Thursday 22 August 2013

I'm as free as my hair

I've always had a thing for dying my hair. I remember, when I was in my teens, begging my mum to let me have highlights and eventually, around the age of 15, she said yes. When I was younger, I had hair so long I could almost sit on it but then when I started secondary school, I decided to have it cut super short, which was a big mistake - my first massive hair fail!

My natural colour is a light brown / dark blonde tone which used to get lighter in the summer, but I always wanted to be blonder. So, over the course of my late teens, blonder I went and I continued to grow my hair as long as I could. Then I decided to go for the oh-so-cool look of having ash blonde on the top half of my hair and dark brown on the lower layers. Actually, it looked alright and couldn't have been too bad as that's the style I was sporting when I first met Stephen!

I then tired of blonde and over the following 10 years, I have been dark brown, medium brown, bright red, plum, auburn, dark blonde, bright blonde, red again, dark brown again, my natural colour and currently I am going from highlights to full on blonde ambition again (I hope).

For those who know me, it's been a bit of a long running joke that I would have a different hair colour and / or style each time they saw me but in reality, I would try and change my look in some way every eight months or so. Sometimes because I had to gradually build colour to get the look I wanted to achieve or other times because I just wanted a complete image overhaul. And then there's roots to deal with, of course!

I've done it myself and I've been to the salon. I've had it long, I've had it layered and I've had it bobbed. I've been straight, wavy, curly and have even had a fringe more than once. I've also had some disasters such as the time when a hairdresser has left bleach on my hair too long and severely damaged it, so much so I had to lose six inches of length to even out the short top layers I was left with. It was pretty traumatic and not long after, I developed scalp psoriasis, so I've had a bit of an emotional time with my hair for the past couple of years.

It hasn't put me off dying my hair though but I think I'll be sticking to shades of blonde from now on. I think it's what suits me best and I want to grow it as long as I can. My hair is who I am - it's the one thing I can control, that and the make up I use. Hair is so connected with femininity and how we feel about ourselves and hoWhen w we look, which is why I think I've always used it as a way of expressing myself. It's like I want to make myself into someone new. That's certainly the way it started but now it's a way for me to give myself a boost and feel better about myself, as my psoriasis can really get me down (see my earlier post on this here).

Here's some of the hairstyles I've sported over the years...

 Back in 2004
 When I was 21
 My 22nd birthday
 I think this is my favourite look
 Me as a Spice Girl
 Natural colour
 Short and with a fringe - perhaps my most dramatic look ever
 Growing my fringe out
 I had purple hair for one night
 I'd love to go pink but luckily, this was just a wig
 I grew my hair and stopped dying it for a year and a half before our wedding
On our wedding day, blonde highlights and curls

 Love my hair here, in NewYork on our honeymoon
 I went for a fringe soon after the wedding as I was desperate to do something to my hair
 Before Christmas 2010, I went auburn
 I bit the bullet in 2011 and went red - I LOVED my hair this colour!
 Red and big curls - sadly, the dye just wouldn't stay and the colour kept fading fast
 This was the final hair do following the damage one hairdresser did - much shorter and much darker than I wanted. I'm smiling but dying a little on the inside.
 My the end of 2011, I had managed to grow my hair a little and lighten the colour.
 January 2012 and I had a fringe put in to cut away most of the remaining damage.
 Growing out the fringe and going lighter.
 Fed up, I went red again but the colour didn't last again. So I went a dark brown in Summer 2012 to counteract the red. Here I'm wearing hair extensions which gave a much needed confidence boost.
 December 2012 and happy because I had bump.
New hair extensions to match my lighter brown colour.
 March 2013 and my hair was getting longer.

 Highlights to lighten my look.
 My new mummy hair do - wash and leave hair to dry naturally, no time to blow dry!

 A little lighter following some more highlights, this was me last month.

So, in the words of Lady Gaga...

I just wanna be myself and I want you to love
Me for who I am
I just wanna be myself and I want you to know
I am my hair
I've had enough, this is my prayer
That I'll die livin' just as free as my hair
I've had enough, this is my prayer
That I'll die livin' just as free as my hair


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