In Norse mythology, common to Scandinavians, Germans and Saxons, Sif was the wife of Thor, god of thunder. She had beautiful long hair the colour of wheat fields gleaming in the sunlight that fell past her feet. One day while sleeping, Loki, god of thieves cut it off and ran away with her locks. Whilst crying out in anger, her husband Thor threatened with the worst punishment to this trickster Loki. Loki, fearing the vengeance of Thor, traveled to Asgard and Smifhelm, home of the dwarves for help. They weaved threads of hair longer than before made from precious gold for Loki to appease the gods’ fury.
Long hair was considered an ornament and was only cut off in times of mourning.
There are many hair myths that circle the globe like urban legends. I have compiled a list of hair myths that you as a client might find useful when deciding to make the chop.
Myth 1: Short hair grows faster than long
False. Cutting your hair more often will not alter its normal biological growth rate or overall texture. Growth rate depends on a number of factors and is specific to each individual. Diet, medical conditions (thyroid, chronic medication, contraceptives, iron deficiencies, etc.), as well as genetics are all factors that should be considered.
Myth 2: Short hair demand more attention
True. Precision cuts specifically will lose its shape quicker and need to be cut more often to ensure the cut stays fresh and on point. Whilst it is advisable for long hair to be trimmed every 6-8 weeks to minimise split ends, this is only a guideline and other options are available such as in salon treatments if length is what you are aiming for.
Myth 3: Short hair isn’t feminine
False. Short hair can easily look butch and lose its appeal, but in the hands of a professional specialising in short hair, even the shortest of pixie cuts can make women feel sexy and feminine (Kaley Cuoco, Demi Lovato).
Myth 4: Split ends are absent on short strands
False. Hair, no matter the length will develop split ends if not looked after properly. Hair just like nails are made up of Keratin bonds and need to be trimmed, treated and handled with care to ensure you get the most out of your Do.
Myth 5: Curly hair should be worn long
False. Curly-topped celebrities like Anne Heche and Kerry Russell have sported short stylish hair for many years. Sarah Jessica Parker was the poster girl for Botticelli chic, and in the hands of a talented stylist any texture from straight to super curly can look smashing.
Myth 6: Hair extensions are not possible on short hair
False. It is advisable that clients have between 12-15cm of length to hide the bonds when extensions are applied, but specific accents like fringes can also be created even on short hair to create a different look. Your stylist will assess your hair texture and length to advise you as to whether you are a good candidate for extensions.
Myth 7: Thin or very fine hair presents better when cut short
True. Depending on the shape of your face as well as the thickness of your hair, short hair will create the illusion of having more hair whilst long hair will show hair imperfections off easier. Chat to your stylist about face shape, maintenance as well as the correct products to ensure your hair looks fuller.
Myth 8: Anyone can wear a short cut
False. There are a few factors that need to be considered before making the chop. Face shape, hair thickness and texture, age as well as your commitment to styling will all influence your decision to go short. Whilst certain face shapes are better suited to short hair, this does not mean that you cannot wear short hair, it simply means that certain adaptions are going to have to be made to what you had in mind, to ensure that the new style flatters your features.
Myth 9: Stylists prefer working with short hair
There is no yes or no to this myth and is purely based on personal preference. I enjoy the freedom to experiment that short hair offers me. It is easier to try out new styles and colours on short hair and therefore makes it more versatile. Short hair offers its ‘host’ more drama and change and will often be so much more liberating and fun.
Myth 10: Short hair cuts are cheaper
False. More often than not cutting a shorter hairstyle can take longer than trimming the ends off of long hair due to the fact that the cut is far more technical and precision is required. Whilst Long hair will disguise a slip of the scissor more readily, this is not the case with short hair where a steady hand is required.
These are just a few myths that I felt had to be laid to rest to ensure that you as a client have all the tools to make an informed decision. Hair is a very personal thing, and what works for one person might have the exact opposite effect for another.
Short hair should not be placed opposite long hair but should rather be seen as a statement made all on its own.