The Short Hair Dilemma

So around two years back I got my hair cut, partly because never been a fan of long tresses (So much maintenance!) and partly because I was shedding like crazy due to health issues. So off it went. Which shouldn’t have been a big deal, right? I mean, the shits just hair. It is programmed to grow back. And I found myself cuter than ever before and, well, low maintenance. Should’ve been a win-win! Right? Riiiggghhht??

WRONG! Because I live in a world of retards. The kind which is sort of sexist. In these two years that I had the cut, I encountered a kid coming up to me in a supermarket and going “Boy… Boy… Boy”, and everytime I went, “Nooooooooo… Girl”- this went on for about 10 minutes. He simply refused to believe my side of the story. But that was a kid. Their sense of distinguishing between a girl and a boy comes from picture books which have never altered the “a pink dress clad, long hair tied in a pink bow” imagery for a girl. So, the pesky kid could obviously be excused. But not the next male bimbo to whom I was explaining the concept of Androgyny. He goes,

“So what are you?”
“I just like dressing up androgynously”, I reply.
Unable to comprehend that he states, “But you are like a boy”
“How?” , I Question.
“You have short hair.”


And there is the occassional remark by passerbys – “Girl or Boy?” and the frequent friendly observation, “You are still single because of your hair.”

I mean I had a haircut, people! Which last I checked wasn’t equivalent to growing a penis or taking testosterone shot.

But for every stupid remark I have to endure, going short made me feel more like me – which is a thing, by the way. I feel more comfortable, more in my skin and definitely more confident than ever. I find myself better looking, even a little bit sexy now and then. And I can see my face more clearly and don’t have the option of hiding behind locks of hair which makes me feel free – “It’s just your cheekbones against the world.” (A line I read in an article summarises the whole thing perfectly.) And the hair makes me feel like a badass. Sometimes. And if we look back in the pages of history, a lot of women who had been or are revolutionary, brought about or are bringing change, and were or are basic badasses had kept it short – the flappers, Coco Chanel, Joan of Arc, Maya Angelou, Princess Diana, Indira Gandhi, Hilary Clinton.

And I am not going to take the shit that cutting your hair or having short hair when you are a girl reduces your femininity or sexuality – because,

a. I saw more action having short hair than when I had longer hair.
b. Audrey Hepburn, Jane Seberg, Emma Watson, Victoria Beckham, Michelle Williams, Rihanna, Agyness Deyn, Winona Ryder, Carey Mulligan, Lupita Nyong’o, to name just a few.

Sure it is different when you are not famous, and definitely not doing anything revolutionary, but I am willing to take my chances if something makes me feel like a badass now and then.

Photograph courtesy: Mark Shaw


7 thoughts on “The Short Hair Dilemma

  1. No seriously, jokes aside, its like everyone got their own beef with everything other people do. Once I went like almost bald with a ‘stache & beard. It was summer. My mum saw me in skype & she shrieked “OMG ETA KI KORECHISH!! GoWer Manoj Bajpayee-er moto lagche! BAD” I was like… OKAY GIVE IT A REST MUMMY!
    Once I kept long hair, my professor went bonkers the day she saw me & I had to chop off my locks(expensive.. the amount of shampoo that went in the process 😛 ) eventually. Intolerance everywhere.
    Gradually you tend to grow this bullshit filter that filters all the barmy-stuff that tends to get thrown at you! 🙂


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