Thursday, January 26, 2012

Hair - good, bad and ugly

So I got my hair cut last week.

My stylist took off 4 inches.

This was a mildly traumatic event for me because it represented change and once I got past 40, I discovered I do not embrace change with the same enthusiasm I used to.

But when it came to hair, I really needed a change. I tend to get in hair style ruts and once I find something that works, it’s hard to convince me to change. Nope. Not good with change at all. Don't even get me started on my continuing quest to find the perfect hair color.

It was all Jamie’s fault. Again.

Seriously. The Big Red Dog has had more impact on my hair style (or lack thereof) over the last 12 1/2 years than any vagaries of fashion.

When I got Jamie in the fall of 1999, I had long wavy hair that spent most of its life in a pony tail because I wasn’t really given to messing with it. You say “styling.” I say “messing.”

Jamie was a very cuddly puppy (12 1/2 years later, at 60 pounds, he’s still very cuddly) and I spent a lot of time holding him in my arms. He would snuggle up, put his muzzle under my ear, then with a quick snap and grab, he would yank the scrunchie right out of my pony tail. OUCH! A little of that went a long way.

That was the first inspiration to get my hair cut short. I went short. Shorter. Shortest. I look at our HIT pic from Terv nationals in 2004 and holy buckets, I think my hair was shorter than the Farmer’s!

Then a year ago, when Jamie was so sick and we were still chasing the IBD diagnosis, I was overdue to have my hair trimmed but during that horrible month, it seemed like all I had time for were trips to the emergency vet. Once things settled down and Jamie was on the mend, my very short hair had gone into business for itself. It didn’t look too bad. It looked okay. In fact, I kind of liked it. OMG, I wanted long hair again. What was I thinking?

And so I spent the next 12 months growing out my short layers. Fortunately, I’m one of those people who has relatively fast growing hair. There were a few months that were kind of scary (have you ever seen gravity defiant layers being grown out? I swear they were growing horizontally, NOT a good look) but by January of this year, I had shoulder length hair again.

I liked it. For about a week.

Then it made me crazy. It was everywhere it shouldn’t be. It was in my face. It was in my mouth. I’m used to picking dog hair out of everything - my breakfast, my toothbrush, the refrigerator - and it doesn’t bother me a bit but I drew the line at picking HUMAN hair out of the same things. Ewww. Yuck. Gross.

And so the crisis begin. I needed short hair again.

How short? What style? Go back to the short layers? But I’d had that style for years. Try something new? Oh lord, change. I can’t deal. My co-workers were very helpful, offering suggestions on styles that would be “adorable” and “super cute.”

Hmmm. I’m not really an adorable, super cute kind of gal.

When all was said and done, my stylist cut my now-all-one-length-no-longer-layered hair in a bob. Okay. Fine. Good. Low maintenance. Cute enough for who it’s for.

Then she started with the hair goop. Oops, product. She moussed, gelled, scrunched, spritzed and blow dried on the lowest, slowest speed I’ve ever seen a hair dryer produce. I’m used to blasting my head with my trusty old Conair on high. It could blow a pomeranian off a grooming table. More hair goop. More spray. More scrunching.

In the time it took her to style this new cut, I could have taken the dogs out, fed them, showered, dressed and eaten breakfast.

The result was . . . um . . . amazing. I was impressed. Truly. It looked super. It didn’t move. I could have gotten hit by a tornado and that hair would not have moved a fraction. It was kind of scary on a lot of different levels.

There was no way in hell I was going to be able to replicate that look the next morning. But then, I didn’t plan on spending more than five minutes on it, either.

That was a week ago. I’ve mastered slooooow blow drying to retain natural curl and ventured into minimal application of hair goop and the results are acceptable. I’ll probably stick with this style for awhile. I really don’t want to have to deal with change again.


  1. Congratulations on the hair change!! A few years ago I had my hair chemically straightened. Once I get up the money for it again (it's horrifying how much it cost - I'm embarrassed to tell people, but then again they might not believe it anyway) I would LOVE to have it done again. It didn't frizz!! No matter if it got wet, or the humidity, or anything, it was GORGEOUS. My hair is still long, way down my back. Yes it does touch my butt. I love my long hair. I don't want to cut it short, but I guess one day I'll have to.

  2. I had hair down to my waist until I was 30 or so. On a whim, I got it cut short. So short, it couldn't blow in my eyes or mouth. Oh gosh, I absolutely loved it. Couldn't believe I'd had long hair for so long. No way could I go back to that. If I were male, I'd probably give myself a buzz cut with the #15 Oster blade once a month.

    But, being of the fairer (hah!) sex, I have to drag myself to the stylist to get it whacked off. If it's a windy day and I find myself brushing hair out of my eyes, I know it's time to visit the hair cutter.

    For about 25 years, I've had the same stylist. She long ago quit wasting our time with the old "And how would like it cut this time?" routine. I plunk myself in the chair and fall asleep while she scissors away.

    Disaster struck a few months ago. She closed the business. I'm sitting here with this hair in my eyes, getting more annoyed with it by the day. But I don't want to shop for a hair dresser. I just want to go in, say "the usual" and fall asleep.

    The #15 blade is looking more attractive every day.

  3. I just got done reading your entire blog (creepy sounding, isn't it?) and it took five days but hey, it's addicting.

    I used to have two and a half foot long hair then I took welding classes. It was a huge fire hazard, so it came off. I went about 3-4 inches long, the shortest I'd had it. Over the years I kept growing it out long enough to make a short ponytail then hacking it off and donating it to those places that make wigs for cancer patients.
    One day I got fed up with it. My hair is the kind that is naturally very oily. No matter what I do to it, the oil comes back within hours of washing. If I wash too much, it gets very itchy and dry. So I decided to buy a 1" guard for the buzzer and got rid of it.
    I never thought I'd like a buzz cut but I am convinced I don't ever want long hair again. Sure, I get mistaken for a guy on a daily basis but that's been happening for about 10 years anyways.

    The best part? It somehow keeps my fedora on my head when the wind tries to knock it into the river or off a cliff.