Thursday, February 9, 2012

Hair Growth Watch

While Queen Michelle was sitting in the stylist's chair in Scotland, getting a trim on Saturday, we were tweeting back and forth about haircuts, hair growth, and regret.

Queen Michelle's hair had been exceptionally for years, perhaps long enough to reach her jeans waistband. Maybe she'll confirm this. I'm not sure of her reasons, but sometime recently, she cut off two feet of hair. Two feet! It's now somewhere below her collarbones.

My hair was down to my lower back until late 2009. Then I decided it was too long for a woman my age (I was 43), and I got about a foot cut off. Yeah, that was a great idea. Who cares how long your hair is when you're 43?

The cut I got was decidedly lackluster and mumsy, but I lived with it. Soon after that, I went to New York, and as a result of serendipitous and benevolent arrangements made by WendyB, I had my hair cut in her hallway by the lovely and talented Julie Matos, who styles WendyB's hair for special events. I took a picture of my haircut that day, and I can't find it. It was the best haircut I've ever had—Julie took my hair from mumsy to yumsy.

Even as Julie was working her magic, I knew her housecall range wasn't likely to include California. Gulp.

With that grim realization, I returned home to my California stylist, and the cut's direction changed, as it was bound to do with someone else at the shears. I tried to accept the new direction. I kept the same basic style, a just-below-chin-length bob for a few months. But it just wasn't the same. The edge and uniqueness was lost, and with it my interest in the cut. I was ruined for anybody but Julie. Within months, I succumbed to frustration, and I told my stylist I wanted "big change." A bog-standard bob doesn't allow for much change, but he did what he could. He cropped me about as short as is tolerable. He did a great cut (photo, below left), but in retrospect, I realize we took it too far. I had made a mistake. That day I knew I wouldn't cut my hair again until further notice.

Circa March, 2010 (left); Mid 2011 (center); Februrary 2012 (right)

When she was in the chair getting a trim, Queen Michelle Tweeted that cutting her hair had been a mistake, and that she was growing her hair out. I understood that. I didn't think cutting my hair was a mistake when Julie cut it, but I was wishing for longer hair after just a months of not having access to her cutting skills. So after my wacky experiment with the Shortest.Bob.Ever, I am on a mission to grow my hair out. Same with Queen Michelle.

After some commiseration, Queen Michelle and I have agreed to a Hair Growth Watch, wherein we will be each others' support if we are ever tempted to chop our locks. We have chosen a goal of chest-length for our hair. Mine is past my collarbones, but it seems as if it has been the same length forever. I'm forcing myself to be patient, and it's not easy. I want it long now. Maybe I have a case of "grass is greener," and I assume I'll be happy with longer hair. But if I ever get to the point where I can't resist the temptation to get a serious haircut, I'll buy a ticket to New York, and book an appointment with Julie. Then I'll lose my return ticket.


  1. I wish I could grow my hair long but a) it won't and b) it would look v strange on me (re: wig trying) as my face is pretty small. I'm intrigued to see how long you go.

  2. I grew my hair out for hubby when we first got married. Mine's so fine that once it passed my shoulders, my ears stuck out! He has consoled himself with the fact that short hair means he sees (and can kiss) the back of my neck.

  3. I did indeed have waist length, exceptionally thick hair. To be honest, I had depression at the time and cutting it all off was a symptom of my mental state at the time. I needed to cut away what was 'me'.
    Of course, now that I'm fine, I massively regret it.
    My hair now is a nothing cut, and I since always felt my hair was my defining feature , which I've now lost, I feel bland and plain. It has grown in the year but I kept getting it cut, desperately trying to find an 'edge' to this dull length. The maijn problem was I just couldn't quite commit to the blunt chin length bob that was in my head. So yes, back to the tedium of hair growing!
    I'm hoping to have turquoise chunks soon though, which might make my boring hair a little more 'me' again.
    But no cuting unless i consult my Hair Watch partner!

  4. Fascinating. As you know, I'm at the opposite end of the spectrum. My hair hasn't been this short since college, and I just adore it. But then, I have very fussy hair. Speaking of greener grass, I've always wanted straight hair. It seems so much more versatile!

  5. I love the really short 'do on you. Of course, I had ultra-short hair for about 20 years. I do like mine longer now because it's so much less upkeep. With a pixie and the like, it was a cut every 4 weeks or else!

  6. You're lucky... you have the face for any type of haircut. I kind of liked the bob, but I know there isn't much else you can do with it... it's pretty much just one style every day (even too short to pull into a pony -- that always felt weird to me at the gym!).