Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Making the Cut

I guess this isn't new if you've seen me around recently (or on instagram), but I made some major changes to my hair recently.

What goes best with a new haircut? Why, pricey coffee and earl grey waffles of course!

Slightly more than a month ago I went to my usual salon for an overdue trim. I LOVE getting haircuts, I get them when I'm happy/heartbroken/bored or whenever I'm in a general need of some shearing. So I've been feeling quite bored with my hair lately, the kind of boredom that no amount of compliments could alleviate. The hairdresser asked me what I wanted to do in mandarin and you know how bad I am with that, so I just said "shoulder" and didn't give much thought to it. She did a double take and asked me if I was sure, and I said yeah. 

When she was done I realised why she did that double take.

Shoulder length in my head was a lot longer than shoulder length in real life. But I loved it. It wasn't one of those haircuts that I had to brainwash myself into thinking it was good, or tell myself that "hair grows out anyway, it's ok". My head felt SO much lighter, and I didn't even feel the pinch when the hairdresser scooped up literal armfuls of my old locks and tossed them into the trash. Seeing that was actually cathartic, in a way. When people ask me how many inches I chopped off I can't even answer them, I'm tempted to say "Umm maybe half a meter?"

Post-wash, my hair still looks good as long as I brush it out and don't go to sleep while it's damp. Sleeping with wet hair is the fastest way to get to a bad hair day. Shorter hair requires different sort of maintenance, but I love how much less smoothening products I'm using since all the split ends and dry hay bits got snipped off.

An example of a bad hair day. I call the straighter side Jekyll and the other Hyde.

The only thing I've missed about long hair is that I can't curl my tresses anymore... it's something I really took joy in, and it's a pity I didn't manage to shoot that babyliss tutorial before I cut my hair! But my secondary school friends can attest to the speed at which my hair grows (Charisse called it grass) so I know I'll be back to curling in no time.

The reactions I've gotten to my haircut are so amusing and surprising, even random people whom I've never spoken to from my elective classes have asked me why I cut it. Usually the conversation goes like this:

"I was bored of it!"
"But your long hair was really nice/luscious/thick/healthy looking. WHYYYY"

Others couldn't recognise me at all until I waved frantically at their faces. Most have told me I look better in short hair. Thank you darlings! I never expected to get more compliments after the cut because society seems to favour long hair on girls in general. And I admit, my hair was quite the sight to behold at its longest.

At Miin's party a day before the chop, those poor ends had no idea what was coming. 

It's hard to believe how much I detested my hair growing up, considering how unapologetically proud I am of my locks now. I used to stand in front of the mirror tugging at it with tears in my eyes, no kidding. I hated its coarser texture, how thick and unmanageable it was, how it waved at different angles everyday, how it wasn't straight and silky like how chinese girls' hair was supposed to be. My mum didn't know how to tie up my hair in pretty braids, and I learnt to bun my own hair for ballet because she gave up after my bitchy ex-ballet teacher kept telling her she was doing it wrong (more on that teacher another day).

I guess everything changed after I rebonded my hair when I was 16. It was a big deal for me back then, the first expensive beauty treatment I'd ever gotten. Ok the only other one was a facial (I've only had one facial my entire life). Having straight hair was such a new experience, for 1.5 years I never had a bad hair day and hardly had to comb my hair. It was amazing, but got boring after awhile. Then before poly I had my young heart broken by a lame guy that didn't like me back so I chopped it LOL. And then the texture of the hair that grew out magically changed for the better! It became softer and more manageable, still wavy but less unpredictably so.

Also, I attained hair enlightenment!

Layering my hair was making it messy and unshapely, instead of making it airier and lighter like conventional hair rules say it does.

Once I started growing out my layers, VOILA. Beauty queen status. *hair flip*

After all my hair woes I realised Mama Tong was right all along, people would actually pay for hair like mine, and I should be thankful for what God has given me (I was one of those babies who popped out of mummy with a carpet on their head).

What's the point of all this hair talk you ask? Love your hair and work with it, don't fight it. A celebrity hairstylist I once interviewed for Mypaper told me this and I've never looked back. Get treatments if you think it'll make you look good, wash your hair less or more frequently as you deem fit. Go bald or grow it to your bum if you want - nobody should be telling you what you should or shouldn't do. Do it if it makes you happy and healthy! Most of all, love yourself.

1 comment :

  1. I grew out my hair last year and it made me happy, no matter what people had said :D