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NG

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Comments

Mat Alt

___I realize how much easier short hair is.
___I admire the beautiful Francine, a lady of a certain age, who has left her greying hair long and endures the necessary caretaking.
Yet, the tears are mine. I take the nice hair for granted, then a woman I know cuts it and I lament, usually to myself, that I never complemented her on her long hair while she still had it, and now she's made herself look OLDER by looking like all the other older short-haired "girls".
___Now I have taken to complementing women who have long hair more often. I'm even doing it to strangers (hopefully in an appropriate non-creepy way)when the occasion presents itself neutrally.
___Stylists(barbers,cutters)cut. It's what they do. They love to cut. Don't ask them.
___Most men like long hair;& most women appreciate it when they see it.
___A group of men I know came up with a theory (after sitting near older women at the Opera) that women's sense of smell resides in their hair. As they get older, they cut it, and lose it. They start to wear the heavier, stinkier, gakkier perfumes & talcs with lavender,shalimar, & HEAVIER scents, and more of it because their own sense of smell is diminished. The rest of us are forced to move away a few seats.
___Back to subject: Your(y'all) longer hair looks better than short, even if thinner, breaking, and requiring more maintenance. And there's enough scent in a good rinse that the rest may be 'unscented', young & fresh.
___We LOVE long hair, even if we don't say so.
Respectfully,....Mat

Antropologa

Love your new hair!

Linda Sherman

I enjoyed this post Aliza.

I have heard a lot about "age appropriate hair".

You have done a good service in pointing out that much of this concept has to do with hair declining in health as we age.

Lowered levels of estrogen are a factor.

Nutrition can make a big difference in the health of our hair. It happens that I eat a great deal of seafood rich in omega 3. I also have fresh ground flax seed with my high fiber cereal every morning. I don't need to add to this but one can also add avocado and other healthy oils to to support hair health.

I spoke about my health plan recently at http://itsdifferent4girls.com/blog/2009/08/23/take-responsibility-for-your-fitness/

Touch my hair. It feels great.

Kay

Looks great on you and I am so there with the short-do liberation--took me longer to go short and love it. But kids freak out--did yours? Mine always did when I cut my hair. Fluff it up--spike it out a bit and enjoy.

cat delett

A thoroughly enjoyable post, Aliza. And I like your new hair, not only because it looks good, but because of the soul-searching way you approached the decision.

I alternate between shortish and longer hair in predictable cycles of boredom, but always my hair is a mix of black and gray. I haven't colored my hair since before I had gray and now I embrace the color, which can't quite be called anything as elegant as "salt and pepper." Many woman have told me they'd like to go natural but have been coloring for so long that they can't figure how to do it gracefully.

The hardest part is all the kids asking me if I'm a grandma or why my hair is gray. I have my stock answers, though, which range from the polite to the slightly snarky depending on the obnoxiousness of the kid asking.

Your experience giving up long locks and the youthful sexiness you associated with it resonates with me and my grays. Attractiveness, sexiness, beauty -- they all emanate from the inside out and don't get snipped away by scissors or faded by grays.

aliza at babyfruit

Yes, NG freaked out. I first asked her if she'd be okay if I cut it. She said yes. Then when she saw it at the hair stylist, she cried and said she wanted my hair back, she wanted it to be long. Now when G. or I ask her what she thinks of Mommy's hair, she says "It's BEAUTIFUL." Sweet kid.

Tonya

CUTE 'do! I love how you write about your experience of it, and isn't your girl the sweetest?

Pamela

Hmmm. I vote for the longer hair, like Mat. And I'm a woman. You looked great! And cutting it short seems like just giving in to the "I'm getting older I now have to have short hair" mantra. But if it makes you happy, more power to you.

Catherine

I cut my hair very short when I entered college and it just didn't work for me (I didn't want to spend the time to keep it looking nice, so it ended up just hanging around my face, lank and dull). Now, my husband likes my hair long, so I keep it pretty long (it was almost long enough to sit on once, but now it reaches my shoulder blades).

MissTheda.com

As a black woman, I've always felt defined by my hair. Straight, curly, long, short, braids, twists, afro... I've done it all.

I use to wear my hair natural until I noticed the response my flat ironed hair got in meetings. It was as if I suddenly was being "heard." No joke, I'm not imagining things. I even got a promotion that year.

To keep the "good will" going, I got a weave but the expense ($700+ for both the hair and the styling) has gotten to be a bit much to manage in today's economic climate. Besides, I don't work in corporate America anymore and don't feel the need to "look the part."

Its been nearly 5 years, since I've seen my natural hair and I've been putting off making an appointment to take this weave out for more than 3 weeks now. I'm nearing the critical stage where dreads are likely forming under the hair net and yet I can't seem to dial the number to my stylist.

I honestly don't know if I can give up my hair, so I applaud you taking the plunge and cutting it all off. I dont think I could do it

Micaela

Wow,
Mat's comments really put me off. I know he signed respectfully, but it comes off as platitudes. Let me paraphrase, "We men (me and my particular friends) like long hair and we don't think you should cut it because it wouldn't turn us on as much as your long hair. But we don't mean any disrespect." And this followed by his theory of aging women and perfume ... my God. I would have deleted his post.
I have medium hair, by the way. But his comment is what makes some women want to shave their heads.
Before I read his post I was just going to say that I think you and your daughter are beautiful with very pretty features. You two are lovely creatures and your husband is very lucky to have you as a partner.

aliza at babyfruit

Mat, I love that you love long hair. Do you have long hair? Are you "of a certain age?" Are you a woman? (I'm guessing not). If not, then you don't remotely have any idea what we women go through with out hair through the decades and particularly in our 40th or 50th ones.

Women are not on this earth to be aesthetically pleasing to men. Well, ok, Angelina Jolie is, however, in general, we are human beings with our own individual needs, desires, personalities and life goals. Top on my list? Definitely NOT keeping my hair long because men prefer it. It isn't to look beautiful to men.

One of my top Life Goals is to be happy and content in my own skin, with my own appearance despite the many changes over the years from age, weight fluxuation, childbirth, hormonal surges and depletion. I want to be able to look in a mirror and be okay, be comfortable, be confident. Just for me. Not for you, not for my husband or any other man. Not for any other woman for that matter.

So thank you for your comments but know that most women couldn't care less about some men's facile, infantile desire to have women be their mommies and their whores. I hope that my husband loves me for what is inside of me, not how I style, color or cut my hair. Frankly, I'm not so sure at the moment, however, that is something I'm working on finding out.

Mike Gunderloy

I'm friends with *you*, not your hair. Cut it however the heck you want.

As a middle-aged male with long hair, I have some tiny inkling of what it's like to get stares of disapproval from other people over hair length. My only advice is to ignore them and do what's right for you.

KCW

Great post! :) I am probably a rarity in that I really quite like my hair and always have. I've only had a handful of days in my life that the results of my haircut desires or styling efforts failed miserably. In the Russian Roulette game of hair genes, I got the good ones. I was never one to be emotionally attached to my hair either. In fact, I had grown it down to my waist throughout my years in high school (with every intention of cutting it VERY short during college) and my stylist also refused to cut it off for me into an extreme short do that I really, really wanted - the same as yours did! (The style I ended up with was very similar to your new do!) I had to get her to do it in stages over a three month period and I think it cost me about three times what it would if she'd have been willing to do the cut all at once. In the end, I kept it super-short for about a year before I got tired of the every-six-weeks visits to the salon.

I have a hard time understanding when women are emotional over cutting their hair since it's designed to grow back. That could also be a function of my personal experience with fast-growing hair. I also don't understand the constant need to change one's natural (usually very nice) hair color to something generated by a bottle of chemicals. Yes, I'm only 32, but I have been going grey since I was 26 and I am one of the only people I know over the age of 15 who doesn't color my hair. Admittedly, my grey hair isn't super-obvious, as I'm a blonde, but it becomes more so every year! I've seen too many women who discontinued color treatments and, in pretty much every case, I thought their look was much more appealing au naturale.

I'm currently going through the opposite struggle. Part of me wants to grow my hair out to a length that I can pull it back into ponytails or a braid. I like long hair, but I fear that it will make me look juvenile and be inappropriate for my age, face, body. I did decide to grow it and, fortunately for me, cutting long hair off doesn't take nearly as long as growing short hair back out. :)

I like having a style that pleases my husband, but I wouldn't change to a style that I didn't want just to suit him. Fortunately, that's never been an issue. I guess that, at the end of the day, what everyone else thinks about your hair is irrelevant. Do you look in the mirror and like what you see? If not, why?

Ronbot

Loved your sexy long hair. I agree with Mat's every word. A 55 yr/old lady pal of mine has become a siren since growing out her pixie cut. Too many women make a mistake by going short. In my eyes, anyway.

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