As Joseph Campbell taught us back in liberal arts skool, every journey has a heroine as well as a guide. A sensei. A teacher.
This is the story of one woman's journey to better hair. And I must highlight in particular one agent of change who led me to a better life, one in which I spend upward of $200 at the beauty supply store in the Valley today just for the fuck of it.
So then, here is my teacher.
This is Miss Ruby. You can obviously see from looking at her that she is amazing. In addition to being a hair and makeup artiste at PinUp Girl Clothing, both in Burbank, she is also a pinup model. No big deal. Here she is modeling a dress from PinUp Girl.
Other important things about Miss Ruby: She is from Minneapolis, she puts blush on her eyebrows every morning so they match her hair, she calls shitty people "dummies," and she is in a gang. They are called the Squirrels. They have secret gang names that I can't tell you. Here is part of her gang.
I love PinUp Girl Clothing a lot, so I tend to frequent their shop. And finally, I realized I needed to fully embrace the pinup style that I had so long admired. So I spent a shitload of money on outfits.
I also started getting my hair and makeup did by Ruby. THAT is when I went quietly banaynay.
The above photo records my astonished reaction the first time I really went for this look. I loved it! That's a faux bob, by the way.
I was hooked! I went back to Ruby and got another fabulous 'do.
I couldn't stop posting selfies on Instagram, because I am a narcissist who always felt ugly as a child, but also because I looked fucking haaaaawt done up like that.
At some point, I decided the faux bob ought to become a real bob. I went to Lola and Roxy's. Ruby went to work, wearing an apron she obviously made herself.
And thus: transformation!
I felt new and alive and sassy and sophisticated. People said it was cute! I felt cute! Then I showered and slept on wet hair.
That was this morning.
I'll admit it: I was scared. What the FUCK was I supposed to do with this hair without Ruby to make it look awesome? I can't afford to get my hair did all the time. It wasn't even like I could call Ruby for advice, because she was off in Vegas at some giant rockabilly retrosexual dance party called Viva.
And exactly whom did I suppose I was, anyway, getting my hair chopped off as if I were some kind of WASP with straight, fine hair? I have bigass curly Sicilian hair. It is thick and unruly and ornery. It is not meant to be shorter than shoulder-length. What the heck had I been thinking, getting a freaking bob?
I began to panic.
At this point, I summoned the image of my teacher and took a deep breath. Then I remembered that she had actually given me some great wisdom, not unlike that of the Master Yoda, while I was busy admiring my reflection the previous day.
"Get hot rollers," I remembered her saying. "Also get shampoo that deposits red on your head. Go to Nigel."
My mission was clear. I needed to go on a vision quest.
I embarked upon my journey atop my trusty steed, i.e., inside my Pop-Pop's old Toyota Camry (BTW, Pop-Pop turns 90 this week! Hooray!)I could tell you it took me a long time to reach the Promised Land, but actually it took like five minutes and parking was easy. There in North Hollywood, I entered Nigel Beauty Emporium and almost fell over. Because, you see, I had found my land of milk and honey. And wigs.
Oh, the sweet sweet glory of Nigel. So many of my favorite things.
A very helpful gal named Sarah assisted me in my quest to find the stuff Ruby recommended, plus a handful of other items I didn't really need.
Then it was time for me to return home and try this shit out on my own.
I put on the Lumineers, set up shop in the bathroom, and went wild with those steam curlers.
I also took the opportunity to use my fun new brow pencil and powder. I spent most of the '90s trying to minimize my brows; now I hearken back to the days when a woman rocked a strong brow with grace. Then I did a bunch of other things to my face, yanked those curlers out, and voila! My own semi-kinda-sorta version of the pinup look!
I felt victorious. I felt wild! I felt so good, in fact, that I went straight out to an Asian fusion restaurant, where you can have sushi and pad thai and sake and then also egg rolls and then Korean beer. It was madness! Edward Said would have a field day, may he rest in peace.
And that, dear friends, is the story of how I got my hair right.
Now if someone could just teach me how to do a perfect cat's eye with eyeliner, I'd be totally set. Any advice, xoGals? SMOOCH!