Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Nature or nurture? As if it's a choice.

"Straight," I announced this morning, "I have learned that straight is not a choice."

Which led Nick to ask if I'd experimented in college. To which I can only say that much like my wishing that I'd slept with more people in my 20s, I sure should have.

But really, the issue at hand is wedding hair. And yesterday's experimentation.
I'm not exactly sure what I think. I quite like the back - I think it's cool. And I like that it's retro.
But the front, I don't like very much. Although I think it's because she really struggled with it, and just had to use so much product. So much that it lost all it's shine. And got kind of, well, crunchy.
It turns out my very straight hair does not want to curl. She sprayed it, she curled it with a curling iron and pinned it into curls, then sprayed them again, then put me under the dryer. And when she pulled the pins out? Stick straight.

And so she curled it with a curling iron. And put more stuff on it. And still the front did not want to cooperate. She's going to try something else later this week.

Back at the office, Tej, and Jenny, and a few other people weighed in. They mostly liked it, except for the front.

Nick, when I saw him in the evening, very diplomatically said it's the least favorite hairstyle he's ever seen on me. What his face said was: I hate it.

Nick likes my hair straight, and my hair likes to be straight, and I am wondering if fighting nature is just an exercise in futility?

Maybe I should just keep it straight and pulled back? Maybe have the front straight and some curls in the back? Or flowers in the back, but really just pulled into a very low, tight ponytail?

I'm in a quandary. A need-to-be-decided-quickly quandary.


  1. I kind of love it. Passionately. But Nick (and you) needs to be the one impassioned... I think your instinct to do what your hair loves to do is right. You want to look like you, after all, just extra beautiful and glow-y.

  2. The back is awesome, but if she was trying to go for finger waves in the front, she's not using the right product and she shouldn't be using a curling iron. You need to tell her to use a setting gel and a wave iron for finger waves, and then finish with something aerosol, like aqua-net (don't hate! I'm from Texas, and you don't want to give in to humidity if you're in the Chesapeake region).

  3. i love that first picture but i see what you're saying about the front. though i don't think it looks bad, maybe just boring?
    i have no suggestions for what to do but i have very straight super fine hair and i can tell you that through much experimentation the more product you use the less likely it is to look good. for me anything i do requires simply mousse and a finishing hairspray spritz. anything more than that will make it heavy and fall out of whaveter shape is trying to be made.
    i love the old-world feel to it though. you could always distract from the boring in the front with fantastic makeup and jewelry to really make your face pop (not pop like explode, but focus : )

  4. I think it looks great, but I'm not the one who matters.

    My hair can be curl-averse. It has some curl on it's own, but try to coax it into anything more organized and poof- rebellion.

    What about the ponytail and flowers, but some curly tendrils hanging out in front to frame your face? Surely there's a product out there that can keep your two or three curly pieces in line for a few hours?

  5. I don't love it. I think the curls in the back are cool, but it looks laden down with product. I see you in more of a glossy, 60s-style sweep in the front, and I love the ideas of flowers in the back.

    Just my two cents.

  6. I liked it... but, if your hair is naturally straight, it might make sense to just work with that.

  7. straight is probably the answer, unless you want to get an 80s style spiral perm, but then you would have curly-curly-curly for months to come.

  8. also - forgot to mention how proud i am that you're trying to figure this out before the morning of your wedding, which was they way i did it. not very relaxing.

  9. Cute- but I bet there are styles that would be 10x cuter. Of course that means you have to start looking through tons of pictures AGAIN.
    BUT- you are one of those lucky people who don't need allot of "hair volume" around your face to look special. And with a formal dress, simple hair looks really good.

  10. I'm with Nick, I definitely don't love it. You're kinda cute, but you don't look at all like you. You can easily have it sraight in the front and still have those pin curls in the back. Flowers too. A smooth, elegant sweep to the side with pin curls and flowers low in the back. I'll be happy to experiment with you when i get there.

  11. LivitLuvit - Ah, thank you! That's the most positive comment I've gotten on it! And yes, I want to look like me, just better!

    Jo - She really was struggling with how to do finger waves. I think you are exactly right, and she just wasn't sure how to approach it. As for the Aqua-net - if you're a Texan, I totally believe you!

    notsojenny - Yah, maybe boring. And doesn't flatter my face so much. You are exactly right - more product makes things much worse for fine hair.

    verybadcat - Thank you! Yes, maybe ponytail and flowers with tendrils. Probably do need some little bit of hair around my face? I dunno.

    Wendy - I hate that it looks all product-y. Glossy, at least in front, is exactly what I would like.

    VVK - Thanks. Yah, this might be the answer, at least in front.

    LJ - Eeeeee! No, no 80s spiral perm! No! Also, I would be losing my shit the morning of my wedding. The opposite of relaxing. Good for you for getting through it!

    Mary - Yes, I think you are right, but slogging through a whole bunch of styles just makes me cringe. I think it's true that since the dress is formal, I can go simple. Which I'm much better at.

    Maudie! - No, doesn't so much look like me. I love how that sounds. And I would LOVE your help. I can't wait to see you!!!!!!

  12. I kind of love it, too.

    This is actually what I had imagined your doing - something retro, with some sort of pincurls. If they can get it to stay glossy and wavy, it will be lovely.

  13. I believe I said something to this effect in the original post about wedding hair. Not to be all nanni-nani I told you so about it, but I think you should go with straight hair. It's more you. :)

  14. i vote fro straight in front and curls in the back. don't fight the straightness :-)

  15. and that should obviously say "vote for" because i don't think a fro would look good with a veil ;-)

  16. Yes, the front still needs work.

    Next time, make sure you take your veil with you and have her work with it. My Maid-of-Honor's aunt was a hair stylist and did my hair, and she refused to even try a test hairstyle without the veil. (I have long, straight hair that I always wear down . . . so she pulled the front straight back -- leaving a few curled tendrils -- into a bun behind the veil, and managed to get curls cascading down the back.)

    You want the whole package to look good together. Otherwise, you get "my, what a lovely hairstyle with a veil on top of it."

  17. You look so pretty. I love that style, but I'm hardly objective? (what am I doing - channeling Betty?) You are going to be such a beautiful bride.

    I'm so glad I don't have to make the decisions!

  18. FreckledK - Yah, retro, glossy and wavy all sound lovely to me! Glossy most of all!

    Slightly Disorganized - Yah, true, very true! Much more me. I am ok with "I told you so"s.

    MrsMac - Hahaha - I couldn't get my hair to get into a fro with a million products!

    Mommy Writes - Absolutely right on the front, and I think that is really good advice, but I am not exactly sure yet if I'm going to have a veil...I bought veil stuff but we haven't made it yet. And it will just be on a comb if I do have one, plus I have such fine hair that nothing is going to really sit on top. But I should definitely sort that out asap...

    DCup - Oh, huge hugs to you! I hope so!

  19. I think maybe its the part of the hair issue. Maybe if you can get a more side swept STRAIGHT part, and keep the curl in the back, it will be more flattering and "you" in the front.

    I am also more for a back or front pouf with an updo. It just naturally more expressive and shows off your great features and cheekbones and doesn't become this whole huge "hair do".

    Like a very chic classic french twist with either the front section up and smoothed back and with a little lift in front or a deep side part of some bang and a fuller twist.

    Or if you like the lower look (which I do as well sometimes)--just go with straight, do the exact same thing but no waves and make it a low bun at the nape of your neck with a sweet white orchid or something to dress it up.

  20. Oh and with the low bun and chic flower...definately keep it in a deep side part--while normally I love a middle part--with updos, the side is much more formal and universally flattering.

    Good luck, you will look great!

  21. I got married last month. I did a side part, low-bun with volume at the crown and flowers pinned to the bun part. Easy, no fuss, and once my hairdresser sprayed it with roughly 4 bottles of hairspray, it didn't move all night. The last thing you want on your wedding say is to have uncomfortable or fussy hair.
    That being said, I love the back of your hairdo. The front? Kind of meh.

  22. so not helpful to say I love, love, love it, right? ;-) you look fabu. But if it takes that kind of engineering to make the waves happen, I doubt it will be a relaxing process on wedding day! and you'll look stunning with it any way you like it!

  23. The back IS cool and sweetly retro, but the front, meh, doesn't do much for me. Maybe try a simple straight side-sweep, glossy but not crunchy. And your brows look fabulous!

  24. Love it! The curls in the back earned an "Ohhhhh" then an "Awwww". Straight in the front would be pretty too!

    I'm really going to miss wedding posts. Am excited about newlywedhood for you and Nick.

  25. The curls are cute, but I think the front could use some work. What about straight, pulled back into a low ponytail to keep it out of your face, and then with a wreath of flowers on top? To make it not just another ponytail, and decorate the front, but not make it look too product-y?

  26. Why is she using a curling iron at all on what will be wedding hair? Why isn't she using rollers? I'd try another stylist if the second test doesn't work. A stylist should be able to work with your hair and your facial features.

  27. Maybe you could walk backwards down the isle?


    Okay, then I'd say try something straight and see how that works with the make up etc. and decide!

  28. I think the idea of pin-curls is a good one - and I do think if she can achieve such a look without it looking (and feeling) so product-heavy - that it would look great on you.

    Otherwise, stay straight and maybe accessorize with bejewled clips.

  29. it's cute but if your hair is that curl averse, then the curls are going to fall out. my hair hates curls. i used to try to sleep overnight in hot curlers. it'd look great for 40 minutes and then my hair would be straight again. if you both like your hair straight, then keep it straight. a low chignon parted on the side would look nice on you. good luck and keep us updated!

  30. I had my stick straight hair pulled back in the front with curls in the back. It looked great, but took about 4 washings to get all the product out.(And don't even get me started about the bobby pins!) Good luck and happy wedding!

  31. KassyK - You are so lovely and soooo far beyond me with all of these possibilities! I looked up a how to on the French twist! I wonder if I have enough hair...I was thinking small flowers, but I aboslutely love your suggestion of an orchid or something more dramatic!

    Hilary - I checked out your pics nd you look beautiful. I like how she did it. And I do just want it out of my way and not to think about it at all.

    Jen - Very true, and I don't want a lot of day-of engineering. You will be in the throes of hair makeup blah blah blah with me as soon as you arrive - you know that, right?

    J - Yes, definitely meh. And thanks on the brows! I was just told I need to clean them up...

    HKW - You are so sweet! And here I am trying to keep them to a minimum and not make people sick of this wedding before it happens.

    Sarah - Wreath of flowers is too much going on for me, but I wouldn't be unhappy leaving the front simple. Would definitely like to not look all product-y.

    Anonymous - Um, I dunno. I never, ever do anything to my hair, so I didn't know that wasn't the right approach...but it definitely wasn't.

    Nicole - Hahaha - if only I had the dexterity, that could be a good option. :)

    BrownEyedGirlie - I don't think any of this can be acheived without an insane amount of product, alas...Am on the lookout for sparkly clips! :)

    H - Wellll, you make a very good point about the falling out after a number of hours. Hmm. My big problem, as I understand it, with all the pulling back styles is that my hair is so short.

    Cheryl - I couldn't believe how many bobby pins I pulled out of the back the other night! I think this might be my best option.

  32. I think your hair looks cute! (And are adorable!) But maybe the photo doesn't do justice to the true crunchiness of the front... :)

  33. First, that's a supercute purse.

    Second, I like the back.

    Third, if the front isn't working, why not keep the part & everything and just sweep the straight hair off to the side the same way you would if it were curled, but more relaxed? Or with some pretty pearl or rhinestone bobby pins? Is it the front he hates or the back?...

    Bottom line is that you ought to do something that you won't feel like you have to fuss over all night, & unfortunately that sounds like it's not the curls.

  34. As someone with stick straight hair I say, don't fight it. Go with straight...a low, tight ponytail would be great. If you try to go wavy, you will be fighting your hair all day. Relax, go with what works, and you will enjoy your day more. You will look sparkling and radiant!


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