ORLANDO, Fla. – If you get your haircut in Central Florida, you may be a world record-holder and not even know it ... well, our strands of hair, that is.
Thousands of people from across the country, mostly in Central Florida, contributed to the world’s largest hairball.
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“The first 100 pounds came from Ohio,” Floyd’s Barbershop Florida Franchise Partner Sarah Sleeth said.
The idea sparked by Ohio stylist Steve Warden spread to Ripley’s Believe It Or Not!, the organization ironing out the logistics to get Floyd’s Barbershops in Central Florida involved to help create a world record-breaking ball of hair.
“Everyone asks us, ‘Why would you want to do this?’ I think the better question is ‘Why not?’” Sleeth said.
November-December 2021, the chain of barbershops collected hair from its clients, sweeping it up and putting them in bins.
“We had big black trash bags full. I mean pounds and pounds of hair Ripley’s was picking up to add to the ball of hair,” Sleeth said.
Some of that hair was cut by Floyd’s manager and stylist Cameron Balmer.
“It was kind of crazy because growing up I used to read all the Guinness World Record books. So being able to see the behind-the-scenes of what all goes into it, was awesome. It’s like a huge production,” Balmer said.
In the span of a month, Floyd’s collected about 120 pounds of hair.
“No hair went untouched. Every strand of hair went to that hairball,” Sleeth said.
Along with the original donations and hair mailed in from all over the country, ‘Hoss the Human Hair Ball’ was born. The hairball took on a life of its own. The hairball has eyes, arms, legs and wears a yellow hat. It’s Central Floridians who have made the largest contribution to the record-breaking hairball.
Hoss weighs a hefty 225 pounds, sitting at 3-feet tall with a 9-foot waistline.
“There’s all these shades of brown and out of nowhere there’d be like a blue or pink. Super creepy, super unsettling,” Balmer said.
“It definitely grossed me out. But our stylists and barbers are used to cutting hair so I don’t think it bothered them,” Sleeth said.
As gross as he may seem, Hoss has also given back. His campaign has raised tens of thousands of dollars for Give Kids The World, a nonprofit based in Central Florida providing critically ill children and their family’s weeklong wish vacations at no cost.
“Seeing all the different events for the charity and seeing it was for a good cause, made it worth it. There was such an outcry of support,” Balmer said.
Hoss is now officially recognized by the Guinness World Records as the largest ball of human hair ever created.
“15,000 of our local Central Floridians were a part of that hairball and can put themselves down as part of the Guinness World Record,” Sleeth said.
Ripley’s Believe It Or Not! said the hairball is not on display locally, it’s being stored at the corporate warehouse for now.
However, Ripley’s did celebrate the accomplishment kicking off the new year with their own version of the ball drop featuring the large hairball. They streamed video live of the countdown ball drop on Facebook.