Sunday, 19 July 2015

On hair

I'm just on a blogging roll this weekend. It's great - but also because I'm going to have a busy week coming up and so I'm using this weekend to relax and blog and colour (I got on that adult colouring train, and it is genius. I picked up a colouring book after work this week and I'm in love. I miss painting very much and strongly suspect all of my paint has dried up in the last two years, as I still don't have anywhere good to paint, but I'm too afraid to look. Colouring is my new tiny apartment-friendly outlet, though I curse way more when I realize my pencil leads are broken that I did the last time I coloured) and watch way too many episode of Parks and Recreation. Despite their hatred for the library, I still love it.

Okay, I just went to go check on my paints. They're fine. This is good.


I got my hair cut last Tuesday, which was long overdue. Prior to that, the last time I had my hair cut was May 2014. And before that, April 2013. I tend to switch between two stages: I like to keep my hair shorter and therefore go for regular trims every 8-10 weeks. Or I decide I'm going to grow my hair out, go for one hair cut to shape it and then ignore my hair for a year until the ends feel like straw and it's so shapeless that it's impossible to manage. Rather, more impossible to manage. My hair is fairly uncontrollable, and since I stopped trying to beat it into perfectly straight submission in high school, I have been a happier person. 

The last time I had piles of hair: 20.

However, the truth about my hair is that I just don't give a fuck. I really, really don't. I personally believe that spending more than thirty seconds on my hair in the morning is a waste of my time. I hate brushing it. I hate washing it. I hate how much I shed in a day. (Since I have a lot of hair, there's a lot of shedding. I was at my new job for a week and there was already a pile of hair I could scrape off the carpet. It was a tiny bit gross.) I hate dealing with it at all.

If I hadn't suffered the short hair humiliation from having a pixie cut ages 4 through 10, with a few brief longer hair breaks, I might be okay with cutting it all off now. But I've heard the frankly shitty things people will say to a little girl with short hair, and I have no interest listening to what I'm sure would be the shittier things they'd say to a young woman. 

TANGENT: the reason I had short hair for most of my childhood is because I refused to brush it and so my parents had it chopped off. Sometime around 10 years old, I picked up a brush and convinced my mother to let me grow it out. Sometime during puberty, my hair changed from straight to wavy, and when I was 18 or 19, I decided to embrace it. I stopped brushing my hair and beating the waves away. When I went home for Christmas after I started wearing my hair wavy, my mom told me my hair looked really nice and she loved my new style. ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME.

Scarring remarks from childhood aside, I actually don't like short hair because it requires more work than long hair. You have to get it trimmed often. You have to style it, and I have hair that doesn't care for styling. Or looking not ridiculous at shorter lengths. It just demands more of me that I'm not willing to give. 

Hiding my short, unstyled, uncooperative hair with a bobby pin and the Cape Breton Highlands.

Long hair comes with its own set of problems, though. People seem to be really okay with touching it. What is up with that? I don't really have remarkable hair. It's brown. It's vaguely wavy. It's very fine, but I have a ton of hair, so it's soft. I don't dye it, I don't brush it, and I certainly don't want you touching it. It gets caught under my purse strap. It's heavy. It's really warm (good in the winter. Very bad in the summer). It takes forever to air dry (I don't own a blow dryer, and I always shower at night, so that I sleep on damp hair. When it gets to a certain length, it's still damp in the morning). 

I have a lot of issues with hair. 

And yet, for all of its annoyances, I'm pretty lucky. I have hair that tends to thrive on my neglect. I can do pretty much whatever I want to it, and it remains pretty healthy. It probably helps that I don't dye it, since I couldn't be arsed to keep that up either. I dyed it a darker brown once, with semi-permanent dye. I loved it until I realized that I'd have to regularly dye it. I haven't dyed it since. I don't use heat on it if I can possibly help it. 

Last summer's hair.

With all of this in mind, I marched into the salon for my appointment after work. I had never been to this salon, but it was in the mall below the building my library is in, so I booked my appointment there. I've never really had a regular hairdresser in my life, except for 2012-2013, when I cut off ten inches of hair and had an inverted bob. I loved my inverted bob. It suited me so well. It was also a pain in the ass that required styling every day and a trim every 8 weeks to keep from looking ridiculous. During this time, I had an amazing hairdresser at a salon that was a minute walk away from my apartment. I got my roommate to go to her too. We loved this salon. But like many good things in my life then, it had to come to an end when we graduated and moved out of the tiny university town we lived in. She in fact cut my hair in April 2013, when I got her to cut my hair into a layered bob, and get rid of the inverted part, in preparation for the fact that I was moving and didn't know when I'd find a new hairdresser. As it turns out, I still haven't, though I think there's potential for the one I had on Tuesday. If I don't move. 

The inverted bob, may it rest in peace.

I asked her to cut my hair to just above shoulder-length, and give it short layers. I also did the unthinkable: asked for some recommendations on styling products. This may seem counter to my usual stance of do nothing, but I finally learned a few years ago that if I can find something that can be put in my hair overnight (I wash my hair at night), then my hair looks better and I can still do very little to it. I've been using Haus of Gloi's hair oil for a couple of years now, but I've really resisted using other products in my hair, which tends to make me look a bit like an haystack, particularly as I go further and further between haircuts. 

I explained to the hairdresser that I need styling products that will continue to allow me to be incredibly lazy about my hair. She ended up using a couple of products from Redken's Curvaceous line (the Full-Swirl cream-serum and the Wind-Up spray) and the same creature that compelled me to ask for recommendations bought them. I've never purchased salon products before, so the price tag made me clutch my pearls a bit, but after several days of using them, I kind of love them a bunch and a little goes a long way. They give me the deliberately messy, textured look, rather than the sloppy, wavy mess.


But let's not go crazy here, I'm still dismissive of my hair. I think what I really need is someone else to come deal with it for me, and I'll just read a magazine or something while they wrestle it into submission. Unfortunately, I picked a career that won't make me ostentatiously wealthy and so this is a pipe dream.

I am pretty happy about this haircut, though I don't think I'll be including hair in my beauty musings any time soon.


  1. Super randomly, you look SO MUCH like Kacey Rohl, the actress that was in Hannibal recently.

    Apologies for the drive-by comment!

    1. I have no idea who that is so now I'm going to look her up!

      And no worries, drive by comments are welcome!


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