Feminism, Hair, Sweet Machine

Quick hit: More on hair

Stacey Fearnall, a waitress in Ontario, was fired after shaving her head for charity. As Meowser informed us recently, not having the “right” amount or kind of hair can lead women to suicidal thoughts. But as this article reminds us, even if you voluntarily reject your feminine duty to have luscious, fuck-me hair, others are willing to step in and reinforce that particular beauty mandate for you. What if Stacey Fearnall had lost her hair not for a cancer charity but because she had cancer? Would she still have been fired for this “employer-employee matter”?

When my mother had brain surgery a few years ago, the first thing she said when she saw family members in her hospital room was “Don’t look at my hair!” We were so happy that the surgery went successfully we were practically crying, but her first instinct was alarm and shame at the loss of her hair. Luckily, FJ and I were there to assure her that she looked like a cool feminist rock star, and I had knit her a hat that she was allowed to wear right away — but I’ll never forget that her first instinct, even in a post-anesthesia haze, was to hide her bald head.

58 thoughts on “Quick hit: More on hair”

  1. We actually have a guest post on this coming up! (Haircuts for fatties, not the article in question.) Maybe now we need a Hairy Prose banner.

  2. I lost half my hair due to my dysfunctional thyroid. It looked like of like that picture of Meowser without her hairpiece. When I got head lice two years ago, I said screw it and shaved it all of. It was one of the most liberating things I ever did.

  3. Ooh, haircuts for fatties! I can’t wait!

    Hairy Prose sounds like poorly written prose, though. We can’t have that!

  4. Meg, tell us more about shaving your head. How did people react? In what way was it so liberating? Do you maintain this shaved head now, and if so, how has it changed how you are perceived or dealt with on a daily basis?

    Please share more.

  5. The COMMENTS in that article… holy moly, I want to move to Canada. Maybe that paper just censors more than I’m used to, but it seemed like everyone who posted was both articulate and on the side of the angels. I think about my local paper where probably the first comment would have been “SERVZ U RIGHT STUPID UGLY DYKE!”

  6. I hope she gets rehired before having to go through a lawsuit.

    Shapely Hair is awesome. I have a haircut now I really love, so I can’t wait.

  7. I want to hear more about Meg’s story, too!

    A woman on one of my favorite forums shaved her head and got tattoos over the whole thing. She also made her partner promise that he’d keep her head shaved if she ever became unable to do it. She really loved it and found it freeing.

    Sars at Tomato Nation shaved her head for charity and said that while she enjoyed it, she did have to navigate the awkwardness of strangers assuming that she had cancer.

    I have been wanting to shave my head for years, but I know that with the type of work I do (receptionist) that nobody here in the Bible Belt would hire me. I already got snippy comments from my boss when I cut it a little too short and couldn’t make it lie down demurely.

  8. This story shocked and saddened me. When I shared with people my cancer diagnosis at 26, more people asked “what about all your gorgeous hair?” or “will you wear a wig?” than “how are you feeling?” or “how will you cope with your treatment?”

    Bald is not the worst thing to happen to someone, and I admire her doing it with good cause. Lets hope someone sees her story and offers her a job based on her sense of charity and community.

  9. My brother and sister-in-law shave their heads by choice as a cheaper and easier alternative than getting a haircut. I decided to give it a try too. I loved the feeling, my head felt much lighter and more comfortable.

    I did worry about my job but they never mentioned it. I also thought people would assume I was gay, which they never said to my face; my boyfriend had to put up with his co-workers trying to convince him I HAD to be gay though. Apparently the fact that I was in a relationship with a guy was irrelevant !

  10. Ok, more about the head shaving. I developed Hashimoto’s disease (basically, my immune system devoured my thyroid) when I was 14. I didn’t learn about it until I was 17 in July 2006. So by September 2006 I knew I had it, but wasn’t yet being treated. (We couldn’t find a pediatric endocrinologist, so I had to wait until I turned 18 to get on hormones.)

    So by that time, I’d been running on almost no thyroid hormone for a year, I was exhausted and sick constantly, and trying to adjust to starting college and a new job. I’d been pulling my hair out by the handful for almost 3 years. My hair was brittle and fragile too. (Tip for those losing their hair: If you’re into costuming, save all the hair you lose. I have some lovely rats I made from my shed hair. I use them as hair forms.) This had done a huge number on my self esteem, especially because everyone else told me I was imagining it and because we didn’t know what was causing it.

    Then some freshman at my college got lice and managed to give it to half the class before she found out about it. So I got it and, remembering a week of eight-hour daily nit-combings from the last time I got it, I decided to shave my head. This also cut the risk of recontamination, and I honestly couldn’t even begin to cope with the prospect of delousing my hair.

    So I got the bus down to my local CVS, picked up a pack of four-blade razors and a large thing of shaving cream. I shaved my head mostly by myself, I cut it really short with scissors, then used by electric razor to get it down short and shaved it the rest of the way until I was completely bald. My roommate helped me shave the back. (Note for those playing along at home: DO. NOT. DO. THIS. Go to a professional. Seriously.)

    I go to a super-liberal college. There are so many people walking around with dread and strange hair colors that nobody looked at me funny, thought my new friends did do a double take when they saw me. So did my professors, thought they gave me a lot of sympathy about the whole lice thing. It forever ensured my notoriety on campus an definitely shocked everyone, because I come off as a good preppy girl.

    I opted not to maintain the haircut and left my hair to grow in as it would. I spent the first 3-4 months afterward almost exclusively on my college campus, so nobody really commented on it. But it was an amazing experience for me. Shaving my head forced me to reorient how I saw myself. Since I had been watching my hair fall out slowly, taking control back by grabbing a razor made me feel much prettier. I didn’t have to watch as bits of my femininity fell off every day. It removed one of the visible reminders of my sickness and I breathed a lot easier.

    Happily, I started replacement thyroid hormone within a couple months of my head shaving. So my new hair has regrown in thick, and I’m not losing it like I was. It did come back silkier and curlier than before, but I’m told that’s common among women who have lost their hair to illness.

    My parents were a little shocked at first, but had no real problem with the hair change either. I ha a few really awful hairdos during the grow-out, though. In fact, the grow out was far less attractive than the actual baldness was. I’m coming up in the two-year anniversary of the day I shaved my head. My hair is now a couple of inches below my jawbone. I’m growing it long, probably very long, the way I used t keep it as a child before I got sick. I’ll probably never shave my had again, but I’ve never regretted it. Throwing caution to the wind and just taking it all off was so exhilarating.

    FInal tip: If you do this, and live somewhere with harsh winters, I suggest shaving in April or May so you have some hair by the time snow is on the groun. Going through winter with 1/4′ of hair was not very nice.

  11. Legally, I don’t think you’re allowed to fire someone specifically for medically-related hair loss, although the law might be different in Canada than in the U.S. OTOH, if you live in a “right to work” place where they don’t have to give a reason for letting you go, they can just privately decide you don’t “look right” and shitcan you for it, I suppose. And I’ve no doubt that where they can get away with it, they do.

  12. Thank you so much for talking about this topic. I am 24 (female) and i am starting to loose hair right at the front of my hairline. Along with gaining 15 pounds in the last 7 months. I am going to get my thyroid tested as soon as i can but since i just switched jobs two months ago it may be a month or two before the insurance kicks in. As much as i understand and absolutely hate how social expectation shapes the way I see myself it has still managed to throw me for a loop. I have been donating my hair to locks of love since high school and have managed to donate over 5 feet, so having it decide to fall out has been traumatizing.

  13. I shaved my head a couple of times when I was a teenager, and cut it REALLY short myself a few more times (just chopping off whatever stuck up through my fingers with sewing scissors, this is a seriously nice look by the way) and I loved it.

    I live in Texas and there is nothing better than flipping over your pillow in the middle of the summer and feeling the cool underside against your neck and scalp.

    I never got asked if I had cancer or was a lesbian, I think that I was punk rock enough to escape the first and pixie enough to escape the latter. In fact, it used to upset me that when I went out with my shaved head I still looked so friendly that old ladies would choose me out of crowds to ask for directions, which would set off a war between my Southerness and punk rock sensibility.

  14. A couple of years ago I decided to shave my head. I have never been happier with my hair-do or more amused at the reactions I get. People act like I’m a lesbian, or not lady-like because of my hair length. It’s ridiculous. I feel so much for people who are bogged down by needing to fit into society’s mold for us. It was a very liberating experience. So much so that recently I needed an inspirational jolt and shaved my eyebrows off as well.

  15. “even if you voluntarily reject your feminine duty to have luscious, fuck-me hair, others are willing to step in and reinforce that particular beauty mandate for you.”

    Or, actually, luscious, f***-me whatever-it-is.

    Hair, skin, figure, nails, wardrobe, shoes, CAREER (some days). Cook, teacher, publicist, wedding planner, generally OK. Chef, professor (please note the irony here), politician, attorney, big 6 accountant? Not so much. Threatening and unfeminine, you know.


    That is all.

  16. one of my friends shaved her head in consolidation w/her best friend who was undergoing chemo. luckily, her job didn’t even bat an eyelash. but, in her off-time… she has a tendency to wear combat boots and camo pants. so she got some of the less fun sister-comment to OMGZ UR AN UGLY DYKE… OMGZ UR A NEONAZI DYKE. le sigh. the fact that she was dating a guy was also irrelevant. (her b/f was a marine btw)

  17. A Sarah, the CBC is a very left wing news source. I also wonder if she would have had so much support if she had saved her hair because she wanted to, rather than to support cancer.

    And Meowser, I’m pretty sure in Canada employers have to have a reason to fire someone (after a 3 month probationary period). That’s why her boss called it a lay off.

  18. I’ve never shaved my head (I probably never will, I don’t think the bald look would work for me), but I did cut my hair last summer; it was short and spiky, the shortest I ever had it in my life. It was fun and I loved it, but I’m also enjoying growing my hair out too.

  19. I’ve been going to the same guy for more than 15 years to do my hair, and he’s become a good friend. Occasionally I get the urge to do something drastic just for a change, just to try it out. (Though I’ve never done it; my hairstyle is pretty boringly the same.)

    A couple of years back, we talked about coloring my hair or streaking it blue or purple. He had some ideas about what methods to use, etc. We’ve talked perms, longer, shorter, etc. But when I said something a couple of months ago about “maybe I can just shave it all off,” he labeled that as “self-destructive.” :-O WTF? It just seemed to come out of thin air.

  20. Thanks for sharing, Meg. Very interesting. Did it itch a lot? How often did you need to shave?

    Any comments from anyone who has permanent hair loss from PCOS or whatever and said the heck with it and just shaved their head? And maintains it that way?

    I can see how it might be fun or liberating as a lark or a personal statement, but then those people know they can always grow it back.

    I wonder about the women who can’t go back….or not very easily anyhow. How is it as a long-term style?

  21. I’m shaving my head for the charity in about three weeks and I’m really excited. My hair’s been long for as long as I can remember and I think its going to be really freeing to have it all gone! I’m starting university in September, and I was a little worried about people’s reactions, but then I realised if anyone had a problem with it they probably weren’t going to be people I’d be friends with!

    If anyone wants to sponser me I’d be very grateful : )

    If anyone does decide to get a lot of hair cut of you can send the hair to this charity
    They make wigs for kids who can’t afford them and its better than it just getting thrown away

  22. I cut mine myself, and frequently buzz it down close to the scalp, but I’m mostly insulated from the social ramifications of that because I have to cover my head when I go out anywhere. I sunburn like you would not believe. Of course, that means every yokel in three counties treats me like I landed from mars because I have a head scarf on. Doesn’t matter what you do, people treat you like you’re public property.

    It’s so nice in the summer, even with the scarf on it’s a lot cooler. I used to yank my hair back into a pony tail or bun every day when it was long, I hated having it in my face. Not having it stuck up in a tight knot has really cut down on my headahes. I’d be constantly tugging at it all the time when it was down, I think I’m a little weird about having any hair at all. Now that it’s so short, it’s also a lot cheaper to use real henna to dye it instead of a box o’ mystery chemicals.

    My electric trimmer crapped out on me tho, I have to go buy a new one when the government “stimulus” check finally gets here. In the mean time, things are gettin kinda shaggy around here. :S

  23. Addendum:
    Because of the sunburn issue I’m always covered neck to ankles and in long sleeves, add a head scarf to that and you get to meet every ignorant anti-Muslim person in your town. *sigh* I apologize to the world for my country.

    Also, selection of modest clothing in natural fibers available in size 28-32…epic fail. Especially summer clothes, mondo epic fail.

  24. Anonymous–I chose not the maintain my hair, so I shaved my head once and then just let it grow in. It didn’t really itch, but there was a very unpleasant week where I had >1/16′ of and inch of hair and my head was like velcro. There was some itching, but it was all on the sites of my louse bites, so I attribute it to that. I stuck to my pillowcase for about a week and would wake up with my boy all contorted around but my head still stuck to the pillow. That phase only lasted a week, though. The only thing that bugged me was having to switch to washing my hair in the mornings. It always looked rather odd after I slept on it.

    Also, Godless Heathen…I hear you on the modest clothing issue. I’m covered from neck to ankles in the summer for similar reasons and it’s just impossible to find things. I finally gave up and learned to sew and I’m slowly remedying the problem.

  25. moonlight0806–research both standard hypothyroidism and Hashimoto’s disease. Make sure you are familiar with the symptoms and if you think your symptoms match up, push your doctor to investigate further even if your blood tests come back within the normal range. Even thought half my thyroid is useless scar tissue, my blood tests never came back below normal-low. Personal thyroid ranges can be a lot different than the ones used by labs. I ha every symptom in the books and, according to my tests, I was healthy.

  26. Hey, funny. I just buzzed my hair off down to an inch. It feels great and people keep complimenting me on it, so I guess it looks okay. I did it because my family just lost multiple homes in the Iowa flooding. There’s a lot of manual labor to be done this summer with the cleanup and the moving people and their stuff from location to location. It’s going to be hot. I just didn’t want to effing deal with it. When, in the middle of the worst of the flooding last week, I was reminded that I had a haircut on Thursday, I nearly lost it. I was bitterly ambivalent about my impending haircut. It was the last straw. I decided it was all coming off.

    Besides being practical, it makes me feel really strong. Not non-sexual (the opposite actually–my boyfriend thinks its superhot) but just…strong. Maybe even intimidating. I’m a tall, broad-shouldered person who tends to scowl when lost in thought, say, walking down the street. I like the idea of no one giving me shit or bothering me because I look a little scary now.

  27. I confess to having major Rapunzel fantasies. (Having really long, lustrious hair, NOT having the royal dude climb up it.)

    Throughout my childhood, my mother railed against long hair and kept mine and my sister’s short. We had “the wedge” haircut (al la Dorothy Hammilll) and the pixie. I spent much of my childhood with a pixie cut.

    Once I got to college, I started growing it out. It’s been short a few times since then, and would qualify as short now, but it’s an angled bob. Definitely appropriately feminine by the culture’s standards.

    The idea of losing my hair makes me fearful. Part of this is because I always wear makeup and style my hair because I feel like I need to apologize for my weight.

    My girlfriend — who’s a soft butch woman — also prefers me to be femme. If I shaved my head, she’d have a big problem with it.

    Didn’t realize how personally loaded the issue of hair is for me. Therapy in a post!

  28. I had hair down to the bottom of my butt for the majority of high school and college. It looked fantastic, except well-meaning people told me that, well, since I have a big butt (relatively speaking), I shouldn’t have hair that long, because it emphasizes my butt.

    I chopped it all off after I graduated college; Locks of Love got 18 inches of hair (I’d trimmed it back to my waist by then) and I still had shoulder-length hair.

    Now I keep it around my shoulders, although I sort of want it butt-length again. It’s just too much work and too hot, though, especially since this is shaping up to be a really hot summer.

    I have mentioned shaving my head, but I wouldn’t actually do it for a lot of reasons (stupid pink-collar job, fear of cold head, fiance less than supportive). I might if I had a friend with cancer or something, though.

  29. I was recently diagnosed with a disease that is making my hair fall out at a rapid pace. As much as I would like to say that I am strong and confident about the thought of not having hair, the truth is it makes me cry. More of it comes out each morning when I shower, and each time I run my fingers through it and it is slowly destroying my usually high self-esteem. Whether or not this means I am conforming to some sort of patriarch-induced norm is something I’m really not concerned about, nor is the fact that this is absolute vanity on my part. I just…I want my hair to not fall out.

  30. While in university, my husband learned he had a brain tumor. In preparation for the treatment and pretty much guaranteed hair loss he would experience from chemo, he shaved his head. As he was walking into the student union, he went to hold the door open for a person coming in behind him. She looked at him and said, “I don’t need you to hold the door you skinhead jerk!” and went to another door. He called after her, “That’s cancer boy to you!”

    I think it’s better just not to make assumptions why a person shaves their head. :)

  31. CJ_in_VA

    Your husband’s comment just made my day. I hope he continues to do well. *wanders off chortling*

  32. CJ in VA, your husband is made of win.

    Rachel, did you read Meowser’s post that was linked? Her experience seems relevant to yours. You have my sympathy for your diagnosis and your hair loss — hair can form such a huge part of self-image. I don’t think your sadness about losing it is vanity at all.

  33. I had a pixie cut for awhile in college, which I carefully spiked out every morning until it was long enough to curl. I couldn’t wait until it grew out, because I felt unfeminine and too fat to pull off the “elfin” look, even if I otherwise have the facial features for it. My husband had past-shoulder-length hair at the time and I was also afraid people would address us as the wrong gender (despite my curves and his beard, I guess). It all felt horribly weird.

    At the moment I have long hair (bra-strap length) and I’m irritated with it in general. If it had any curl to it at all, I’d hack it off and go short.

  34. A Sarah —
    I’m from Canada and I doubt there’s much censoring going on, although they would hold back the trolls. However, this is CBC. I think CBC has a particular demographic – sort of like NPR might.
    We do have papers that would attract the horrible comments and would print them for the special negative attention. The little behaviour disorder papers.
    Also, these comments you can “recommend” – I imagine the trolls get voted down to the end of the line.
    That said, and I once I shaved my head, and it was fine all around – and I didn’t even do it for something so noble as cancer. I did it for being bald. It was fun, and I was never bothered. But I live in Teh Big City.

  35. Shaved mine in college–dykey girl athlete look. Dyed it lots of fun colors (Red! Pink! Leopard Spots!) It looked cute and I really liked it, but I definitely looked like my brother. The practical problem was that I have kind of a pinhead for my height, and was playing water polo. I didn’t need the latex swim cap to keep my nonexistent tresses in check, and the water polo hat (bonnet, I think they are officially called, but in practice it sounds a bit too Jane Austen, so they are hats or caps) would slide all around when I swam and cover my eyes.

    I grew it out after a year or so–there are several distinct awkward phases to the process, and you just have to sort of grin and bear it through those weeks–DO NOT cut your own before your 8:30 am class without using a mirror–you run the risk of cutting holes in the back of your head and ending up with an adorable but twee English Boarding School Boy look and scolding from your hairdresser.

    At nearly 6 feet tall with broad shoulders, I noticed that even in a tank top with the mini-rack-of-doom readily apparent, I was mistaken for a boy approximately four times a week. I just stopped correcting people and would ask for whatever I needed in my regular voice (definitely feminine). The genderfuck was fun–as long as you don’t have a chip on your shoulder about being mistaken for a dude, I would recommend it.

  36. Ohboy hair issues. Let me show you them.

    I’ve always had thin, fine hair. When I smoked I had obvious thin/bald at the top, very similar to Meowser’s pics in the referenced post. I got some hair when I got pregnant with my daughters both times but lost it again right after. Along with being fat and having glasses and being a general nerd, I always always always felt like I was made completely of fail on all fronts, the hair was truly the icing on the cake. I’ve been tempted to shave a few times because I’ve heard it comes back thicker.

    As a child, a teen, a young adult, a medium adult, I would dream about having long, thick, lustrous hair that would look NICE, not amazing, not great, just adequate and not a source of embarrasment. It’s always been a HUGE issue for me.

    After a year or so of being smoke-free, my hair did get somewhat thicker on top though it’s still very fine. I tend to keep it cut short as it gets very flyaway with any length. To add insult to injury, it’s also wavy but not curly.

    When I was in the nursing home back in Feb and March, they fed me so poorly that I lost a lot of my hair. It’s starting to come back now.

    I’m looking forward to going grey as grey hair tends to be more coarse.

    Both my daughters have thick hair. My older daughter has VERY thick, dark brown hair, the lustrous stuff that I always wanted. Italian hair, the same hair my mom had when she was young. My younger daughter’s hair is my texture, fine, but thick and much straighter than mine so it looks awesome. WHEW.

    I hate how much emphasis there is on how women’s hair looks. It’s very much a feminist issue.

  37. Hair is a funny thing, I have a friend that is about as heavy as I am that wears hers in a short pixie style and she looks very feminine. The one time I tried it, I felt too mannish.

    I’m not sure why that other women can wear theirs super short and still look womanly and sexy, but it think I look horrible. Been working on that one for quite some time.

    My other bugaboo is I don’t like to touch other peoples hair and I don’t want them to touch mine. I have actually gotten sick to my stomach from the nerves of going to get my hair cut, but once fell asleep on the exam table waiting for my pap test. I hate to admit that I had trouble doing my daughters hair when she was little.

    My ex-army husbands hair is getting down past his shoulders, looks ultra hot these days too. I am so proud of myself to say that last night I actually used my own hairbrush to brush the tangles out of his hair and then used it on mine. It might not mean much to some people, but I’ve also been known to throw away a brush after someone else used it, washing it just didn’t seem to be able to get it ‘clean’ enough. It’s also something that very, very few people know about, my ‘thing’ with hair. Although my daughter has a similar thing with feet.

  38. I have serious other-people’s-hair phobia, but that is probably because I have very, very little hair myself (genetic disorder–about as much as a newborn baby has). I get a lot of mixed reactions: when I was younger (pre-puberty) I got mistaken as a boy a lot, which was extremely frustrating because I was incredibly girly and never wanted to be mistaken for male. Now people assume I have or had cancer and (random strangers on the street, no joke) are just dying to share their stories with me and hear mine. I cannot begin to explain how awkward these encounters are.

    My most favorite is when women I meet will tell me how lucky I am that I don’t have to deal with having hair (on the head or body). Depending on how patronizing the tone, I sometimes get this urge to pull out all of their hair, so they, too, can be lucky! I am lucky, however, that this is not just some external manifestation of a deeper problem: my health was never negatively affected, just my self esteem at times.

    I never really thought about hair as a feminist issue, but it makes sense. I used to be completely fixated on my lack of hair and it was pretty depressing: it took me a long time to feel feminine because I always associated long, luscious locks with femininity.

    On another note…apparently women in the armed forces (okay, at least the US Navy, according to an NROTC friend) are not allowed to shave their heads. According to them, wanting to shave your head is an indication of homosexuality (the horror!)

  39. I just started noticing this over the past few months, but when you look at romantic leads in movies, all the females have luxurious, long hair. You almost never see a female lead with short or incredibly curly hair (or some variation thereof) — only the sidekicks.

  40. When my daughter was in high school (about 15 years ago) she tried dyeing her hair blue, then black, then it was so thrashed that she shaved it all off.
    She looked pretty cute, but her bosses at Macdonald’s weren’t thrilled. But all they did was make her wear a Macdonald’s hat while she was at work.
    Of course, this is BC, not Ontario, but still…..there’s no excuse for firing someone just for shaving their heads.

  41. Q Finder, that is something I’ve noticed too. When I see movies in which the female romantic lead has short hair, I get so excited because it’s so rare! But I also wonder if they are deliberately supposed to “read” as less feminine that way. The only two I can think of at the moment are Zero Effect and Code 46 (which is not exactly a happy love story). Are there any Winona Ryder movies from when she had that cute pixie cut?

  42. Shannyn Sossamon has short hair a lot! I mean mostly she’s in creepy movies but sometimes she’s in rom-coms with short hair. Then again she named her kid Audio Science so who knows about that.

  43. Goodness.

    Hair is such an issue for me. As a fat gal, I’ve always wanted pretty hair. I’ve always had thin hair. I never got to have long hair, because when I was young, my parents didn’t want to deal with it. When I was a teen, I couldn’t get it to really do much past shoulder length. It started thinning when I was in my late teens due to PCOS _and_ hypothyroidism. Now I keep it at chin length and I just deal with having my scalp visible.

    Both of my daughters have “good” thick hair, and I let them grow it as long as they want it. :

  44. I cut mine down to nothing right after undergrad. It was great for washing, but I got tired of paying for haircuts every four weeks. (It grows stupid-fast.)

    The best part of the entire experience was when a friend of a friend announced that he “knew” I was a lesbian because I had “short hair” and “a boy’s name.” Friend and I got a major kick out of that one…especially since my friend is bisexual. :D

  45. I can very much relate to the “don’t look at my hair” thing. I lost about 1/2 my hair many years ago -(Damn you, PCOS! DAMN YOUUUUUUU!!!)It will never grow back, but I keep hoping it will. I would love to stop wishing it would come back. Shaving my head is not an option – it would look hideous and I would definitely have trouble at work. I think my goal is now to stop worrying about my hair before what’s left of it turns completely white.

  46. Short-haired female leads: Audrey Hepburn, Demi Moore, Julie Andrews, Sigourney Weaver, Winona Ryder, Gwyneth Paltrow…

  47. And Audrey Tautou in Amelie. DAMN do I wish my hair could pull off that style! (I think it might be too fine. Aside from any issues I displayed upthread.)

  48. Meg Ryan, too. There are tons of women in rock and pop with short hair. I’m growing my hair long and honestly I tend to feel out of place amongst a lot of women – they all have shoulder length, or a bob cut, or another style of very very short hair – pixie and others.

    Hair longer than BSL is not common where I live, and I adore having it and look forward to having it longer. The idea of shaving it off…would scare me. I get cysts on my scalp, and while I may be of the opinion that I am beautiful as a big person, or just as a person full stop, the idea of exposing those cysts to public scrutiny is..um…..yeah. Dunno.

    I also warn people against donating to Loves of Love: http://www.livejournal.com/tools/memories.bml?user=longhair&keyword=Locks+of+Love&filter=all for an overview of some issues relating to them.

  49. The arguments against Locks of Love were silly and mostly based on public misconception about the charity. You shouldn’t donate anything to charity without doing your homework first, so why should the charity be punished because the people donating did not take the time to read about the charity first. I have donated to Locks of Love three times and each time I managed to find their website and do a little research first, I have no sympathy for people who blindly follow anything including charities.

    Their website lists the donation requirements and that the charity is mainly organized around donating to children with long term hair loss due to alopecia. It also states that the rest of the hair that does not fit the requirements will be sold to offset costs of producing the wigs, which doesn’t make the sold hair any less valuable to the overall cause, without those donations the money to make the rest of the wigs would not be there. As for the argument that the wigs should go to cancer patients instead of other children with alopecia, well thats just ridiculous because those children suffer just as much from the discrimination and self esteem loss without the cultural sympathy that cancer patients get.

    Donating hair is something everyone can do at a relatively small monetary cost to themselves. The argument about money donations being more effective may be true, but thats not the point, the point is if you don’t have that extra money to donate you still can donate your hair, its just another alternative way to help someone else’s life.

    And for all the people that made the argument that it would be more effective to provide them with synthetic wigs. I would like to know how many synthetic wigs that they personally provide children every year. It seems like when you try to do something nice people start crawling out of the walls to tell you your doing it wrong. The synthetic argument will become valid when people start growing synthetic hair on their heads that is as cost effective for them to donate. And when those synthetic wig supporters stop spending their time criticizing the group thats actually doing something about the issue and start doing something themselves.

  50. Audrey Hepburn! Julie Andrews! How could I have forgotten two of my favorites? I was thinking more along the lines of Kate Hudson in “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days” and the woman who plays the lead in “Enchanted” — the big big movies that appeal to impressionable young teenagers (among others… like me…) for their love stories. I must say, I feel pretty silly for not even remembering Meg Ryan.

  51. Annette Benning in “The American President”. Pixie-short and she looks fabulous (darn her anyways).

  52. I shaved my head in highschool and then again after I had my daughter. My mother hated it both times, but I just love the freedom of it. I’m about to go for a pixie cut and for the first time in my life I was worried about doing it. I have gained a ton of weight (100+), and I was worried about looking fatter, but then I read the quest blog *Short cuts for Fat people* and she looked freaking awesome. I’m going to go get it cut right now. I’m reclaiming my craziness!

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