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'I just want to feel beautiful again': Cancer survivor receives Ambush Makeover

We're kicking off National Breast Cancer Awareness Month with Ambush Makeovers for two cancer survivors.

by MC Suhocki /

We're kicking off National Breast Cancer Awareness Month with Ambush Makeovers for two cancer survivors.

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Our Ambush Makeover team of celebrity hairstylist Louis Licari and (as Hoda Kotb called her) "our sassy style siren with a passion for fashion," Jill Martin, used TODAY’s #PinkPower series as inspiration to find two beautiful women who beat cancer to make over.

Susan Bagwell

 Susan Bagwell was so excited about being on TV that she didn't tell her husband. She hoped to surprise him with her makeover. TODAY

Susan Bagwell, 57, visited TODAY from Raleigh, North Carolina, on her husband's birthday with her mother and daughter-in-law. Bagwell was so excited about her makeover that she didn't tell her husband she would be on TV. Her husband was diagnosed with prostate cancer shortly after her own breast cancer returned.

Bagwell's mother told Martin that she wanted Susan's new look to be her husband's "birthday surprise." Bagwell's positive attitude caught Licari and Martin's attention for an Ambush Makeover!

 Susan Bagwell screamed "No!" when she looked in the mirror. Nathan Congleton / TODAY

"No!" Bagwell excitedly shrieked after seeing her new look in the mirror for the first time.

"I don't think we've ever had somebody go, 'No!'" Kathie Lee Gifford said.

 Susan Bagwell reacting to her makeover. TODAY

Licari softened the base color of Bagwell's hair and added natural and soft highlights. The team also layered the hair around Bagwell's face, which lifts it almost like a mini-facelift, Licari said.

Martin put Bagwell in a leather jacket from Chico's, leopard shoes from Talbots and a simple Clara Sunwoo tank that can be worn with any outfit.

Shop Bagwell's look:

TODAY has affiliate relationships, so we may get a small share of the revenue from your purchases. Items are sold by the retailer, not by TODAY. All prices are subject to change and items could sell out based on the merchant’s inventory.

Ruffle-Trim Faux-Leather Jacket, $159, Chico's

Ruffle-Trim Faux-Leather Jacket, $159, Chico's

Mid-Length Tank, $49, Clara Sunwoo

Mid-Length Tank, $49, Clara Sunwoo

Tessa Haircalf Pump - Leopard, $149, Talbots

Tessa Haircalf Pump - Leopard, $149, Talbots

Linda Balentine

 Linda Balentine came to the plaza and just wanted "to feel beautiful again." TODAY

Linda Balentine, 57, beat cancer and came to New York from Muscle Shoals, Alabama, with her son for her yearly checkup. She told Martin, "I just want to feel beautiful again."

 Linda Balentine could not look more beautiful! Nathan Congleton / TODAY

Her Ambush Makeover left her son speechless!

Balentine had an equally emotional reaction when she looked at herself in the mirror.

 Linda Balentine had the best reaction to her makeover! TODAY

"You look beautiful," Hoda said.

Licari said Balentine's hair was too long, so the Ambush team chopped it off. Martin complemented the new 'do with a Clara Sunwoo outfit.

Shop Balentine's look:

Free To Live Women's Wide Leg Boho Palazzo Gaucho Pants, $10, Amazon

Free To Live Women's Wide Leg Boho Palazzo Gaucho Pants, $10, Amazon

Narrow V Tunic, $89, Clara Sunwoo

Narrow V Tunic, $89, Clara Sunwoo

Erica Kitten-Heel Pump - Croc-Embossed, $139, Talbots

Erica Kitten-Heel Pump - Croc-Embossed, $139, Talbots

These two deserving ladies are ready to hit the town with their families!

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