What’s it like to be blonde? The same as being a brunette, a redhead, or in my case, having long jet-black locks? Actually, it seems not.
If you read my Canna Medici series, you will know I use hair colour as part of Canna’s persona. When Canna is a battered wife, she is blonde, as demanded by her husband. It is a bright veener to cover up an ugly reality. Once Canna falls into a deep depression during her drug addiction, her hair is her natural jet-black, like her attitude to the world. When Canna tries to pull herself from her problems, she tries her hair brown, a mid-way point between all the ugly places she has been. (Don’t worry, that didn’t ruin anything for new readers).
Anyway, is you follow me on Instagram, between my pretty shots of the beach and others beautiful spots you aren’t visiting, you will see my attempts to lighten my hair. My hair is long and very black. I tried bleaching at New Year’s, and got some blonde bits and some still black. After the colour treatment I got very dark brown. A start. Fast forward a few weeks, the process again gave my medium brown. So far, so boring.
Until this weekend. I sat down and had a bleaching treatment again (bottle eight of the stuff, if you must know. I have so much hair). The moment the towel came off my head, while still wet, it was obvious my hair was blonde. I WAS BLONDE. Not patchy blonde, not strips of blonde like past attempts. BLONDE. Long blonde hair. In a mix up, I didn’t have time for the second stage of treatment, to cover it up with a light brown. I had to go in public with blonde hair.
I ventured to my writer’s club. Everywhere I walked, people were looking at me. Was it that bad? I thought so. Every time I caught a glimpse of myself in a store window, I remembered – I was blonde. Suddenly, men were stepped aside for me on the busy lanes was walking along. They were taking second glances at me. That is something I am not used to – at all. I’m a power walker – I live my life and don’t really stop to inspect people around me.
But suddenly, people were looking at me. I stalked back to the hairdressers, pulled my hair down and told her to cut off my hair. Forget the second treatment, cut the whole damn lot. And she did. My newly blonde hair fell to the floor in a golden mess. Then I was left with short blonde hair instead.
I detoured to my local supermarket to grab lunch, on a super busy Saturday afternoon. The place is a crush of people, food and huge trolleys. I detest shopping and even more so on a weekend. But no, wait, I was blonde now – men stopped and allow me past them, doors were held open, things were grabbed from high shelves, I was allowed to cheat and move forward in the checkout queues. It was no coincidence – it was my short blonde hair.
Is this something that happens of all blondes? Or so they notice it? It was the only different – I’m no tiny girl, let’s say my body is built for strength, not modelling. The suburb I live in didn’t magically overnight change to Cloud Cookoo Land where everyone is super polite and chill (wish it would though, that would be epic).
The result? I had the second hair treatment, ending up with the light brown target of the original project. Now my hair is short and brown and I’ve had so many women stop me – the girl with the giant bun of hair now as no hair at all. And no one is staring and I was not given an courtesy at the store this morning. I guess blondes do have more fun – or at least manners. I’m sure there are many downsides to this attitude, too.
Shameless hair photo! (Post exercise – don’t judge the messiness)