I have NEVER had my hair professionally cut or styled. It's way past time, but (like many things in life) the longer I wait, the harder it is. I also have a very long list of special requests. What should I do in order to have hair I love again?
Get comfortable: grab some coffee or whatever. This is going to take a while.
Me: Mid-30s, tall, overweight, brimming with anxiety and self-doubt.
My hair, past: Always long. Previously shinier and thicker than now, maybe due to a past health issue. I'm used to my long hair being my one point of vanity, and I used to wear it down all the time.
My hair, current: I live in a really hot part of California and I'm always too hot in certain classrooms or on a hike, so my hair spends most of its time in a basic, boring, unflattering chignon. I typically wash it at night and braid it to increase its waviness and body. I have a few white strands, but they haven't significantly affected anything yet. I have no idea what my hair looks like or does if it's shorter than mid-back. (I'd be thrilled if it were curly.) I would love to wear it down more often.
Current photos: bun from the front
, photo from a couple years ago--after braiding the night before
, best photo I could take by myself of how it looks just now, having washed it this morning and air-dried it (no braid)
. this is what's going on under the outer layers
My hair, future: Don't know. I can tell you this, though.
- the ability to get it completely off my face and neck so that I don't die of heatstroke
- the ability to get it gathered together at night (I have to use headgear at night--I guess short enough not to matter would also work)
DO NOT WANT:
- to have to go back to the stylist frequently
- to use products - I'm allergic to everything and chronically sleep-deprived during the school year, so while I know there are always some people who say "wash and wear isn't a thing!" -- it MUST be wash and wear. No products for daily wear, no blow drying, no curling irons! If you're going to say "can't be done," please do not comment, because this is not helpful.
- hair in my eyes :(
Hair I like: I suspect that what I think looks attractive on women (e.g., bangs) probably doesn't look good on me. I don't think I want short hair or bangs, but I'm willing to hear arguments. 1
Caveat: I'm so scared of going to a salon, because it's bizarre to be my age and have never gone to one. (I have reasons, but...it's time to move past them.) How do I find a salon that won't induce a migraine immediately just from the smells, will take time to help me find something I won't regret, won't just try to sell stuff to me, and won't just cut all my hair off? When I think about this, my anxiety levels go off the charts and I start eyeing DIY Long Layers videos. Eek!
Addendum: I write and teach college, so I don't have to worry about whether my hair is "professional." I have a plan for crazy color as a reward to myself when I finish this writing project, in fact.
I would really appreciate
- specific cuts that you think would work well
- specific salon and stylist names and advice for going there/what to expect (I live in the east east East SF Bay and realize I'll probably have to travel to another city)
someone to go with me to the salon