Catherine Kean

Hair.  It’s something we’re born with.  We have no choice in the color (blonde or black), texture (coarse or silky), or thickness (thick or fine).  That’s all determined by DNA.

The good thing, though, is that if we hate our hair, we can change it.  Hooray for perms and hair dye!

My hair is extremely fine, slightly wavy, and a medium brown color.  When I was a child, my hair was super straight and a lighter shade of brown than it is now.  I look back at pictures of me and marvel at the sheen of my locks which didn’t see anything more than shampoo and conditioner until my early teens.  I did have the occasional braid, though, which I loved, especially once I’d unfastened the plait and my hair flowed loose and wavy.

Once I hit my early teenage years, I wanted a change.  My hair was too straight and had no volume.  I applied gel and mousse and turned the ends under with a curling iron.  However, the curl didn’t last long in my silky hair.

All of the girls at school were getting perms, and, as the brainy introvert who desperately longed to fit in, I wanted one, too.  I remember my first perm—a home permanent I’d bought at the drugstore which was done by a woman recommended to me by a friend.  I hated the smell.  I cringed at the way the solution burned my sensitive scalp.  But I wanted a perm, and I was going to endure.

Of course, the perm turned out very tight, puffy, and frizzy, and I didn’t really like it until about six weeks later, but it did make doing my hair in the morning easier.  The curl in my hair stayed in longer, and I liked that.

I continued getting perms, most of them at salons.  I graduated to spiral perms in my late 20’s, until a hairdresser convinced me to try highlights.  Oh, what wickedness.  Highlights gave my hair a lovely “been out in the sun” golden hue and added fullness to my locks.  I was hooked, especially after having my daughter.  My hair changed through my pregnancy—it acquired a loose wave, which my hairdresser said was due to hormonal changes—and with a bit of mousse, gave me the curls I’d always wanted from perms.

My hair is still boring brown, and now, I’m finding wiry strands of gray (eek!).  That’s okay, though.  I don’t have to live with the gray.  I have a great hairdresser who does wonderful highlights.  She also has a knack for color.  My teenage daughter, also gifted with blah brown hair and also going through that longing for change I remember from years ago, is now a redhead with a cute pixie cut.  She loves all the compliments she’s been getting.  Oh, the fun of hair!

What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done to your hair?  Please share! 🙂

One guest who comments will win a digital copy of either my sexy medieval novella Bound by His Kiss or my award-winning medieval romance Dance of Desire!   Winner gets to pick which one. 🙂


17 thoughts on “Hair (Nope, Not the Musical)

  1. Its funny, Catherine that you always wanted curly hair because I always wanted straight hair. I also wanted it to be blonde so I’d look like the popular girls at school. It wasn’t until I was about 25 that I said enough of that and embraced my thick curly hair. I’ve been much happier since I did that!

  2. Sandi in OH says:

    I was born blonde with natural curly hair. I had the curls until my grandfather thought my hair was too long and he took me to a barber shop. Good bye long hair and curls. The curls never returned. My hair was so fine that it wouldn’t hold the curl from permanent, either home or salon. The blonde changed to an auburn which I disliked. My g-aunt dyed her hair constantly. Back in those days hair dye was harsh on the hair and pretty much turned it to unmanageable stray. To this day I won’t dye my hair. I thought my hair was turning lighter…it is turning a pretty shade of white.

  3. Emily McKay says:

    I have super fine hair too. My hair pretty much laughs every time I get out the curling iron. “Nice try, ya fool! You can’t change us.” For a while I had really long hair. Like, long enough I could sit on it. but then I cut it off and donated it. That’s probably the craziest thing I’ve done with mine.

  4. Shana Galen Shana Galen says:

    I have wavy hair and I want fine, straight hair. Guess you can’t win. But Emily, your hair looks so easy to manage! The craziest thing I ever did was to put that Sun-in stuff in it when I was in high school. It turned a lovely orange.

  5. CateS says:

    Well, another victim of older sister with SunInn.. I have the baby fine light brown hair.. I was maybe 14 when we were getting a group shot of daughters for parents 25th Anniversery… left it on a minimum of time… I became BLOND….VERY BLOND.. with black eyebrows [both Mom & Dad had them as did sisters…]…Someone asked if I dyed my eyebrows.. ??? Hello…. it was the 60’s in small town America…

  6. Rebekah E. says:

    I have dark brown hair and dedided that I wanted to be a blonde like my mom and sister. It was not a smart idea. I ended up having orange hair for a little while. I think that is what started me on funky colors and after that I tended to have purple hair. I still love purple hair to this day.

  7. Kathleen O says:

    I have very fine hair. When I was young I could have been Shirly Temple’s twin sister.. But alas my mother got frustrated one day and when I was about 7, she told the hairdresser to cut it short.. I looked like Peter Pan when I was finished.. When my dad came home from work and saw my hair he was livid with my mom. She told him, well you try to do her hair in righlets everyday… Dad shut up then..
    My hair has never been thick, and I keep it short so as to keep that natural curl, whats left of it, neat and tidy.. I am not good at doing my own hair, God did not give me that as one of my talents in life. But THANK God for Hairdressers, which I might add I am off to today to have it cut…

  8. I’ve done that perm, Catherine…you are not alone! Haven’t done anything crazy, but my daughter is shaving her head in a couple of weeks. It’s a cancer research fundraiser (St. Baldrick’s. So it’s not really crazy as much as wonderful…and I’m sure she’ll look very cute bald!

  9. My hair is soooo very fine but I have lots of it (according to several stylists!). It hangs straight down and no amount of blow-drying or curling-ironing will do anything to it. Even the weather doesn’t affect it which is good.

    The craziest thing I’ve done was get those old, really-tight, really-curly bubble perms — makes your head look like a mass of bubbles! Probably like the one you got, Catherine!

    Now, I’m just trying to keep ahead of the gray-and-kinky invasion (which is not a wild sexual practice, no matter how it sounds!)…. Sheesh!


  10. Tori Elmgren says:

    Other than the fact that I wish it were a tad less fine, and had less of a tendency to go frizzy, I generally like my hair and consider it one of my better features. It’s thick, and wavy and so dark brown, that a lot of people will argue with me that it’s black.
    But, like a lot of you guys, when I was a teenager in the 80’s one summer my best friend and I also did the Sun-In thing. Every morning, we’d put on our bikini’s, Sun-In and Coppertone and sit out in the sun for hours. We loved the way we looked that entire summer, and for the first month after school started that fall too… but once we stopped spending all day outside. Orange city! Sun-In and Dark brown hair are not like peas and carrots. Especially when the current hair trend is teased and permed. Yikes!

  11. catslady says:

    I too wanted what I didn’t have. I wanted straight hair lol. There was one girl that had a cut I loved but no way would my hair do it. I have thick hair with some wave and some frizz. I did like my color which was a very dark brown. I got perms to (I think it was just the thing to do back then). I learned that the longer the hair the less wave so I spent hours in those huge curlers and under a dryer for forever. Eventually I got this really cool white stripe that people use to ask how I did it. Now I’m totally grey. Only once did I try coloriing it and the color was so dark it looked horrible and within two weeks I had horrible roots showing. So now I go short and have a do that takes no care lol.

  12. chey says:

    I had perms and highlights for years. Eventually my hair was in such bad shape I had to get it cut really short.

  13. StacieD says:

    The craziest thing I ever did was dye my hair twice in one week. Really bad idea. It all broke off. I was in high school at the time. I went from having waist-length hair to almost a shag. I don’t know what I was thinking. LOL

  14. bn100 says:

    Get it cut by a hairstylist with not a lot of experience- it turned out really poorly

  15. LSUReader says:

    I haven’t really done anything weird to my hair, other than get a perm years and years ago. I’m just not a hair person.

  16. Yet Peng says:

    For my pre-U orientation camp, we had to dunk our heads into pails of water, shampoo them, and make this crazy puffy, stacked-up hairdo. Haha, even the guys! It was really funky, but my Korean friend managed to do this really elegant twist to it which was way cool. 🙂

  17. Na S. says:

    The craziest thing I ever did to my hair was chop it, mushroom-style. Everyone thought it was cute but really it wasn’t. I have thick, wavy hair and like it long because I can tie it up 🙂 The good thing was that haircut happened in my younger days.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Keep in contact through the following social networks or via RSS feed:

  • Follow on Facebook
  • Follow on Twitter
  • Subscribe