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I always know when it's time to get my hair cut because of the mass of tangles adorning my head like brunette-tinted halo.

January 10, 2007

When I was in 3rd grade, I would brush my hair from the crown of my head to just below my ears. My ears marked the location where my hair inexplicably morphed into a knotted maze of locks. This barrier prevented my brush from going any further, so naturally, I stopped brushing.

I would literally pull my brush out of my hair, horizontally, and just start at the top again, repeating the pattern until my hair, for the most part, was brushed. (What more can you expect from an eight-year-old?)

After listening to me yell and scream one day after attempting to brush through the tangles, my dad loaded me into the car and promptly drove me to a hair salon. He plopped me down in a large leather seat and gave the stylist these instructions:

"I want you to cut her hair off above the tangles. ALL OF IT."

She looked at dad, and then at the tears in my eyes, and then at him, and then gave in to the more threatening of the two of us.

Dad.

I don't remember her washing my hair and trying to detangle it. I only remember sitting in the giant leather chair, covered by a long plastic bib, watching the scissors cut through my gnarled tresses.

The kids at school said I looked like a mushroom, and I did. I hated that haircut, and at the time thought my father was the meanest man alive for causing such a thing to happen.

It was a moment in my life that was marred by trauma. And that trauma would follow me into adulthood.

Apparently, I still haven't learned my lesson. I still go too long between cuts, and every few months when I break down crying to Roger because "Iiiiiiiii hhaaattteeeeee mmmyyyyyyyy haaaaaaaiiiiiiiiirrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr," we both know it's time for me to get a cut.

Yesterday marked eight months since I last cut my hair. My personal record is two and a half years – can you imagine the tangles and the stomping and the yelling? – and last night when I visited my stylist, I had forgotten how closely a simple haircut resembles the feeling of freedom. The burden is lifted, hallelujah!

I sank into her chair and began our session by apologizing:

"Rhonda, I just want you to know that I haven't washed my hair in five days because when I wash my hair, that means I have to brush my hair, and when I brush my hair, I have to deal with the tangles. And I just can't contend with the tangles."

(She stared at me.)

"So you have my full permission to just cut a tangle out when you're trying to comb through my hair. Really. It's okay. I would do the same thing if I were you."

By the end of the evening, ringlets were scattered across the floor beneath me – but none were chock-full of tangles. I've finally found a hair stylist in Dallas willing to work through my tangles, willing to teach me how to keep my hair long and luscious, willing to be patient with my hair when I can't bear to cope with it any longer.

And then I realized: like father, like daughter.

(Plus: a purse full of free samples. Score!)

Comments

1

Wow, your hair looks awesome, Jes!

2

Heidi: Heee! Thank you! I only straighten my hair when I go to a stylist, since they do it for me. See: Patience, lack thereof.

3

HOT!! You can just run your hands through that hair, wooooo!

4

pretty hair jes and FREE samples . . . did you cry tears of joy?

5

I love your hair. It looks great.

6

Love the cut!!!

I've given up on my hair looking good. It's too fine so I look like a 3 year old. Added bonus is our well water is horrid so now it gets really greasy. Fun fun.

7

Ah, you must be a fellow Curly Head? I LOVE straightening my hair (or having someone straighten it for me)! Doesn't it totally feel like you're in disguise? Some whole "new" you? Ah...

I need to get a haircut.

8

I am in dire need for a hair cut, but I haven't gone to the salon in 6 months for different reasons: i hate the feeling of washing less hair. It's wierd, i know, but my arms are used to bending a certain amount to wash, dry and style - and they don't like adjusting to the new length.

only when the curls no longer curl, and my hair starts looking like straw do i consider making an appointment. Of course it takes me 2-3 weeks after this point for me to make an appointment - the whole time i'm cursing myself for not getting over my hatered for washing freshly cut hair already *gosh*

9

Micker Mackers has snarls in her hair... but there is this thing called "detangler" that you spray in her hair and the tangles magically disappear as you comb through them... do you know about this magical potion? It really makes it easy to comb through the proverbial "rat's nest" that comes with hair that easily tangles.

I am surprised that you don't use it. It comes in a Winnie the Pooh bottle... but it rocks. You should check into this.

10

Oh, Ben, could you really think me unaware of the detangler? The thing is that sometimes, the tangles really are that bad.

My detangler doesn't come in a winnie the pooh bottle, though. Maybe that's the problem.

11

Hm... how does ones hair get that tangled. Does Roger tie knots in your hair as you sleep.

I bet he does!

...to get back at you for Snoring.

12

They make stuff that helps you get tangles out. It's for kids mostly, but my wife uses it now and then. It really works. I haven't looked at the back, but I know it evaporates and looks normal. Have you tried a conditioner after shampoo now and then?

~Jef

13

My hair used to be like that when I was little, but my hair changed as I grew older, luckily. My mom would brush through the tangles; I had no choice. But it hurt like freaking heck.

The new haircut is beautiful!

14

OMG, you boys. Do you not know? DO YOU NOT KNOW THAT CURLY HAIR REQUIRES CONDITIONER EVERY TIME I SHAMPOO? Just in case, IT DOES.

Products used in my hair:

--Shampoo
--Conditioner
--(sometimes, detangler)
--hair product #1 that i can't remember the name of, but it's Sebastian and the color is ORANGE
--MORE CONDITIONER
--hair smoothing serum
--hair spray

Seriously. ALL that product goes in my hair EVERY TIME I FIX IT.

This is why my hair is high maintenance, and also why I only wash it every few days, because I'm too lazy to do that EVERY DAY.

15

The 'do looks FANTASTIC!!!! Is there anything better than hair which has been blown dry professionally? I didn't think so.

16

btw, my new fav products for horrendously curly hair (mine) are as follows:

Bed Head Fashionista (it's a heat safe treatment for when you blow your hair straight)

Bed Head Afterparty (prevents flyaways)

Those are the only two goop-alogical things in my hair right now. My hair ACTUALLY swings. I just checked it to make sure I wasn't lying. :-D

17

I don't use conditioner and I don't get snarls. ;)

18

1. Your hair looks great!

2. My mom had me given a similar haricut when I was six. Similar to the mushroom, I mean. Hence my current very long length hair.

19

WOW!!! Pretty!!!!!!!

Hooray for the new stylist.

As long as we're taking detangler - I would actually DIE without my daily leave in treatment from Biolage. I love the stuff. When I backpacked around europe after college, and brought with me only the very most essential items (because - hello! backpacking!) my giant bottle of biolage made the cut. You should check it out!

20

Preeeeeetttttyyyy!! Yay, hair.

Do you recall No More Tangles by Johnson & Johnson? That shit didn't work. Did not! My mom would spray it helplessly on my hair as I screamed and yelled while she tried to work through the knots. And my hair isn't even curly, just wavy. Oh, how I can imagine the horror of the curly-haired knots. {shudder}

21

You look amazing!

22

You should try S-factor smoothing lusterizer. It smells like strawberry, and it is amazing!!! I have thick, wavy hair (mind you, it is short) but I seriously wish I discovered it years ago!!! It makes blowdrying so much easier.

My products are as follows:
1) Shampoo and conditioner (for colour-treated hair)
2) S-factor smoothing lusterizer
3) (blowdry and straighten here)
4) Brilliant Brunette finishing cream by John Frieda
5) Waxx gloss pomade by AG (to make my short hair look somewhat piecy).

23

You're lovely, Jes, and so is your hair. I'd love curly hair, myself.

24

you look nice :)

25

Oh yay! I had that no more tangles crap when I was little and I swear it was just water. Which made it worse. I had the WORST rat's nest of tangles after the first day here. I ,eam it literally lifted off my head for about 6 inches in the back. Then? I stupidly just made a bun in it and went to sleep. In the morning, I had to condition, wide-tooth comb, shampoo, condition, comb, condition, shampoo, comb, and then condition and comb it out when I was out of the shower. I seriously was thinking I would have to cut it and I was freaking out.

26

Love it! Very nice! And FREE stuff??!?! Awesome.

27

My hair has always snarled easily, too. For years I compensated by keeping it incredibly, incredibly short. The last couple of years I've let it grow a bit, and I'm constantly reminded of why I kept it short. The products, the hassle--aaarrgh! In my next life I want different hair.

Yours looks great in that pic, though. And yay for free product samples!

28

Okay, who is this wonderful stylist, where is she located, and how much does she charge?

29

Beautiful. Really! I'm glad I'm not the only one who finds haircuts extremely therapeutic. Only I get therapy every 5 weeks. Too bad for you. ;)

30

I remember the Mushroom....
I am blessed with very low maintenance hair (wash and go mostly), but I do condition every time as I also color.
I do wish, occasionally, for curly locks....then I hear about your hair or talk to Jenn and I am over it!
Love the cut...very beautiful and earthy.

31

Wow, it's gorgeous Jes really.

32

Cuuuuuuute! :)

33

I used to have the mushroom cut! Mine was because my mom thought I wasn't a "long hair person." I finally convinced her to let me grow my hair out after years of begging, and it finally worked. Of course once it got longer, she said, "We should have done this a long time ago!"

I definitely always had trouble with the tangles, too. That's always how I knew when to get my hair cut. I started going in sooner now to avoid that, but this time it didn't work because my hair lady is out on maternity leave (seriously insensitive of her!). This guy totally butchered my hair, so I'm now waiting on it to grow back out so I don't look like a cocker spaniel/flying nun anymore.

But at least it's not tangly.

34

i have A LOT of curly hair that i never cut--i like it long and i am too poor afford a haircut anyway. re: tangles, have you tried detangling it in the shower with the conditioner still in it? with a detangling pick? once i get out of the shower i don't comb or brush my hair... just gel, leave-in cream to weight it down and gooooooo!




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