Japanese Rapunzel Hasn’t Cut Her Hair in 15 Years

35-year-old Rin Kambe has been dubbed the Japanese Rapunzel because of her nearly 6-feet-long mane, which she hasn’t cut in 15 years.

Rin, who hails from Tokyo, was never allowed to grow her hair as a child.  She was on the girl’s football team so had to keep it short, but when she became an adult, she decided to take control of her hair and use it as a “weapon of expression”. The last time she cut her hair was 15 years ago, and now her straight, black locks measure 5ft 10in, a good 4 inches more than Rin herself. Although her hair sometimes gets in the way when doing the simplest of tasks, like changing her clothes, the Japanese dancer and model said that she loves her long mane, adding that it encapsulates the “beauty of Asia”.

Photo: Rin Kambe/Instagram

“I grew up with strict parents and when I was a kid, I was on the girls’ soccer team and always had a short cut because of this,” Rin Kambe told Daily Star. “I grew my hair when I started dancing seriously at around twenty and my hair is now floor length. I began to grow my hair because I wanted to shine in my own way.”

The 35-year-old says that she constantly gets asked if her hair is real, and that people’s reactions to it are mixed. Some are really impressed by it, while some consider it too much. Even though she has been the target of hateful comments on social media because of her unusual look, Rin says she has learned to accept that everyone is entitled to their opinion.

“I get a lot of reactions to my hair. There are men in the world who appreciate it and there are also people who think that it is a monster,” Kambe said. “I think it’s only natural that there are different opinions in the world and if I didn’t believe in myself I would be swayed by the negative opinions. I’m willing to accept other people’s opinions. Either way, I’m glad people are interested in me because I transform it into a strength that shines in my own way.”

Despite the occasional criticism, Rin Kambe considers her hair “a thing of beauty” and has no plans of cutting it anytime soon. It’s become a “weapon of expression” for her and she has even found ways of incorporating it in her dance routines.

Rin is one of several real-life Rapunzels we’ve featured on OC over the years. She is now in the company of Ukrainian Rapunzel Alena Kravchenko, who hasn’t cut her locks in 30 years, Trinh Thi Nghien, whose 3-meter-long hair had to be bundled together in a thick, snake-like mass, or Frankie Cluney, who hasn’t washed her six-feet-long hair in over 20 years.