I have long been obsessed with hair. I would say since I was born. As a child, I had amazing 80s hair down to my ass and complete with huge bangs. When my mom was in cosmetology school, I would sometimes visit her after school. I loved the smell of the chemicals on the floor and when she decided to practice her perms on me, I was elated. So I pranced into the third grade with huge ass hair and didn’t care what anyone thought. I had no idea how ridiculous I looked.
As a teenager, I was like most awkward girls and tried to keep a low profile. I wore my hair like everyone else. I used to cry trying to blow-dry it straight (guess what kids – we didn’t have flat irons. They had been invented, but nobody actually had them yet.). I wanted straight, thin hair and mine was was part wavy, part curly, all coarse, and thick as fuck. I could barely get a ponytail holder around twice and it hurt!
In college, I got my first flat iron and would spend hours frying (ahem, straightening) my hair before going to the club. When I was feeling especially flirty, I would even flick the ends out! I colored my hair at home auburn off and on for years. Sometimes I got crazy and went really dark brown!
In my early twenties, I was starting to become more independent and was developing a sense of self. Fresh out of an abusive relationship, I dated a new guy while I had longish hair. After dating for a couple of months, we were sitting on the couch at his apartment, watching a movie (more accurately, we were DVD-and-chilling). Suddenly, changing the subject to distract his wandering hands, I said, “I’m going to cut my hair short,” putting my hand up to my chin to illustrate my desired length. He half laughed into my neck, still trying to make out. “No.”
I pulled back. “No?”
“You are not cutting your hair. I like long hair.”
I got up, faking a bathroom run. I stood there looking at my mirror, hating my hair and being mad at him. I went back to the living room and told him I needed to go home because I was tired. When I woke up the next morning, his insistence that I was not to cut my hair was the first thing on my mind. I rushed to get ready for work. I pulled out kitchen shears to open a case of bottled water. I cut open the water and stared at the scissors in my hand. 5 minutes later, I was standing in front of the mirror with a jagged bob. That was the beginning of my “I do what the fuck I want” attitude.
The guy and I broke up once he saw my hair. Good riddance.
I never meant to come in here and tell you all that backstory. I simply came in to do a lighthearted piece to show you what I’ve been through with my hair the past few years.
Everything really took a fun turn when I tried a new stylist less than two years ago. I went in with some weird random description of how I wanted to grow out my pixie but needed to have a different style every time I come because I get bored. She took no issue with that. She didn’t even ask a lot of questions. She just understood what I needed. She cut off minimal amounts and shaped it all up.
One day I went in and we decided to shake it up a little, I needed COLOR. So purple it was (see bottom right of above collage). We put just a few chunks into my brown hair and it gave me liiiiiiiiife.
I felt such a thrill, such an excitement. It felt as if I was peeking into a different life that I had been meant to live. I know, I know. That sounds dramatic as fuck. But unless you’ve experienced it, you just can’t know.
From that point on, I was constantly thinking of what I wanted to do next. I started to think I wanted to be blonde, like REALLY blonde. However, I had once ventured into blonde highlights territory (you can’t miss it in the above collage) and wasn’t in love with it. I had total confidence in my stylist and knew she could make my vision come to live. I didn’t want to be JUST blonde thought. I wanted to stand out. I saw a navy shadow root picture on Pinterest and that was my inspiration.
I went in brown and purple and left blonde and blue. It was such a cool color and effect and it wasn’t really being done yet. Everywhere I went, people would stop me to compliment me. Children grinned at me and I felt SO ALIVE. I loved catching my reflection in mirrors and storefronts.
My next salon visit, we changed it up yet again. Blonde with purple! This was absolutely my jam. I think it’s still my favorite. The tan I was developing certainly helped, but I felt sexy and confident.
Then, I landed my dream job and hair had to be at a natural color. I sure as hell wasn’t ready to get rid of the blonde and go back to brown, so I happily welcomed platinum into my life. God, I GLOWED. All these years I spent convinced I could never pull of platinum and my hair would be fried and falling out. Nope.
The dress code was updated right after I was hired and I jumped on it as soon as I had the money and time off. I got TWO colors – purple and blue – and people flipped out. I never got tired of the compliments and I certainly never got tired of feeling like myself.
This past October, I moved to Texas. Before moving and scared of trying a new hair stylist, I went to mine to have my hair redone in a way that would allow for roots to grow gracefully. Back to blonde, but with a black shadow root (which I now notice the top of my head is cut off in the shots below). This color made me feel really edgy and grungy and I totally dig that vibe.
After six long months, I managed to empty my bank account for a trip to Mississippi. Just to get my hair done. Yep, true story. I don’t think I will be able to do that again, but I sure am happy for now! We kept the shadow root for growing out purposes and kept some blonde. Honestly, I miss having more blonde. I’m not sure what I will do next, but I know I’ll never have brown hair again.
Which hair is your favorite? Do you color yours fun colors?
I encourage you to step outside your comfort zone. That’s where the magic happens.
*if you happen to live on the MS gulf coast, go see Savannah at 13th Street salon in Gulfport. Chick makes shit happen.*