Wednesday 18 June 2008

Cutting edge or so sharp it hurts?

There were plenty of cutting edge hairstyles on show at the 32nd Hair Expo in Sydney this week. I love working at hair shows because the crazier the styles are the crazier the makeup can be. My favourite was the Rock Chic segment, crazy hair, painted on tattoos, black lined eyes. Lots of fun.

While I admire the latest look on other people's heads, I am far more conservative when it comes to my own hair. I have tried lots of different hair colours over the years but I am less brave when it comes to getting my hair 'cut'.

Except on one very memorable occasion, that is.

This would be the time when I completely lost my senses and let a gorgeous French hairdresser have way too much freedom with my hair. I had always worn my hair fairly long and was ready for a bit of a change. I felt I was in safe hands because I assumed that anyone from Paris has 'style' as their middle name. No, clearly he was an impostor who was adopted from elsewhere and hadn't taken a dip in that particular part of the gene pool.

As soon as I sat in the chair he firmly told me what style he would be 'doing'. There was no client, stylist discussion. It was his decision. Mmmm short, short, short was his decision. I became brave for a minute and nodded my head. I mean my thoughts at the time were that hair grows quickly and how bad could it actually be given his reputation. Dangerous.

I sat there, hopeful to begin with ...until it quickly became apparent that I was on the verge of an irrecoverable disaster. My lovely long hair was being cut off chunk by chunk in uneven lengths all over my head. I thought I was going to hyperventilate. The language barrier didn't help. I don't think my Aussie swearing translated that well either. And my six years of schoolgirl French had not prepared me to tell this guy to !%$£!$!@** get away from my hair!!!! The worst insult I could come up with in French was Ferme la bouche!(shut your mouth). He mistook my rising hysteria for a heightened passion for his artwork.

When I finally saw him take a razor to the ends of my hair the tears welled up and streamed down my face. He was fully involved in creating his masterpiece and didn't seem to notice. Perhaps he was used to highly emotional female customers.

The artwork was magnificent but just not on my head. In fact, I don't know whose head it would have worked on. It was all shades of WRONG.

He was ecstatic and I cried. He clearly thought I was overjoyed. I was not. Those tears didn't dry up for a few years, truly, until it grew long again. I had to wear that brown paper bag over my head for a long time let me tell you. It has become one of those funny episodes of my life (just another) that gets mentioned by family and friends every time 'hair styles' are a topic of conversation.

In fact, it was such a traumatic experience I have never worn my hair above my shoulders again. I still wince when I see the hairdresser with a pair of scissors in their hands. I figure I will be 80 with long hair. Hardly appropriate.

What about you? How brave have you been with your haircuts? Do you stick to what you know suits you or do you try the latest looks? Have you had any bad experiences?


  1. Hi Lilly ~ Why is it that people think long hair needs to be cut short? (shivers) I did try short hair when I was in high school, about 15 years old. I had a perm on the top and it was cut really short and straight on the bottom. I looked like a cotton ball!

    The other hair style that I attempted lasted all of 2 hours. I went to the lady who has done my hair for years and years. I trusted her and I said, "OK, I'm ready to try some blonde highlights." I have dark brown hair naturally.

    She put the blonde in with streaks and the thought that came to mind was, "I look like a Zebra!"

    I didn't even show my hair to my mom or any friends or family. I went home, looked at the mirror, got back in my car and told the hairstylist, "I don't like it!" I couldn't face myself in the mirror! Lol.

  2. Hi Lilly,
    First off, looking at your profile photo, I don’t think anyone who wears blue makeup all over her face is allowed to call herself conservative.
    (I’m just kidding, of course.)

    The worst scenario that I had was about 4 or 5 years ago and dealt with color and cut. I was in the’ blond weave phase’ which needed to retouched every 6 weeks or so. My regular stylist wasn’t available and I used someone else.

    When the stylist put the stuff on my hair, I could feel my scalp starting to burn. I did mention it to her and she said that was normal. Normal? Odd. - I hadn’t experienced it before. Like you, I set saying nothing,- but in pain as well as anguish. I paid her and went home with a tender scalp and unhappy with the color to boot. Over the following weeks my hair started breaking off like crazy. My regular stylist was beside herself telling me that a ‘burning scalp’ is never normal and I should have stopped-screamed- whatever. She had to cut my long hair off to chin length for me to look presentable.

    I’ve let my hair go back to my natural dishwater blond. It’s healthy, thick and shiny and I think I’m going to stick with it.

  3. Aleta - I know but the older you get it kind of doesnt look right to have long hair. I have started to wear mine in a bun because I cannot imagine ever having short hair again. Wow, I love your story about the zebra look. Reminds me when I had blonde pieces at the front of mine and dark hair at the back. Your hair is gorgeous the way it is by the way - guess you are planning what style to do for your wedding, what fun it all must be for you. Thanks for dropping by.

  4. Redchair - blue is quite becoming don't you think? Wait till you see me with blue hair - I will change the profile picture when you least expect it one day. Oh, that is a horrible story - your poor scalp. I hope they gave you a free pass at the salon for the next year. They could have been sued for pain and suffering. I guess we tend to think we are in capable hands and just ride it out. I think natural in everything is best - your hair from the pictures you showed on your blog does look healthy and shiny - I am starting to see the grey popping through now and I don't like that much either. The joys. What fun it all is. Do you have views on when its time to cut long hair - 30, 40 never? Thanks for your comments as always.

  5. My hair is long, and it stays that way. I look BAD BAD BAAAADDDD in short hair. Plus, the hubby hates it. I got my hair cut a little below the ears early on in our marriage, and the man wouldn't touch me for a month. Ha!

    I'm recovering from a bad color job right now. I told the girl I wanted highlights. SUBTLE highlights just around my face. Ugh and Grrrr....she turned me into a bleach blonde bimbo. I mean white! I'm a natural blonde and I didn't think I could go much lighter, but dang! Scary that these people actually get licenses. Actually, I think she had blonde envy. It's a master plot by brunettes to turn all of us real blondes into fake ones :)

  6. Lilly,
    I don’t think we have to cut our hair short because we’re older anymore. Mine is about shoulder length.

    I have an artist friend who’s my age. She’s extraordinarly beautiful in person- Audrey Hepburn like. (This is her site- )She has long hair-sometimes pulls it back in a ponytail.
    Women are keeping themselves looking young physically and they want their hair to reflect a more youthful appearance. Keep it long, Lilly.


  7. Trouble x2 - men do love long hair its true. Yes, I too look BAD with short hair. Hopefully your extra blonde bits fade somehow. Some people do not know the meaning of subtle is the problem. Enjoy your summer!!

    Redchair - You are right things are a little different now. I checked out your friend's site - she truly is beautiful - you both look similar in fact. OK, I am going to keep my long hair I think. Thanks for your comments - good to know what others think about it all.

  8. OMG - the stuff of nightmares.
    I love my long hair too and I doubt I will cut it off again.
    I did once too. A 'flamboyant' guy styled it very creatively and I liked it for about 10 mins ... it took me a year to grow it out enough too.

  9. This is so hilarious. I've never been happy with any of my hairdressers, so I cut and color my own hair. Unfortunately, my hair is uneven, but I cut it to fit or form to my face. Hubby keeps telling me to go to the salon everytime I asked him to even out the back. I don't ask him anymore, thus the uneven cut hair stays, but I'm happy with my work.

  10. baby~amore - I am with you long hair is staying put. Oh yes, it always looks ok when you walk out the salon door and then you realise you can never hope to replicate it again...

    Tasha - congrats to you for doing your own - that must be hard to do. Having seen your picture though you do a great job. Perhaps if I am ever over your way you can trim it for me. Have a great weekend.

  11. Hi Lilly! Regarding your livestrong post...I am so inspired by Lance Armstrong. I always think if he can train, uphill in the rain during chemo treatment...I can do so much more! Also..I am sorry you are having trouble with etsy..was it something you wanted from my shop or another shop. Maybe I can help you. Take care!


Thanks for your comments.