Why do some orders of religious sisters require the sisters to shave their heads?

I am discerning a call to the religious life, and I was wondering why some orders have the sisters shave their heads. Is it a symbol for humility or does it mean something else entirely? Thank you!

Dear friend,

Our culture considers a woman’s hair to be a principal aspect of her beauty and status. Some woman who have consecrated their lives to God, have traditionally covered their hair in some way as a sign of their consecration. The members of some orders have shaved their heads for this purpose or for easier access to the head gear they wore. Today most women religious whose head gear covers all their hair, keep their hair cut quite short. I don’t know of any, except possibly the Carthusian nuns, who still shave their heads.

Fr. Vincent Serpa, O.P.

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