On Beauty

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I threw down the GHDs in frustration, and glared at the mirror. I really was fed up of this ritual. For years I had worn my hair in a chin length bob. Neat tidy and professional, though it had required washing and blow drying, or straightening, each morning. Then I had got engaged, and like pretty much every other bride, I had grown my hair out for my wedding, dreaming of a glamorous and sexy updo.

We had a long engagement, and my hair grows fast, so that by the wedding, it was to the middle of my back, despite regular small trims from Debbie, my supportive hairdresser.

My hair is fine, and neither straight enough or curly enough to really be either! It’s too fine to hold a curl, and too frizzy to look any good unless straightened. Consequently, as it grew, I was spending more and more time with the straighteners each morning, or scraping it back in a ponytail when I couldn’t be bothered. (It always fell out after a couple of hours even then).

I had had my glamorous updo though. My initial thoughts of a simple and elegant ‘do had been gradually replaced with more and more complicated creations – largely at Debbie’s urging, and accepted by me as a justification for keeping on growing my hair, even though I wasn’t enjoying it.

Anyway, it all seemed worth it for the glamorous wedding ‘do. Until the big day itself that is.

I hadn’t really counted on either the amount of time that I would be spending in the hairdressers chair – what with shampoo, rollers, dryer (Debbie knew very well that my hair didn’t hold a curl, so LOTS of small, TIGHT rollers, industrial quantities of gel, and a long time under a HOT dryer were required) followed by teasing, spraying, LOTS of hairpins and MORE spraying – or the discomfort either. At least half the pins seemed to be sticking straight into my head, and the large mass on top of my felt very strange. I wasn’t happy about the huge quantities of gel and spray either, but every time, I suggested that it might be enough, Debbie replied that we wanted to make sure it stayed up all day, didn’t we, and shoved in another grip, or gave me another blast of spray.

Eventually, I was declared to be done, and allowed to look in the mirror. My hair was more or less as we had agreed, perhaps a little higher, and, somehow… fancier. But the main problem was that it looked nothing like me. I had never had my hair anything like this, and probably never would again. The rather red face from all that dryer time, and growing increasingly het-up through the styling process, didn’t help.

Debbie then proceeded to do my makeup. Of course, she applied rather more than I normally did – it was my wedding day after all. But when she had done I looked even less like me, and the red flush to my face seemed even more pronounced. I hoped that Chris, my husband-to-be would recognise me when I walked up the aisle!

Fortunately, he did (the big white dress was probably a clue!) and everyone had told me how beautiful I looked. Even though it’s almost compulsory to tell the bride that on her wedding day, I expect I did – as someone else’s idealised concept of ‘beauty’, and though I was very happy to be marrying Chris, I remember being uneasy even then at the idea that I could only be ‘beautiful’ by spending hours being primped and preened to end up looking almost unrecognisable.

That’s nearly a year ago now, and my hair is probably a few inches longer than it was. I hadn’t really been sure what to do with it after the wedding. Part of me wanted to cut the annoying, time consuming lot of it all off but part of me was scared to do that – it was such a big step. And, perhaps perversely, the fact that I hadn’t liked my wedding ‘do – I hadn’t had the ‘payoff’ for all the stress and hassle – made me reluctant to get rid of it, as though doing so would underline the fact that it had all been a big mistake – acknowledging that I would have been better off just keeping my neat and tidy little bob!

Certainly Chris wouldn’t have minded – I’d asked him more than once before the wedding, when my hair was annoying me, whether I should have it all chopped off, and he had always replied that it didn’t matter to him, but wasn’t it me who really wanted long hair for my wedding. Of course, I thought that I did, and by the time my next trim with Debbie rolled around, I had calmed down and allowed her to take off a quarter of an inch, and talk about my ‘fabulous’ wedding style.

I’d spoken to Chris since the wedding, too, increasingly threatening to cut my hair – short – and asking what he would think. He had been non-committal to the point of being useless, simply replying that it was my hair, and I could cut it however I wanted!

The trouble was, that I didn’t really know what I wanted. I was fed up with the current, long frizzy mess, and fed up with the time it took to wash, condition and straighten, that was for sure. I could go back to my safe, conventional (read: boring) bob, but I didn’t really want that either. It would be too much of an admission (to myself, if no-one else) that I only grew my hair out for my wedding, and that I really shouldn’t have bothered. I would also be obliged to wash and straighten every day, as it would be too short for a ponytail. That also clashed with the growing idea that I didn’t want to be judged on the basis of an ‘artificial’ beauty – that I only looked ‘acceptable’ if I straightened my hair, applied make-up and dressed carefully in fashionable clothes.

I was slowly coming to the idea that what I really wanted was to abandon all these ideas of conventional beauty, and be judged for who I was – doesn’t everyone say that true beauty lies inside – but how many of us really act on that? I still wasn’t quite sure what this entailed though – It certainly meant a short, no-fuss haircut, though I hadn’t any real idea of how I wanted it to look. I didn’t have any idea how my not-straight-but-not-really-wavy hair would behave when it was short either. Despite this, I now felt that I was ready for a short haircut. It would at least feel like a positive step, as a thirty-something married woman, rather than a desperate attempt to return to the twenty-something single girl who I used to be.

It would probably mean toning down my clothes, and makeup, to more ‘conservative’ styles too. I’d started experimenting with my clothes – pushing the shorter skirts and higher heels to the back of my wardrobe in favour of sensible below-the-knee skirts, and plain court shoes with one-inch heels. I didn’t really know what to do with my make-up, having only ever done it one way, but that would surely have to change too.

I had booked the day off, intending to go into town and do some shopping, but my current failure to make my hair behave was making me think that this was the day to reinvent myself – to chop off my hair and stop chasing other people’s artificial ideas of beauty. To begin to present myself to the world as a modest, unassuming woman, and allow them to judge me for myself, rather than for my appearance.

Before I could do that though, I really needed to talk to Chris one more time. He had gone to work, as normal, so I phoned him.

“Hi Chris”

“Oh, hi Helen. Everything alright?”

“Yes, I was just thinking that when I go into town, I might get my hair cut.”

“OK.” I could hear the puzzlement in his voice. “Why are you telling me?”

“I mean I might get it cut short. I told you that I was fed up of all the time it takes me – washing, drying, straightening…”

“Oh. Yes, you did.”

“And I wanted to make sure that you wouldn’t mind?”

“Of course not darling. I’ve told you that you can do anything you want with your hair. It really doesn’t matter to me.”

I’d hoped for something a little more positive, but I guess that would have to do. I quickly put my half-straightened hair into as neat a ponytail as I could manage, wincing as the hairbrush fought its way through tangles. “Not after today.” I thought, smiling determinedly at myself in the mirror. I had done my makeup before the failed attempt to straighten my hair, and while I wasn’t sure that I really wanted it today, I didn’t know how to tone it down, and wasn’t brave enough to go out make-up free, so it stayed for now. It just remained to choose an outfit. I would normally have worn expensive jeans, and a casual designer top for a shopping trip, but I didn’t think that would do today. I selected one of my smarter ‘work’ outfits – a plain black skirt that fell a few inches below the knee and a pale blue blouse, which a few months ago I used to wear with the top three or four buttons undone. I had been wearing it with just the top one undone lately.

Today I buttoned it firmly to the neck, and then, after a little thought, rummaged in my jewellery box until I found an old brooch, which I fastened over the top button.

Looking in the mirror I was pleased with the effect of the outfit. Smart, conservative and modest. Just the look I wanted for myself. I tried to imagine a plain and simple short haircut on me (which wasn’t too difficult, with my hair already scraped back) and decided that it was exactly what I needed to complete the picture. More determined than ever, I set off into town.

I decided that I should try to get my hair cut first, before I changed my mind, and so headed for my usual salon. I wasn’t sure that Debbie would be particularly receptive to the idea of the new conservative and modest me, but I didn’t know where else to go – that was the only salon I’d ever used.

My fears proved absolutely correct. I walked into the salon, and fortuitously Debbie was just passing the door.

“Hello Helen. I nearly didn’t recognise you there. I didn’t realise you had an appointment today?”

“No, I don’t. I was hoping that you could squeeze me in. And, er, this is how I dress for work.”

“Mmmmmm. Very smart, but a bit dowdy, if you don’t mind me saying. And why are you hiding all this beautiful long hair away in a ponytail? You should be showing it off!” She reached round me and gave my ponytail a sharp tug.

“Well that’s the thing. It’s getting harder and harder to straighten it, and I’ve just had enough of it. I want it all cut off! I feel like I need a smarter look for work, too.” This last bit wasn’t really true, but I felt like I needed a reason to give Debbie, and this just sprang into my head.

She obviously wasn’t taking me seriously. She gabbled away whilst looking through the appointments book. “Don’t be silly – you can’t cut it all off after all this growing. You don’t have to look dowdy just because you’re married. All men like long hair. We’ll trim a few inches and give you some layers next time. Anyway, you should look like a babe at work, not boring.”

As Debbie was reeling this off, I realised that there was no way I was going to get the kind of plain, simple, SHORT haircut that I wanted from her. Looking at her with fresh eyes, it was easy to see why. Her own hair, artificially blond and artificially straight, hung down nearly to her waist. Despite the practicalities of working as a hairdresser, I had never seen her with her hair tied back, even partially, and as a result she was constantly flicking it back out of her face. Her face was heavily made up, with eyebrows plucked to obscurity, and then drawn back on, and her lips, eyes and cheekbones all painted to conceal their true appearance, and present an idealised image of this season’s concept of ‘beauty’.

In contrast to my modest outfit, she was wearing a tight top, and short clingy skirt, and the considerable amount of exposed flesh was the burnt orange colour of a spray tan. Nope. There was no way Debbie would understand my new attitude, and give me the plain and modest look that I wanted.

I knew that I had to get out of there, so I mumbled something to the effect that yes, Debbie was right, what was I thinking, and I’d be back for my regular trim in a couple of weeks.

Debbie thankfully accepted this, and I stumbled back out onto the high street. Looking around me, I realised that I had a problem. Debbie’s look – the skimpy outfit, fake tan, trowelled on makeup, and most of all, the poker-straight blond tresses – were duplicated on at least half of the women I could see, and the kind of short, plain haircut that I had in mind was nowhere to be seen. I decided that I was perhaps in the wrong part of the high street – lots of shops selling young, trendy clothes, expensive coffee shops and so on. I turned right and walked towards the less fashionable end of the street.

As I walked, the trendy shops on either side were gradually replaced with less up-market versions, and then were began to turn to charity shops, a laundrette, the post office, and library. I’d seen one hairdressers on my way past, but whilst it was clearly not as trendy as my usual salon, a quick glance inside showed that it was largely inhabited by the same blonde-tanned-warpainted girls. I quickly passed on.

I had by now nearly reached the end of the high street, and was beginning to wonder whether I would find anywhere suitable, and what I would do if I didn’t. Then, right at the end of the high street I spotted what seemed like the perfect place. The sign said ‘Miss Carol’ in a handwriting style, brown on orange, very 1970s, and underneath, in smaller writing, ‘Ladies Hairdresser’. Signs in the window advertised ‘Shampoo and Set £7’ and ‘Discounts for Senior Citizens on Tuesdays and Wednesdays’. Faded, but clean net curtains obscured most of the view, but I was sure that I could see a row of old-fashioned hairdryers along the wall. I took a deep breath and pushed the door open.

‘Hello Dear, can I help you?’

The lady, presumably ‘Miss Carol’ was the only person in the salon. She was, I guessed, in her early sixties, with short, curly grey hair. She wore a long pleated skirt, a pristine white blouse with a high collar and sensible flat black shoes. A bigger contrast to Debbie couldn’t be imagined, and I felt sure that she would have no problem with snipping off all of my long hair, and giving me the sensible short cut that I wanted.

‘Yes,’ I replied. ‘I’d like my hair cut, please. I’m afraid I don’t have an appointment.’

‘Well, I’m very quiet this morning, so I could do you now if you like?’

‘Yes, that would be lovely.’

She smiled, and ushered me over to a chair and wrapped a cape around me, then released my hair from its ponytail.

‘Trim the ends, is it dear? An inch off? Or two?’

I took a deep breath.

‘Actually, I’d like you to cut it short. I’m fed up of looking after all of this, and I’ve had enough of feeling that I have to be a slave to fashion. I just want a plain, simple, neat and tidy, short haircut.’

There was a moment or two of silence after I delivered this speech, as I wondered what ‘Miss Carol’ would make of it.

‘That will be a big change for you, dear, but I can’t say I blame you. It must be a lot of work to keep this looking presentable. And if you don’t mind me saying so, it really doesn’t really look appropriate with the way you’re dressed. A nice sensible short haircut will look much better on you.’

As Miss Carol spoke, she was briskly combing through my hair, and as she finished, I felt her scissors slide in above my collar, near the hairline. She didn’t give me a chance to object, or back out, but simply closed them, snipping away two feet of hair which slid unceremoniously towards the floor. She moved them across, and snipped again. Five or six snips later, the majority of my hair was on the floor, and the hair left on my head was shorter than I could ever remember it being. It wasn’t short enough for Miss Carol though, and she calmly carried on lifting up sections of my hair with her comb, and running her scissors across.

It seemed like just a few minutes until she stopped snipping, and I looked in the mirror (I’d been avoiding it until then) to see myself with what was undoubtedly the plain, simple, short haircut that I’d asked for. My hair had been left at a uniform length of perhaps 2 or 3 inches on top, with the length rapidly reducing on the sides of my head, so that it was cut neatly over my ears. Whilst I couldn’t see the back of my head, the hair must be pretty short, as nothing at all was visible behind my ears!

‘There! That’s much better! A nice short haircut, just like you wanted. How is that for you? Short enough?’

‘Oh, er, yes, that’s lovely, thank you. It’s a bit of a shock though!’

Whilst I hadn’t had any clear idea of how I expected, or even wanted my hair, this was definitely shorter than anything that had crossed my mind. I couldn’t fault Miss Carol though; My hair was plain and simple, and short, just like I’d asked. However, owing to my can’t-make-their-mind-up waves, it did look a bit messy. I was wondering whether to say anything about this, when Miss Carol took charge again. She picked up a bottle, and thoroughly sprayed my shorn locks. At the same time she briskly pulled her comb through, ensuring that I was well soaked with the water.

“Right, we’ll just get you looking neat and tidy then.”

With that she picked up a can from the counter and sprayed a large blob of mousse into her hand. This was rapidly worked into my hair, and combed through. I watched in the mirror as the comb was then used to trace a perfectly straight parting down the right side of my head and the hair was firmly combed away to either side. Miss Carol then picked up a hairdryer and a large flat brush, and rapidly dried my hair. I couldn’t believe how quickly my new short hair dried! In a couple of minutes I was left with an immaculately smoothed down cap of hair, with not a trace of my unruly waves. The side parting made a sharp white line through my mousy brown hair (the blonde highlights which Debbie had been painstakingly applying for the last goodness-knew-how-long were now all lying on the floor, along with the rest of my tresses). My hair curved neatly across my forehead, though staying well clear of my eyebrows, and stopped in a clean line above my ears.

Miss Carol had undoubtedly delivered on her part of the deal. Neat and tidy, short, conservative. Plain, simple and above all, modest. This was exactly the qualities I had asked for, and exactly what I had got. And I loved it.

“There you are dear. Neat and tidy and very respectable indeed. Let’s just make sure it stays that way.”

With that, she picked up a can from the counter, and, holding her hand over my eyes, proceeded to give my hair a thorough coating of some heavily scented hairspray. She touched her comb to tidy a couple of strands that had dared to move out of perfect alignment, and repeated the process. When the spray had settled, I looked in the mirror to see that my hair hadn’t moved, but now looked rather stiff and shiny.

“You’ll find it’s much easier to keep looking presentable now it’s nice and short, dear. Just a quick blow dry and a blast of spray and you’ll stay neat and tidy all day.”

This, unfortunately, was the one thing that I wasn’t happy about. The style itself was perfect, but I had really wanted to avoid daily styling. To be sure, this would take a lot less time than drying and straightening my long hair, but what I really wanted was for the world to accept me just as I was, without having to apply heat and styling products every day just to make myself look ‘acceptable’. Whilst the overall effect was quite different, the stiffness of my hair now was uncomfortably reminiscent of the rigidly sprayed updo I had endured for my wedding.

Miss Carol must have picked up on my pensive attitude, as she asked me if everything was alright.

“Well, it’s just that, umm…. Do I have to blow dry and spray my hair every day?” I went on in a rush “I know it’s a lot less faff than when it was long, but I was really hoping to….” I trailed off, not quite knowing how to finish.

“You just want to wash and go do you?”

“Well, yes, I suppose so”

“With your waves, dear, you really need to do something to keep it neat and tidy.” She paused briefly. “You could have a perm of course.”

“A … perm?” That was one thing I certainly hadn’t thought of!

“Yes, dear. Stop fighting with your waves and turn them into nice neat little curls. It’s the perfect wash and go style, and it really is the best way to tame those unruly waves of yours. No fussy styling required, you just have it re-permed occasionally when you come it to have it trimmed.”

A perm! And a short, curly perm at that. I couldn’t quite believe that I was considering it, but what Miss Carol said seemed to make a lot of sense. It would certainly be a plain, modest style, and from what Miss Carol had said, completely fuss-free. Best of all, I wouldn’t be able to change it. I would simply have short, neat curly hair, and the rest of the world would just have to accept it.

“Well dear?” Miss Carol broke into my thoughts. “Are we going to make you nice and curly then?”

In for a penny, in for a pound I told myself.

“Yes please.” I said firmly “I think you’re right. A good perm is just what I need.”

“Let’s get started then!”

My chair was spun around and leant backwards, and a spray of warm water cascaded across my head. Miss Carol squirted some shampoo on, and briskly scrubbed my hair. I could feel the resistance from the stiffness of the mousse and spray my original short style had required, but they soon surrendered, and I was towelled off to be left with short, damp tousled hair. It still felt strange for my hair to be dried so quickly, and to not be left with long strands of wet hair hanging all over my face and back.

I wasn’t given long to enjoy the sensation though. Miss Carol wheeled over a small trolley covered with small boxes containing various sizes and colours of perm rods. She then picked up her comb and scissors and started to once more lift and snip my hair, taking what seemed like an alarming amount from already short hair. I didn’t say anything, but Miss Carol must have noticed the expression on my face.

“We need to take the top down a bit, to match the back. That way we’ll get a lovely uniform curl all over. I’ll be using the smallest perm rods, to make sure it stays nice and tight, so you won’t need any styling.”

“Ah, Ok then.” I relaxed slightly, but it seemed that ‘no styling’ was going to mean a very short and very tight perm indeed! I suddenly remembered Chris. He’d been relaxed about me cutting my hair, but I’m sure he hadn’t imagined it would be this short! And what would he think about a head full of tight curls? Oh well, there was nothing I could do now. He would just have to accept it, like everyone else.

Miss Carol had finished cutting now, and was rapidly winding small pink rods into the top of my hair. Each one was fastened in place with a little rubber strap, and before long my head was covered in them. I then had a strip of cotton wool wrapped around my hairline, and Miss Carol snipped the top from a plastic bottle with a nozzle. She then proceeded to squeeze the contents rapidly over each of the rods in my hair. Finally, a rather ugly plastic cap was put over my head, and I was led across to one of the dryers lining the far wall.

“Half an hour on Gas Mark 5!”

Miss Carol smiled as she said this, and the joke took away any nerves I may have been feeling. There was nothing for me to do now, and so I settled down into the chair, watching Miss Carol as she pottered about, tidying up around the salon. It was only as she was tipping the sweepings into the bin that I realised that was my hair. Well, not really mine any more!

Before long, Miss Carol came over and turned the dryer off. She lifted the hood up, and removed one of the rods.

“Yes, I think you’re done now” she said, as she pulled gently at the released curl, and ushered me back to the chair where my hair had been cut. The rods were rapidly removed from my hair, but I couldn’t see myself in the mirror, as Miss Carol was standing between me and it. She picked up her comb again, and gently teased and prodded at my curls for a few seconds.

“Now normally, after a perm, I give my ladies a nice smart set, but as you don’t want to fuss with any styling, we’d better just send you home with this nice neat little head of short curls.”

As she said this, Miss Carol was removing the cape from around me, and helping me out of the chair. Looking in the mirror now, I could see the full effect of her efforts, and she had certainly been true to her words. My hair now looked a great deal shorter even than my original cut, and was simply a neat cap of tight curls around my head. I turned my head to see that there was plenty of clean white skin visible around my ears, and certainly no hair visible below them.

Despite the radical change from my appearance when I’d walked, in, I was struck by just how right my new short curly hair looked with my smart black skirt and properly-buttoned blouse. There was one jarring note, though, and it was the one that I’d spotted before I left the house – my makeup looked even more out of place with my nice sensible perm than it had before. Miss Carol obviously agreed, as she looked me up and down and commented.

“You look very respectable indeed. Or rather, you will when you scrub all that muck off your face!”

“You’re right!” I laughed. “Do you have any soap?”

I was pointed to a washbasin in the corner, where I found a clear, orangey bar of the carbolic soap I remembered so well from my childhood. I ran a little hot water into the basin, and worked up a lather on my hands. I briefly hesitated, as I wondered how long it was since I had been out in public with a completely bare face, and whether I was really ready now. Then I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror above the basin, with my extremely short, tight perm, and realised that I really had no choice. Miss Carol had turned me into the sensible, conservative, modest young lady that I wanted to be, and a face full of makeup had no place on me any more. With that thought, I happily raised my hands to my face and scrubbed away the last remnants of my vanity.

Having rinsed and dried my face I took another look at myself in the mirror. With my face scrubbed clean of every trace of makeup I looked the very image of a respectable, and modest young lady. I looked older, I suppose, but only because I now looked like I really was in my mid thirties, rather than desperately trying to hold on to my twenties. It still felt very right though. I looked – and felt – like myself; like the person I wanted to be, and I was entirely ready to face the world with my new, plain and modest appearance. I wasn’t sure how anyone would react to the new me but apart from Chris, I wasn’t worried – they would just have to accept me the way I was. I was just a tiny bit worried about how Chris would react. I decided that he too would have to accept it in the end – there was no way that my hair would be anything other than short and curly for a long time to come, and as I’d just seen, trying to wear makeup with such a plain and simple hairstyle just looked ridiculous – and I would just have to hope that he would get over any initial shock quickly.

Holding my head up high, I walked over to the desk to pay Miss Carol. I was amazed at how much cheaper it was than a trim-and-highlights appointment with Debbie. At least Chris couldn’t complain about the cost!

“Now dear, shall I book you in for a trim in six weeks?”

“Oh, yes, please do. Will I need to have it permed again at the same time?”

“No dear, three months between perms is about right. You can always have it set if you want it freshened up before then. It would probably last a week at your length, and would give you a smarter, more formal look.”

“A week?! Well maybe I wouldn’t mind styling my hair if it lasted that long – and if someone else does it for me! I think I should probably get used to having it short and curly first though. I’ll see you in 6 weeks. Oh, and thank you very much!”

“You’re welcome dear. It’s lovely to see a young lady opting for a sensible, modest hairstyle. I really enjoyed smartening you up!”

I smiled as I left the salon, tucking the appointment card into my handbag. I held my head up high as I walked back up the high street, not ashamed of my short, tight curls, or my clean scrubbed face. I was surprised that I didn’t really seem to attract many looks as I walked. I supposed that no-one who had seen me walking down previously would recognise me, and since my hair, clothes and (lack of) make up all presented the consistent appearance of a plain, modest young woman, there really was no reason for anyone to look twice at me. Also, because I was completely comfortable, and confident in my new appearance, I wasn’t trying to hide from anyone, which would only have drawn attention to me.

I toyed with the idea of going to see Debbie, and show her that I really had wanted a sensible short haircut, but I decided against it. It would only cause a scene, which was the last thing I wanted. Instead, I headed home, to await Chris’ arrival back from work. Having got home, I decided that I should keep my smart outfit on, as I wanted Chris to get the full effect of my changes. I was having more doubts now – not about my new hair – I loved it – but about Chris’ reaction. I decided that I had better warn him first, but I didn’t want him asking too many questions, so I decided on a text message. I quickly thumbed it out, not wanting to think too hard about it.

– have had my hair cut. it’s v.short and I love it. come home soon. H.x

I pressed the ‘send’ button, and off it went. I didn’t have to wait long for a reply.

– great. just leaving. be home in 20 mins. C 🙂

I didn’t want to just sit there clockwatching, so I spent the time doing a bit of tidying around the house, though I will admit that I gave the clock the odd glance! Still, before I could get too nervous, I heard Chris’ key in the door, and hurried to meet him. He looked up from closing the door just as I came around the corner and I saw the expressions play across his face – first surprise; no – shock – and then a big smile to match my rather nervous one. The silence seemed to stretch out forever until I finally broke it.

“So, what do you think?” The smile on his face had given me enough confidence to give a quick twirl as I asked this, so he could see all the way around.

“You look absolutely beautiful. I had no idea you would cut your hair so short, but I think you look amazing.”

Chris paused for a moment and then, looking a little closer he asked “Did you expect your hair to go that curly when it was cut?”

“It didn’t!” I laughed. “My waves were just as badly behaved as ever. The hairdresser suggested that I have a perm to make it easier to manage, and I thought ‘why not?’ ”

“Well you look beautiful.” He paused for a moment. “I think that part of the reason is that you look so happy.” I smiled back at him to confirm my happiness. “So…..” A mischievous look crept on to his face. “The only thing left to ask, is why didn’t you do this ages ago?”

I smiled again, and shrugged helplessly, unable to explain all the conflicting thoughts that came into my head. Chris waited for a moment or two to see if I was going to come up with anything and then he shrugged.

“Doesn’t matter. The important thing is that you love it, and so do I. Come on, I want to take my new wife out for dinner!”

 


 

This is an old one, old enough that it pre-dates this website, so hopefully new to some of you.

also published at https://f35hstories.wordpress.com/

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