Why Elizabeth Gilbert shaved her head.

Few people experience the level of success Elizabeth Gilbert has.

The journalist and author had her memoir, Eat, Pray, Love, turned into a movie starring Julia Roberts, and the book itself has sold over 12 million copies since its release.

Watch: The Advice Elizabeth Gilbert Would Give Her Younger Self. Post continues below.

Video via OWN.

She now continues to write - something she does best.

In her newsletter, Gilbert, 54, answered The Oldster Magazine questionnaire, talking openly about how getting older has changed her perspective on life.

For many, ageing is a terrifying thought, but Gilbert looks at it differently, saying it gave her the “wisdom, independence, financial independence, sobriety, freedom, dozens of tools for handling the chaos of my mind and of the world.”

The author delved into the confidence that comes with age, and her lack of desire to conform to society's expectations of women.

In 2016, Gilbert experienced her second divorce after deciding to end her 9-year-long marriage to Jose Nunes. 

Two months later she announced her relationship with Syrian-born author and musician Rayya Elias, who sadly died in January 2018 after battling pancreatic and liver cancer. 


Elizabeth Gilbert and Rayya Elias, who died in 2018 after battling pancreatic and liver cancer. Image: Getty.

Now that she’s overcome the grief of losing the woman she loved, Gilbert is in no rush to settle down. Instead, she’s enjoying living life in solitude.

“I had been taught by my family and culture that there is nothing more tragic than a single, childless, middle-aged woman,” Gilbert wrote. 


“But as someone who has now been twice-divorced and once widowed, I am amazed by how great it is to be on my own, to live alone, to travel alone, to chart my own course in life without having to run it by anyone."

Recently, Gilbert shaved off all the hair on her head just because. It was something she had dreamt about for years but was too afraid to take the plunge.

Elizabeth Gilbert before shaving off her hair. Image: Getty.

For Gilbert, shaving her head was a statement, one that said she no longer cared about conventional beauty standards.


For years, Gilbert would dye her hair and inject Botox into her face, fearing that if she didn’t, she wouldn’t be considered pretty anymore.

But then when she observed men, she realised that the same things women are told to cover up and erase were being celebrated on the opposite sex.

It was then that she decided to throw away arbitrary beauty standards, thinking to herself, “If I can’t do this - if I can’t be as free as any man my age - what woman can?”

“I have more freedom than almost any woman I know. I have no partner to please, no kids to embarrass, no boss to appease, no asses I have to kiss to make my money - and yet I still have to care about these idiotic beauty standards, that are so random and stupid and boring and played out? No. No more,” she wrote.

“So I said: f*** it. I bought some clippers and took off all my hair, and I also stopped messing with my face. And I love it. I think I look gorgeous. I think I look more like myself than I have ever looked in my life. Because when I look in the mirror, I see a woman who looks FREE.”

Now, instead of sporting a blonde bob, Gilbert rocks a buzz cut all while embracing her greys and everything else that comes with age - and she has never looked better.

Feature Image: Elizabeth Gilbert Substack.

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