Aug. 16, 2012 at 1:16 PM ET
The Ambush Makeovers are always dramatic, but Thursday's was extra breathtaking on account of Nancy Bouffier, a 55-year-old mom from Long Island, N.Y., who hasn't cut her Rapunzel-meets-Einstein locks since she was 16 years old.
"I thought about cutting my hair, but I (could not) afford it plus I was afraid to go somewhere that was bad," Nancy told TODAY.com. "I never did anything."
The ladies plucked her from the plaza, and the "earthy" Nancy, who makes her own clothes, agreed to let TODAY's style team take the shears to her wild hair — even though she was nervous. An avid fan of the Kathie Lee and Hoda, she watched the show every single day and would always wait for the makeover to come. "I kept saying, one day that'll be me."
Before you could say Louis Licari La-la-la-la-la-la, Nancy looked positively modelesque in a short, sexy shag. Her son and best friend were literally left speechless, and possibly in danger of passing out.
"I'm surprised I'm not on the floor," said her son Jessie, 36, who stared blankly with his mouth agape.
Talking to TODAY.com after the segment, Jessie talked about his shocked expression. "You can tell by my reaction that I was blown away, if not unconscious..." he joked. "It completely knocked me out. It took me more than a few minutes to realize it was my mother standing there instead of a double or face switch."
She looked amazing, because, duh, Louis is a genius and should be canonized.
"This just goes to show what a haircut, hair dye, a good outfit and a bottle of Scotch can do," Louis said.
Jessie wasn't the only one completely taken aback by his mother's look. Nancy herself couldn't believe it. "When I looked in the mirror, I said, 'It can't be me,'" she told TODAY.com. "I feel like a princess."
What's next for Nancy? Her son, a film school graduate, says his mom has caught the acting bug, and he's been taking her to open castings in the city.
"Anything is possible," he said.
Tonight, Nancy plans on dancing in her new 'do — and shocking her friends.
"I'm going to walk in and not say anything," she said. "They're going to be like, where's Nancy?"
Julieanne Smolinski is a TODAY.com contributor who has, personally, only gotten into trouble with hair dye and Scotch.
Danika Fears contributed reporting.