The Empowerment of a New Hairstyle
I started growing out a pixie cut five years ago after my son was born. I’d worn the style for about three years, and although I absolutely adored it, I was ready for a change.
Any mother will tell you that pregnancy does crazy things to a woman’s body. Hormones can cause boobs to inflate, fingernails to grow at warp speed, and feet to swell into marshmallows that fit into nothing else but socks. Or more accurately, Christmas stockings.
For me, this last pregnancy resulted in all of the above, plus a drastic change in the texture of my hair.
My once semi-curly hair that could easily be tamed with a flat iron had now taken on a mind of its own. The roots became kinky, while the rest was a mixture of ringlets and waves, intermingled with a few straight pieces here and there. As a result, I’ve spent the better part of the past five years sporting my signature messy bun.
Hear me out: I love a messy bun. But the messy bun has its time and place. It can be paired with yoga pants or jeans. It’s cool to wear one while running weekend errands. Acceptable when you’ve just woken up, or when you’re washing off your makeup before bed. On occasion, you can “dress it up" by pulling out some tendrils and side-swept bangs.
But after spending nearly every day for five years in the same pulled-up 'do, I started feeling something.
I felt like the college version of myself. Skipping the makeup, and tossing my tresses into a knot on top of my head just to make it to class on time. Lazy for not taking time to make myself more presentable. So frazzled and rushing through the morning — and through life in general — that it was all I could do to pull a thick pile of frizz into a knot on top of my head. Unpolished and unkempt. A far cry from the wife, mom, and career woman that I’d like to portray to others.
Yesterday, I had about 5 inches chopped from my broken-off, dead-ended, frizzy-ass hair. My stylist — who happens to be my older sister — assessed the cut from both a “curly” as well as a “straightened” perspective. Either way I choose to wear it, it is cut evenly and should lie perfectly. Of course, since it took her over an hour to blow-dry and straighten this craziness, curliness shall prevail.
Upon seeing my new reflection in the mirror, I felt a change. Silly as it may seem, I “looked” more responsible. I now have a style that doesn’t require a scrunchie to be worn around my wrist at all times. I don’t look like the stressed mom who hasn’t brushed or washed her hair in a week. I can see myself waking up, running fingers through my hair, and being ready for the day…as opposed to my former hot mess of a self, looking partially thrown together in the same bun I fell asleep in. Feeling guilty for not brushing my hair and still being in the same bun I fell asleep in.
In my honest opinion, looking the part helps in acting the part. For some strange reason, my “polished" hairstyle has sparked motivation to be more responsible, productive, and just better in general. Call me crazy.
Take the time. Do something kind for yourself. Especially if you’re one of those who are always giving and doing for others. You’ll be happy you did.
A haircut. A manicure. A massage. Writing in your journal. Painting your toenails. Painting a canvas. Taking a bubble bath. Taking a drive in the country.
Never underestimate the power of small acts of self-care.