clothing · hair · shopping

Did you get a haircut?

My husband came home and accused me of getting a haircut without telling him. A haircut’s not in our budget this month so it was like being accused of hiding a new little black dress in my closet. Okay, I’ve done it before but I promised I wouldn’t do it again.

On a constant basis, I get asked, “Did you get a haircut?” SIGH. It’s an innocuous question that gets annoying the more I get asked. The problem is that people don’t know too much about hair like mine, they don’t realize that my hair is “special.” It’s not like straight hair. It looks different depending on when I washed it, how long it’s been since I washed it, whether or not I ran out of gel or didn’t use any product at all. Based on these little details, it can look like I got body-snatched…or well, like I got a haircut.

Curls are not consistent. They have a mind of their own. So last night, I did something crazy. I washed my hair right before I went to bed. I usually don’t do this because who wants to sleep with a mass of wet gel on their head. Hours later when I woke up, my hair was about five inches shorter and vaguely similar to a Greek statue’s ringlets. Usually, sleeping on my (usually dry) hair makes it grow to massive proportions.

So 9 times out of 10, I haven’t gotten a haircut. I know it’s confusing. But honestly, because I keep my hair “natural,” I only get hair cuts every three or four months. So really, not very often. The other innocuous phrase, by the way, is when my hair looks particularly big (haven’t washed it for a while–remember, my hair is very DRY, it doesn’t need to be washed more than once a week), I get “you need a haircut.” Funny, I didn’t ask you for your opinion.

This has been a public service announcement from Aliza’s Afro.

13 thoughts on “Did you get a haircut?

  1. Honestly, I was a big fan of the bald look but the tichels actually slide off. I've written about this before “The Rastafarian Beret and Other Adventures in Hair Covering and shaving my head would only solve some problems and create others. My husband loves my hair. He almost had a heart attack when I shaved it right after the wedding to cope. I just can't do a turban. I could never pull it off. I would feel too silly. I am not a turban kind of girl. 🙂

    I think hopefully somewhere down the line someone (not me) will create a line of head coverings for women with my hair, women with afros. I think there could be a great market there.


  2. Also, there's something that bothers me about the people who offer advice like “just shave your head” or “just straighten your hair” or “just wear a wig (have you seen how awful some of the curly-haired wigs can be?).”

    In my experience, unless people ask you for advice, you shouldn't really give it because more often than not, you just offend the person on the other end.

    And trust me, telling someone to shave off their Afro borders on the offensive. Hopefully, people will watch Chris Rock's new movie, “Good Hair” and learn why the hair issue is so sensitive to people like me.


  3. I've been looking at lot of “African Head wraps” on youtube lately. Some of the techniques are really beautiful. I unfortunately have too thin of hair to pull any of them off, but I bet it would look fabulous on you if it didn't cause you pain.

    One of them was this lady with a lot of dreadlocks who used this really thin stretchy material instead of the normal cotton tichel material. I'll see if I can find the link. Otherwise, you just go along your happy way and enjoy your gorgeous hair. My husband has the stereotypical Ashkenazi fro and I'm like, praying our kids, G-d willing, inherit it instead of my thin wispy hair.


  4. winter is knit hat season Chez Too Many Darn Tuxedo Cats, which means I can pull out all the wool berets that are too hot for LA. The last few days I have been walking around with Jew-fro POOF sticking crazily out from under my hat and I haven't been able to figure out what to do. As I stared at my hair in dismay yesterday, a little voice whispered, “Product.” Oh. Yeah. I got out of the habit of using product during the summer, which is tichel weather. D'oh.

    Hair is just a never ending weird stressy high maintenance thing around here. I mean, if my hair were a girl? It would be a strappy sandal wearing, mani-pedi getting, Cosmo drinking, won't share a cab, high maintenance sparkly pink Blackberry using kind of girl. With a purse pet.

    I feel your pain. Not the same, because it is different hair, but there is some relating. Also, just to say, I am with your husband on this one, I love your hair.


  5. @ #2 and ruby…

    Geez. The lost art of sarcasm. Doesnt anyone get it anymore????

    I like this blog, but all the victimization, woe is moi stuff is way over the top.


  6. I had waist-length super thick hair. After I got married I chopped it super short because I was just sick of dealing. I actually WANT to shower now because it goes so quickly. I miss it sometimes but it was definitely time.

    I wonder what my friend did. She had very curly hair and got a curly sheitel. People kept asking her in the beginning “wait, didn't you get married?” I just wonder how she fits her hair under it…


  7. I imagine she has cut it to some extent or if she doesn't have thick, puffy curls, it might fight under a sheitel. I've seen friends, with straight hair though, fit extraordinarily long hair under the sheitels. Even when my hair was fairly short, I could not fit my hair under a sheitel. I needed a cap to squish it down and even then, my hair puffed up the sheitel unnaturally.

    I find it very problematic that we with our curly hair have to cut it off, straighten it, shave it, to fit into hair coverings that weren't intended for hair like ours. There are plenty of Jewish girls with hair like mine so why hasn't someone thought to create more options for hair like ours. Probably, because like most women I know with my hair type, they are straightening their hair to fit in, too.

    If it wasn't for my husband, I would probably have a crewcut. Yes, it is easy being pretty bald. Gets kind of cold in the winter. I'm lucky that the look is flattering on me though one of my DMV photos with such a cut makes me look like an axe murder.

    Absolutely none of those curly hair sheitels can simulate what my hair does naturally. And I know plenty of women who love that their sheitels look “better” than their own hair but I have long ago and after much, much work accept who I am, what I look like, what my hair looks like and I am no longer interested in pretending to be something else.


  8. Yeah fair enough. I know plenty of white ashkenazi girls who have thick pooofy curly hair. They probably just cut it because it's something they grew up with and just accepted.

    My friend has a long custom made sheitel. The sheitel macher made her a pocket in the back of the net for her ponytail which is kind of cool I think.


  9. I have very long, thick, extremely kinky hair – kinda like yours. When I wore a sheital I would make two french braids and it kept it down pretty flat.


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