A hairy issue

troll doll

I have worn my hair long the majority of my life. From my earliest years, when my mom would cut my bangs straight across my forehead and the rest would hang long down my back, to my high school years, my childrearing years and all the years since. Not Crystal Gayle long, but longer than not. Always.

Except for one year. In 1991. I worked in a beauty salon then and had my hair cut short during most of that year.

Lately I've been considering chopping off several inches of my hair. My mess of hair makes the night sweats of these midlife years far worse when I'm tangled up in tresses while doing my best to toss off covers... then yanking them back on seconds later when I'm shivering.

And why not cut it off when during the day I most often wear it pulled back in a pony tail or held off my face with any one of my two dozen pairs of readers or bifocals strategically scattered about the house. (Sometimes even two pair as many times I forget I have one pair on my head already, use another pair to read this or that, then attempt to push that pair atop my head after finished reading... only to realize there's already a pair there.)

Another reason I'm considering cutting my hair is because it's drilled into my head, every woman's head, that women over 50 — according to the beauty pros — look better/more vibrant/less aged with short coifs versus long lengths.

I want to look better/more vibrant/less aged. So I've been seriously debating if I should succumb to the subconscious peer pressure and just cut the darn hair.

When I visited Megan and my grandsons a few weeks ago, I asked her if she thought I should cut my hair short. Megan's always been far more fashion conscious than I am, and she's known to not mince words, so I knew she'd give me her honest opinion.

Which she did. In no time flat.

"No," she said. "It'll make you look old."

I thought that odd since all the experts swear older women look younger with short hair. So I asked Jim what he thought.

He, too, answered no... though without any real reason.

So I pulled out my pictures from that shorthair year of 1991 to consider and decide myself. These pictures: 

short hair 1991

short hair 1991

Looking at those, I realize why Megan and Jim advised me to keep my hair long. How horrid are those photos? That hair? How horrid it might be for them — and others — to see me looking that way again.

Yet, because I want to look better/more vibrant/less aged, I justified to myself why short hair now might look different than in those horrid photos. For one thing, I was ridiculously and unnaturally redheaded back then — from a bottle, of course — which I'm not now.

And the permed poof puff that was acceptable in 1991 would be replaced by something a little less, well, voluminous.

Plus, though I clearly was unhappy in those photos, I assure you it wasn't related to the hair. (In fact, maybe the short hair was a result of my unhappiness?) I'm happier now and no doubt wear a more chipper expression than I did during that distressing year, those depressing photos.

But after debating with myself, the hairy truth of those photos couldn't be denied and I must agree with Megan and Jim. Ultimately my decision is the same as they advised: A big fat hairy NO.

I will not cut my hair.

I will, though, simply start wearing pony tails to bed to limit the nightly tress distress.

And I'll accept that perhaps I already look better/more vibrant/less aged.

At least compared to those photos from 1991.

Today's question:

What's your hair history and did you feel compelled to go short at a certain age?