Sheila Bridges is an award-winning interior designer whose skill creates beauty wherever it’s needed, whether it’s the 8,300 square foot Harlem offices for former President Bill Clinton and his staff, or her own personal home. The beauty she creates professionally has earned her the title of being named “America’s Best Interior Designer” by CNN and Time Magazine. But almost a decade ago in 2004, Sheila was diagnosed with alopecia–an autoimmune disorder that results in extreme hair loss. Her diagnosis caused her to examine her own notion of beauty, which she talks about on this week’s “Oprah: Where Are They Now?” on the OWN Network.
Sheila, whose first time on Oprah was all the way back in 2002 as she gave a tour of her country home, returned to meet with Oprah to discuss her decision to go completely bald and learning to redefine beauty. Part of Sheila’s pre-alopecia persona was her curly hair–so learning to deal with hair loss was no doubt a shock to the designer. She told Oprah, “If you look to the outside world or to the media to define what’s beautiful, I’m certainly not that.’ She goes on to mention that typical notions of beauty are usually unattainable, and there are often no other references for a-typical types of beauty–especially for Sheila. These difficulties led Sheila to the realization that in order to find a reference point, she had to look within herself.
Looking inside gave Sheila the conclusion that to her, beauty is defined as feeling comfortable in your own skin, having strength, and having courage to be yourself.
Check out the preview clip of Sheila’s episode below and be sure to tune into OWN this Sunday at 10 pm/9 pm central to watch!