Cutting Off My Hair Despite My Face

August 23, 2017

Cutting off two thirds of your hair is some scary shit. Sitting down in that almost-but-not-quite-comfortable hairdresser’s chair, facing the sober reality of my own face with its conflicting perfections and imperfections, I felt hesitant. Frankly, a bob might just not suit me as it did when I was 18. It’s always a gamble. As it happens, my hairdresser didn’t give me even a millisecond to hesitate before gathering most of my hair together and cutting that shit right off. Just like that.

Side note: it’s not really a bob. It’s a lob. A long bob. Which is *obviously* very different. I’m not brave (read: crazy) enough to attempt the Posh Spice. And Pinterest has assured me that the ‘choppy long bob’ is the new it-girl hairstyle of 2017. So what choice did I have, really?

The fact is, some women have ethereal, dainty pixie faces that would suit any style. From a prison style buzz cut to ‘I recently escaped from a cult after spending 20 years in an underground doomsday bunker’ floor length hair. These women can wear it all. Women like Mia Farrow or Natalie Portman. Women like Emma Watson or Emma Roberts or Emma Stone. (Basically, if your name is Emma, you’re probably good to go.)

I harbour no uncertainty about my face and its angles. Yes, like most of us, I can post a good- looking selfie on Instagram; I don’t scare children with my hideousness. But I am certainly no dainty pixie. Sometimes I think my body might be a medical marvel in that I am able to store up water and energy for winter like a camel – except it’s all stored more or less on my face. Most people pick up two kilos and their jeans are slightly tighter, I pick up two kilos and my face is a barely-recognisable puff pastry with only the vaguest of features. Or at least that’s how it feels.

Okay, I exaggerate, but the point is, before cutting my hair, I worried that short hair wouldn’t suit my face because it wouldn’t hide my face. Which is a pretty sad way to think, and something I didn’t quite realise I was thinking, until very recently. And that’s exactly why I had to cut my hair – to face this insecurity, like I’ve always faced my biggest fears and insecurities, by jumping right into the deep end without blinking.

All in all, I drove home from the hairdresser loving my new haircut. It was a big step for me and I’m sure it will take a while for me to get used to living without my veil of long brown hair. And, as per usual, it didn’t look quite as perfect when I woke up this morning which made me doubt whether I did the right thing. But ultimately I did something brave and bold – and that is, and always will be, far more important than having a perfect pixie face. Don’t you think?



P.S. You might be thinking “It’s only hair – no big deal” and that’s totally true, but I’m always wrestling between vanity and self-consciousness. Maybe it’s because I’m a Gemini, or maybe it’s because society teaches girls that it’s most important to be pretty. Who knows? It’s a constant struggle and I’m sharing it because why the hell shouldn’t I.


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