Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Crowning Glory

When I was born, I was the typical blonde hair, blue eyed baby. And although my mom was disappointed that my eyes shifted to a mossy green color, my hair remained blonde for a good long time. Up until my junior year of high school, I took pride in defining myself as the spunky, short-haired blondie. The ladies in the front office even knew me as "the girl with cute hair" and I loved it. Then I went through my first break up, and it didn't take long for me to dye my hair a deep, moody brown to reflect my roller-coaster, hormonal, adolescent emotions.

During my brown-hair episode I went through a series of dysfunctional relationships (I even refer to one of my ex's fondly as my ex-douche bag), and then when I began to "find myself" again my hair gradually lightened. By the time I went off for college I was a full-blown, spunky blonde. And then -- a break up -- and my alter-ego brunette made another appearance.

My point isn't to tell you all about my hair history, but to analyze what in the world would make me crave such drastic changes in my hair color? Why did I love being defined as the girl with "the" hair? And on top of that, why to this day, does my hair color and style affect my mood, attitude and how sexy I feel?

Well, apparently the answer is a little complicated, but it's okay, Chris Rock found us the answer. Yes, seriously. Check it out:

If you haven't seen this movie, it's a must -- hilarious, thought-provoking and informative.

Alright, so I'm obviously not on the "creamy crack," but I am addicted to re-defining myself through my hair. Honestly, I'm okay with changing my "crowning glory." Unlike plastic surgery, a new piercing or tattoo, if a look doesn't go quite as I hoped, I rest assured knowing "it's just hair." But somehow, even though that's all it is...I still love it, and a little change always leaves me feeling like a whole new women. Blonde, brunette, red-head -- I love it all. In the words of Hillary Clinton, "I'm undaunted in my quest to amuse myself by constantly changing my hair."

I blame my hair-obsession on several things. One being that I've had patches of white hair since I was three years old, all thanks to a lack of melanin in my scalp. Dye has been my best friend since I was about 13. My other excuses? My grandma, aunt and grandpa are/were all in the hair profession.

As a little girl we had my grandpa's old barbar chair in our house. I used to twirl myself in circles in that old, black-leather chair. Then, on the other side of my family, my grandma had a whole salon built on to her house. She was kind enough to give us grandkids beauty school dolls so we could cut and style its hair. I have fond memories with my cousin Kourt highlighting our doll's hair, and afterwards, Kourt's mom showing us Haircutting 101. When I was really lucky my Aunt Kaye would throw a cap on my head and give me "just for fun highlights." Even at the age of 7 having that something extra really put a bounce in my jellies.

Over the last 22 years I've given myself "bangs," cut out tangled combs by myself, had several perms, dyed my hair blonde, brown, nearly black, shades of red and even pink. When I was 13, I even had friends brave enough to let me near their heads with scissors (some still let me, even!), and even after all that change...I'm still a very happy hair addict.

How do you feel after you get your hair "did"?

My hair timeline. From late high school (at the bottom) until now:

And so my friends...how should I reinvent myself next time?



Anonymous said...

Well at least you look good with both colors!

As I was reading your blog I had a realization...after a break up I never changed anything about myself. Instead I always set out on the hunt to find a guy who would like the things that my ex didn't like about me but I would never change those things.

It's weird how different people deal differently with emotional drama, right?

Hannah said...

Thank you!

And yes, it definitely is! That's part of what made me write this. I know people who are TERRIFIED of even trying a different style pony tail, let alone a new hair color!

For some reason, for me, when there is a change approaching in my life, I want something new and shiny. We're moving on Saturday and I'm getting my hair done in a few weeks...I feel like a new place (and hopefully my frist grown-up job) deserve a new look! I'm sure when I get pregnant I'll have another identity crisis and want another change.

Ya gotta love human psychology. :)

Jess said...

I love it, I love changing up my hair. I have always wanted to go blonde though. But my husband doesn't like blonde hair.
When I went through a break up I always changed my lip gloss. That was high school though. We all do different things.

Hannah said...

@Jess -- what about a light brown or DARK blonde? That might be fun! How funny though that it was something about your beauty routine that you changed...oh, beauty industry, you sure do have a hold on us girly girls!

Sherms said...

I know they say blondes have more fun but dark hair suits you!

It's amazing how good getting your hair done can make you feel. I hate my face when my hair is a mess and my eyebrows aren't shaped. Just those two hair regimes completely change the way I feel about myself.

I don't really change my hair style very much. I'll just get it trimmed. And I've only ever coloured it once.

How come you have no pigment in some parts of your scalp? Not sure if you've noticed in my pictures but the husband has that. But also with some parts of his skin, its called Piebaldism. And it's genetic.

I always love Little Women, when Jo cuts off her hair and her sister calls it her "one beauty"

Sherms said...

BTW, I'm totally on the "creamy crack" xx

I'm not sure if you read Free Bird Train but her most recent entry is liek yours...


Hannah said...

Thanks, Shermeen. I think I might go a medium red next just for something different!

That is a REALLY good question. I have no idea though. I haven't had any pigment on certain parts of my scalp, face, and shoulders (maybe other places) for a really long time. I'm not really sure why though. The patch on my shoulder will burn and peel and burn and peel if I'm in the sun too much. Everything else will get tan but the patches. Don't really know why...maybe I have the same thing he has! Can women have it, too?

Have you seen Hair? They do an experiment with relaxant on coke cans and it totally dissolves the can...kinda scary! How long have you been getting your hair relaxed? You should see the movie...it's GREAT!

I just checked out her post...GREAT!

Sherms said...

Hannah, I've been getting my hair relaxed for years.

I JUST watched the movie, I was inspired. It was very funny and very interesting. I think actresses like Lauren London and Raven are so beautiful...and perhaps stupidly, thought that was their natural hair. Now, I know.

I'm not sure I'd be able to stop relaxing my hair...it would be very difficult to manage. Not soft loose curls like I want. I usually end up chemically straightening my hair only to use curlers!

Women can get Piebaldism. Its funny because some people in a family will have it and may or may not pass it on. And sometimes nobody has it and then suddenly a child is born with it. But it is genetic, it really just depends on recessive and dominant genes. But there is a wiki for it and a FB page.

Either way, be sure to cover up or use SPF50 where you've no pigment. When I first met Adam he was so tanned (working outdoors in FL) so the areas of no pigment were so much more obvious.

I coloured my hair red once, just temporary henna dye. I quite liked it but I'm not sure I'm ready to try it again xx

Stephanie Iris said...

You're fortunate you can switch from being a brunette and a blonde and still look beautiful.

It sucks when you are a brunette and your eyebrows are blonde.. or the other way around.

When I was in high school and dyed my hair everything: Red,pink, brown, black, blonde, and even orange (on accident.)

I haven't dyed my hair in over a year and it's finally long, healthy and curly. It's found it's own identity I think. =)

dana_king said...

I think I let you cut my hair a good 3 or 4 times and I never came out bald so all and all it went really well for me. haha, remember your
"If good hair is a crime, lock me up"

Hannah said...

@Shermeen, I'm glad you know now that even the celebrities are on the "creamy crack!"

Hey, if you're cool with it, I don't see a problem! Have you ever hurt yourself doing it? Do you get it done professionally?

Oh, girl, I know! I wear SPF 50 on my face, neck and hands EVERYDAY! The ironic part is, I'm also Vitamin D deficient. My cousin blamed it on the sunscreen, haha! I'd rather take Vitamin D supplements, wear sunscreen and have a lesser chance of cancer/wrinkles in the future! Since I was a swimmer/lifeguard in high school, I've always been very conscience about wearing sun screen (I tan easily, too...except for those patches, haha)

Henna dye? I'd love to see a photo!

Hannah said...

@Miss Sassy Pants -- I definitely have a natural hair color and skin that allows me to be a chameleon. I am lucky in that regards! And hooray for hair being healthy and how it should be!!

@Dana -- Uhm...you mean the best shirt known to man that I couldn't pass up for anything?! Of course I remember that shirt. It was awesome. And lime green. I love that you trusted me that much...especially because for a long time "short hair" was anything above your elbows, haha! Good times, good times...women and their hair.

L!$@ said...

Your hair looks awesome both ways! That trailer was hilarious! :D

basia said...

Whoa, so many different yous! :D I think you look great no matter what kind of hair style you have! I really like the dark one with bangs (second row, second photo) and the ones where it’s sort of a reddish brown. I’ m sure whatever you decide to do with it will look fab! I get how you feel about your hair. Although, I haven’t been as experimental with mine (it’s been every color but the cut is usually the same), it’s definitely something that impacts my “image” of myself, if that makes any sense. It IS silly, but what can you do?

Hannah said...

@Lisa -- You should definitely go find the movie and watch it. The whole thing is hysterical!

@Basia -- Thank you! The only thing to do is to embrace the silliness. And I'm totally okay with that. :)

Mila said...

I just got my hair "did" yesterday for my brothers wedding and I love. I feel pretty to have long hair but I do miss my natural curls.

Hannah said...

@Mila -- I'm the same way with my hair, too. There are some days where I feel beautiful when it's messy, dirty and un-done. Then other days where I feel amazing when it is styled and curled. As long as you're feeling like your best self at the moment...I figure it doesn't hurt! :)

Sherms said...

Hannah, when they talk about "the burn" in the movie, it is not a lie! lol! You need to leave it in long enough to let it take effect but not so long that it'll burn your scalp. I've never had a bad relaxing experience but once or twice it'll cause a small scab on the front of my scalp. I've known people who have lost all their hair because it wasn't done properly. My sister also had to cut her hair short because she tried to relax her hair with colour in it. That's why I used the Henna dye.

I'm all about sun screen. I love the sun (not that I see much of it in London) and can just lay and let the sun cook me. But even with dark skin I think people should be careful. If you want a tan, I recommend the spray every time. It really isn't worth the risk of skin cancer and wrinkles!

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