Mousse Madness

ImageI finally discovered that when you buy mousse (for your hair, not moose, the Maine variety) price does matter. You do get what you pay for. I had used mousse by Aussie and I thought it worked fine. I was mistaken. Yesterday I was at Walgreen’s and bought Matrix Biolage mousse to try something new. I had no idea the impact this $14.99 can spewing white foam would have on my hair.

My hair is naturally curly so it is usually easy to make curls with the application of mousse and a specific hair drying method (upside down). In just one use of Biolage I noticed a huge difference in the shininess, smooth curls and waves it created. I was amazed. My head is usually overcome with frizz, but no longer! This mousse has changed my life. I had no idea my hair could look so much better with no extra effort. The mousse does it all.

The experience made me question, “When did I start using cheap mousse?”. Now that I know what I know, I won’t ever use cheap mousse again. I don’t care how many signs are displayed for discounts and half-price, I will pay a premium for this product. It just isn’t worth it to use something inferior. Funny how something so simple and relatively inexpensive can have such a huge impact on my daily life. I was lost, now I am found. Actually, it is the phenomenal mousse that was found. What simple products make your daily life easier?

“Hair” in Dallas

I realized that pretty much anywhere in the U.S. has more humidity than Phoenix, but I had forgotten about my hair’s ability to measure the humidity. When I arrived at the airport in Dallas, Texas I immediately walked outside to grab a taxi, and the heat washed over me. I could tell there was a change in the air because of the sticky feeling on my skin that I recalled from my days of living in Annapolis, Maryland.

The real measure of the humidity came this morning. I dried my hair with a hairdryer, but left it a little damp for my trip downstairs to eat breakfast. By the time I returned to my room, just 20 minutes later, I could see the humidity in my hair. I was brushing my teeth and when I looked in the mirror I realized my hair looked scary! The hair humidity factor was the reason that I gave up bangs a decade ago and the reason that I continue to live on the West Coast. I have avoided this humidity for a long time, but here it was (my hair) staring me in the face.

Fortunately my hair was in need of a haircut, which here in Dallas meant that it was just the right length because the humidity shrunk it up at least 2 inches. If my hair was red and a little shorter, I would have looked like Shirley Temple (for those of you old enough to know who that is). If my hair was a bit longer, I would have looked like Sarah Jessica Parker. My hair was curly, frizzy and wild. Too bad I didn’t have a wacky wardrobe to distract people’s attention from my hair like she does.

At least I knew this hair condition was temporary and would return to normal once I deplaned in Phoenix later in the week. In the meantime, I had to live with the hair and hope that I don’t petrify my new coworkers. All I can say is, thank goodness for hair elastics! Besides getting back home to see my family I was also looking forward to seeing my hair return to a straighter state in Arizona.

Wind in my hair

A gentle wind is blowing my hair around just enough so that it is tickling my face. It feels good to have fresh color and a clean haircut. For some reason my hair seems more bouncy. It is also nice to have covered up those nasty gray hairs that started to peek out. Funny how we pay hairdressers to make our hair look natural or should I say ‘naturalish’. Today my hair color turned out a nice brown with a hint of red that you can only really see in the bright sunlight. It isn’t a “Carrot Top” kind of red, but a nice auburn or burnt ember kind of red. I always wonder who gets their hair purple – because I saw that option in the ‘color’ book.

I was thinking about the weight of my hair. Somehow gravity is non-existent in the salon, because my hair truly defies gravity – at least until I walk out the front door. If I am lucky my hair will keep its bounce and fresh-cut look for about 24 hours. Will it stay like this if I don’t sleep on it? Should I just sleep in a chair tonight so that I don’t mess up my hair? Then I could show it off for work tomorrow. Hmmm… maybe not, because I would still have to figure out how to take a shower without getting it wet (like wear one of those crazy shower caps?). Does anyone under 70 or maybe 80 even wear a shower cap anymore? I certainly don’t own a shower cap. Honestly. I have seen them in hotels before. I have to ask…who still uses them?.

I guess I will just have to wash my hair tomorrow and let nature take its course with my hair (even though it feels more like revenge). I live in the driest climate (Arizona) which results in lack of curls, but it also isn’t good for body (this is why it seems to look flat all the time). Oregon seemed to yield ‘curly everywhere’ hair, reminiscent of a clown. Luckily I kept my hair pretty long when I lived there, otherwise I really would have looked like a clown. The wind seems to be picking up, but since the sky is dark (it is night-time) I cannot tell if the wind is friendly (clear skies?) or evil (rainstorm or dust storm?). If friendly, then I will be able to sit outside on the patio for a while longer. You just never know what the wind will blow your way. I was hoping the weekend would blow my way, until I realized today was only Wednesday. I think sadly,”By the weekend I will have completely lost the ‘new haircut’ feeling.” Another breeze pushes strands of hair against my face. I close my eyes and enjoy the tickling of my face while I still can.

Bad Hair Day…you don't have to have one!

I got my hair cut today…and I LOVE getting my haircut. When I was younger I used to hate it. To me getting a haircut meant getting it “chopped”…literally. My hair was always short and extremely curly and I had these…dare I say it…BANGS! For some reason my bangs were never quite the right length. Why? Right after a haircut they would be too short. Then when I thought the rest of my hair was finally a good length,  the bangs would curl up under the humidity of a hot New England summer day. They would frizz and go in every direction imaginable. I would come to the realization that my hair just looked out of control and a bit mangy really. Mangy? Ugh, that was the last thing I wanted was to look like a shaggy dog with ungroomed fur that was knotted and dirty. So maybe I didn’t look mangy, but I felt mangy!

All through high school I felt like my hair never looked good. I thought it was ‘bad hair genes’ that were responsible for all the ‘bad hair days’. Eventually I discovered the problem or problems, but it was a long and drawn out process that was more trial and error than a scientific investigation. After  a long time I realized that I didn’t have to have short hair and maybe I could be saved…by the ponytail! I thought cool, this will solve my hair problems for good. Once my hair was long enough, I put up my hair only to discover that my bangs were going to continue to haunt me. The bangs would curl up like a slinky at the hint of humidity. I suffered the painful “grow out” process to eliminate the bangs. ‘Hallelujah I have been saved!’, or so I thought.

I was under the false pretense that “my hair was as good as it could get’.  I moved from the stifling heat and humidity of Maryland to rainy Oregon and made an interesting discovery.  Oregon is known for rain and a lot of it, so how was my hair going to respond? Apparently when you cross the Rocky Mountains something changes in a good way, at least for your hair. Oregon is rainy, but since it is COLD and RAINY it seems to have a different effect on the hair…now my hair was…straight? Well, straight is an exaggeration…how about straighter? Most of my bad hair days behind me, I thought it couldn’t get any better than this. Could it?

After the birth of my daughter I noticed a change in my hair. Why is the new hair coming in a different color? and a lot lighter? Oh no…its GRAY? I have a newborn…and I am gray? This a cruel joke. I thought my ‘hair’ challenges were over, but no, my quest to avoid bad hair continued.  I finally discovered the one-two punch that could “knock out” bad hair forever. The secret combination was known to most, but it took me a while to learn about it…hair dye and a gay hairdresser.  I don’t know what I would do without plentiful hair dyes in every shade and my beloved gay hairdresser.  Somehow he could look at me and pick the perfect hair color (or colors?) and finish the look with a sassy new ‘do’. I knew I struck gold when I walked in the door and my husband said, “You better leave, my wife will be home any minute!”

Even if you are born with hair that is too thin, too thick, too brown, too curly, too flat, too blonde or too brown, you can have perfect hair days. All you need is 1) to live in a dry climate (did I mention I moved to Arizona?), 2) Ditch the bangs, and 3) Find a talented gay hairdresser.  Obviously anyone can still have a bad hair day once in a while…but you don’t HAVE to.