I recently got my hair cut.

It is nothing fancy—just a standard bob-sort of hair cut where the front is probably a little longer than my chin. I have curly hair, and in this Texas humidity, I like to keep it short and off of my neck.

Conversely, I also dislike getting my hair cut.

I hate spending money on it. I hate taking the time to schedule an appointment and then GOING to that appointment. It feels like a miracle when I can get my husband home to watch the kids for a few hours so I can go to the dentist or the gynecologist. Obviously, haircuts are sort of the last priority in my life. Also, I am lazy.

So, my hair gets sort of long between haircuts. I am always glad when I finally go, but I also procrastinate until it is long enough that I am wearing it in a messy bun 95% of the time. Then, I finally schedule a haircut and get the whole mop of it chopped off until next time.

It was after my last haircut that I went into a store that I frequent regularly. A male employee, whom I have chatted with a handful of times and only knew me as the messy-bun-version of myself, greeted me by saying, “I don’t like a woman with short hair. But yours looks okay.”

Umm. Okay.

‘Thanks,’ I replied. I was nice, and I know (I really know) that he didn’t mean any harm with the comment. I am not trying to berate him or make it seem like he is a bad person. But also, what??!

It isn’t his hair. I am not intimately connected to him in a way that his opinion about my hair should be taken into consideration when making decisions. I don’t walk around giving my unsolicited opinion on random men’s appearances in my everyday life.

“Oh, hello male Target cashier that I recognize from my frequent trips to this store! I actually find men who wear red shirts unattractive. But I guess yours is okay since you have no choice.”

“Oh, hello eye doctor! I usually don’t like men with brown hair, but yours looks okay, I guess.”

Weird, right?

It irked me for a few days. I wondered if I was just being overly sensitive. Too easily offended. He didn’t mean for the comment to upset me. It was a sort of backhanded compliment. But still, I kept thinking about it.

The very next day, I was at the orthodontist with my daughter. One of the orthodontic assistants had also just gotten a new haircut. I didn’t recognize her, but I heard the mother of another patient grilling her about it. The new haircut was the sort I think a rock star might get: straight, cut at a sharp edge, and buzzed on one side. As an added bonus, a dark blue streak ran through her black hair. Here was the exchange I overheard about this style:

“Oh, wow, did you get a haircut?” asked Other Mom.

“I did! I changed things up for my 25th birthday!” she replied. (Side note, I almost choked on my coffee at how old I feel next to professional people nowadays. She is a baby!)

“Oh. Wooooow,” says Other Mom dragging out the ‘O’ in a completely patronizing tone. “What does your husband think?”

“He loves it! He prefers it short. Not so many long black hairs in the shower this way,” she replied.

“Wow. So bold. So brave to cut your hair like that,” Other Mom continued with her lips pursed and her tone dripping with more patronization as she “wowed” for the third time.

Bold? Brave? She cut her hair! She didn’t rescue three children and an elderly woman from an apartment fire! She may very well be bold and brave, but certainly not because she got a haircut.

romy & michelle's high school reunion clip gif

What is this fascination with hair!?

I have heard other women say that their husbands forbid them to cut their hair. Another one of my friends says that they are only allowed to highlight her hair lighter—never darker—per her husband.

I don’t think there is anything wrong with wanting to look attractive for a partner, either. However, when I ask my husband how he prefers my hair, he replies, “I like your hair however you like it.” As far as I am concerned, that is the only correct answer.

Because at the end of the day, my hair is mine. How I cut, style, or color it is none of your business.

My haircut is none of your business. The end.

 

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