I love my hair; it’s amazing. It’s thick, perfectly ombré and smooth. I’ve always enjoyed styling and dying it, and experimenting with different lengths.

Before I got married last year, I was undecided on whether or not to cover it. Then I got some hair scarves from one of my rebbetzins for my bridal shower and asked her to teachI don’t particularly want to stand out in a crowd me how to tie them. It wasn’t too difficult, and the scarves were beautiful. The day after my wedding, I decided to wear one on my head.

I tried this for a few weeks, but the scarves kept slipping off. And I felt like I was so obviously religious in them. I’m a shy person and don’t particularly want to stand out in a crowd. I decided to wear hats instead and not cover my hair fully.

I did that for a few months. While traveling around the world on my honeymoon, airport authorities would ask me to take off my hat. I didn’t want to cause a scene, especially in places in Europe, where public anti-Semitism has occurred a lot recently, so I did, but that became uncomfortable, too.

I was told to get a sheitel (a wig) if I didn’t like hats, and that seemed a reasonable idea. Though I was against sheitels before I got married, I didn’t feel very pretty in scarves or hats. I dropped more than $1,000 on one of the least expensive wigs I could find and wore it to a wedding.

I was horrified whenI was horrified when I saw the pictures! I saw the pictures afterwards! The wig had slipped back, and you could see my hairline. The netting on the sheitel was showing in some other shots. I didn’t look like myself at all. I was so embarrassed that I put the sheitel in my closet and there it sat for several months. I gave up hats as well.

This all happened at a time when I wasn’t learning anything new about Judaism. I didn’t have a study partner, and I wasn’t even reading the Torah portion every week like I had previously done.

My husband noticed my lack of interest in spirituality and suggested that I learn with my Chabad rebbetzin. She’s a woman who radiates holiness. I’ve never seen her lose her cool or hear her talk badly of anyone or anything. I always walk away from conversations with her feeling uplifted.

She gave a class on the Rebbe’s teachings about wearing sheitels, along with the halachas behind it. I learned that blessings radiate from your hair and when you cover it, you’re protecting yourself and your family. I looked at her—a successful and centered woman—and decided that I should give it a try. I thought of my other rebbetzin, who also wears a sheitel and looks great in it. All of the women I admire in my community for their hard work and devotion wore them.

So, I decided to give my wig another try. I got it cut and dyed. I figured out how I could style it on my own and make it look more natural. When I put it on, I felt what the rebbetzin had described: safe. It looked gorgeous, especially compared to my natural hair. That was surprising.

It’s been a few months since I got my wig back from the hairdresser. Now, I wear it all the time. I wear it on Shabbat and when I’m at the comedy club with my husband, who is a comedian. I go to business meetings in it and put it on when I fly to avoid having to remove my hat again.

One of the big reasons I was hesitant to wear my wig was that I felt like it was a bold statement. I thought that my non-sheitel wearing friends would think I wasNow, I wear it all the time going extreme, and I thought the more religious ones would hold me to a higher standard. And if I thought that if I ever decide to stop wearing it for reasons that might have nothing to do with Judaism, then people would judge me and think I’ve suddenly lost the faith.

But I’ve realized that all of this is social anxiety. What matters is how my wig makes me feel now, which is a stronger connection to G‑d. It’s my personal choice to put it on or not. No one can judge me except for Him.

When I wear my wig, I’m not trying to show that I’m an observant Jew or that I’m some great holy person. I’m just doing my best—with the halachas and the guidelines I was given—to feel closer to G‑d.