Ironic Hair

One of the things I’ve always been frustrated by is hair in my face.  When I was in high school I didn’t know how to style my hair and it usually just hung loose.  I’d either tuck it behind my ears or occasionally I’d pull it back in a pony tail.  Being the oldest I had no one to learn grooming tips from and my mother was no help.  If you’re unaware of my childhood situation there are some previous posts that discuss my formative years, but I’m too lazy to link them here so you’ll need to be interested enough to go find them on your own; helpful aren’t I?

I went to high school in Southern California in the early 70s – most of the girls were slender and feminine.  They wore long gauzy/floaty/floral skirts with complementary blouses or sweater sets, and long straight hair parted in the middle.  Sometimes they’d pin a strand or skinny braid back on either side.  My hair is and always has been thick, wavy, and unruly.  When I parted it in the middle it stuck out at the sides.  Not a look you’d want in high school; the circus maybe.  Think Bozo the Clown only in dishwater blond.  Okay, that could be an exaggeration.

As I got older I tried various styles (as girls will do).  Few of them were successful, though I liked some of them for a while.  I wasn’t entirely happy with my hair until I was in my 40s.  It was then that I began growing out a very short style and the natural wave worked in my favor.  I found a stylist who knew how to cut wavy hair to enhance its qualities.  All was right with the world hair-wise.

Then I met JD and a few months later we were engaged.  For my wedding I wanted something like the dreamy, romantic style below.

wedding hair

Since this was going to be my second and last wedding, I decided to go for it.  My co-worker at the time did this to her own hair all the time and agreed to do my hair for the wedding.  She said I’d have to let it grow out more as it would need to be all one length.  The resulting hairdo was perfect!  I loved how it looked with flowers woven into it.

After the wedding though it quickly became annoying because it was so long and thick.  Seriously, everyone who has ever worked on my hair has commented on the thickness of it or how much I had.  When I’d get my hair done with my SIL she’d be finished way before me.  I realize not everyone would find that irritating and I shouldn’t complain about having hair that is too thick.  But when you deal with it every day – the weight of it on your neck, the bushiness, the frizz – it isn’t as appealing as it sounds.

Fast forward to a few years ago when I braved a new stylist again in an attempt to tame the monster on my head.  I arrived prepared with a photo of my hair pre-wedding, when it was still growing out from the short style and I really liked it.  The image below is similar to how mine looked then, though mine was wavier and a little shorter.

pre-wedding hair

I asked Selena if she could help me approximate this look except I didn’t want the bangs, and damned if she didn’t do a great job!  She even performed some kind of sorcery on the side with the extra bushiness to take out part of the bulk.  Selena’s been cutting my hair ever since.  It’s been about the length you see here for some time, though more layered to take advantage of the waves.

Lately though, as menopause took up residence even this length became unbearable.  It started to seem like my hair doubled in volume mere days after a trim.  I loathe how I look in short-short hair and I am NEVER going back to that.  Some women look adorable with short hair; I’m not one of them and I know it.  So what’s a menopausal, hot-flash and night-sweat suffering woman to do?

I can’t take credit for the solution.  We were watching Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them when I saw what turned out to be my answer.  I adored Queenie’s hair!  Now, mine is nowhere near as wavy as hers is here but I really liked the wedge shape of it and did some research into the style.

queenie's hair

I’m not sure that particular style even has a name, but searching for Queenie’s hair brought up a LOT of other similar styles, many of which were identified as reverse or inverted bobs.  Okay, there have been a few Bobs in my life (my birth father and at least one step father to name 2) but I don’t remember ever having a bob.  Well, maybe once when my kids were young; probably before the short-short hair.

An inverted bob consists of shorter hair in back while the sides/front are longer.  Getting the hair off my neck was my first priority and this seemed to fit the bill.  Now, I could have just had it cut a bit shorter all around, keeping it layered the way I usually wear it.  But then the front would be shorter than I wanted.  Ah yes, if you’re harking back to my first paragraph you’re remembering that I hate hair in my face.  Longer on the sides/in the front would seem counterproductive to that.  Here’s where the irony comes in!  See, I did finally bring it around to that title!  Growing my hair longer in front and on the sides actually helps me keep it out of my face!  When I wore it layered all over, it would grow out to the “too long” point quickly, driving me crazy.  While it was long enough to get in my face and be maddening, there wasn’t enough length to pin it back without having it stick out sideways.  Now that I’m letting it grow out in front and on the sides I have sufficient length that I can twist some strands and pin them back out of the way in a softer, more subtle style.  Score!

I thought this really long post had a point but now that I’ve reached the end I can’t think of it.  Maybe it’s just an excuse to brag about my new style – I had another trim a few weeks ago and I am still loving the results.

So without a point I’m not sure how to end this.  Perhaps the message I’m getting at is this – don’t give up.  The perfect hairstyle is out there!




6 thoughts on “Ironic Hair

  1. Timely post as I am in the hunt for a new stylist. My current one is really cool and funky and she’s all tatted up, but her styling is meh. She really doesn’t do a good job making me look good and I know it’s possible based on past experiences. And she just raised her prices – the final nail in the coffin… Wish me luck! I have some styles on Pinterest I like, but I’d really like to find somebody who has an eye for style and will know what to do with my fine, straight hair (although I have a lot of it…) while I’m growing it out. So happy you found Selena! Now, wish me luck!

    Liked by 1 person

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