This week, I cut my hair myself. (File that under “coronavirus haircuts.”) It was past my shoulders and getting a bit too long for my liking. To my surprise, even though I cut it at shoulder length, it’s curled up to below my ears. Meaning: a very short, wavy hair cut.
I’ve always had wavy hair, but the funny thing is how long it’s taken for me to realize and personally accept my hair. Blame it on my high school days when it was fashionable to give it the Japanese straight perm treatment. Straight, shiny hair was considered beautiful.
My wavy hair that is neither the “classic Asian look”, often associated with geishas, or the blonde locks often associated with the West. My hair was thought to be too thick and unruly. I spent a lot of my 20s, going between self-indulgence and self-loathing.
I confess, and as embarrassing as it is to write this, I went through a phase of purchasing many Victoria’s Secret push-up bras, but I never could look anything like the buxom catalog models. I bought make-up to make my eyes look more huge and “Western”, often with clownish results. I have also spent a lot of money on balayage or expensive haircuts, which didn’t last. You could say that I also tried to draw the least attention to myself.
Today, I’m happy to say that I don’t really care. It has taken me long enough and in a pandemic to accept it. My hair has its good traits too: it stays in place when I brush it and it’s thick so as I get older, I will still have a full head of hair.
Given this pandemic, and the latest uprising surrounding the Black Lives Matter movement, I like to believe that we will eventually have more acceptance of diverse people. I hope this means there is something positive emerging in our current times. Who you are rather than what other people want you to be or how they want you to look like is the new modern.