The last time I had a haircut, I was still in England. It was October. October. Since then, my hair has been blasted by the freezing Icelandic air, braced itself for a cold Christmas and New Year in America, journeyed across Australia in 38 degree heat and then struggled to cope with the humidity of Sydney. My hair has been through a lot and it showed. It might have looked long and flowing in photos, but the ends were split and dead and taming it was getting to be impossible.
Enough was enough, so yesterday I took the plunge and went to the hairdresser.
It was the best haircut I have ever had. The lady cutting my hair (Jae) was from Korea and we had a good chat about moving abroad, life in Australia and missing home. I was brought drinks and given a scalp massage whilst I had my hair washed. After using a conditioning treatment on me, Jae gave me an array of samples to take with me because I wasn’t sure if I wanted to buy them. I asked for a curled blow dry, which Jae did, but then she styled my hair some more because ‘we were having too good a conversation for my to leave just yet’. She was the nicest woman and I walked out feeling pampered, relaxed and like a new woman. My hair might have been a good 5 inches shorter, but I walked out there like I was 5 inches taller, head held high and feeling good.
A good haircut can do that to you. It not only changes how you look on the outside, but on the inside too. When we were travelling, my hair going wild and free was all part of the fun, but since settling the bedraggled look became tiring. I didn’t exactly feel scruffy when my hair was crazy long and straggly, but I didn’t feel good. Having hair that frizzed, that had split ends visible to the naked eye, that looked dull and tired made me feel dull and tired. My hair was a chore and trying to get it to obey me was a struggle I couldn’t be bothered with most days. I’d fry my hair into submission with my GHDs, lather on leave in conditioner or hair oil to try stop it succumbing to the humidity and be on my way. My self care was non existent.
Having that indulgent time at the hairdresser was a bit like hitting a reset button. It felt nice not to be rushing to get somewhere or trying to write posts for deadlines or trying to get my writing out there. Sitting in that chair, chatting away to someone new and having them look after me was just what I needed. Looking at my reflection, finally happy with what I saw, boosted me. I was no longer carrying around dead weight that pulled me down and sapped my energy, but I was fresh and shiny and ready to face the world.
It is important to give yourself that time every now and then to sit in that chair, have your dead ends cut away, to reinvent yourself and have that pamper. I need to remind myself that my hair, my wellbeing and making time for myself is important. I deserve the scalp massage, the gossip, the relax, the styling and attention – and so do you. Let’s never forget that again.