. And then it was time to bring her out to wow the crowd. “Are you ready to see your mom?” Winfrey asked Christine and Cindy, who nodded, looking both nervous and excited.
From behind a screen appeared Irvine, who looked like a totally different woman. The bouffant was gone, and it had been replaced by a classy blonde bob, which made her look years younger. Not only that, but she was dressed in an elegant outfit.
Consequently, the audience went wild, whooping and cheering with approval. And her daughters looked completely amazed by their mom’s new look too, running onto the stage to give her a hug. As for Irvine, she looked happy, confident and radiant.
With a huge smile on her face, Irvine high-fived Oprah as the audience continued to cheer. There’s no doubt that the makeover was deemed a huge success by everyone involved. Irvine looked fantastic, having ditched her outdated hairdo.
And people online agreed. “Seriously, she literally looked 20 years younger. Amazing,” wrote one person who viewed the clip on YouTube. And another commented that post-makeover Irvine looked like the actress and singer Florence Henderson.
Then, 13 years after the makeover, The Oprah Winfrey Show, caught up with Irvine to see how she was doing. The producers did a “Where are they now?” segment on her, and spoke to her via a video link.
Speaking about the makeover over a decade ago, Irvine said that she “certainly gained in confidence,” as a result of her transformation. On top of that, Irvine said that the makeover saved her a lot of time because her new hairstyle was much lower maintenance than the old bouffant.
However, she commented on how strange it was to let go of what she described as her “trademark” hairstyle, which was a part of her identity for so many years. But 13 years since the makeover, she still hadn’t reverted back to the old hairdo.
Irvine told The Oprah Winfrey Show how she has managed to keep up her hobbies of swimming and walking and has been enjoying her retirement. Looking back to her appearance on the show, she fondly described it as “a moment in time.”
“I can’t believe I went through that without falling on my face or something,” she joked. Thirteen years on, there’s no doubt that Irvine still looked as radiant as she did when she first stepped out onto the The Oprah Winfrey Show stage with her brand new look.