February 5, 2006

Long-Haired Freaky People Need Not Apply

I don't really mean that. The invitation is extended for all people---especially long-haired freaky ones---to offer me insight on hair.

See, I'm letting my hair grow. It started because this Suburban Lesbian could not find fifteen minutes to visit the Hair Cuttery. Fifteen minutes is all it takes. The same woman has been cutting my hair for years. She's one of the few people I let get away with calling me Susan. She's fast. She knows how to cut naturally curly hair. Not every hair professional understands the nuances and intricacies of natural curl. I've had the bad cuts to prove it.

Many folks spend a small fortune visiting a salon. Not me. My haircut costs $14 and I tip my stylist $8. For $22 I get a great, fast cut. Works for me.

When I was younger I wanted long, straight hair so bad I could taste it. I fought my curls with blow dryers, irons, hairbrushes. It just grew like dandelion fluff. Then I matured and my inherent laziness took over. I learned to embrace my curls and love it short. It was so easy. Quick wash in the shower, a few spritzes of gel, run my fingers through it and voila! Done for the day.

The hard part was getting it cut every six weeks. The last time I visited the Hair Cuttery was on November 7. You can do the math. Wendy has encouraged me to grow it out a bit. Merely running my fingers through it is no longer enough to style it. Luckily Wendy doesn't mind sharing her hairbrush. My usual gel is no longer enough to control it. Luckily Wendy has a penchant for hair product and gleefully allows me access to her supplies.

How's this for pathetic: I've been late for work every day for the past two weeks because I have not adapted to the additional time it takes to deal with my longer hair.

I'm not sure I'm cut out to be so high maintenance. But maybe I just need some perspective. How long do you spend doing your hair each morning?



Elizabeth said...

3 minutes if I don't wash it. 15 minutes if I do. But it's not long. Right now it's collar length and I probably won't let it get longer than that.

Unless I get really sweaty, skanky, gufungy I wash my hair every third, maybe fourth, day because it just works better that way. I don't have curly hair but I have very thick, course, wavy hair and it behaves better when I don't wash all the oil out of it every day.

Maxine is also gleeful when she lends me hair product. I guess there's something about hair product that elicits glee. Who knew?

Aine said...

Ah, see, mine is just long and straight. I wash it, brush it into approximately the right shape, put gel on the bits that have a mind of their own and that's it.

My ex gf who had curly hair got so frustrated with hers she simply chopped it off close to her scalp. Shame 'cause it was beautiful long.

Anonymous said...

I normally even forget to comb it. I wear a uni-bomber outfit to work in the morning so only the bottom of my very long hair is visible.
I wash it but rarely even comb it after that - my hair is so fine and straight that letting it dry in a big clump produces the same result as if I combed it.

r.d. said...

Here's the deal on hair. I pay (I know it's crazy) 50 bucks plus tip every, we'll say... every... maybe 6-8 weeks?. I don't even know. I have the curly locks.(red,not that it matters) I'd say shoulder length. I wash it every day because I just have to, can't wear a bandana to work. Takes me maybe 5 minutes to put stuff in it then I'm hitting the coffee while it dries somewhat, then I dry it for maybe another 4-5 minutes. Never thought about it in this much detail. My point is is that epecially for curly hair you need to get a professional cut. Style is everything. I'm sorry but anyone who charges 10 bucks for a cut doesn't know what the hell they are doing and then you look like the fool. Pay up.

Suzanne said...

r.d, you've missed my point. My cheap haircuts have always been stellar. It's the stylist, not the price, that matters. My stylist rocks.


weese said...

this whole hair thing is very topical for me right now. i am also growing mine a bit. i normally wear my hair very short...buzz short - which i like. i like it mostly for its practicality. but i have been feeling lately like its just to cliche butch...and so i am trying something new. what a pain! i have to dry it every day (i prefer not to use product, i like it to feel soft and clean)... not sure how long i will last with all this hair.

A said...

A few years ago, I used to have my hair short and spiked, which I really liked until I grew tired of being called "sir".. well, that and the unabashed stares in the women's bathroom. Actually, hair that length required more daily maintenance than it takes me for longer hair. However, when I do my hair now, it takes longer than slapping on some gel and tousling, so I probably spend roughly the same amount of time on it.

I have neck-length hair now and I don't have to look good to go to school, so most mornings I generally end up putting on a bandana because I would rather sleep than wrestle with my hair. I have fine, wavy, and fluffy hair that does crazy things when left to its own devices, so a headcovering is usually necessary when I'm being lazy. When I *do* do my hair.. it's quick to wash, takes 10-15 minutes to blow dry, and another 5 to work some straightening iron magic.

As I said, I did really like it short and have considered chopping it off again, but around here I would be stared at.. plus the long awkward stage between short and styleable was kinda sucky.

Anonymous said...

Liz from I Speak of Dreams.

Oooh, curly hair! Can I have your curly hair? I have fine, limp, stick-straight hair. I used to fuss with it. Now it is quite long, below my bra, and I just twist it up with a clip, or use a scrunchy and tie it back. I can't use those chopstick things cause they just fall out.

I used to wash it every day but as I got through the 40s that was too much. Even if I get sweaty working out I just rinse it rather than the shampoo routine.

tiff said...

Oh-kay, here goes my discourse on longer-ish wavy/curly hair...
wash, condition, don't rinse out all the conditioner, put on either some stuff to make it curly and then blow-dry just the roots (5 min, tops), or put on some stuff made for ethnic hair that's really just glycerin and will soften your hair to buttah-like wavy loveliness, let it air dry for 10 minutes, the blow dry (again, 5 minutes). The trick is in the, dar I say it, hair spray. Spritz whatever you do so that it stays where you want it to. A few shots oughtta do it. There! You're done!

tiff said...

Um, one more comment - layers. Longer curly hair blossoms into mushroom-head very quickly without the layers. Hairstyles that resemble woodland fungi look good on very few people. I cut my own, and it's not hard, but not for the faint of heart either. I'm just that cheap is all. :>

Deb said...

Right now, it takes me no time to style my hair, because I currently have none. (I'm undergoing chemotherapy)

Over the course of my life, I've had both long and short hair, and whatever I had, I was unhappy with it. I have very straight, fine hair (although I hear it may come back curly after chemo), and it never seems to look good no matter what I do with it. Over the last few years, I've gone the short route, mostly due to laziness.

TexMexSol said...

I, like you, wanted straight hair when I was young. But, alas, nothing about me is straight. Years ago, I had a gf that would "style" my hair, using curling irons and blow dryers and all types of gel/mousse/hair spray. I'm glad those days are over!

For years I had collar-length hair that was short on top. I decided to grow it out because I was tired of being called "sir" all the time (you would think the double D's would have been a clue). But I never let the top grow long, only the back. Finally, last year, I tried letting it grow long on top, just to see what it would look like. What a mess!! All summer long!! It was so hot that there were days when I almost took the shears and lopped it off myself. Finally, I went to my stylist, after about 9 months, and got my mullet back.

I am much happier now. I keep it short on top, long in the back. I shampoo it about twice a week and condition it every day. A few squirts of gel and out the door I go to let it air dry on the way to work.

you hippo said...

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Dearest ladies of the internet, how beeg ees your butts?

Simple, yes?

the determined dieter said...

My hair is also ridiculously curly. I usually just let it do what it wants, but I will always tame the curl somewhat with product, water, etc. I brush it out, although they tell you not to do that to curly hair. (Well, I don't want knots to build up, right?) Then I spritz on water and comb it again. Then I scrunch it in small sections, towel dry, sometimes adding product. Total time: 15 min. If I'm straightening it, it can take up to 2 hours, and I use a blowdryer and a hot iron. My hair is a little beyond shoulder length.

cbar said...

What on earth was that comment about butts??? We talk about butts here??

BTW, takes me 5 mins tops to do my hair in the morning. I wash it, comb in out, and then twist it into a clip, or loopy ponytail.

I have longish (around my shoulders, straight hair). I don't feel the need to do much with my hair at work and my students are always too fasicnated by it when it's down anyway.

Geeky Dragon Girl said...

Hey I just got a haircut myself! I absolutely refuse to pay more than $20 for a cut. I like to make sure my hair stays at a length where, if I fall out of bed and run out the door because I'm running late, it won't matter what my hair looks like because I can finger-comb it in 5 seconds. One of my coworkers says I would look good in a buzz cut. Um, I don't know about that... a little too severe for me. But it would probably feel neat, and would be absolutely no maintenance at all. Plus people would keep petting my head. Wait, is that a good thing?

Pisces75 said...

I too have curly hair. Since I have always been a curly headed person, I have always wanted to have straight hair. I luck out that my cousin is an educator for a large hair care company. She keeps me in free product and "free" hair services (I quote free because there is always something I must pay. Sometimes babysitting, sometimes lunch, sometimes money. Most of the time it is a bargain.) She was able to do a straightening treatment. I loved it so much in the beginning! It was so straight. Then after 6 months of blow drying and curling or flat-ironing it became a chore. I have now gone back to my shoulder length curly hair. I enjoy my 15 minute curly hair ritual instead of the 40 I had with straight hair.

Anonymous said...

Every decade or so I get the silly idea that I want that long hair that I saw on someone else. The problem is I have very fine, not so thick, impossible to curl hair. I am with Elizabeth...three minutes. I also get what I call the six month hair cut. "Cut it so I don't have to come back for six months."

Career Guy said...

As a guy, I'm not supposed to care about hair and such, but I do. For about fifteen years I had a perm. I had it when I started my current job, and everyone always thought I just had curly hair. Then I wanted something different so I went straight, but still a little long. Kathy was after me to try a real barber instead of these stylists that didn't really understand me. I finally did a couple of months ago, and now my hair is shorter than it has been in probably forty years! I love it--so easy to take care of now. Go swimming, it's practically dry immediately. Two minutes or so with a dryer if I care to 'style' it. So anyway, there's that song by CSN "Almost Cut My Hair"...oh .wait. this is supposed to be about you. Good for you--go long!

Anonymous said...

My hair is the bane of my existance. I can't seem to live with it, but I certainly do not want to live without it. I, like many of you, have curly hair. I have also recently moved to a new town and have not worked up the courage to break in a new hairdresser. I've had many a bad hair day in the last couple of months, but I'm finally to the point of being able to capture it with a hair tie.
All I can say is "Get thee to the Hair Cuttery" and be greatful you've got a cheap, fast, and good hair stylist.

Melodee said...

Five minutes, tops. I have curls, too, and bangs, so I blow out the bangs, curling-iron them, too, and then scrunch and dry the rest. I was very in-style in the 80s. ;)

I just lopped off five or six inches, but I can still wear a pony tail.

Sumit Khanna said...

I'm a guy, Asian Indian, and I have long hair. It's unusual for an Indian person to have long hair, and I'm often mistaken for being Hispanic. Bastards.

Anyway, I know the pain of long hair. Mine is naturally curly and naturally frizzy. If I remember in the morning I'll put that anti-friz stuff that comes in the little green bottle. Usually I forget and I end up having to retie it into a pony tail several times during the day.

It's painful enough for me to take a shower in the morning. I usually stare at my bar of soap for about five minutes before I start. My mind has trouble waking up sometimes. It really sucks in the winter when you easily and quickly run out of hot water. I end up taking thirty minutes for a shower sometime, including shampoo and conditioning.

I've had my hair long for several years know (at least three I think). I did have a buzz cut back in high school and early college. I'm pretty sure I'll tire of it eventually and wack it all off. I miss the ten minute shower.