As some of you may have seen on Facebook, or on my post about urgency, I have recently had a change in hairstyle. Quite a major change in hairstyle. Last Saturday, I shaved my head.
I had decided to try something different with my hair cut this month (shorter on the top, not shaved on the sides), so The Engineer and I were working on that. But it turns out that we are not hairdressers, and that there was a bit of a gap between my vision and our abilities. I think we probably could have saved it, and created something nice (even if it wasn’t exactly what I had in mind). But I was hungry. And the idea of the big shave had been rolling around in my head for a while. So I instructed The Engineer to put on the number four comb, and shave it all off. Half an hour later (it only took that long because he had to go and buy a new set of clippers – turns out unbranded $18 haircut kits are not the best. Who knew?) I looked like this:
You might think it’s not a very big deal for an already short haired lady to shave it all off. But I can tell you – it’s kind of a big deal. That hair on top of your head? It makes a big difference. When you have hair on top of your head, you might think you can see the shape of your head, but you’re wrong. I was genuinely surprised by how weird it felt, and by how weird I looked. The Engineer assured me (about a thousand times in the first couple of days) that I did not look like an alien. But it took me a while to believe him. Six days on, I can finally look in the mirror without getting a fright. And I’m actually starting to like most of the photos taken of me (it took two attempts to capture the photo above, compared to about 50 to capture the first photo for the Facebook reveal).
I totally get that shaved heads aren’t for everyone. But I think it was something that I had to try at some stage. And when I reflect on it, I think this was the perfect time.
- People here stare at me all the time anyway, so the shaved head doesn’t get me any extra unwanted attention. Plus, now I have a reason to explain away the stares “They’re just staring because I have a shaved head, it’s sweet”.
- It’s hot here, and the less hair you have, the better.
- It’s humid, so hair can take a while to dry properly. Even my short hair would often be wet for ages after a shower, and that made it hard to style. With a shaved head, I don’t have to worry about wet hair at all.
- I don’t have to go to work or worry about looking professional. I think I look perfectly professional with no hair, but I know that not everyone would agree with me there. And that thought would have given me pause when I was a working woman. As a writer/housewife/traveller, this was not even a consideration.
- I spend a rather large amount of my time doing yoga. And the shaved head is perfect for this – no hair in my face, no need to worry about hairties etc. (That said, my last hairstyle was pretty yoga-friendly too.)
- It’s great for swimming. We try to get to the pool and the beach quite regularly, and having no hair makes this much easier. No salt and chlorine build up, no swim caps, no hair sticking out every which way from the salt.
I’m not sure what will happen next hairwise. I might keep it shaved. I might find another length in the growing out process that I prefer. I might go back to the quiff. I might grow it long again. (Actually, that last one seems unlikely.) But it’s great for me now. And now that I don’t feel like I look like an alien, I’m going to rock the shaved head for however long it lasts.