Friday, April 22, 2011

The Grand(?) Reveal

As you may have noticed from my post on Wednesday, I donated my hair to Pantene Beautiful Lengths. This isn't the first time I've done this. I donated my hair almost two years ago, as well.

When it donated my hair that time around, I went to my usual hair place, and while I was a little nervous about short hair - having not had it for a long time - they found a way to work with my hair: the partial curl, the cowlicks, the tendency to flip, etc.

This time around, I'd been told that Great Clips does this on a regular basis - they'll cut your hair for free and send it off for you. Or so I'd been told. Me being me, I looked it up on their website. I called to ask about this, and my local salon verified. I was set.

I went into my salon a few days later and explained to them what I wanted to do. The woman knew what we had to do for the donation and asked me what I wanted for my cut. Hmm.

Since I haven't done short hair in a really long time, I don't know what works so well for my hair. I explained that it's curly and that makes cutting and styling it fun. I did not want bangs, and it needed to be long enough to pull back for sports and the like. I showed her my two cowlicks, as well. Beyond that, so long as it was flattering, I was open to suggestion.

She recommended cutting it about ear length, which was fine with me. She asked again if I wanted bangs, and I reiterated the no. My hair went into a few different ponytails, and snip snip went the scissors.

And let me be clear ... I'm not looking for compliments here. I'm being honest in my assessment.

When the woman was done, she started tucking my hair behind my ears furiously. As a public service announcement, that is never a good sign when your hairdresser tries this maneuver in an attempt to keep it from sticking out everywhere.

A) I now have bangs. Lots of bangs. The bounce in my eye as I run.
B) The bangs accentuate my cowlick on my forehead because the hair isn't heavy enough to control it but too long to hide it.
C) This is not ear length hair, except for the longer part in the back of my head.
D) It is not long enough to pull back for sports by a long (pun intended) stretch.
E) In fact, there is much of my hair that is not long enough to even tuck behind my ears.
F) My hair isn't long enough to straighten.
G) My hair is too short to curl properly.
H) My hair is short enough that it is "extra full bodied" as one friend put it. That cowlick in the back of my head? It's taking massive effort to keep it from popping up like Alfalfa.

All in all, when I left the salon, my hair looked to my eyes like the late 70s or early 80s perms with the super short hair. Very androgynous. And it stuck out in various places.

My motto was to give it a week. In a week, I'd have time to adjust to it and learn how to style it. It would feel more natural to me. Today is that week. And I still hate it. I've tried different things each day, and nothing looks good to me. At the same time, I feel like I don't want to cut it shorter because it will just have to grow out later anyway.

Any styling suggestions? And no, I won't be heading back to Great Clips again until it's for a simple trim of my once again long hair. This should not scare anyone away from donating hair - it's a great cause and so easy to do. This was my fault for trying something new while attempting to save money.

Oh, best part? When I went to the front, the woman charged me full price. When I asked about the hair donation and free haircuts, she looked at me blankly. And yes, by that time I was just done and wanted to leave to lick my wounds.

Done whining. Here's the hair:

Styled to minimize the "poof" - in person you can see more of the issues than the photo shows.

This is as straight as it gets. Note the still super high poofy cowlick in front.

This is me after walking down the stairs - note how my hair is now falling in my face and flopping around. Boo.

Hair donation is way cool though. I will be growing my hair out and then donating it again. There are several places that will accept hair - each with varying requirements.

The most common is Locks of Love - it can be colored but not bleached and must be 10 inches or longer, stored in a ponytail or braid before cutting.

Pantene Beautiful Lengths is the charity I ended up donating to (though I would have done it to Locks of Love had the Great Clips done that for me), as they are the only ones I know of making wigs for adults and not just kids. For them, your hair must be eight inches or longer, and only semi-permanent dyes are allowed.

Wigs for Kids is another option where hair needs to be at least 12 inches and free from any permanent dyes.

My last suggestion for donation organizations is Children with Hair Loss. Hair needs to be 8 inches or longer. While they will accept any hair (including grey hair - most will take hair that is 5% or less grey only), they prefer it to have not been chemically treated.

I am happy to have donated. It feels good, and I love that someone will be able to make use of it. But the grand reveal? Sadly, it's not so grand after all!

Freschetta By the Slice giveaway here
$35 gift certificate to DaySpring here


Laura April 22, 2011 at 5:08 PM  

I would never go to great clips--chain salons suck sorry the hacked off your hair--the first picture is great!

Tara R. April 22, 2011 at 5:28 PM  

It is definitely short, but I like short hair. Even if it's not what you asked for, it is cute. Once you get used to it, I bet you'll like it.

Heather April 22, 2011 at 6:07 PM  

I think your cut is cute. But I know I'm not the one who has to deal with it. I refuse to go to any hair place but the one my hairdresser is at. When he switched salons, so did I. I've run into the hairdresser who cuts my hair the way they want to, not the way I want them to. And my hair is thick and heavy, he knows how to deal with it. I would so have demanded the cut to be free, or at least a discount. Whoever cut your hair did not listen to you and you were unhappy with what she did. I hope your hair grow super fast (though I still think it looks cute!)!

Claire April 22, 2011 at 6:21 PM  

I think it's super cute! I had a similar haircut awhile ago and let me warn you that growing it out can be kind of tough because you may go through an awkward phase for a bit when it's between lengths. But the way it is now is adorable!

Jen U April 22, 2011 at 6:27 PM  

A curling iron and hair spray can be two good comrades in the fight against cowlicks (even with short hair)...but it depends on how much you care. (I don't generally enough to bother.)

septembermom April 22, 2011 at 6:44 PM  

I think it's cute. I'm sure you'll find all sorts of ways to play around with it. With your beautiful smile, you're gorgeous. Remember your hair is framing that pretty face!

Heather E April 22, 2011 at 7:19 PM  

While I think what you did was awesome, and that it looks really cute, I totally know what you mean about feeling so disappointed after a hair cut. And it seems like when you've had a bad one, it takes FOREVER to grow out. Here's hoping it grows really quickly!

Unknown Mami April 22, 2011 at 9:00 PM  

For exercise you could use a headband so the bangs don't get in your eyes. You can also get some product to help with manageability, something that will add some weight to help mold it. Then just smile and know that when you are smiling no one is looking at your hair. It will grow and you will never go back to that "stylist" again.

Melisa with one S April 22, 2011 at 10:20 PM  

Once I picked myself up off the floor (I nearly fainted because of shock at how much you got cut off!), I looked at it again, and I really like it! It's really cute, and I think it's great for a busy mom of young kids such as yourself. Also? Would be adorbs (and I never use that word! ha!) with a thin headband, while you're running.

I'm sorry you don't like it, but with each passing day it's getting longer again; hopefully VERY soon it'll be at a length that you feel is better for control, but I really like it! :)

anymommy April 22, 2011 at 10:44 PM  

Well, you did a great job of making look cute, I like it, but I understand as I have hated my hair before and I currently detest short styles (for me) due to my constant ponytail.

Lovely cause - may your hair karma be good from here forward because of your good deed.

Laural Out Loud April 23, 2011 at 2:09 AM  

The length and style are really flattering on you! I hate not being able to pull my hair back, though, and that would really really annoy me, especially after telling the stylist not to go that short. It's always such a bummer to get a cut that you don't like! I'm glad you're still into donating hair. If I ever go short again, I'll donate.

As Cape Cod Turns April 23, 2011 at 7:15 AM  

Good for you to keep donating your hair Michelle! I like it short! And you have a very nice smile that compliments your hair :) Definitely try a headband when you are running. Bangs flopping would drive me batty.

Karen April 23, 2011 at 9:38 AM  

It's so discouraging to get a cut that you clearly didn't want, but it really is darling on you - and will be nice for summer!

Anonymous April 23, 2011 at 9:32 PM  

I hate being disappointed after a hair cut. With all hair cuts the growing out phase can be tricky, think you'll go back to your normal place to make that transition less... awkward? Just a thought.

Emily April 24, 2011 at 12:45 PM  

I'm so impressed with you for donating your hair. I'm sorry that you were unhappy with the cut. I've always found that haircuts is one of those things where you get what you pay for.

Michelle April 24, 2011 at 9:46 PM  

Laura - Yeah, I've figured that one out. Unfortunately it was a lesson learned too late.

Tara - Aww you're too kind. But getting used to it is definitely a factor, which is why I'm giving it a week and then some.

Heather - You're so sweet. And smart. My hair isn't easy to cut, I know that. I should have known better!

Claire - Yep, there will definitely be an awkward stage - or three. That's part of why I wanted it to stay long enough to pull back.

Jen - Ummm would you believe I don't own a curling iron? :)

Kelly - I've definitely been getting creative with it the past week or so. And you SO have the right attitude. Thanks!

Heather - I am lucky in that my hair grows relatively quickly - thus the 10 1/2 inches to cut off after less than 2 years (including haircuts in the interim). Wish me luck!

Unknown Mami - That actually is using a ton of product, believe it or not. I have very umm fluffy hair! I sadly hadn't thought of the headband issue until my hair was bouncing in my eyeball, but it's on the list!

Melisa - Lots cut off, huh? :) Tricked you, tricked you!

Stacey - I could so use the karma, but of course I didn't do it FOR the karma because we know I wouldn't get any then. Right?

Laural - Awwww that's so sweet. And definitely donate if you go short. It's such a great cause!

Sue - I love that when donating my hair it's going - free! - to people who need it. It's such a little thing to do.

Karen - Very true. Then again, that means summer has to eventually come to Chicago, no?

She'sWrite - I am definitely going back to my normal place for a fixup. I think now though that I'll try to time it around my formal events so at leats it'll look "good" then!

Emily - Words to the wise! If only someone had said something to me before I did this. Then again, I probably would have pshawed them. I'm stubborn that way.

Pat April 24, 2011 at 10:21 PM  

I like the second (of the after photos) best. I think it's a cute cut and it frames well your high forehead, blue eyes and beautiful smile! Kudos to you for your gracious gift of hair and that you're going to do it again!

Michelle April 24, 2011 at 10:25 PM  

Pat - The second one is definitely better - another day of experience to play with my hair. Today is better than yesterday. Here's hoping it keeps going that way :)

Anonymous April 25, 2011 at 2:31 PM  

I love it! I think it looks really cute! I ended up just trimming my hair instead of chopping it all time! :)

Debbie April 25, 2011 at 5:07 PM  

Michelle you have just totally vindicated the significant amounts of cash I spend for not just myself, but also for Arden, Melissa and Michelle to get their hair done. Many years ago I banished GreatClips, Borics, and Supercuts from my vocabulary. The girls are not even allowed to suggest the idea. And they just asked me why I was laughing so hard. Poor you but remember - hair grows. Faster than you think it will.

Tiaras April 28, 2011 at 10:56 AM  

oh and hear I went and said how cute your hair was when I saw you and you hated it! So sorry! You are super brave tough for chopping- I don't think I could ever do that!

Get a flat iron! A really REALLY good one (psst- Mario's) - your hair will be flat for sure!!

Michelle April 28, 2011 at 12:29 PM  

Patty - Thanks :) It has to be the right time to cut it all of, but I love that you're thinking of it!

Debbie - Why didn't I call you first?! So grateful it's summer so it will grow faster (well someday summer will be here) and that my hair grows relatively fast as it is.

Teresa - No worries! I'm gratefully accepting compliments now, even the false ones ;) That said, I'm continuing to learn how to style it, and I was totally ok with it on Tuesday. I have a great flat iron, but this short, there's not enough grip to get it going in the right direction.

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