In the last few weeks, my hair has been falling out at an alarming rate. Anybody who knows me will know that this isn’t exactly a nightmare for me per se, as my hair is usually the thickest, frizziest blonde mess you ever did see. However individual hairs have been falling out much more than usual, and while I know there’s no chance of me going bald – at least for a good while – as a result, it does mean that my hair is in poor condition and ratty. On top of that, it means that there are constantly massively long hairs within the reach of Travis, if not on his actual person, which makes me worried that he’ll try to eat them. Because, of course, what could be more appetising than overbleached strands of hair?
I’ve not had hair shorter than my bra clasp (my specific go-to length) since I was 17, and there’s a very good reason for that. When I was about 9, I chopped all my hair off into a bob after outgrowing my typical 90s kid fringe which started at the crown of my head. Ok, I wasn’t allowed near the scissors, a hairdresser did the deed, but you know what I mean. As a result of this child rebellion, I ended up looking like Aaron Carter. Coupled with the fact that I was a massive tomboy at the time (wearing culottes and trousers to school when they were considered as breaking the uniform rules for girls), I really did just look like a little boy. Not that I minded at the time, but as I grew up I decided to be less ambiguous about my gender, mainly because I liked more girly styles and, truth be told, girls had more choice in terms of style than boys. Aaaaaanyway, huge anecdote aside, I wasn’t really up for short hair again until I was 17.
I can’t remember my exact reasons for this, I think there was a combination of thinking it would make me look older (yes, underage pub entry!) as well as cutting out the various black flashes through my hair (it was fashionable at the time. Ask any emo) to allow my hair to recover from overstyling, overcolouring, overbleaching – basically a bunch of excess. My hair was undoubtedly more rock and roll than I as a teen. It coincided with the summer between school and uni so I think it was probably some sort of coming-of-age thing. Except it went horribly wrong. It widened my face (some feat considering I had chipmunk cheeks to begin with), washed me out and was a general pain in the arse to style every day (I’m lazy). All in all, it was a disaster, especially as I didn’t even gain any extra pub entry out of it. So, about 3 weeks later, on holiday in Turkey, a nice young Turkish man spent way more time than he had planned to fit over 300 human hair extensions into my head. It took a good chunk of the day off my holiday but added years of happiness to my life.
The happiness was temporary as the extensions began to fall out, but my hair grew as fast as it could so that by the time I was 18 I had my beloved length back. And in the last 10 years I’ve never let it get shorter than my go-to length – until now.
Absolutely dreading the chop, but understanding it was necessary, I braved 2 feet of snow to walk to my hairdressers at the beginning of the month. The hairdresser in question was the same girl who cut my short do all those years ago, so she was understanding and asked me about 17 times if I definitely wanted that much off. To be honest, I didn’t want it off, I just needed it off. Using the band-aid psychology, but secretly dying inside, I told her to just do it before I changed my mind. With each snip, all I could think were things like ‘what if it just keeps falling out and I need to go shorter’ or ‘what if I look like a bloated chipmunk again when I already feel like a post-natal fail whale’ but, most importantly, ‘what if the wee man doesn’t recognise me?’
Each of these turned out to be a ridiculous notion (well, maybe not the first one, as I’m still finding hairs everywhere), as my hair is now healthy and vibrant looking again – and not too short really. My hairdresser chopped it to just below the shoulders with lots of choppy layers to mask the fallout and thinning in areas. It certainly feels in better condition than before, and on the plus side, it only takes a few minutes to dry now!
I’m still not 100% sure if I suit the style, but know it looks and feels a lot healthier, even if a good bit thinner than usual. If nothing else, I’m sure it helped me get asked for ID when buying some booze from Asda last week so there’s a silver lining I suppose!