As my hair grows, I snip at it to delay the need for a haircut. I’ve always done it. It works really well until there’s an unintentional mullet on the back of my head caused by the absence of a third eye. At that point, I run to the place in the mall and make a simple request.
“Please bob it without layers except to make the ends curl in instead of out. Keep the bangs long.”
It’s not a difficult request. I always offer to leave with it wet and style it myself. Not to be cheap, but because I can always make a good cut work and it pains me to subject others to my difficult hair. I have had a lifetime to learn where the curls and cowlicks hide. Also, I’m really not that picky about my hair.
My last haircut was during the summer. I had a rare moment without children and I zipped in the mall for a quick chop.
I am never going back to that salon again.
“I need a bob with bangs.” I barely spoke for the next twenty minutes. We didn’t chat about the weather, music, children or any of the normal things you discuss during a haircut. Instead, I was treated to a lecture about my terrible, horrible, no good, very bad hair.
The hair dresser/physician/nutritionist’s chorus was that my hair was too dry, too frizzy, too cowlicky and too damaged. The verses to her song were prescriptions from her vast areas of expertise.
“You need to take hair vitamins.”
“You shouldn’t go so long between salon visits.”
“Have you had your thyroid checked?”
“You should never color your own hair.”
“You should avoid gluten.”
“This isn’t a good style for such damaged hair.”
“How old ARE you?”
“You should drink less coffee.”
I only knew the haircut/lecture was completed when the hairdresser stopped talking to unsnap the big ugly cape that was hiding the obscene gestures I was making while she talked. Silently, I walked to the counter to pay. Three salon brand bottles of product were shoved at me along with the bill that already had the over-priced shampoo added to the total. “You have GOT to use these.”
The next morning, I used the expensive products on my hair and realized something I had been to psychologically bruised to notice at the salon. In addition to layering EVERYTHING, my haircut wasn’t even. I don’t mean that it was 1980’s deliberately lopsided cuteness, I mean that it was an inch longer on one side of my head.
All summer, I used the products. I stayed out of the sun. I took vitamins. My hair is exactly the same as it was before the products. It is also exactly the same as it has been for more than a decade. Now, I’m out of fancy hair product and my lopsided hair is a shaggy mess, but I don’t feel safe going back to the salon that made me feel terrible.
As soon as I figure out where the children have hidden my Fiskars…