Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The end of my red period.

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Freshly minted brunette here, reporting for duty!

Well Reader, I said goodbye to my red tresses yesterday.  How strange!  Even this morning, the new 'do still feels somewhat wig-like.

My beloved Buffy, the girl who turned me red almost exactly three years ago, made the switch with me.  Back then, in late 2008, I was still blond -- and the new hue changed everything.  

You know what they say, about blondes having more fun?  Lies.  I got fifty times more attention as a redhead than I ever did as a blond.  Inspired by Joan Holloway on Mad Men, and particularly by how bold she was, I waltzed into Buffy's chair at Vain and fanned out some pictures.  I was 26, and I wanted some of that boldness for myself.  

Have you ever gone red before, Reader?  If not, I think you should.  Everyone should.  Just to see how it feels, because let me tell you, red is an absolute trip. 

I believe that other redheads present and former can vouch for this: Red goes beyond stares on the street.  My hair has probably been every shade on the red rainbow, from demure ginger, to maroon, to loud, screaming Poison Ivy.  An old lady I used to go grocery shopping with thought I was Irish, my classmates at my 10-year high school reunion voted me "Most Changed" last year, and my Dad once called me "Crayola Head."  So red not only imbues confidence, you see: It makes people process you differently. 

But sometime recently, I saw a picture of myself on an overcast day, and the red suddenly looked ... too much.  Like it didn't fit me anymore.  I craved something more natural, something less look-at-me.  Isn't that funny?  You'd think I'd never give this great thing up, this fun color that got me so much attention.  But I just had this gut feeling.  A beloved chapter (my twenties?) was closing. 

And now?  Well, new color is always a little weird, but I like the new me.  I feel confident in a different way.  Mature!  That's the word.  I feel mature.  Less Poison Ivy, more Jane Birkin.  Thank you for transforming me yet again, Buffy.  You always make me feel so comfortable in your chair, and totally jazzed by the time I leave. 

I love you and your hair dying wizardry!

(PS: Buffy moved two weeks ago to Propaganda on West 5th.  I recommend her to everyone that I know.)

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