I wrote about my trysts with my tresses in my last post! Quite funnily, I realised that I can write so much about hair, so here I go blabbing about women’s hair – this time cuts, styles and hair care – then and now!
Hair and beauty of a woman
The hair and the hair-dos have been a very important part of a woman’s beauty, but external beauty, as I have always believed that there is so much more in a woman to be and feel beautiful about apart from her looks. The beauty of a woman, and for that matter a person is deeper than the skin, it beyond the physical form, it’s intrinsic, a person exudes beauty, if he/she is beautiful inside, as a human being.
Although, interestingly, I read about this research a few years back that facial features hold a key to one’s mental makeup or one’s psyche. Hence, a face is more than a face really.
Hair – then and Now
Hair of a woman are indeed one factor which not just affect her looks but also reflects so much about her – her ethnicity, her socio-religious background, her mind, her choices and yes, not to forget the trends of the times!
Talking of hairstyles and colouring in last twenty years, myself in 30s can say, it has undergone a tremendous change, just like the dress up of women.
Cuts – The Long And Short Of It !
During my school days, apart from the plain Jane, plaited look (one or two plaits) or a better version – pony tailed look, girls also sported short hair – mostly, boy cut (boy?!!), bob cut, blunt cut, steps cut. If you did not want the whole length to be altered, then you would go for a fringe cut in a layer, of course the part of hair close to the forehead. Which cut to choose would depend on the shape of your face, the quality and texture of hair.
In last few years, the hair trends have changed and are changing so much. Years back, came the perming of hair. Hair were curled permanently (lasted for a few years) in spirals or ringlets of various diameters, sometimes half length of the steps of cut hair and sometimes, the full length. That was a rage at that time.
Then came the straight silky look, with a shoulder length hair or little longer. Since, I naturally had straight silky hair, so I suddenly realised I was having a trendy hairstyle, though without any effort. And I was so flattered when girls would ask me, how do I manage to keep them straight? and what shampoo do I use?! I would just smile and say – “Ah! it’s natural!”
Since, then cuts mostly keeping the hair length till shoulders or little longer, with steps, layers, razor cuts, curled or straight are mostly kept by girls and women. Sometimes, our bollywood beauties have donned a short crop or even bald look, which is not so common.
Hair Buns And Knots
Plaits or Braids : The plaits have vanished gradually. Earlier, I was an unsaid code that unmarried girls used to make two braids and married would make one brain or a bun. But all that has changed now.
Buns, Judas and knots: also started becoming a symbol of being elderly and were avoided by young married girls, even for family functions.
Moreover, earlier, growing up girls, would learn different types of Judas, before marriage, this trend has died down completely, with the blooming of beauty parlour culture. In Delhi, you will find a beauty parlour in every place, small lanes, homes, posh areas or small colonies. Women get buns and hair knots made for special family occasions by hair dressers in beauty parlours. The yesteryear’s puffed up hair from front with a voluminous bun on top looks fabulous for traditional Indian marriages. A French knot, my personal favourite, goes well, with traditional as well as formal wear.
Hair Extensions And Accessories : extensions in many shades!
This cannot be complete without the mention of hair extensions. Traditionally also, these were used by Punjabi women to make a long plait, with a further colourful and shiny glittery extension called paranda.
The style in extensions also changed with very fine quality of hair extensions in various shades came to make the buns like chignon etc. Various hair accessories, pins, clips, highlighters etc also catch the fancy of many women.
Washing And Care
Even, washing hair was a ritual in those days(!). My mom would soak, amla, ritha, sikakai in a black iron vessel (kadai) overnight, boil them in the morning, and the cooled down matter was strained and hair were washed with this water (Jet black in colour).
Then came the age of packed shikakai power, and the need to soak and boil was done away with. Shampoos and soaps were also there, but were used sparingly.
And now, nothing except a shampoo, with or without conditioner does anything to our hair. Although, excessive or concentrated use of shampoo damages hair. Proper care should be taken while selecting a shampoo, keeping in mind the hair type.
Have a good hair day!
PS: all images courtesy- google image search
PPS: The author has given her personal view and is no way should be taken as a professional approach
(This post in second in the series of three posts on womenfolk’s hairy tales! )
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