THE FALL OUT

large (1)I’ve got a lot of hair.

It’s what people comment on the most about me. (Aside from my ability to eat more than most giants, of course).

It can never make its mind up whether it’s red or brown and is unsure if it wants to be curly or straight. But one thing it is sure of, is that it is falling out.

Yep, that’s right. I have alopecia. You wouldn’t think it though.

Luckily for me, I have an abundance of the stuff sprouting from my scalp so it’s really tricky to notice, but if you ask me nicely, I’ll show you that my hair is, in fact, evacuating my head piece. One bald patch at a time.

We had a falling out you see, me and my hair. It didn’t like how stressed out I was this time last year so, much like a stroppy teenager, it decided to kickback and run away from home. I think it was nature’s way of telling me to slow the f*** down and chill for five minutes, I just wish it had been a little more subtle about it.

Alopecia is one of those things, you see, that we don’t know much about. Great for specialists when I walk into their office, as they get to experiment with its hapless behaviour first hand; not so great for me as it’s far from easily treated and the life expectancy of my beloved follicles remains uncertain. The truth is, I may lose all of my hair, or best case scenario, I might not. That’s the thing with alopecia: it’s fairly untreatable and pretty goddam unpredictable.

Despite this, I remain defiant. My hair is my thing. We all have that one feature that we hide behind; be it a full face of make up, or a fantastic pair of knockers, and mine is my lid. I lose that and, much like old Samson, I lose everything. So topical steroids are my new best friend, head bands are my safety net and hairdressers are now my enemy. I’ve tried caffeine shampoos, Vitamins Q, R and S and have even considered implants. Thankfully, my hard work is paying off.

You probably think I sound surprisingly okay about the whole thing considering the fact that I might end up bald. For the record: I’m not. But at the moment it’s under control and I’m bald patch free, which is all I can ask for at this point in time- until life gets a little too stressful again and my body decides to tell me so.

The way I stay positive about having this condition is by remaining grateful that I’m losing my hair simply because I’m stressed out and not because I’m being treated for something more serious.

Look after yourself and listen to your body when it’s speaking to you. It actually has quite a lot to say.

The Follicle

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From hair loss and hair cuts, to the fuzz between your legs and the strands sprouting from your bonce: we’re hair obsessed.

I have always been partial to the longer haired gentleman, and I think if more women were honest with themselves, they are too. It’s something to do with our sexual appetites harking back to the Stone Age- forget pecks, biceps or even triceps, give me a head of hair and I’m putty in your hands. Teamed with a beard? You don’t even have to know my name. Blame science, I do.

It therefore pleases me that one of the most iconic styles of the last year or so, and one of the trends sure to define our lost little generation is the ‘mun’ or man bun. This, to me, reigns supreme in follicle fashion; so much so that I think it should be mandatory for men to don one for at least a month of their lives. Why should top knots be restricted to women only? I’m all for equal rights and if we can do it guys, then so can you.

For women, it’s fringes that are coming to the fore. Put off for a while when a guy mate of mine at uni told me that he could never understand why women had them:

“Why ruin a pretty face?” he asked.

I didn’t (and still don’t) even know where to begin.

I’ve always loved having one. They frame my face more than Kim’s contouring ever could and they add that certain something to an outfit that a hand bag just can’t. But as with most great fashion or beauty fixtures, they come with their perils and fringed females must always think ahead: staying over at people’s houses requires either a full bag of bobby pins to curb the curl; hats are pretty much a no-go if you’re headed anywhere you’ll need to impress, and rain… well, just stay inside. Deschanel and Byrne make it look so easy but I can pretty much guarantee that they have a team of twenty to make those facial curtains look so seamless.

And what do we hide under our bangs? More hair, of course. I’ve always had fuller, very dark brows – unlucky me until Delevigne hit the big time- and I now walk around like a boss, only tweezing when things get really bad, or my fringe grows out. But I don’t believe they’ve ever received so much attention; from drawing them on to waxing them off, we’re really quite distracted by those little sweat guards. But as one who is quite clearly pro-hair, I must stress something I feel quite strongly about: the fact that they are called browS. It’s for a very good reason. We should all, no matter what gender or how painful the upkeep, have two. The forehead is no place for a caterpillar- except for Frieda Kahlo’s of course; hers seems like the perfect habitat.

So, in a world obsessed with beauty, let’s come together to celebrate being low-maintenance and hairy; something we rarely (except for Cameron Diaz and Julia Roberts) do. And lads, if Leonardo DiCaprio is doing something, then don’t ask questions and just follow suit- the mun is paramount. 

Oh, and FYI, Primark do hair ties for a pound. Thank me later boys.

 

The Beard

970941-beardsAs a small child with a fair-haired father, I would bawl and back away from any dark haired men with a bit of facial fuzz who came anywhere near my pram.

Oh the irony.

Although beards are quite clearly having a moment, I have been enjoying their existence ever since I first watched Teen Wolf.

Some girls wince at the thought of stray hairs getting stuck in their teeth and their toes curl at the prospect of food getting caught in their man’s moustache. I beg the question: “What is so wrong with saving a few crumbs for Ron?” Hamsters store them in their cheeks, hipsters store them on their chins. If nothing else, beards are efficient.

On an arguably shallower note, they’re hot. Most men, as I think even they will agree, look like unborn foetuses when they are clean shaven. The common excuse I hear about having to grin and bare it is that their bosses won’t have it. Tell them to do one. It’s the 21st century; if we are in charge of our ovaries, you should be in charge of your chins. Fact.

A definitive downer to the beard however is that they are deceptive as hell. Boys, you know when you see a hot girl in the summer wearing oversized sunnies and think “phwoooooar!”, only for her to take them off and be utterly disappointed? Yeah that. Beards are like a blanket for the face. Ladies, prepare to be fooled. Beards have the ability to make even the Barlows of the world look attractive, as we have recently noted. Cue One Direction.

My boyfriend has a beard so big he practically looks like the missing link. In fact, one of his pals even questioned him as to what it was like before electricity was invented. Drunk women also have the desire to touch his face a lot. Young children point and stare.

But despite all of the hecklers and over friendly females, there is a plus side. If he even thinks about moaning about my prickly pins, all I have to do is point at his face and laugh.

I am aware that it is a matter of taste and, as Gosling has demonstrated, there is still time in this world for a lack of facial follicle. But think low maintenance lads and let that beard run free. It’s what God would’ve wanted.