Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Crazy hair

Addison was born without much hair. She spent about the first half of her life as a cute little baldy. Hence the cabbage toupe:


But in this last year, her hair finally stopped being so shy, and started rapunzeling its way down her beautifully round head to fall right above her shoulders in a stylish bird's nest of snarled silky golden fibers. We tried to comb it, more or less. But unless she'd just gotten out of a bath, it'd never really lay down the way it's supposed to.




It always seemed like a bit of a losing battle (especially in the California heat, where she spends half the year with her hair matted to her sweaty head), and in the end I just decided that her hair explosion was endearing. And it added just the right touch during her crazy clown phase. The best we could do for streamlining was a pulled-back Dread Pirate Wesley look:


So we didn't worry too much about it, just like we don't particularly mind dressing her in boys clothes or mis-matching her socks or letting her go to the playground in her pajamas.

She liked it, too. When Addison and I draw or practice letters, we typically draw pictures of everyone in the family. I'd ask what kind of hair I should give everybody, and this is what Addison would suggest: 



For Gramps “just a yittle.”

For me: “Piky hair.”

For mama: “Soft hair.”

For herself: “Crazy hair!”

Recently, though, people have been increasingly telling me that I've got to "do something" with her hair, and that she looks like a "ragamuffin," a term which Addison vehemently protests: "I not a muffin!" 

So, I've spent the last couple months thinking of ways to solve the feral child problem without adding more work to my day (did you know that there are parents out there who manage to corral toddlers for a full TEN minutes of hair-brushing?!). I've always had a bit of a thing for a sort of Audrey Hepburn short style. You know; sweet, neat, and easy to clean:



So I started researching pixie cuts and photo-shopping 'dos onto Addison:

Thanks for the do, Carey Mulligan
Much obliged, Emma Watson
What cute little boys, right? Really, though, these first two aren't terrible . . . but Addison's hair just isn't that thick or dark. I have this suspicion that if I actually cut it as short as the cuts above, her hair would become invisible. I tried to find a blonde that'd be closer to Addison's color, and this is what happened:


Eh. Michelle Williams, you can keep your hair. We're probably going a different route.

I found some scissors and brandished them dramatically in the mirror for a while, trying to inhabit the role I was about to play. Satisfied, I took a deep breath, and got to work. I got rid of the nest in the back and started trimming here and there. I took special care not to cut my daughter's ears off (safety first!). At a certain point, I decided I'd better take a break before I did anything that I'd regret. So this was pretty near the end:


I smoothed it out a little but ultimately wrapped things up pretty quickly because I didn't have any more Laffy Taffy to keep the kid occupied. And the whistle was deafening.



I think we ended up channeling Twiggy more than Audrey Hepburn.



Though I've gotta say that ours is even more photogenic, if just a tad shaggier. I'll admit, it's not a perfect final product, but for my first ever haircut attempt, I'm fairly pleased. Maybe we'll call it "shaggy chic."

This is the closest she gets to bed-head now. No hair explosion!

Now that your crazy hair is gone, kiddo, you'll just have to be a sleeper agent for crazy. I'm sure you'll still be letting it out when we least expect it.

Update: for the final, shorter evolution, check this post out.

17 comments:

  1. That is brave stuff attempting a short haircut. Well done.

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    1. I do my best. I keep almost cutting her hair even shorter, wanting to try at least once for the really short 'do, but haven't been able to QUITE muster up the courage for it.

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  2. Oh. That makes me a little sad, but hooray for less de-tangling work for you guys!
    We have been cutting Peter's hair for the past 6 months now, and what I found to be helpful was taking him to a hair salon at the beginning, taking copious notes of what they did, and watching some youtube videos. Now, we are more confident that the layers look professional and neat. We'll probably do the same for K when she gets older, but I don't think I'll be able to bear cutting it until she's at least 20. :)

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    1. Sounds like I just burst your balloon, Emily. But! It'll always grow back.

      Good tips about the salon and youtube videos, though. I don't know why I didn't think more about that.

      Out of curiosity, how much of your day do you spend wrangling your daughter's awesome head of hair?

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    2. Emily, Lindsay and I were just talking, and I appear to have not remembered how much hair your daughter has. So Lindsay dug up some photos for me. Not a lot to work with, but still awesome!

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    3. Yes indeed, Neal temporarily got K confused with our other friend's daughter, who it must be said had total 80s glam rocker hair when she was like 5 months old.

      Watch a couple of youtube videos and then give mine a try, Neal. I'm up for a little excitement!

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    4. I'll think about it, Lindsay. I'll think about it.

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    5. Yeah, sadly no hair on her yet. She has about enough to get some cowlicks every once in a while, but I'm looking forward to the wrangling days. Yes, yes I am!

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    6. Careful, Emily. You may get what you ask for.

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  3. She pulls it off great! I was telling Lindsay every morning that I get K dressed (which is most but not every day of the week) I do "teeth and hair, scriptures and prayer" as her morning grooming/prep routine. It took a while to work up to all of that, but it was initiated by the fact that K's hair was getting long enough and messy enough to need to do something with it. On days we stay home, she just needs to let me do enough to keep it out of her eyes (quick brush, then a bow, headband, or small pony for the front part of her hair). On school days, it has to be up (pigtails or a pony, which actually requires about 4 hairbands to keep it all in place). She hates it, but she usually doesn't fight it any more and we can do it pretty quickly. I tell you this because I assume some day Addison may want her hair longer and you'll have to change your approach---this is what works for us. Until that day, I think you've got a great way of doing things!

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    1. I do not look forward to having to manage someone else's long hair. I found it obnoxious enough to manage my own, before I cut it off. The way I see it, when she's old enough to take some responsibility for it, then she can grow it longer. Also, I'm a curmudgeon.

      I like what you're saying about a morning routine/ritual, though. In the last couple of months we've been totally off morning routines (though I usually feed her breakfast), and a whole lot of hard things would be easier if we chose a few things and stuck with them. I'm gonna take that to heart, now.

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  4. My kid was a baldy with sparse curls. Then he got a hair cut. Now he has a head full of straight hair. I still miss his natural curls. Pawing at them taped onto a page isn't the same.

    Oh well, at least his scalp is more protected against skin cancer.

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    1. You could always tape the curls back on his head...or he could get a wig. When Addison and I take walks at the mall, we always have to stop at the wig shop, where she eyes all the hairpieces with a look of wonder on her face.

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  5. And the Best Prepositional Phrase of the Week Award goes to Neal for "in a stylish bird's nest of snarled silky golden fibers!" (The crowd goes wild).

    Also, the thought of ^-^ pawing at her son's curls on a page really made me chuckle. I'm with ya, sista! I'm not cutting my kid's hair yet for that very reason.

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    1. I accept this award. I will carry it with me wherever I go.

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  6. Addison looks darling with her new haircut! The short pixie style suits her...but my FAVORITE hairstyle is double ponytails (better know to the world at large as pigtails--however Addison never wanted her hair to resemble a pig at all).

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    1. It's she's not a fan of anything coming from a pig. Except Peppa Pig. Too bad her "double pony tails" rarely lasted more than a couple minutes; I concede she DID look very cute.

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