Notes on a Haircut

Recently, I decided to cut my hair. Generally speaking, I have never really been one for the dramatics of a haircut. I’ve cut it all off and grown it out an infinite amount of times, and never really felt too particularly dramatic about it. To be honest, I’ve certainly had some freak-outs over some awful cuts. One time I threw a hairdryer. But that’s a story for another time.

If we’re really going to talk about haircuts though, you should understand that I inherited this whacky mane from my mother, which really consists of really coarse, really thick, really wavy hair that admittedly is versatile. However, I went through some awkward times as a teenager where I had no idea what to do with it, or how to cut it, or how to lean into the crazy. But really. Who are we kidding? I STILL don’t really know what to do with it or how to fix it. I can’t wield a round brush without getting it hopelessly and excruciatingly tangled. (One time I even thought I was going to have to have my husband cut it out with a pair of scissors.) Either way, I’ve done a lot of stuff with it, spanning the haircut from the cover of Ryan Adams’ album “Gold” to a Keith Richards inspired rock mullet. I ain’t afraid of a little crazy ‘do.
After awhile, though, I just started to grow out all of the layers from the aforementioned rock mullet and took some detours into bang territory (not a good idea for me). Finally I got my hair to a really good place. It was long, wavy, and is likely my most defining feature. I was really lovin’ it. Then I had the baby, and it seemed easier to just keep the locks long. I could braid it, tie it in a knot on top of my head, and I could generally keep it out of the grasp of my daughter’s little hands. And then, one day, I woke up and it looked like shit. I wasn’t sure for how long it had been looking so rough, but I certainly hadn’t been taking care of it. I rarely wash my hair anyway, but because it was so long and thick, I found washing it to be cumbersome and time consuming. I was wearing it in a top knot EVERY day, and I wasn’t really bothering to dry it. Lazy. I was being lazy. And then I found this girl on Pinterest who had my hair type, which is not something I often find. She had this amazing short ‘do, and my wheels started turning.
Here is where my dilemma starts.
I am a Southern woman. That statment covers a multitude of topics and sins, and the explanation of that could cover the subject matter for it’s own blog. However, in this context, it basically means that I, like most Southern women of a certain age, can gather infinte wisdom from the oracles that are “Steel Magnolias” and “Designing Women.” For this particular haircut scenario, all I could think about was the scene in “Steel Magnolias” where the diabetic Shelby informs her mother, M’lin, that she’s heading to Truvy’s to cut off her hair. In a knowing way, M’lin says, “I think that would be precious.” But really, you know that Shelby is a worn out new mother and wants her hair gone because it’s too much trouble.She feels the need to simplify. Now, I do not have any health issues, but being a new mom is hard, and you tend to see these women cutting off their hair when the a) have kids or b) hit middle age. I was immediately worried that I would look like a soccer mom, and that is definitely not a look I’m going for. My immediate thoughts were, “I DO NOT WANT TO BE SHELBY.”
Come to find out though, it turned out pretty cool. I have to do literally nothing to it. I’m finally learning to lean into the crazy, unorganized mess that is my hair. I have to do nothing to make this haircut look good. I get out of the shower, maybe I spray it with some salt spray. In fact, we went to the beach last weekend and I just let the salt water do it’s thing. I didn’t even bother washing it while we were there and it was like hair magic. And I’m pretty sure I don’t look like a soccer mom. The way I look at it, sometimes you just need to shake up your look to keep things fresh. And who knew I had so much to say about a stinkin’ haircut?


11 Responses

  • Thank you for sharing and HOLY BOMBSHELL! You look like a movie star. Looks really incredible. I am so struggling with my crazy mess. I have been told to embrace the crazy. Been toying with the idea of a pixie. Mine is a bit tighter curls and has gotten curlier with each child to my dismay. Way to work it mama. You look hot.

  • Ok, comment attempt two. So, I’m not from the South, though I wish I were. (Born and raised in San Diego.) But I knew I had to read the post if it referenced one of my all time faves, “Steel Magnolias” and then to see it mentioned “Designing Women” too – I mean, I had to read on. I recently treated myself to a cut and color after not coloring my hair since before getting married. One hundred and seventy dollars later – holy sh*t! – I am happy, though the change is subtle, not a dramatic lopping off like this. Like Shelby, I am going through some health issues and felt I needed to pamper myself. I have quite curly hair but last time I cut it short I was 7 months pregnant and let’s just say – it was not a good look at the time… This cut is modern, soft, feminine and easy. Love it. And the post.

  • Well DUH it’s amazing. Your hair has the perfect texture for that cut, and I’m crazy jealous. My hairs were that short after a mullet meltdown incident the day of my 30th birthday (THAT was fun), and it’s finally grown out to where I can put it in a little bitty bun. HALLELUJAH. My hair does this weird half straight/half frizzy thing that I really just can’t figure out. I think I’m just going to resign to the fact that I have to just grow it out. Blerg.



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