Princess hair

My daughter was born with a full head of hair, and it grows extremely quickly. Which means that, at the age of 4, her hair reaches her butt. And that’s only because I’ve trimmed it several times – if I hadn’t, it’d probably be down to her knees.

I’ve trimmed it because she gets horrible knots in it as the ends become worn – hairbrush-breaking knots. Otherwise, she would never let me cut it at all. She allows me to trim her bangs, because they tickle her nose. And she’s allowed me to lightly layer the ends of her hair; the shortest layers are waist length. Beyond that, I am to leave it the hell alone.

I am also not to cut my hair. She allows me to trim my bangs, and to trim the ends a couple of times a year (trim, not cut). She must supervise my hair appointments to make sure I don’t do anything crazy.

This last part is kind of understandable. I had a bit of a meltdown when she was a baby and donated my hair to Locks of Love. Twice in an 8-month period. My hair at the time I gave birth to her was long enough to reach my tailbone when completely straight. After the donations, it just barely cleared my chin. She has never forgiven me for this.

I’ve grown my hair back out since then. It is not quite as long as it was, but it will be soon. And Anya is rejoicing, because she loves my hair. She tells me she wants her hair long so she looks like me. How cute is that?

Then she tells me she has to have long hair so she will look like a girl. Long hair, she says, is princess hair. If I cut her hair, even a little, she won’t be pretty anymore.

What the everloving…?

Yes, I have long hair. Really long hair. I have long hair because my hair is impossible to manage when it’s shorter. My forays into hair donation reinforced this for me. I have thick, coarse, curly, frizzy hair, and I live in the Mid-South. The longer my hair is, the better it behaves.

If my hair is long, my routine is simple:

  1. Wash and condition (because of my allergies, I have to do this every day).
  2. Pat dry; add styling goop.
  3. Comb.
  4. Air dry (usually overnight).
  5. After it dries, add a little extra goop to tame the frizzies.
  6. Straighten bangs.

Takes me maybe 10 minutes all together.

With short hair, the game changes. I must blow dry and flat iron it, which when my hair is chin length takes half an hour; each additional inch of hair adds up to 10 extra minutes. Who has time for that crap? But the alternative is to look like a brunette Carrot Top, so…no.

I would love to have short hair. Then my hair would dry in under 8 hours, and I would not have to stockpile hair clips and hair ties like I do. If I had straight hair, I would have a lob. Or maybe just shoulder-length layers. But I do not have straight hair. Long mop it is.

My daughter has curls in the ends of her hair, but her hair is not yet seriously curly. (Neither was mine until I went through puberty.) In fact, her hair is extremely easy to manage, aside from the tangles. She could have any hair style she wanted. And she wants to look like Rapunzel.

Everyone comments on Anya’s hair. It is rather unusual for such a young child to have hair that long – I didn’t even have that much hair at her age. And her hair is absolutely beautiful. But I hate that she’s internalized that her hair is what makes her pretty. I blame the pretty pink princess culture for that.

Seriously, Disney, knock it off, okay?


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