A Thing of Beauty?

I'm thinking of making a radical, life-changing decision. It's one that women (and increasingly men) think about, contemplate, worry about, and plan for ages in advance.

No, no, not marriage. Been there, done that, got the white satin t-shirt. I'm talking about changing my hair.

You see, I recently decided to grow my hair long again. That by itself wasn't hard – I simply stopped getting it cut. But the problem is that I have very fine hair. Without the assistance of products like mousse, gel, gamma rays, curling irons, microwave ovens, hair spray and quick drying cement, has absolutely no body and no curl. So at the moment, I look like a limp English sheepdog.

To make my life easier therefore, I've been debating about whether I should get a body perm. The problem with that is, well, that I have very fine hair.

Even with the latest and greatest formulations, I figure I will either look like A) a sex goddess with wondrously flowing locks of hair or B) a French poodle. (And to those of you who just started taking bets, I say: Stop that, or I will have to hunt you down and hair spray you.)

This may also require changing what I use for makeup. This is because most cosmetics are chemically engineered to look good only under specific circumstances. That is, if you color test and buy your makeup on a day when you have twenty-eight eyebrow hairs, and within a week you have twenty-nine, then your makeup will look completely different. And if you test and buy when you have short hair and then grow long hair, well… then your makeup will make you look like a limp English sheepdog with skin problems.

Buying makeup is certainly no fun either. I don't know about you, but I personally give department store make-up counters a wide berth. This is because the last time I strayed too near one, it went something like this:

CERTIFIED BEAUTICIAN: Hi! Would you like to try some of our new Organic High-Fibre Low-Sodium Hair Mayonnaise?

ME: Er, no, I'm just on my way to buy a-

CERTIFIED BEAUTICIAN: Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiyaaaaaaaaaaah!

ME: Hey! How did I end up strapped into this salon chair?

CB: To become certified, I did a professional wrestling course. Now sit still while I have a look at you. Good God! Your pores are in terrible shape! They're huge!

ME: That's possibly because your makeup mirror magnifies things 1500 times.

CB: Nonsense. Hold still while I apply our new Hypo-Allergenic Milk Plus Illuminating Collagen 5 Intensive Coenzyme Stress Cucumber with Daily Radiance.

ME: Argh! What's IN this stuff?

CB: Water, sheep grease, and H20. Now we'll pluck…

ME: Ow! Hey! Stop! Oi!

CB: … and apply the foundation…

ME: Mmmpth!

CB: … and then this year's hottest color: electric purple.

ME: But I'm fair skinned!

CB: Who cares? Electric purple is the new black.

ME: But I look like I've been in a bar fight!

CB: No, you look like a heroine addict who hasn't eaten in three weeks and been in a bar fight. That's what gives you the super model glam factor.

ME: Glam what?

CB: Let's see, eyeliner, eye shadow, spray-on-fixative, lipstick, lip liner, day cream, night cream, 3:15 p.m. cream, carpenter's glue, false eyebrows – yours are looking a little thin there, dear…

ME: You just ripped them all out!

CB: …foundation, and oh look! There's your credit card!

ME: How'd you get that out of my pocket?!

CB: To be certified I had to take a professional pickpocket's course. Now be a good girl and swipe.

So, if the next time you should see me I look like a drug-addicted French poodle sporting false eyebrows, you'll know that I have acquired both a bad perm and glam factor. And if you make fun of me, there will definitely be a bar fight.

To read more of Chandra's work, visit www.ChandraKClarke.com.

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