Thursday, January 06, 2011

new look?

I think I need a new look.

Most of the time, I feel like I can rise above the pressure modern culture puts on women and its preference for youth. Most of the time, I am reasonably satisfied with how I look. Most of the time, I see the gray hairs and marks of childbearing as evidence of life experience and therefore contributing to my own natural beauty, such as it is. But there are times when my own weakness and vanity comes through - lately, every time I look in the mirror - and I just wish I looked better somehow, spiffier.

Mostly, this isn't a body issue. I feel good. I am healthy. I run regularly, especially in the part of the year with longer daylight hours, I swim in the summer, I bike the kids around when it's not too cold. Eventually, I managed to lose the baby weight, even after a second pregnancy, though there's some postpartum redistribution around the middle I'm not crazy about, but whatever.

No, the problem is my hair, my face, my clothes, all the stuff that makes me appear shallow and vain to care about. I'm most comfortable in jeans and running clothes, so that's what I wear. I own exactly one tube of lipstick that might be a decade old, plus some foundation powder that I only use if I am performing or if someone's getting married. That's about it for make-up. Those things aren't going to change, at least, not until I get the kind of job that pays money and doesn't involve wiping butts and doing laundry for most of the day.

And then there's my hair. It's been sprouting gray, wiry bits around my temples since I was 25, with considerably more frequency since having children. Also it's thinner than it used to be; I'm going to blame pregnancy for that, too. it's straight and limp and I've had the same haircut for a really long time, just in varying lengths. Now it's long enough for a ponytail. I want something different, but I don't want to have to color it or style it. (We didn't even own a hair dryer until two years ago when my husband had to buy one because the car doors were frozen shut and he had to thaw them open to get to work.)

I'm just not sure what to do. Most likely, I'll get over it. But I'm tempted to get my hair cut. Something new and different. With bangs, maybe, or shaping or layers, something I'd eventually regret because it would make me look ridiculous or require me to spend more time on it than the 10 seconds I currently use to run a brush through in the mornings, 10 seconds that I consider optional certain days of the week.

6 comments:

Amanda said...

I can totally relate... I recently got rid of the first (and only!) blush I owned. I got it when I was 14, and I'm now 33. It wasn't even all gone, it was just all dry and crumbly. I replaced it with the exact same product in the exact same shade. And a few weeks ago, I tried blow-drying my hair for the first time ever. It's hard! I don't know how people hold onto the dryer and the brush at the same time. Anyway, you're not alone. Good luck on your hair decision!

Mrs. Allroro said...

What about a pixie? That'd be easy to style. If I were tiny with gorgeous eyes, I might get a pixie.

Claire said...

Cut your hair. It'll grow back. And, tell whoever will cut your hair that you don't want to fuss with it. That's what I do and it's been working out.

Jessi said...

You know, sometimes a haircut just makes you feel better somehow. I just go in and say I want something different that I can do in less than three minutes in the morning and will grow out well because it'll probably be about year before I get back here. I've seldom been totally disappointed.

Jenn-Jenn, the Mother Hen said...

I agree with Claire, Jessi and Mrs. Allroro. I have the same haircut I have had most of my life - short short that takes me 10 seconds to run a brush through. If I feel like dressing up, I put a little mousse in it and blow dry it with a round brush. If I don't, it still looks okay. I think you would look gorgeous with a pixie cut a la Emma Watson or Mia Farrow in her younger days. Just tell the stylist what Claire and Jessi said.

Animal said...

Well, the "Get it cut!" folks have spoken, so there's that. As for the grey: don't be sucked in by the Revlon people. They exist to remind you that in order to still look hot to your husband, you need to still look like you're 16. Which, ew. These are the same people who won't take their own advice, so they invent the phrase "Men age gracefully." Bollocks. Let the grey come and let it do what it wants to do, wiry or not. Look your age. Just…look like a hot version of your age.

:-)