Well, its done. The last few inches of (faded) dyed hair has been placed in its final resting place in the trash bin at the hairdressers. No more telltale line drawn in the follicular sand that marks the end of the dye and the beginning of my real hair. I have officially gone natural.
And you know what the kicker is? My husband says that he thinks he likes the new, chopped-off version of me better than before version of me, thereby shattering the myth that men only "see" women with long hair, and the rest of us will just have make due with reruns of Downtown Abbey and a carton of Chunky Monkey (which, incidentally, I hate...why I used that as an example is beyond me....I'm more of a mango sorbet gal myself).
So if you're new to the blog and/or have not yet read about my transition to my natural gray hair, here is a quick photographic recap, starting in about 2010 (please forgive the grainy photos.) The entire process took about 18 months from the first photo to the haircut.
So that's it. That's me. Will I keep it like this? Color-wise, yes. Cut wise, I'll probably grow it back to just above my shoulders. I have really thick hair, and it tends to go all mushroomy when it is short if I don't style it meticulously. This is my hair with a whole lot of product in it to get it to lie down and behave. More on that in a forthcoming post.
Now on to the philosophical stuff; what I've learned.
1. You have to be ready. If you are the type to worry excessively about what others might think, you're not ready.
2. Hang in there. Many of your female friends will think you're insane to want to do something that is so "aging". They, or maybe even complete strangers may say things to you because they want to "help" you. Ignore them. Your haircolor choice is not a medical condition.
3. When people do say things to you, remember that this is a reflection on them and their personal insecurities, not on you and yours. If they persist, speak to them from the heart about your reasons for wanting to go natural. You will know your reasons well when you are ready to go natural, so it should come easily. If, despite your heart-to-heart, they continue to persist and badger, well...that person may just be an insensitive a-hole. They have shown you who they are. Move on.
4. Have fun with products and fashion. Give that unforgiving fuchsia lipstick that you were never braveenough to wear a try, you will be amazed what looks good on you now that you have less colour next to your face. Also try on your clothes and assess what still works in your closet, and maybe what doesn't. Open your mind to new colours (says the girl in the gray sweater), really, colour is your friend.
5. Hair product is your friend. Gray hairs are wirey little bastards with a life of their own. I will be reviewing products I try in many, many forthcoming posts. Probably for the rest of my life. Your input here is most welcomed.
I would say that I am finished here, but I'm not. I have finished the technical part of the going natural process. Now comes the details...finding what works. I feel like a teenager who, by way of heavy experimentation, is still struggling to decide if blue eyeliner and violet mascara is really the way forward (it isn't).
So with that, I set off on another set of tasks; finding stuff that works with my new hair, from clothing to beauty products. And for those of you out there in a similar situation, feel free to drop me a line...particularly if you have found the Holy Grail of Frizz Control. I know I've said this before, but I'm serious....if you have the Holy Grail of Frizz Control I will follow you... I will follow you Monty Python: Life of Brian-style, just about anywhere, so great is my desire for frizz control. Just sayin'.