Or, The Great Heat Wave of 2009

Oh my hair, my hair. My hair and I have been through many adventures together. My hair has a mind of it’s own, for real. My hair basically does what it pleases whether it makes sense or not. How many people do you know who have had both naturally straight and naturally curly hair at different points in their life? Without a perm? Well you now know at least one. *points to self* There have been many, many hair debacles over the years. I will ease you in with the most recent one.

If you haven’t checked out the post from when I went to Australia you definitely should. It was an amazing adventure and very nearly a perfect trip. I didn’t mention the one imperfection in that post because it wasn’t really the point. However if you know me really well you might have been able to guess. Here, I’ll give you a hint:

This is Joel and I walking the red carpet into the opera house. Amazing moment. Ignore the large man in the background. Notice something different about my hair?

If you said half of it is pulled back then ding ding you guessed correctly. While this is a perfectly fine hairstyle it’s not one I would normally wear. It’s also not how I planned to wear my hair that evening.

I’m a little bit, um, clueless when it comes to hair. I basically have two hairstyles: up and down. For work I’ll throw in a bun every now and then, ya know, if I’m feeling crazy. Other than that I have zero ability to do any fancy up-dos or anything. Since it was a big fancy occasion and a pony tail was out I decided to straighten my hair and wear it down. I know, incredibly posh. My hair generally looks pretty good down and let’s be honest, most of the paparazzi wasn’t there to take pictures of me (shocker I know). I consider myself a fairly seasoned world traveler so, even though I had a straightener from the States, I had my fancy outlet adapter so thought I was set. Plus, Plus, I had been straightening my hair with that exact straightener all the other days I was there. I had no reason to think anything would be different that evening.

You can probably guess where this is going. As I was straightening my hair I noticed what I thought was the effect of not quite drying my hair all the way. You know how when your hair is damp it steams a little when you apply a heating element? That’s what I thought was happening. I also thought it was a little strange because I didn’t think my hair was still wet but in my excitement for the event I didn’t stop to analyze things. At almost the end of the process I realized I smelled something funny. At the same moment I watched in horror as the bits of my hair that just had the straightener on them fell on the bathroom counter. O.M.G. I frantically ran my fingers through my hair and more bits fell.

And then I died.

Ok, I didn’t actually die but I really thought I was going to. I was on my way to walk the red carpet of a major motion picture world premiere. There were going to be movie stars and models there. People were going to want to take my picture (What?! A girl can dream, can’t she?) and I had just fried my hair! There was no time to for any real help. I had a mini meltdown and resigned myself to doing what I could with what I had. The half up-do was the result. Like I said, I’m pretty clueless.

When I came home and assessed the damage it was pretty bad. I had seriously fried my hair basically from root to tip. Some parts were worse than others. The underside of my hair was the least damaged while the top layer of hair and bits by my face were by far the worst. Just my luck of course since that’s the part that shows the most. I went to get it cut and there wasn’t much they could do other than shave it all off and that was not something I was willing to do. They cut as much off as I would let them and from there it’s just been a waiting game. I always thought my hair grew relatively fast but since this whole fiasco I’ve changed my mind. My hair is the slowest growing thing in the world.

Today I went to the Aveda Institute to get my hair cut today. Side not: I love that place. They give great hair cuts, use high quality natural products and they’re super inexpensive. Also, I’ve not been paid to say that. Anyway, since I’m getting to the end of the severe damage (thank goodness!), my student’s instructor suggested some sort of botanical deep conditioning treatment. It involved me sitting under the dryer with a super sexy towel thing on my head for 15 minutes.

Sorry boys, I’m taken.

In the end it made my hair much softer and actually seemed to repair some of the damage. I wish I had a before picture but I don’t so you’re just going to have to take my word for it with the after picture.

I’m not sure how well you can tell because it’s kind of small but I can see that the ends are damaged a little still. The rest of my hair looks super shiny and awesome though so I’m happy. I hope the treatment lasts until I can get back in for another trim.

I only have a couple inches to go before I’m back to having healthy hair. Of course I fully expect my dear hair to pull a fast one on me and add another chapter to my saga before too long. In the mean time though try to learn from my mistake. Do not use your own heating devices in a foreign country. If you have something fancy to go to buy one there or, better yet, have a professional do the job. I still have about three inches worth of reasons why it’s totally worth every penny.