Blown Away: Hair Magic

Photo by  davide ragusa

Photo by davide ragusa

When I was in junior high back in the 80s, I dreamed of having light brown hair with bouncy spiral curls. I thought my long, straight, almost-black hair was just about as boring as it got. So, it was a monumental moment in my teeny-bopper life when my mom agreed to let me get a spiral perm a few weeks before the first day of eighth grade. 

About a week or two before Perm Day, I was rooting around in a bathroom cabinet when I stumbled upon a bottle of Sun In. Jackpot! I immediately doused my hair in it and went outside to let the sunbeams do their work. Excitedly, I scampered back inside to check out my newly-sun-streaked hair. Nothing. Hmmmm. The next day, I repeated the process. Again, nothing. I continued this pattern for the next few days until finally, one day, something happened: my hair turned red. Well, more accurately, it turned orange. I hadn't bothered to look at the bottle and note that the Sun In was for blondes. Not dark brunettes. Oops.

But that was okay, because I was still getting my perm, which I was sure would make me look just like the Noxzema Girl. Nothing could have made me happier than I was in those three hours, while I inhaled chemicals, waiting in anticipation for my new perfectly-formed spiral curls to be unveiled. When my hairdresser finished it was ... underwhelming. Within a few days, my hair was bone straight again. So back to the hairdresser I went, and she permed it again. This time, it took. But the curls were really tight, and my formerly long hair bobbed up above my shoulders. Not to mention the fact that, if you recall, my hair was also an odd orange hue, thanks to the Sun In. In short, the effect was less Noxzema Girl, more Little Orphan Annie.

And that pretty much sums up my relationship with my hair. Only, over time, it's gone from being bone straight to frizzy and wavy--only one side of my head is much wavier than the other, creating a very, um, interesting effect.

The truth is, I just sort of gave up on my hair long ago because, while I do have some skills in life, hair is not one of them. Even on the rare occasion when I take the time to blow dry or straighten it, my hair generally ends up frizzed out again before I leave the house. So most of the time, I just save myself the effort and throw it up in a knot or let it air dry and see what I end up with. Like Russian Roulette. Except with hair. To be honest, at this point my hair isn't something I even think about very much, but every now and then I see someone with a great head of hair and think how nice it would be to feel more polished.

Then, the other day, I was listening to the Forever 35 podcast. (Have you heard it yet? If not, it's awesome.) One of the co-hosts was talking about this new miracle round-brush/hairdryer she bought, and how it was life changing. The Revlon Salon One-Step Hair Dryer, to be specific. She described her hair skillz (or lack thereof) and it reminded me a lot of myself. 

Intrigued, I went to Amazon and checked this apparently magical hair dryer out. Four and a half stars and more than 1,200 reviews. At $60, it was definitely more than double the price I've ever paid for a hair dryer, but I was so impressed by all of the before and after pictures in the reviews that I decided to go for it.

I gotta tell you, the podcast host wasn't lying. It is life. changing. In three to five minutes, my hair is sleeker than it's ever been before. And, I have to admit, I do feel more polished, kind of like I thought I would. 

Sometimes it's the little things in life.

Before + Five Minutes Later

Before + Five Minutes Later