Growing up, Holly was always told by her father that a woman had to have long hair or she wouldn’t be pretty. The Destin, FL resident took that sad opinion to heart as a child and carried the insecurity with her into adulthood. Eventually, it was what led her to the most epic haircut of her life.

Holly had been growing out her hair for years, and in her effort to conform to her father’s idea of “pretty”, she lost much of her confidence.

Fast forward to 2017. Holly has met someone special and is getting married to them later this year, but there was one problem looming over their special day: she didn’t feel beautiful. And every bride should feel beautiful for their wedding.

In preparation for the event, Holly decided to take matters into her own hands. She knew her hair had gotten way out of control and she wasn’t going to let it slide for one of the most incredible days of her life. So she visited hairstylist Sara Pestella at Avant Garde Salon for a complete transformation.

Holly after first cut.Instagram via Jeremy Hartfield
When Holly arrived, her long hair hung around her hips, dragging down her small frame. Her disgruntled locks were also two-toned; the bottom was an old bleach blonde color and the roots were a deep brown.

It was pretty clear that Holly didn’t feel beautiful or comfortable in her own skin, and it seems apparent why. She had kept her hair long for all the wrong reasons and now she was hiding behind it, losing her lovely self in the process.

Sara Pestella was bent on fixing that.

Holly before and after makeover.Instagram via Jeremy Hartfield
In total, the makeover took about seven hours. Two feet of hair were trimmed from Holly’s mane and she was also given a gorgeous dye-job: some golden blonde color that looks amazing on her! Sara gave Holly’s hair some effortless, cool-girl waves that really brought her long bob (or “lob”) together — and voila! The hair transformation was complete.

But the salon didn’t stop there. They helped Holly play around with makeup, giving her look that was both natural and glamorous on her. By the time every aspect of the makeover was done, Holly looked like a completely different person. Best of all, she felt like herself again.

Pestella spoke with Modern Salon about the incredible makeover, saying that because of this epic change, “Holly feels beautiful in her own skin.”

Holly after makeover.Instagram via Jeremy Hartfield
We may not know Holly personally, but we feel like we do! How many of us have done something (or not something) to our physical appearance because we wanted to look “pretty” for other people? Probably too many to count.

It may have taken years of not feeling pretty, but we couldn’t be more inspired by Holly deciding to do something for herself and make a change. We’re sure she’s going to look gorgeous for her wedding, but we hope she keeps up with whatever beauty routine makes her happy long after her big day!

What do you think of this mind-blowing makeover? Share your thoughts on Holly’s story and her new look in the comments section below.