Hairdressers: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

Photograph courtesy of Taryn via Flickr (

Why is it so hard to find a hairdresser, when you become a woman of a certain age, who will look at your face before attempting to tame your lustrous locks (or no-longer-lustrous, as the case may be), and who doesn’t charge so much money you practically have to get a part-time job to pay for the service.

Becoming a woman of a certain age creates certain challenges in the hair department that can be alleviated in many respects simply with a good hair cut and/or colour. But the biggest problem is finding a hairdresser who will look at your face, your neck and the shape of your head as well as the condition of your hair, the way it grows, the thickness or thinness and all the other factors …

One of the things I have learned is that if you have acquired a less-than-perfect chin (you may even have a Turkey gobble happening), my advice is to wear your hair almost to your shoulders, cut in around the face and neck to partially mask the neck and draw attention up to your face; you want people to notice your eyes!

Of course, if you have a problem neck you can also wear a scarf, which is not really a solution in summer, or you can have it lifted which is not such a bad idea.

Long hair, way below the shoulders, really doesn’t work after a certain age. It tends to drag the appearance of your face and neck down which, combined with the effects of gravity, doesn’t help create a youthful look. If you can’t bear to part with the length at least have it taken to your shoulders and layered; the layers will lift the appearance of your face and focus attention where it needs to be.

If you are afflicted with thin hair, keep some length and have under-layers cut in; the hair on the top is longer and the shorter hair underneath creates an appearance of fullness.

I’m not a huge fan of the ubiquitous bob which seems to be the only style most hairdressers can devise for women of a certain age. True, it brings the eyes of the observer up to your face but it is particularly unforgiving for those of us fighting gravity (the neck!).

Again, I’m not a huge fan of short hair (the mannish cut) for women of a certain age. It doesn’t really do a lot for any woman unless she still has cheek bones, taut skin and a firm neck! Which is unlikely unless you’ve been ‘under the knife’ or botoxed extensively …

A major problem for many of us is acute frizziness. Never having had it before the question is ‘what to do’? So now is the time to start spending money on really great hair products, especially moisturisers.

If you’ve been going to the same hairdresser for years, still have the same style and colour or have been led down the path of short or bobbed hair, take a long hard look at yourself and ask if your hairdresser is really putting any effort into helping you look your more youthful best, or is she/he just taking your money? If your not happy, perhaps a change may be in order?

If you don’t have a regular hairdresser or are looking for a change, go and interview them. Have a picture in your mind of what you want and see what they suggest. You’re paying them money and you want to get the best job you can; in effect, you’re interviewing them for the job. If you’re not sure of what you want, use a virtual hairdresser on line or even try on wigs; it’s up to the hairdresser to provide you with alternatives that will work for you.

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[Top Photo: Courtesy of Taryn]



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