Thursday, March 29, 2012

Gigi's Inadvertent Sociological Experiment

Since I had the same long, curly hair for 20 years, from 16 to 36, I took for granted the responses I'd get about my hair. Compliments and pick-up lines, sure, but also nicknames like "Poof" because of how frizzy my curls could get.

In the past eight months I've tried out many different hairstyles, and it's been fascinating to see how people respond differently to me when I have different hair.

The biggest eye opener? There's a big difference between the hairstyles men and women respond to.

The Pens picked out this wig with red highlights for me (shown on the left), and it quickly became my favorite wig during chemo. When I was up for leaving the house, I'd don this wig, and on most trips at least woman would make a comment about cool it was. I'm used to people commenting on my hair, but not quite that frequently.

When I was healthy enough to go back to working out of my office in San Francisco, I got myself a real hair wig (shown on the right). I picked out one that's pretty close to what my hair would look like if it wasn't curly, since I thought it would be fun to try out straight near-black hair. On my way home from the beauty store that day, I stopped at the market, and a guy hit on me.

The pattern has continued. Women love the streaks of color and often comment on it. Men don't approach me as often in that cool wig, but with the more natural hair, I get hit on at least as often as I used to. What's the deal?

I never selected any of my wigs for their potential for being hit on, but it was nevertheless interesting to see how it played out.

When I wanted more variety, I got myself an even shorter wig with purple streaks cut at a cute angle (shown on the left). The response was very similar to the wig with red highlights. Women agree with me that it's very cool. But guys? I have no idea.

It's been a few months since I finished chemotherapy, so pretty soon I'll be sporting a short cut of my own hair. It'll be interesting to see what happens then.



L.G.C. Smith said...

People will hit on you like crazy. Duh.:)

Martha Flynn said...

Uh..I would hit that pretty much under any circumstance

Rachael Herron said...

That's so interesting! I was *just* at the donut shop, and an entire group of older men (6 or so) turned to stare at me. Because they were older or just didn't care, they then carried out a full discussion of my blue streak. "I dont' know why women do that! Why do they do that? It's like the lipstick thing. Why do they paint colors? I could never do that. I'd never WANT to do that." It was amusing, and I *almost* said, "I CAN HEAR YOU" but I was too interested and wanted to know how it ended (with a discussion of who owed more for coffee, so that wasn't very interesting). But yeah, they did NOT get it.

Juliet Blackwell said...

This is so funny! I think it's fascinating what men find attractive, versus what women find hot in other women. My son has a *definite* bias against sparkles, while I love them. To each their own...can't wait to hear how this all turns out!

realistic lace front wigs said...

It really is amazing how much even slight changes in your hairdo can affect how others see you. I remember once having my hair cut shorter than usual only to have most of my friends barely recognize me at all.