“I think that the most important thing a woman can have – next to talent, of course – is her hairdresser.” ― Joan Crawford
Curly hair. It’s a challenge.
Granted, not a challenge in the biggest sense. It’s not like the Greek financial situation, or ending world hunger. It’s not running a marathon, or starting a new job.
But it is a challenge nonetheless. Relatively speaking.
I’ve got the type of hair that my mother always insists “people pay good money to get their hair permed to look like yours!”. Well, not since the mid-80’s, I think she’ll find.
How I have longed for the type of mane which you can rely on to do what you have planned. Tresses which, upon your wakening, remain roughly in the same place as where you left them the previous night. Sleek and hanging about just where you expect them to fall.
Morning hair for me? Let’s just say it could scare small children.
A few weeks back I was bored of an evening, and took to my curls with a comb. Just to see what would happen – as you do.
I walked out to the lounge. Mrs Podgely actually hissed at me and then ran away. True story. It was pretty crushing. The Southern Man tried valiantly to cover his sniggers, but I knew. I knew.
I don’t even want to start to consider the amount of dollhairs spent over the years to tame the mane. There’ve been mousses (what’s the plural of mousse? Mice?), gels, pomades and sprays. Creams and waxes. Straightening smoothers and curl enhancers, texturisers and shiny-fiers.
Some have worked better than others. On the plus side, the mousse technology seems to have improved somewhat, so the threat of coming out with hair resembling Justin Timberlake’s less-than-successful 2 Minute Noodle look of the early 2000’s is diminishing. There’s always the crunch factor though, against which we curly-haired girls must remain vigilant.
And don’t even get me started on the weather. Humidity is a real b*tch. There’s nothing I have found yet, in my extensive searches, which can combat the affect of moisture in the air.
Haircuts can also be fun. New seasons bring new styles, and I have some gorgeous friends who can rock the latest lock looks, them with their straight and well-behaved follicles and all that. Me? Well, I have two options. Long long to keep the curls at least hanging (mostly) hanging in a downwards direction, or mid-length with a lot of layering…anything else and this is the result.
No pixie cuts or sleek bangs over here. (I can’t provide actual pictorial proof of the poodle look, as all evidence has been diligently destroyed, for obvious reasons).
All this being said, I’m trying to make peace with my locks, as clearly my previous attitude of flat-out denial, or my constant attempts to curb the unruly madness have not been successful in the slightest.
And maybe it’s a good side effect of getting older, this acceptance . The curls are part of who I am. And on a good day, when the stars have aligned and the kinks are playing nicely, I can see that they’re actually quite pretty, or at least eye-catching. They add interest. It’s easy to pin up and won’t fall down. I can even store small items in the mess, as evidenced by the odd times I’ve found a pencil tucked in to a random up-do (for ‘up-do’ read: two bobby pins and a stick to get it off my neck).
I guess there are always things we wish were different about our own looks. I’ve been told there are many straight-haired lasses who despair about their sleek tresses, as they might not be able to do as much with it. Sometimes straight hair falls out of an intricately-styled chignon, despite all the hairspray and pins one can throw at it.
It’s a reminder that there are more important things to be concerned with, and that, as the Southern Man says, every day with hair is a good hair day. (This statement does not apply in any way to those hot men who can rock the bald look – all the deliciousness, all the time).
It’s funny how whatever hair we’ve been blessed/cursed with can in many ways become a part of our personalities. On the occasions I’ve had my hair straightened, I really didn’t feel like ‘me’. I like the look, can’t stop touching it or running my hands through the non-tangled strands, but am always secretly relieved to jump in the shower and wash it back to the curly chaos.
Which is pretty cool. And I’m lucky to have the choice.
All that aside though, if you’ve got any recommendations for good products to tame the beast, I’d love to hear them – please!