First trim and thoughts on how to transition

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At this point, it’s been 12 weeks and 3 days since my big chop and getting rid of all the dye. Today’s picture is a before and after collage of my first trim since that cut. If you look at my last picture, the one taken in October, you’ll see that I had a good amount of growth. I didn’t get much taken off this time; in fact, nothing above the middle of my ear, but my bangs are pushed to the side which makes them look shorter. I’m experimenting with letting it grow for a while and seeing if the curly, wavy hair that I had as a kid comes back. I’m granola-crunchy enough that I really do like the look of long, curly gray hair, as long as it’s well maintained.

I’ve been giving the matter some thought, and I really do think that it’s better to go short than to keep the hair long and transition slowly. I know there’s a school of thought that a pixie cut is aging, but that’s a stupid school, and I’m not buying into their program. Long roots are far more aging, IMO. I’m definitely in the cut it short and get it done camp. Looking back, I almost wish I had just gone ahead and gotten a buzz cut back in August (she says with all the swagger of a woman who did not shave her head). I’m sure it wouldn’t have hurt me in the job interviews that I had in September and October any more than my very clear half-and-half hair did.

I think that half-and-half can look like “I don’t give a shit about my appearance,” far more than fun, funky short gray hair does. I may be turning 50 (much) later this year, but age is just a number. I still care about my appearance (hence my disdain for half-and-half hair), and I have certainly not given up on myself (another thing I hear about naturally gray hair).

So, in conclusion, long curly gray: Good. Roots that are more than a couple of inches long: Bad.

But that’s just my opinion.

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Slackers unite!

I’ve totally been a slacker on this blog lately. Must remedy that. Back soon. Promise.

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No More Dye (17 weeks)

No More Dye (17 weeks)

Final haircut after the decision made not to dye. This is 17 weeks, so less than half the length of a full-term pregnancy since the last time I dyed my hair. It feels great to be free of the every 6-week cycle of cut and color and the constant worry every time an event comes up as to where in the root/dye continuum I would be.

Meanwhile, in other matters, I’ve had a grand total of 2 job interviews and 0 offers, but I’m dealing with that disappointment, moving on, and filling out more applications. I even worked out today. It might be nuts to view it in these terms, but with having the last dye out of my hair finally, it feels like now is a really good time to get on with the other changes that I want to make.

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About 14 weeks’ post the last dye

About 14 weeks' post the last dye.

My most recent hair picture, plus I’m learning to wear lipstick. Exciting times.

Also, I’ve had a job interview (for a job I really want), received a rejection letter (for the first job I interviewed for and would have taken but probably wouldn’t have loved), and my son (whom I like to refer to as That Boy) has left for Army basic training.

Seriously, exciting times.

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As promised, a selfie

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This is the after picture from my most recent haircut. I went quite a bit shorter, and I now anticipate my hair being 100% dye free at my next cut on October 28.

I took some minor crap on Facebook for the fact that I’m not smiling in this picture, but I almost never smile for the camera. It’s not that I’m mad or sad (although I do have bitchy resting face); I just don’t like the way I represent on (virtual) film when I smile. IRL, though, I’m generally pretty damn cheerful.

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Ten Weeks

That’s how long it’s been since I last dyed my hair. I’m off to the salon shortly to get some more of the dyed portion cut off (it’s been 4 weeks since I made the decision not to dye any more and got the first big hair cut, and also since I started this blog).

As I get further and further into the journey, I’m noticing two things. One is that I’m not alone. It’s like when you get new car and suddenly you see your new car everywhere (I drive a Nissan Cube; it’s still a rarity to see those out and about, although I am seeing more now than when I got my car 16 months ago). I am seeing a lot of women who seem to have stopped dying and growing out their natural gay hair.

The other thing I see is a lot of bad dye jobs. Don’t misunderstand me, I don’t have a problem with dying your hair for whatever reason, it’s just that the more I look, the more I can tell a home dye job because the color is so flat and lifeless. I also see a lot of women my age or older who are still clinging valiantly to the deep, dark shades of our youth, and frequently it’s just not flattering anymore. Our skin naturally fades as we age, and most of us have wised up and started wearing sunscreen, so we are, of course, paler. With these paler complexions, the dark color of our youths only serves to age us; the exact opposite of what most of us want.

This is pre-hair cut, a selfie with my 10-week skunk stripe. I’ll add an after selfie after today’s cut.

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Color my world

No, not the Chicago song, although I do love it (because I am of an age where it’s a classic to me). This post is about changing my wardrobe to match the new hair. I have found this can be a controversial notion. From what I’ve seen, particularly in discussions on the knitting site Ravelry, there is a sizable percentage of women (and probably men, too, but that’s not the point) who dress themselves only in colors that they like or that make them happy with absolutely no regard for how those colors make them look.

Personally, I love bright orange and many shades of yellow; they’re such happy colors. Tragically, I have no yellow undertones in my skin, and those colors, at least if worn next to my face, make me look awful. Ditto with most colors with appellations like dusty, heathered, tweedy, or country. The dulling of bright colors by adding beige or gray undertones is quite simply not flattering to me. If you go by seasonal terms, I’m a winter. I can wear pure white next to my face, and it looks good. I can wear really deep purples, blues, and greens (which is handy because I love those colors, too). Red can be tricky for me; a true red or a red that’s more to the purple/blue side of the spectrum can look great, but more orange/yellow reds don’t flatter me. With the natural hair color of my youth (as opposed to the natural color of now), I could wear pastel tones of the basic colors that look good on me. These days, pastels make me look washed out, and I practically disappear.

Now, if I were an introvert, I might dress in pastels and shades of beige, greige (gross) and mousy brown, but that’s really not me. Which means, that I’m going through my closets lately and this time, instead of just tossing clothes that don’t fit or are from a different decade, I’m tossing pastels, off-whites, and most earth tones (not that there are a lot of those).

If you’re wondering what your season might be, Color Me Beautiful, and Pretty Your World┬áhave quizzes. Color Me Beautiful is more established and has 4 seasons, which can be limiting. Pretty Your World believes we have 12 seasons and that even though I’m basically a Winter, I can wear some Autumn colors, which kind of explains why really deep chocolate brown and olive drab (like my Air Force fatigues which were very flattering on me) are colors that I can wear even though they’re not typical winter colors.

If you’d rather wear colors that make you happy, that’s cool, but for me, looking the best I can in what I’m wearing makes me happier than looking at my shirt all day. Which is why sometimes you might catch me wearing yellow or orange socks with my deep purple T-shirt.

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