Ed. Note: Welcome to Hair Week on the Tiki Tiki! We’re talking all sorts of hair issues — cutting it off, straightening it, loving it, being frustated by it…Let’s pretend we’re in a salon and chat….
Me? I could not be happier sans the 8 or 9 inches I cut off my head in July, the minute I got home from my 25th high school reunion. (I admit to vanity here…)
This makes the fourth time in 20 years that I went from very long to very short hair. (The third time during my marriage.)
Sometimes, I just feel the need to shed, to restart. The flooding in Nashville this past May has something to do with this current cropping. The desire to get rid of stuff began then. I saw so much stuff thrown about on the streets, in lawns, on the river bank, that it forced me to take a good look at the things I can live without. Hair, being one of those things. Plus, my exercise is done mostly in a pool and having short hair is so much easier for that.
Anyway, the whole point of this post really is to talk about the idea that, as a Latina, I am swimming against the tide with this particular pixie style.
If you look at the images in popular culture, or if you look at your own Latin friends and family, what kind of hair do most of them have? Long. Si!
Every time I have cut my hair off, I have had to shake off some voice inside my head that tells me I am ignoring a cultural mandate to have long hair. Pelo Largo!
When I was about 8, I got my first short haircut. I was not happy about it then and that unhappiness was further fueled by an espiritista friend of my mom’s who said that “Las hija de la Caridad” should not have short hair. To translate, la Caridad is Cuba’s patron saint, the coquetish mother of the rivers, influencer of love and riches, for whom I was named. (This may be why I have never won the lotto…I keep cutting off my hair.)
So, let’s talk about this. Do you have short hair? Would you have short hair? Do you think I am crazy to think Latinas don’t cut their hair because then well, they wouldn’t look as Latina? Or because their machos threaten divorce?
Or, s it an every-woman thing, and not specific to our culture? (Probably…)
If you google anything that has to do with Latinas, the images you get are of long-haired — and often half-naked — beauties. Case in point:
So maybe I am not so crazy in my theory?
I don’t look like any of the above now…but then again, I never really did. And, I’m still me. An American Latina a mi estilo y sabor.
Coming up tomorrow: Marta, she of the curly hair, gets a Brazilian Blowout and films it. Oh yes.