In Which I Compare Myself to Helena Bonham Carter

No, don’t laugh! I don’t claim to look like her. I have vaguely similar colouring in that I have brown hair, and a complection that is fashionable if you’re into vampires, but there’s no real resemblance. Am I a gifted actress, with the main difference simply that I am, as yet, undiscovered? Sadly, no.

It’s the hair. My hair has that same potential for wildness as hers, that same desire to take over the world, and I just don’t know what to do with it.

Throughout my childhood, my mum cut my hair. This led to various levels of disaster. My hair was not easy to cut, it was the 1970s and 1980s, and sitting still was not my strong point. This was not a good combination. I first went to a hairdresser in 1986, and came out with a typical 1986 haircut which did not suit me one bit.

In the following years, I mostly just let my hair grow, with the occasional major attack, much like cutting back an overgrown hedge. This carried on for more than a decade, with me growing my hair until it was too long, then chopping it all off. In 2000, I got a job which paid rather well (I tripled my income when I took it). I decided I had to look a bit more professional to live up to what I was being paid, so I started going to the hairdresser. What I didn’t realise straight away, was that the hairdressers I picked seemed to only do a limited range of the current fashionable cuts.

The first time I went, they gave  me a ‘Rachel’. Now, I had no idea at the time who Rachel was, but the picture looked OK, and it did seem to suit me. I was quite happy with that style. For the first time ever, I had a proper haircut and it was OK. A few months later, I decided to go a bit shorter. I showed them a picture of a choppy bob, and they set to with the scissors. Unfortunately, Victoria Beckham had had a short haircut a few weeks before, and I was doomed. For the first time since early childhood, I cried after a haircut.

Once the shortest parts had grown down to just above my chin (about the length they should have been according to the choppy bob picture) (it took about 7 months – the one time I was lucky my hair seems to grow fast), I went to a different hairdresser and had it all cut just straight and level. That was the last time I darkened the doors of a hairdresser.

Now I occasionally trim the ends myself, but for the most part it just grows. My hair is longer than it has ever been, which, as anyone who knew me in the sixth form will attest, is Far Too Long.

It never looks neat. It never looks well cared for. The best I can do is tie it back to try to gain some semblance of control. I would love a hairstyle that looked nice, suited me, and was obviously professionally done (and I could maintain with virtually no time spent on it). I’m just a bit nervous about going out and trying to get it, and too frugal to want to pay.

In the meantime, I suppose I’ll just have to channel my inner Bellatrix.


About planetcoops

Living a busy family life in a beautiful place with a hundred and one things to be achieved.
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3 Responses to In Which I Compare Myself to Helena Bonham Carter

  1. Laura says:

    Hey! I had “the Rachel” too! I was 20 and in business college. I had the shortest boy cut after that, but when my youngest was born, I grew it out. Since then, it’s been straight and boring. Seems to suit me. ;0)

  2. Karen says:

    Cut it off!!!!! I go once a year to keep it manageable. Long enough to tie back when it’s a pain and to cover my cold ears, but short enough that it dries without assistance. But you’ll remember how wild and woolly mine can get.

    If anything it will take some of the weight off your head and you’ll be able to turn your neck. I don’t know how you manage to stand if it is truely that long!

  3. I am sure you look lovely despite all your misgivings about your hair. The whole salon/hairdresser thing is a conundrum that I (thankfully) don’t have to deal with. I just shave my head every two weeks and go around looking like a football hooligan.

    Or Sinéad O’Connor.

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