All Hail Bobby Pins


What no one tells you—or maybe they did tell me and I chose not to listen—is that there’s really no “coming back' from bleached platinum hair. You sort of have to cut it all off and start over. Just look at Sky Ferreira, Charlotte Carey, and Sasha Luss, all of whom, just last year, were basking in a halo of white light only to suddenly go not only from blond to brunette, but from long to very, very short.

I joined their ranks not long ago. On a Friday this fall, I left work with shoulder-length hair of unfortunate texture and neither-here-nor-there coloration. If hair itself is actually dead to begin with, my hair was deader-than-dead. Weekend at Bernie’s dead, with me dragging it around, to parties, meetings, and airports. That weekend, ensconced in my bathroom and succumbing to a fit of what I recently learned has the apropos nickname “anxiety grooming,” off it went, in rigor mortis strips falling gently, in and around the sink.

Though I normally take to ITG to show transformations, and espouse the merits of experimenting with one’s hair on a frequent basis, this time I’ve been quiet because, finally, I’ve gone too far, just like my mom, boyfriend, and psychic predicted. I have a truly bad haircut, undeniable to all who see.

(Let me pause for a moment to say—life is GREAT, and I’m just being overly dramatic because every woman should be able to bemoan a bad haircut. And then she should shake the Bieber bangs away from her eyes, remember that there’s more to life than hair, and give herself a high-five.)

Here’s the good news: bobby pins.

All that’s needed to make sense out of a mullet-ish haircut is water, a comb, a hair elastic, and classic Goody bronze bobby pins—plucked from a pack of at least 50, costing not much more than a grande peppermint mocha. A few days ago, I discovered this trick:

1. Start in the shower, shampooing and conditioning the hair (I'm currently enjoying Christophe Robin Cleansing Purifying Scrub with Sea Salt, and Redken Color Extend Conditioner).

2. Get out of the shower and dry off. Rub some moisturizing leave-in product (like my current favorite, Shu Uemura Art of Hair Essence Absolue Oil-in-Cream) through your hair. Part it just left or right of center, and comb the wet hair down and back into a low pony secured with an elastic.

3. A few inches down from the part on both sides, slide a bobby pin in. This secures the bangs and kind of blends them in to the rest of your longer hairs.

4. Enjoy your newly chic hairstyle! Selfie oneself in car for ITG post.

If it’s cold outside, you can even leave home wearing a loose-ish beanie on top, creating a self-heating environment for your hair to dry inside of.

It all sounds simple and perhaps rudimentary, and that’s because it is. I’ve never been any good at “styling' my hair, and am very pleased to say: my functional bobby pin “fix' is actually a pretty cute look.

—Emily Weiss