Why did I wait this long to have a hair makeover?

“I think that the most important thing a woman can have- next to talent, of course- is her hairdresser.”
― Joan Crawford

Midlife bestows one with Project Fear, to steal a useless phrase from politics. Project Fear in midlife is also closely linked to the Fear of Missing Out (FOMO). It manifests itself through being, both, fearful about the consequences of doing something new and, also, the fear of missing out on a new and possibly delightful experience.

Along with many women a lot of my self-esteem comes from having my hair done in a certain way – 80s big hair with bounce. I have not trusted any hairdresser to cut my hair in any other way apart from how I want it. A bit pathetic considering that I am in my 50s.

Gustav Fouche was recommended to me as a rare gem of a hairstylist by a good female friend. I took her on trust but still had my fingers crossed as I sauntered up to Gustav’s salon.

There was something quite liberating about doing something new though. I had recently taken to wearing a wig for a new look rather than actually giving my own hair a new look. Covering up my multitude of frizzy hair strands was an act of cowardliness. One of my favourite self-help books is, ‘Feel the Fear’ and it never fails to astound me just how much my life is ruled by fear.

The salon is an Oasis in Central London, calm and Zen like. Gustav listened to my needs and didn’t laugh at my throwback request for ‘big hair’. It didn’t surprise me. The salon is a visual homage to the female form. I felt a loosening of my hair inhibitions and micro control.

I was given a dry cut first before having my hair washed. As someone who has only had the reverse done this seemed like an innovation of sorts. Watching a new shape emerge from my head of frizzy and out of control hair made me question whether one could be a feminist AND have this much concern invested in one’s hair?

I decided that ‘hair neutrality’ wasn’t for me. If my hair doesn’t look good I feel bleh. I am a feminist who needs to have good hair to feel like I am sparking off. All those feminists who laughed at me for not wanting to make porn, I bet, worry about their hair too. At some stage our stereotypical female concerns and feminism collides.

While most hairdressers seem to think that there is only one way to hair heaven- straight hair – Gustav was happy to indulge my waviness. The end result was just what I wanted. Actually, I lie, it was beyond my expectations which is why I am happy to showcase Gustav Louche on my blog.

Gustav is a girl’s dream. He listened to me ranting about things I can’t stand and then indulged me by talking about politics. Plus I was given a fabulous hair makeover in my midlife which I hadn’t anticipated. What more can a middle aged girl ask for?


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