Carey Mulligan. What. A. Goddess.
She can act. She can sing. She can marry a Mumford and still manage to get some lip-on-lip action with Leo Dicaprio. Carey Mulligan is living the dream, ladies and gentlemen. And she’s doing it all with arguably the cutest haircut anyone has ever seen: the pixie.
I myself recently acquired such a haircut and, needless to say, Ms. Mulligan was a huge inspiration. The three months my long hair and I have spent apart have been three very strange months indeed, for one reason above all: they’ve involved a nonstop stream of questions about my pixie cut.
“Why on earth did you do it?”
Well, it all started when I watching the movie Amélie (continuing with my habit of making major life decisions based on films). Beyond being blown away by the movie’s location, cinematography, and overall loveliness, I couldn’t take my eyes off Audrey Tautou’s close crop of hair. It was so different, so fresh, so quirky- and I was in love with it.
I found myself thinking: I’ve wanted to chop off my hair since forever. Since before forever, in fact. Since the prehistoric era of eighth grade. Emma Watson had just hacked off Hermione’s locks and I was super jealous of her bravery. Who cares what the media thought; she looked fierce and chic around the clock. I, as a dorky middle schooler with fluffy hair and horrible bangs, wanted nothing more than to do the exact same thing; but at the time, I just couldn’t bring myself to do it.
And then I thought of all the short-haired heroines I’d recently seen grace the screen:
- Audrey Tautou in Amélie
- Audrey Helburn in Roman Holiday
- Anne Hathaway in Les Mis (okay, not in Les Mis – the starving prostitute look isn’t exactly something to strive for- but certainly on the Les Mis red carpet)
- And of course, Carey Mulligan in The Great Gatsby
Beyond the cheesy, romantic idea I had of short hair, I also found myself thinking of its practical purposes. My shower time could easily be sliced in half. I would never need to buy hair ties again. More than anything, I was beyond sick of hair everywhere. As any long-haired ladies can attest, having long hair = shedding like a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. Hair gets stuck on your clothes, your sheets- even your carpet. And don’t even bring up the shower drain, or I might gag. I just got to a point where I couldn’t take it anymore.
And when Karen Gillan (possessor of the most gloriously glossy red mane humanity has ever seen) revealed her shaved head at this year’s Comic-Con, I knew that I was out of excuses ( “But I need long hair for prom!” “But I need long hair for senior pictures!” “But I need long hair for graduation!”). If Karen Gillan could hack off her hair, I could certainly hack off mine.
“Did your boyfriend break up with you or something?”
Erm… no. No he did not (like Ryan Gosling would ever do that to me).
“Wow- this must be such a time-saver for you!”
Wouldn’t you think so? Short hair is surprisingly high-maintenance, but I guess you have to make sacrifices sometime or another. I spend just as much time on my hair now as I did when it was a foot long, except now I don’t have the option to take a lazy day to put it in a ponytail or a topknot. I definitely can’t just roll out of bed and leave it as-is (unless I feel like rocking a fauxhawk).
(Heard in passing)
“Oh my God, is that a guy or a girl?”
A girl. A girl with excellent hearing.
“I’ve always wanted to do that… how exactly did you do it?”
First, I told myself that I had to take one month – a full thirty days – to decide whether I really wanted to do this, or it was just the Virginia summer heat messing with my head. During that time, I made a Pinterest board of haircuts that I really liked (and yes, I really did name it “Short Hair, Don’t Care”), and looked up loads of blogs of women who’d taken the plunge already. After a month was up, I still wanted the haircut more than anything.
I went to a salon I really liked and felt good about. Was it more expensive than going the usual Supercuts route? Definitely; but I felt like I was in safe hands, which made the whole experience a lot better. I also brought along a printout of the pictures from my Pinterest board to show the stylist, so that she knew exactly how I wanted everything to look.
Do you ever regret it?
Sometimes. I have to get it trimmed about every six weeks, which is a bit of a hassle and certainly isn’t cheap. When I’m in the final fifth-week stretch and my hair is shaggy and sloppy-looking, my confidence levels aren’t really at 100%. And no one is immune to the occasional bad hair day.
But whenever I find myself pining for my old Rapunzel-esque ‘do, I just try to remind myself of all the reasons I cut it in the first place, and all the fabulous perks of the pixie:
- My hair was always in a ponytail or topknot anyway. Always.
- Which isn’t even to mention that it was frizzy and poofy absolutely all the time.
- Let’s face it: I was never that good at braiding.
- My swanky earrings look that much more fabulous when you can actually see them.
- If I get the sudden urge to cosplay Captain America or Dean Winchester (which I admit, has yet to happen) I can do it with that much more authenticity.
- Hats look SO CUTE on me now.
- The money I’ve saved on shampoo is unbelievable.
- I never have to worry about scrambling for a hair tie before Chemistry labs.
- I donated my hair to Children With Hair Loss, so someone who needs it more than I did is currently rocking it.
- I’m not going to lie: being compared to Audrey Hepburn on a regular basis is pretty freaking cool.