The oh-so-clichéd saying “breaking up is hard to do” rings a little too real for modern girls, especially when it comes to breaking up with our beloved hairdresser.
In my humble opinion, making the decision to part ways with a longtime stylist can be a far more harrowing experience than ending a long-term committed relationship with a romantic partner.
Any girl who frequents the hair salon with vehement dedication knows exactly what I’m talking about.
I'm not talking about the bevy of infuriatingly chic bohemian festival girls, who spritz a bit of sea salt into their wild manes and call it a day.
I'm talking about girls who rock multiple tracks of luxuriously-priced hair extensions imported from India; girls who sport on-trend, high-fashion precision cuts that require biweekly upkeep; girls with honey blond highlights dutifully painted onto a sleepily dismal natural base; girls who can’t face the world without the sealed cuticle super shine of a keratin treatment.
So what's a girl to do when things in the HAIR department start to go awry, and ever so suddenly, we find ourselves seduced by the idea of a NEW stylist?
It's but a conundrum that holds the same intensity as having to break up with a romantic partner we've had a wonderful run at a relationship with, but suddenly, the very thought of having to f*ck him or her makes our skin crawl.
We love our stylists with our whole, bare hearts, but are intoxicated by an irrepressible craving for something NEW.
We find ourselves in the ultimate predicament, standing at the dramatic crossroads of a distressing decision.
1. We are forced to make the hard choice
Like the bitter taste of divorce, the story doesn’t have to end this way – but sometimes it just f*cking does.
Sometimes for reasons unbeknownst to us, after so many heart-soaring years of beauty triumph, our hair starts to deteriorate.
Friends are starting to notice, and we're just not getting the same amount of attention anymore.
It could be we’re suffering from a lack of communication with our stylists, OR perhaps we are slowly growing ugly and are unfairly blaming them for our visual demise (a far more likely scenario).
The reason is irrelevant, as our confidence is crumbling by the second, and we’re faced with a brutal-yet-painfully-telling-to-our-character type of choice: Do we pick looks or loyalty? It's like being an innocent child caught up in a savage custody battle, forced to choose one parent over the other.
2. The custody battle of looks vs. loyalty
We adore our hairdresser with every fine strand adorning our head, but we’re also vain little minxes whose confidence is often directly dependent on the state of our manes.
We find ourselves in a stubborn arm wrestle with the seductive devil and the do-gooding angel within us. Vanity always wins.
3. We’re not just cutting ties; we’re cutting hair
When we’re in the pitfalls of a painful breakup, one of the deepest struggles exists in facing the fact that our lives have become but one entangled entity.
We are intertwined in the same social, economic and familial web.
As head-poundingly complex as this is — it’s a mere cakewalk compared to breaking up with our stylist. With a stylist, we’re not just cutting ties; we’re cutting hair.
Our hair, much like our souls, will long outlive us. It continues to grow after we die (fact). Our stylist has touched and trimmed and tamed an everlasting, endlessly existing part of who we are — I can’t think of anything that (literally) cuts so deep.
4. Social media sites are breeding grounds for jealousy
Social Media can serve as a bitingly cruel, nasty little teasing tool for our generation.
Instagram, Facebook and Twitter attain a twisted ability to ruthlessly dismantle our self-esteem post by post.
Never were there two bigger social media sluts on the planet than salon girls and hairdressers.
We live for the cheap thrill of posting carefully filtered pictures of freshly blow-dried locks onto Instagram, while stylists find bliss on tracking the “likes” that image (inevitably hashtagged with their names) accumulates.
It’s a match made in narcissistic heaven — until it's not.
During a breakup, both parties find themselves in a vanity throwdown.
A poisonous competition: The stylist compulsively uploads pictures of his or her new muse (a less pretty version of you, of course), and the salon girl is desperately posting pictures of haphazard DIY blow-dries in an attempt to prove she doesn't need her stylist anymore (resulting in an embarrassing fail).
Both stylist and girl are left feeling empty, achingly regretful and longing for the brighter days of the past when they were but a united force in the hair world.
5. There are no boundaries
Once a human being penetrates our vulnerable scalps and fearlessly massages our frail, feeble heads with the tips of his or her fingers — all bets for a normal, civilized relationship are off.
The intimate relationship between stylist and client is empty of the social boundaries that dominate the rest of the professional world.
We salaciously party together, delve into the gory details of our sex lives and all too often, frequent the same desperate whiskey bars at unspoken hours.
What started out as a safe business relationship became an informally personal relationship.
Imagine all the cringe-worthy, awkward encounters you will face when your eyes meet from across the sale rack in the shoe department at Bloomingdale’s (you DID always have similar taste)…
6. We are losing our best friend in the world
Every girl knows her real best friend is hardly a diamond; it's her hairdresser.
After a breakup, chances of recovery for this friendship are painfully slim, for it will take many long years of healing to get to the precious, sacred place you once were.
7. Stylists know EVERYTHING
There is a creeping sense of panic that eventually explodes across our hearts, when the utter thought of leaving our stylists first enters our minds: THEY KNOW EVERYTHING ABOUT US.
A stylist is privy to things we've never dared to tell even our devoted therapist.
A hairdresser knows what happened to us that one summer at sleep-away camp, that embarrassing person we slept with two winters ago, the REAL reason our parents got a divorce.
We are no longer our hairdresser’s client period, let alone securing that safe title as "favorite client"— so what if he or she tells?
I mean, come to think of it, our hairdresser has provided us with a LOT of dirt about former clients... what made us think we were so special (why do we always think the rules don't apply to us)?
8. We run the risk of losing the one
OK, so we're ready to pull that trigger. We can't take it anymore; we've even flirted with a few persistent stylists around town.
Hairdressers are starting to talk. We're going to LEAVE our stylist.
And then, the cold fist of reality hits us boldly between the eyes: What if we are giving up the best thing that ever happened to us? What if we're just going through something – as women often do?
What if we lose the ONE forever?