Athena Magazine

Fashion, lifestyle, passions

Bangs?!!! September 23, 2008

Filed under: Fashionista Files,Now Looky Here — rebmas03 @ 2:12 am
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I am constantly changing my hair. I view hair as a sort of accessory, a great way to accent a new look. So it’s often that people don’t recognize me from one time to the next—I’m a chameleon that way. Recently, I wrote about entering a new hair dimension by finding a fabulous set of sister salons: Public and Woodley & Bunny.

Well, my mother flew in to see me and get a second haircut with me for my birthday. It just tickles me pink that my 60-something mom loves this hipster salon (the stylists all remind her of her ’70s heyday). My mother has her hair cut by Ginger, and I had finally secured an appointment with the artistic Andy.

When I sat down in the chair, he asked what I wanted. I said that I was up for anything. And he suggested bangs. Bangs!!! I have not had bangs since I was sixteen and wearing braces on my teeth and back. I have this picture that is so completely ridiculous from my high school album. I am wearing a really cute cadet-blue, plaid, bow-tie dress that I wish I still had, and my face is half-braces and half-bangs. Then before that I was five and slightly cuter, but still, I was five. Now I’m in my forties.

I winced at the memories. “Bangs,” I said weakly. “I don’t look so good in bangs. They are just so … irrevocable.” It was hard to turn down an artist’s inspiration, but I just couldn’t see it.

“Really,” he said. “I think that you’ll look like Louise Brooks.”

Well, that was a different story, but …. no. He shrugged and set to patiently cutting my hair just as it has been for the past year.

Since he had been working for Fashion Week, I asked, “Are bangs big on the runway?”

“No, just really, really long hair.”

Well, really long hair was definitely out of the question. But here was a man who created the looks for Fashion Week. Couldn’t I just be a little flexible? I pondered this as he trimmed away. Soon, he would be finished, and my chance for change would be gone. I always say no to change at first, but I always reconsider.

“It’s not too late for the bangs, is it?”

And there you have it. For the third time in my life, I have bangs. But, oh what a difference this time. Where they had once made me squinty-eyed and cute, I’m suddenly youthfully glam. Boys at Starbucks no longer call me ma’am when I order my iced Americanos. I’m a “miss.” People love my new look, or if they can’t figure out what’s new, just say that I looked terrific. (How anyone could miss anything as obvious as bangs is beyond me.)

But the best comment was from a work friend: “Lulu,” he beamed, upon first seeing me. “That is the best look on women over 40. Women in their 20s just don’t look that good in bangs.” Now that definitely put a spring in my step.

And if I put on dark eyeliner and tilt my head just so, to my left profile, and squint, I really do look like Lulu.

 

A tale of good hair luck August 15, 2008

Filed under: Fashionista Files,Now Looky Here — rebmas03 @ 3:11 am
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It’s not easy to find a good hairdresser. I had one in the early ’90s named Adrian—he was also the stylist to Madonna. When Adrian cut my hair, his scissors just flew around my head in a blur, then stopped. There would be one lock of hair left long. Then, snip. And I had the perfect hairstyle. Shampoo, a little brilliantine and I was so sleek. I wore that hairstyle all through Australia, when I was working for BRIDE’s magazine. I got my dive certification on Lizard Island on that trip, and I still carry my dive card, just in case I need to do a quick James Bond-type move and also because I love to look at that hair cut.

Adrian disappeared, like all great hairdressers do, to Brazil, and I went through, no lie, 15 years of bad—or worse, mediocre—hair cuts and the search for another like Adrian. I can’t even bear to tell you the indignities I suffered, not to mention gray hairs, but finally I had the good fortune to end up working on a fashion shoot set with a couple of very style-savvy gals with amazing haircuts. And they assured me that all good haircuts happen in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. At this point I was the victim of brown hair and a ’90s severe bob given to me in Brooklyn Heights. It was humiliating.

But my hair luck finally turned and one day after I dropped my cat off for her acupuncture appointment at my Williamsburg vet, I stumbled upon Public. It was a hole in the wall really, but I decided to have faith in my fashion friends and take the plunge. I went inside and begged for a modern hair cut and color. Andy gave me the brilliant cut, and Laura did my color. She convinced me to go back to red, not auburn, RED! It was so amazing. I was chic again. But after a few visits, and a completely renovated life, things got complicated. Of course.

First Andy moved to the sister salon, Woodley and Bunny, also in Williamsburg. But Andy was never available, so I went to Ginger at Woodley instead, also awesome. But then Laura was never available also, so I found a colorist at Woodley. It was getting a little crazy anyway, getting my color at Public and my cut at Woodley. I had to alternate visits. But it was all like a cornucopia of Adrians—there wasn’t a mediocre stylist in the bunch.

Somewhere in the middle of all this, my 66-year-old mother came to visit from St. Louis. She also liked my haircut, so I took her to Woodley and Bunny to visit Ginger. She insisted that Ginger was the best hairstylist that she had found since 1965, so now she’s coming to visit every three months just to get her hair cut. (Plus Ginger’s vintage hotpants, platforms and mega-rhinestone glasses remind my mom of herself in the ’70s.) My sister even says she’s coming to have Ginger cut her hair. These people NEVER come to see me in NYC. I used to have to go see them, but now I have Ginger.

It gets even better. Today, I was at Woodley getting my weekly blowout, which I now have to get, because what good is fabulous cut and color without good styling, and who should I see? Laura! Promoted from her apprenticeship at Public to full status at Woodley. Now my cut and color (Ginger and Laura!) are all in the same place on the same night, which is a night that works with my schedule! Now that’s some good hair luck!