When Were You At Your "Hair Happiest"?

Ain’t it always the way that, as Joni Mitchell warbled, you don’t know what you’ve got ‘til it’s gone? That’s how I feel about my hair, anyway.
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September 11, 2013
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hair, haircuts, beauty, hairdressers

There’s something about the onset of autumn that makes people think about getting a new haircut –- everyone seems to be doing it right now (er, by "everyone" I mean swimwear designer Lisa Marie Fernandez who I follow on Instagram and who just got ‘bangs’ and Garance who’s talking about her forthcoming haircut on her blog -– that’s "everyone," right?)

As I contemplate going to the hairdresser’s next week (on the eve of London Fashion Week –- risky decision? Possibly) I keep wondering, will this be the time that it turns out perfectly, just as I imagined, and makes me feel like the best possible version of myself?

I don’t think a haircut has ever changed my life before, so I probably should have learned my lesson by now, but still I live in hope that a serendipitous exchange with a hairdresser who miraculously "gets" me will result in me rediscovering the ideal hair that I once had.

Basically, I want Lou Doillon’s hair -– her loose, dishevelled, wavy curls and messy fringe. I don’t know if that’s possible but I’m going to try anyway, by brandishing lots of photographs in the poor hairdresser’s face.

Wahhh I want her hair why can't I have it whyyy. *cries*

Ain’t it always the way that, as Joni Mitchell warbled, you don’t know what you’ve got ‘til it’s gone? That’s how I feel about my hair, anyway. And it’s not "gone" in the sense that I’m losing it (as far as I know), but more that it doesn’t look -- in my opinion anyway -– as good as it did a few years ago, and I don’t know what to do about it. The most infuriating thing is when I look back on my "best hair" in old photographs, I have a feeling that I really didn’t appreciate it at the time.

Which is typical, isn’t it? That’s the message that always comes through when older women give advice to their younger counterparts –- they tell them not to waste a precious moment fretting over perceived flaws –- yearning for a flatter stomach or longer legs or whatever =– but to treasure and appreciate their bodies for being healthy, useful and yes, beautiful.

So I suspect that in the future I’ll look back at pictures from now and think “There was nothing wrong with my hair, it looks perfectly alright, what was I complaining about” just like I do today with pictures of my younger self.

I will also, however, remember the unfortunate centre-parted curtains I sported in the mid-‘90s (an attempt to emulate Justine Frischman’s slick side-parted bob which went very, very wrong) and the Ann-Widdecombe-esque red and black bowl cut of my early twenties and shudder, just as I do now. No bad hair day will ever be as bad as those "experiments," but I’m glad I tried them.

So what I’d like to know is, have you had a perfect hair moment, when everything came together to express exactly what you wanted to about yourself? (Am I putting too much pressure on what a haircut can do for a person here? You know what I’m talking about, right?) And do you have a hair idol (Lou is mine, clearly.)

This article originally appeared on xoJane.co.uk.