November 9, 2010

Haircut

I got tired of my hair being long. It was fun for awhile, and fun when it grew long enough for braids, and fun when it grew long enough to be rolled into a nice smooth bun. But the way I REALLY like to wear my hair is in a sproingy (i.e., ends fountaining instead of tucked) French twist, and that stopped working sometime last spring. That's when I started the process of Intending to Make a Hair Appointment, and please note that today is a day in November---six to eight months past spring.

The other day I caught a glimpse of myself in a store mirror, and I SIGHED about my hair: I don't have bangs, so a bun can look kind of severe, especially with my glasses and not wearing much make-up. I pulled out the bun so it was a ponytail instead, but it looked long and draggy and I didn't feel cute.

Yesterday I tried wearing it down but it wasn't a flattering look, so then I tried to put it in a bun but it was too dry for that to work right, so then I tried a ponytail and it looked wavy in some places and straight in others and the general effect was "got out of bed and put hair right into ponytail" combined with "way overdue for a haircut."

And this kind of thing has been going on for MONTHS. But...to make an appointment, I'd have to use the phone, and I'd have to find a time that worked for the stylist and for me, and it would have to be a time when I didn't have children with me and GAH. So this morning I cut it myself.


Practical, sensible, and economical? Or disturbing manifestation of increasing mental illness? I think as a culture we decide such things by the RESULT: if Britney Spears had looked gorgeous with a shaved head we would have been wowed by her nerve and style.


(Doesn't my face look kind of naked without my glasses?
You can tell I can't see you.)



The ends are not as crisp as when my stylist does it (I have good haircutting scissors I use for the kids' haircuts, but they're not PROFESSIONAL-good scissors, just regular good) (er, plus I don't know what I'm doing like a trained haircutter does), and it's a plain blunt cut with no shaping or layering so it'll be a little triangular when it dries. It still could use an actual appointment with an actual person who knows how to cut hair.

But as a haircut that was meant to remove 5-6 inches of extra length until I get around to making such an appointment, I am very pleased with it. I only had to go around the perimeter once for the main removal part: no "Oops, this side is longer. Oops, now the other side is longer. Oops, CRAP." And now it's short enough to avoid ouchie tangles, short enough to use one box of hair color instead of two, and short enough for a flippy French twist. HAPPY.

63 comments:

Slim said...

Samantha Bee? Is that you?

Amanda said...

I'm very impressed. I could never pull that off. I'm terrified to take scissors to my hair.

Ann said...

I think it looks completely fantastic!

Shelly Overlook said...

I love it!! Still long enough to pull up if you need to, but short enough to feel freeing.

el-e-e said...

Cute! Brave!

Pigeon said...

that looks great. How'd you do the back?

AnnetteK said...

Super cute! I cut my own hair all the time, mostly because I'm cheap. :)

Swistle said...

Pigeon- I took sections that included a piece of uncut back plus already-cut side, then pulled it through my fingers until the part that was cut jusssst sprang free, and then I used the scissors blind to cut the part I was still holding to that same length.

clueless but hopeful mama said...

So impressive! I just went through exactly this with my hair except I forgot I had made an appointment to get a haircut, got the reminder call, went in and told her chop off 5 inches.... and YOUR HAIR LOOKS WAY BETTER THAN MINE. One side is definitely longer than the other and it's TOTALLY a pyramid look, all thick and blunt at the ends (I told her "no layers but thin out the ends so it's not too thick" which maybe didn't make any sense to her.)

You look fabulous. And I'm diggin' the hair color (that's next for me, if I ever get around to it!)

Alice said...

i am *mighty* impressed! that looks entirely as good as cuts i have professionally received. i am far too scared to try that on my own hair, mainly because i know it would not come out nearly so lovely.

Amy said...

The cut looks great, nice job!

And WHOA, it is like you can read my mind or something! I have been trying to get up the nerve to cut my own hair as well, but thinking about cutting the back made me chicken out. I was even going to do layers (I understand how they are done, how hard can it be?), but....the back....I just don't trust myself not to mess it up. Maybe I can get my husband to cut that part?

Elizabelle said...

Cute! The length really works on you. I have recently considered trimming my own bangs, but am too scared. It just seems like such a waste of money just to go in for a trim.

wisdomandpeace said...

Not bad at all! I would never have guessed it was a DIY job if you hadn't mentioned it and I think it's a good length on you. BTW, I also HATE making phone calls, though I think you have me beat. I don't really mind making appointments, since I figure it's the person's JOB to take my call, be polite, etc. and that I will most likely not be the most annoying person to call their office that day. My most hated call: RSVPing for children's birthday parties, especially when I don't know the parents. I always put an email address on my children's birthday party invitations, because I'm sympathetic to how hard of a call that can be to make and come to think about it, I'm not even that crazy about them calling me!

Swistle said...

Wisdomandpeace- YES, and in fact I had to make TWO of those RSVP calls yesterday!! I managed it, but ACK. It takes so long to establish why I'm calling ("Um, hi. This is Swistle Thistle? I'm Elizabeth's mom? From your son Jacob's class? And we got the party invitation...") and then it's so hard to END the call!

Dr. Maureen said...

I can barely recognize you without your glasses. But nice job.

GratefulTwinMom said...

Looks so cute! I could never pull that off. I do trim my own bangs, but even then, sometimes, I end up making them too short. But I totally get when your hair's too long and it bugs you, you can't get to those scissors fast enough. Good for you.

Marie Green said...

If you would have posted this and simply said "I got my haircut" I would have been like CUTE! What did you tell your stylist? Imagine how impressed I am that you did that YOURSELF.

Whimsy said...

Awesome job. Flippy and fun, and a fantastic length!

Saly said...

WOW! Props to you for cutting your own hair as well as the hair of your children. I would not trust myself with either.

Also, you look GREAT!

Lora said...

I'm impressed too! It looks really good. Yay for a flippy twist!

Jess said...

It DOES look good. I will never go near my hair with scissors, though. With curly hair like mine, layers are CRUCIAL.

Miss Grace said...

I'm super impressed with the evenness, but I still want you to have sweepy bangs.

Swistle said...

Miss Grace- ME TOO. I even looked up some videos on how to cut sweepy bangs, but felt too nervous to try it.

Your former hairdresser said...

Kudos to you, looks great!! If it makes you feel any better Swistle...I have been cutting my own hair for the last 7.5 years ;o) ~W~

beyond said...

very cute. i love it. i've been cutting my own hair for years, it's never perfect, but i always get compliments. (the first time is the scariest...)

Lola said...

That looks damn cute. You should go into business.

Tess said...

Oooh!! CUTE!! But how do you cut the BACK? I don't get it! Do you pull the hair around front over your shoulders?

StephLove said...

You are just like Mulan. (My daughter loves the clip of the movie in which she cuts her hair with sword and makes me show it to her over and over on the computer.)

Joanne said...

Looks great. I just cut my own hair recently and although it is a little effed up, overall I'm just HAPPY that I did it. Good for you!

d e v a n said...

It looks good! I 'm impressed that you got it all straight on one try. I don't think I could do that.

Confession: I let my dh cut my hair a lot to avoid the calling/appointment making/ child free time hair cut thing...
Surprise: He does a good job! For Free!

sitting on the mood swing at the playground said...

I'm so impressed. The last time I tried to cut my hair it didn't turn out so well. When I showed up for work my boss greeted me with, "Oh my dear girl."

I need a hair cut (and am debating the whole bangs thing) but it's becoming easier to just put it off.

Party of 5 said...

I can't even cut my 20 month old's bangs straight. You're awesome.

Jana said...

Looks great! You are one brave and talented lady!

momma on the run said...

I give my kids haircuts all the time (husband too). However, I almost always have to go back a couple of times over the next few days to fix the spots I missed or even it up here and there. A professional I am not. Nice work!

Bethsix said...

I think it's adorable.

I cut my hair once in college from shoulder length to a couple inches long, and I still remember it as one of the most FREEING haircuts ever! And then I started shaving it after that, but that's another story. I'd totally do it now, but am too fat-n-old.

shygirl said...

Wow. I've been cutting my own hair for about 4 years-- for all the same reasons you did-- but mine never comes out that well! Kudos!

I saw your explanation earlier in the comments about how you did the back, but I still don't quite get it... did you seriously just cut it behind your head, without looking, only by feel? How on earth did you end up not cutting yourself in the process? I feel like if I tried that, I'd probably cut the fingers that were holding the section of hair instead of the hair itself!

Christina said...

I haven't gone to a prof hair cutter in 12 years. I'm a big fan of cutting my own hair.

I just cut my own bangs a few weeks ago. The after effect was a few days of getting used to it - but I'm happy.

As a tip - don't keep chopping (I saw your tweets!) just let it mull for a few days and then see.

DomestiKook said...

Do you have any idea how super cute a ponytail would be with that cut? It would be flippy! and bouncy! I am so jealous!

Jessa (bipolararmywife) said...

I have a cosmetology degree and I'm not even close to brave enough to trim my own hair, much less cut it. You did a good job!

A Parody of Sanity said...

Huzzah for do-it-yourself haircuts. I applaud you, Swistle.

I would do all the haircuts in my family because what the salons charge is thievery. But I tried, once, and ended up having to go to a salon anyway and have them fix it. I still shudder even thinking about that DYI cut of mine.

For me, what works best is having a girl that I've gone to for years. She's one of my sister's friends, actually, and though that doesn't get me a discount (damn!) I don't feel as awkward making an appointment/getting my hair cut.

Swistle said...

Tess- What I do is, I cut the sides first, as far back as I can. THEN, I take pieces I can't see in the back, pieces that include some of the side hair I already cut. I pull down until I feel the ends of the already-cut pieces between my fingers (or until they just barely break free), and then I cut (blind) the hair in the back to that same length.

Swistle said...

Shygirl- It definitely is the worst part! I read in some haircutting book a long time ago that you should cut UNDER your fingers rather than OVER, but I do cut over (so that I'm holding the cut-off hair, rather than letting it fall to the floor). This may be not-quite-right, but I find it easier for blind cutting: I can FEEL where the scissors should go, just by letting it go across the top of my finger---and I can hold the hair tightly down, so that it cuts more easily.

Then I usually have to look in the mirror using my face-powder mirror, to see if I need to do a little more trimming. It helps that my hair is wavy, so it doesn't really show if it's not cut perfectly straight.

lifeofadoctorswife said...

It looks great! I too am in awe that you can do that yourself.

And I am also curious about this flippy french twist... Sounds like one of those effortlessly elegant looks I have never been able to figure out.

Swistle said...

Dr. Wife- It IS. It's perfect for those of us who have never quite mastered the Art of Hair. You need a claw clip---do you have a claw clip? I like the kind that clip from the side (bear claw) rather than from the center. You make a low ponytail, and twist it toward the ceiling and against your head, then put the clip in to hold it there. ...I think I'd have to show you. Because it's totally easy, but it's weird to explain.

Swistle said...

Here's the very bear claw I use: bear claw clip. But I don't pay that shipping, GEEZ. I found them at Walmrat, but haven't seen them in awhile. May have to pay that shipping after all.

shygirl said...

Oooh, I've been checking the comments all afternoon hoping you'd elaborate on your technique ;) Thank you Swistle-- I'm totally trying it your way next time I cut my own hair, yay!

Superjules said...

Very cute! I find that once I decide I need a haircut, the only acceptable time for one is RIGHT THIS SECOND. Even waiting until the next day is excruciating.

Lippy said...

I hate calling for an appointment. I like my salon because the have you make your next one before you leave. No phone call! I think it looks nice, you are much braver than I (me?).

DomestiKook said...

I had that EXACT bear claw clip. Then my husband broke it and I haven't been able to find another one. Every time I think about it I feel slightly stabby.

Cagey (Kelli Oliver George) said...

Looks good! Nothing like feeling bouncy hair to put a spring in your step, eh?

I trim my husband's hair and I also do the "over" the finger cutting. For one, it is less messy and allows you to dispose of the hair, rather than letting it just fall everywhere.

SIL Anna said...

I'm totally impressed. It looks great.

Mimi said...

It's totally cute, Swistle!

Meadows said...

Great job!

A lot of salons in my area allow folks to make appointments online. I just click the stylist I prefer, then the date, and select a time. Easy peasy!

artemisia said...

I think the haircut looks great! I love the ends, actually.

How in the world did you cut the back?

Anne said...

You=brave. I could never do this. I tried once, in college, and it was truly terrible. Like flock of seagulls mixed with kate gosselin bad.

Good job, Swistle.

Cayt said...

I always cut my own hair. It's a little different, though, because my hair is a little ridiculous in length, and I really don't trust anyone else to cut it. Last time I had it cut, the hairdresser had to get me to stand up because my hair is so long. The longest parts are top-of-thigh length right now. I don't think I'll let it get longer than knee. It's an awesome feeling to not have to make an appointment and pay for a haircut, though!

Swistle said...

Artemisia- I start with the sides. For each cut, I take SOME hair I've already cut, plus SOME hair I haven't---and I cut by making them the same. I do the same as I get to the back: SOME already-cut side-hair plus SOME hair from the back. Then I pull down until the already-cut ends are in my fingers, and then I cut (blind) the back to the same length.

Sam said...

First: adorable! I'm jealous of the length since I'm growing min longer. Second: I text my hairdresser. No phone call needed. I love technology. If I need a day and she offers another, I can take the time to look up my schedule instead of nervously saying "okay!!" to a bad day or time on the phone. Texting is so awesome for my phone issues.

Lucy said...

CUTE! Love it!

Raisin'Cookies said...

So this has nothing to do with your hair cut (but I am very impressed!), but since you have many children in your home, I thought you could answer my question, if you haven't written about it already.

How do you cope with tiredness? My 5 month old is phlegmy and coughy and kept me up half the night last night, and even though I got a nap this afternoon, by 6pm I felt all my energy POOF and I still had to feed the kids and put them to bed on my own because my husband has a Big Deadline at work and is gone a lot recently.

I admit it - I did a fair amount of shouting. I also languished on the couch and dictated what should be done. It didn't seem very efficient. The three year old is stirring up trouble up stairs and I have no energy to deal with it.

Any tips? Commisserations? Sometimes I wish I could go back in time and re-live the baby days of my firstborn child, because that was a cakewalk compared to juggling four kids under 8!

Help!

Swistle said...

Raisin'Cookies- DUDE. Total commiseration. I haven't found a way to handle it either. Coffee. Snacks. A drink while making dinner. Until last night (when I said, "SCREW THIS, the time change has made it TOO DARK for this!!") I was going on a walk after Paul got home from work. I do a lot of the same things you do: directing from the couch (I figure it's inefficient but better than not getting it done at all), shouting, television, etc. Sigh.

Raisin'Cookies said...

Funnily enough, that kinda makes me feel better.

My baby is still awake and rubbing snot all over my shirt, my girls are still awake and pestering each other over book reading rights, my husband still isn't home yet, and I feel on the verge of passing out.

I think I'm going to go fix myself some comfort food because I can't take much more of this today!

Bethany said...

It looks great! I've tried a few times to cut my own hair and it never turns out well. I've stopped trying...haha!