A Brief History Of My Hair

I never said these memory posts were all going to be serious, did I?

Back When I Was A Blonde: Birth-Two Years Old

Yes, my friends, despite being solidly in the brunette camp now, when I was a toddler I was blonde.   A picture in case you don't believe me:

When people wonder where my kids got their blonde baby hair, I can say for certain that it was from me.  I don't remember what it was like being a blonde.  Did I have more fun back then?

The Brunette Phase: Three Years Old-10 Years Old

My hair changed rather suddenly to a light brunette when I was three years old.  It still changed to blonde in the summer when the sun would bleach it during all those hours outside, until I was in first or second grade - then I was solidly a brunette, and it's only gotten darker since then.

The Frizzy Phase: 11 Years Old-14 Years Old

Ah, puberty.  That was a rough hair time for me.  Something about the hormones made my hair want to try to turn curly, but it wasn't quite succeeding - I ended up with a semi-wavy frizzy mass.  I am quite thankful for my mom during this period, who tried to help my hair situations with different anti-frizz products she would buy for me.  But my hair just refused to decide if it was going to be semi-wavy, or sort of straight, or full-on curly, so it was a confusing time.

The Curly Phase: 14 Years Old-16 Years Old

My hair finally curled up enough for it to actually look like it was on purpose, and we found some decent products.  Still, I had a hard time accepting my wavy/curly hair.  The preferred hair style in the culture at that time was definitely sleek and straight, and my hair was just...not.  I always felt like it was a little out-of-control, and it was hard to get my curls to look right because they were still half in the "wavy" category.  (I'm still not sure how to deal with my curly hair au natural, to be honest).

The Straightening Phase: 16 Years-20 Years Old

I finally got a hair straightener and started using it more regularly.  I found at this time that I liked my day three hair the best.  The first day I washed and straightened it, it would still be on the frizzy side (I'd try to wash it on days we weren't going anywhere).  The second day, the frizz had calmed down some.  By the third day it actually looked pretty smooth!  But by then it was time to wash it again.  I wrestled with my hair in this manner until my 20's.

The I've-Got-It-Figured-Out Phase: 20 Years Old-Present

I got married and started working at a real job (and hence earning my own grown-up paycheck) at 20 - which gave me a lot more wiggle room to try out different products.  And what do you know, I finally found THE product that would make my hair cooperate! Sexy Straight Hair (that's what the product was called).  I even had the courage to try growing my hair long once I found this lifesaver.

It didn't last long, I think I'm more of a bob kind of girl.

I eventually switched to a Chi straightener (game-changer) with the Chi Shine Infusion Spray (which is pretty similar to the product above, just easier to find), and that's what I use today.

I do have one regret about the different stages of my hair up to now, and that is the fact that I have never figured out how to wear my hair curly and like it.  I am not sure if it is because of the semi-traumatic experience of having my hair go rogue at a stage when everything else was changing too (oh, puberty), or if I internalized too much of the straight-hair-is-better message of that time when my hair was changing, or if I have just never found the product that would make my curly hair manageable enough to suit me.  

But I do wish I could have figured out how to make it work and love it, because I would love to be an example to my daughters in that way - I'd love to teach them to embrace the unique beauty of their individual hair types, like my mom tried to do for me.

Maybe that will be the next stage of my "hair evolution" - The I-Finally-Get-My-Curls Phase.

Do any of you have wavy/curly hair?  What products do you use?  Did you ever figure out how to tame the curls, or do I just need to learn to go with the curly-hair flow?

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Michelle said...

Your 11-14 hair is me exactly! It’s between curly and frizzy and just a royal hot mess. I still haven’t figured out what to do with it!

Hannah said...

With the exception of the blonde hair as a little girl, this sounds just like the story of my hair :) I remember it being straight and pretty and I could braid it and fix it a few different ways, but it was nice, we got along really really well. And then around the age 14 or so, we were visiting my sister who had curly hair, and I was convinced/talked into getting my hair cut short with some layers and that would make it curly! So I cut it... ugh. I blame it all on that one hair cut. I'm convinced if I hadn't done that all those years ago my hair and I would still be on happy terms. But we're not. My hair did curl. And then we moved to the most hot and humid place on earth, which did NOT help a bit. and I was called a lion in a different language because you know, that's what my hair looked like. Fun times. There weren't a lot of products available to me, that or I just didn't know about them/what to do with my hair. So it was a hot mess until college when I discovered a flat iron. Now I straighten my hair a lot more than I have it curly. Though, I will say, when it's long, I like my curls - though after having babies it's all crazy again. Who knows what's going on with it. When it's short [shoulder or above length] it has to be straight. The curls are too fat and poofy for me. But when it's long, I have found one product that works for me, that and drying it with a diffuser make good curls. But my hair's short right now so, it's straight. Sometimes I've used a curling wand to help the curls a little bit. But after my hair grows out after the butcher job that happened this year, I'm curious to see how the curls will do on their own. Hopefully good so I can leave the curls be. It's so much easier than flat ironing it! Any and all questions about curls I would be more than happy to answer and talk with you about. I've done it all! :)

Natalie@She Builds Her Home said...

I do have wavy/curly hair. Mine went from ringlet curls as a little girl, to then awkward kind of wavy because I chopped it off, to mildly wavy but just not straight, but to pretty wavy/semi curly now. It is a challenge. I have found that with wavy/curly hair, 2 days are never the same. I can do the exact same routine on it and have it look stellar one day, and then the next week it's a complete flop. It drives me nuts. I am still looking for a product to REALLY tame the frizz. I have found some that help, but I've just come to terms with the fact that my hair is super frizzy :/ I know exactly the straight preferred hair phase you're talking about-I felt that a lot too and ONLY wore my hair straightened probably from about the ages of 12-23+ish. I sometimes wear it curly in the warmer months (b/c otherwise I am freezing while I wait for hours for it to dry naturally in the winter) now and have had the same thoughts as you about embracing my natural hair for my daughters' sake. Especially my curly haired daughter ;)

Anna said...

I enjoyed reading your post today. I had about the same hair hair story also. Especially the big frizzy curly-ish hair as a teen, once I discovered mousse. In college I did some research into how to care for my curls. I'm still a naturally, curly girl today, over ten years later. The biggest help I found was a book called Curly Girl by Louraine Massey. I personally like the older version of the book but both are great. Right now I don't currently go no-poo (where you don't use shampoo and talked about in the book), but I was for about 7 years. I also have not owned a hair brush for 10 years and my curly hair is rarely every knotty. I know this all probably sounds pretty bizarre, but it's definitely worth the few dollars to buy it used on Amazon. Currently I am using the Shea Moisture brand of shampoo and conditioner, bc I can get it at a discounted price.
Okay, I'll be done for now. But I hope this was helpful for you and your girls. :)

Rachel said...

I had straight hair as a kid that turned curly almost overnight in my teens. It normally straightens out a bit the longer it gets, but I usually wear my hair fairly short, and I love the body of the loose curls. I couldn't get a haircut at a Malaysian salon without being asked if I want a permanent straightening treatment to "fix" my hair. The majority population is Chinese where we live, so yes, straight hair is always in fashion! But curls run pretty strongly in my family, and I love them! Actually, my all time favorite product for curls is from the "sexy" line--the "sexy curly hair" curl cream. One of the fun perks of having a cos. license is being able to get pro products and colors and tools at the discounted price for professionals. These days my hair is more wild than defined curl...but honestly, I like it that way. I'm trying out letting my hair grow out while I'm pregnant since it grows a bit faster...with the full expectation of chopping it all off next year.

Felicia said...

I did wonder where your kiddos go their blonde hair from! Now I can rest at ease haha.

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