I find long hair cumbersome and annoying, and I recently cut most of mine off. It went from being just about shoulder length to what is commonly referred to as a ‘pixie cut’. I’ve never been attached to my hair, in fact I prefer to let it grow for a while, and then cut a drastic amount off and even dye it a completely different color at the same time. In my opinion, if you’re going to spend the money to go to a nice salon and get your hair cut, you should look completely different than when you went in; otherwise I don’t think it’s worth it. Plus, hair grows back. Even if after a few weeks you don’t like your new short cut as much as you did the day you got it done, who cares? You are 100% guaranteed to have your hair eventually be the exact length it was before you cut it, you just have to be patient. And in the mean time, who cares? There are many ways to make an unfavorable hairstyle bearable until it grows back. And there are even serums and products to help it grow back faster. And yet, many women are terrified by the idea of cutting their hair as short as I did. I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve been told how brave I am in the past two months. As if hair is some sort of protection against danger, and by discarding mine I have left myself vulnerable to attack. I suppose it goes to show how deep the idea of long hair as being a staple of femininity runs within our culture. Many women truly believe that they will not be beautiful unless they have long, flowing hair. It’s true that different lengths of hair look attractive on different women due to face shape and such, but I’ve never paid much attention to any of that. If I get an idea to cut my hair a certain way or dye it a certain color, I just do it without too much thought. I’ve never been scared because it’s not permanent. Men are also victims of the ideal of long locks as being the true form of femininity. Which is not to say that no men find women with short hair attractive, but they too tend to see it as something that is against the norm. Shortly after I cut my hair, a man I was talking to in a bar asked me “so have you always had short hair?” I thought it was a very strange question to ask. It reminded me of conversations I’ve had with people about my various allergies, and they ask, “so have you always been allergic to…” wondering if I’d been born with the defect or developed it later on. So whether he meant it that way or not, his question seemed to imply that my short hair was some sort of defect, something not necessarily undesirable, but something that was notably out of the ordinary. I just don’t understand why a simple act, shortening something that grows continually, can bring on such strange, unintentionally negative attention.