Friday, September 20, 2013


Seems like old news, but I cut my hair this summer. Seems like we all cut our hair this summer. Something in the air?! If you followed me on vine (remember vine? do you still vine?)  six months ago I posted this silly six second ramble about my incurable urge to chop my hair... like a virus.  I battled that urge for six months, me against the scissors, and exhausting all my weak resistance, the scissors took the win. And I am okay with that...

I've had the same 'do for nearly a decade now, with the exception of a impulsive emotional chop to my mane that I gave myself in the first year of marriage. I admit it wasn't my finest look, but I was 21 and everything about life was changing. We often take it out on our hair when we feel like we are out of sorts with ourselves, or feel out of control. Being a beauty school drop-out I still have a pair of old shears in the closet just waiting to lop off some hair. Usually I just go for the bangs, once a year, every winter when my skin gets dry and my forehead gifts me a few extra wrinkles, it's cheaper than botox and more natural. But every once in a while those scissors give me a good stare down and I have to put them in a high place and walk away... 

Hair is kind of a big deal, true, it is a scientific fact that it's necessary for our heads to hold in and retain warmth. But also true is it holds psychological power. It's a part of our identity. After I moved to L.A. I would give $15 bathroom haircuts and highlights to friends from school and church so I could keep buying spaghetti and bread to eat while I went to music school. I started cutting other peoples hair when I was 11, starting with my best friend Golda and my little sister Katie, in the same day I gave them both very short Dorothy Hamill style haircuts that resembled mushrooms, moms were not happy... and I never really quit until the time I went on Idol. My clientele has pretty much dwindled to Dave these days and maybe a sister or friend. But I've got to say, doin' hair all those years stressed me out hardcore. I was slow as molasses, and I put my heart and soul into peoples hair, but it doesn't always turn out "just like the picture" they brought, or didn't turn out like the picture in their head. Or the infamous "just do whatever you think will look good". If you say this to a hairdresser you are asking for it! So much awkwardness in a hair-do gone bad with a good friend. People just take their hair super seriously. It was just too much darn responsibility.
4 years ago when it was at it's prime, healthy and super curly, those were the days...
 picture by Jessica Mendivil/Mendipixel
So back to the haircut, after 9 years of long curly hair, my hair had seen better days. Previous to idol it was healthy and thick and full of body. As I went through the constant rigorous ritual of glamming up for the show, shoots and then on the tour and beyond day after day, it began to take it's toll with all the and it started snapping and splitting. I began to wear extensions to fill it out. I got a few trims trying to keep it long, but it just couldn't recover. 

Fast forward, then I got pregnant, and it seemed to be growing in thicker and healthier! But then I had the Londy Loo and I tell you I exchanged my hair for a beautiful baby, a worthy trade. However, over the course of a year postpartum, my hair line birthed a wild crop of baby bangs, my roots turned dark and ashy and my curls began to disappear, resulting in the puniest almost wave. A slave to highlights and constant trims, I just couldn't get it back. Big time Sadness, yes. Curly long blonde hair was my identity, and now it was fading away, as looks almost always eventually do. But wait, have you seen the back of my Loo's hair?! it is the most gorgeous collection of golden swirly locks you have ever beheld. They say that everything that is yours becomes your childrens', in this case, I gave London my curls. And now I live vicariously through her wild lovely locks... it's pretty special.

So after resorting to braids and buns everyday for months, I pulled the classic new mommy cliche, and I went and chopped it all off. However I wasn't gonna settle for just any ol bob. I searched out the best looking haircut in the pinterest world, so good I pinned it twice, and randomly found the guy who cut it, and just happened to be in Los Angeles! My dear friend who usually does my hair was taking a little time off, so I figured I'd give this guy a call. I tracked his number down on the internet and called his assistant, Turns out he had one opening in his schedule the next day, I gulped and told them to put me on the books.

The following afternoon I drove through two hours of traffic down the sunset strip to the salon. I walked in frantically and sat in the chair and told the stylist. "I want this haircut... the one on pinterest!". A quiet lovely man, he laughed, apparently he gets that a lot. I asked him if I was crazy, I told him I was freakin' out, he told me it was a great idea. I put the fate of my hair in his hands. Before I knew it a half of a foot of my gnarly scraggly old hair was just chillin' on the floor. It felt scary, and good.

photos taken by my brother the mighty quinn
Ahn CoTran, the hair wizard really fixed this old tired hair up, and after over a month of living with it, I'm so not sorry I did it. I adore long hair, but Change is good, hair grows back. People resist change and might not love your new do, but that is okay, to be expected! You got to live a little!

Ok, so you know you're ready for a haircut when...

1. You've been rockin' the same style for more than a decade... check in, is this style outdated or old fashioned? We often get stuck in our "hair prime". The 80's perm, waterfall bangs, scrunchies and claw clips, or trapped beneath a long blanket of lifeless hair. You can still maintain length or a similar look, just freshen it up to create a modern updated style. 

2. You wear it up more than you wear it down. If you are ponytailin' it daily, it might be time to chop chop ! 

3. If your long hair becomes super jagged, frail, thin and transparent, it's time to let it go... Long hair isn't pretty if it looks like it got caught in the garbage disposal. Trim it to it's thickest and healthiest point and then maintain tiny trims regularly to allow it to regrow thicker and healthier. 

4. You've been thinking about cutting it for longer than a month or two. If you are wanting to cut your hair on an emotional impulse, give it a little time. Check yourself... anything going on your life? Break-up with your boyfriend? Hating your job? Take a deep breath, try reading a self help book, go to a yoga class or talk to someone before you take it out on your hair. Get through your life crisis, if you still want to cut your hair, go for it!

5. If your current hair isn't serving you, it doesn't flatter or make you feel like your best self, find a great stylist, consult with them and invest in a new style and cut, one that is flattering, realistic for your lifestyle and easily maintained.  You'll feel great. 

After all of that, we can't forget, it's just hair. Trust me, I'm a beauty school drop-out :)


  1. I love your do! I am guilty of #2 - I rock a ponytail almost every day because I can't stand my current length, but I tell myself it's because I'm growing my hair out to the luxurious locks I once had. Still, I watch videos of Olivia Munn and fantasize about her long bob. Ah, indecisiveness.

  2. You always look pretty, but those photos of you that Quinn took are especially radiant! I'm sure I've thanked you before, but let me reiterate that I'm so glad to have had you as a hairstylist in those pre idol days. You gave me my first side-swept bangs and helped me transition to this LA life. :)

  3. I love your hair. love love love.

  4. So funny, I got the chop yesterday. I was at the scraggly, split ends stage amd ready for something new. I showed that exact Pinterest style to my hairdresser too. Unfortunately my hair needed too much work and it's a bit short right now. Oh well, it'll grow, right?

    P.s. I also lost my curls. :(

  5. You are stunning Brooke! I have a similar hair cut and I love it! How do you curl it or is that your natural curl?

  6. I had a baby 3 months ago so right now my hairs all falling out, ugh! I've been dying for a change. Just looked through that stylist's website, all those before and afters are amazing. Wish I was in LA and could have him do my hair!

  7. Hair crush.... you're beautiful! love the cut!

  8. I think your hair cut is beautiful and as a mom of five, I totally relate to hair changing after babies! Mine first got darker- from kind of red to very dark kind of red and then I had to start dying it after I'd just given up the blond hair dye my senior year in high school because I was finally okay with the red that crept in about puberty. But then I had to start dying a slightly lighter version of it'self- baby 2 (when it got darker still) after baby three I decided to try highlights- too much upkeep, then I think I just gave up for awhile, only caring here and there. I'd dye it mostly red ish, but when I got a toe head as my last baby and started looking at pictures of myself I'd posted on FB from high school when I still dyed my hair, it made me want to go back blonde. I'd let it grow out and was cutting layers myself to go with what waves I had and it looked the best it had for a long time with a little "surf hair" and a scrunch! But after about a good year it started to thin in the back (might be health stuff, maybe it's just almost being 40) and I was putting it in a pony tail so much that I thought it best to just chop it off- double chin or not! So excited for the short cute styles I loved in Jr. high to be coming back, even cuter! I was loving that until my last hair cut when I thought I was so prepared with pictures (3 from pinterest) to explain what I wanted and the lady totally thought for some reason that I wanted my bang area shorter, not longer, like I thought I'd clearly stated... sigh... it's finally growing back and I took about and inch off around my ears the other day and it really helped it look better. I like that I can just do the front and only minimal effort on the back when it's cut right.
    Sorry I ramble- it's just on my mind. I wish I'd read this post way back in 98 when I tried to pull off a Dharma, from Dharma and Gregg, haircut after my son was about 6 months old. That was a bad "I need a change" time.
    My sister had your hair color growing up and after 2 babies it got so dark and ashy that she has been dying ever since. It is very emotional to see the changes that our bodies go through in places you don't expect! You handled it well and thanks for the wisdom. Hopefully other mom's can avoid my mistakes with your sound advice!

  9. I've seriously been thinking about doing this, but I just haven't buoyed myself up enough yet. I just really love my long hair, and sort of don't like change that much. We'll see what happens!

  10. look beautiful pushing a baby out of your body and at 3 a.m. without any sleep. As long as I have followed your career (and your blog) you always look beautiful. My favorite part, is that you are as beautiful inside as you are outside.

  11. You've got to share your styling tips! It looks great, how lucky you were able to go to the exact stylist as your inspiration pic!

  12. Your hair is AH-mazing! I too would love to know how your style your hair.

  13. yes... please please share how you stye it. sections, barrel size, wrap around/clamp or flat iron curl?! please share, im getting my hair cut like this on monday and want it to look like yours!

  14. I have a similar cut, but have always struggled with getting the waves just right. Would you mind sharing how you use your iron to achieve that look? Thanks so much!

  15. I ditto what the last four ladies said :)

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  17. please please please share your styling tips!! I got my hair cut similar to this today, but am struggling to get the waves just right! Your waves are gorgeous!

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  19. This is amazing! I've always wanted fabulous model hair, but I never knew what the heck they did. Thanks to Reagan for sharing her wisdom!.


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