A chip off the old block or shades of Tess!

My Mom as a young woman. Notice the wave on the right.

My Mom as a young woman. Notice the wave on the right.

Mom in her 70s.

Mom in her 70s.

My mother and I never looked alike. We had different coloring and different shapes. We didn’t wear the same shoe size. Our tastes were different. We were different (or so I thought).

For the last 35 years of her life, I cut my mother’s hair — partly for convenience and partly for economy.

It also allowed her to yell at the person who could not make her look like her favorite movie stars. (Turns out that’s a family trait.)

Her hair was dark, thick and wavy. She didn’t wear bangs but had a deep wave to the side. She always wore it short. Not Miley Cyrus weird short but like a wavy Jennifer Lawrence from a few years back with a Veronica Lake wave to the side.

I have been growing out my hair for a while, especially my bangs. I don’t know why it takes so long. When I wore bangs, I trimmed them every 2 or 3 weeks.

Finally in December, my bangs were “grown out” but there was a problem. Over the years my forehead didn’t age as well as the rest of me (or someone swapped my forehead out for that of a 90-year-old woman — no, make that 110-year-old). It’s scary what hides under there.

I will need to wear bangs the rest of my life. It’s not the end of the world. Some people take cholesterol meds, I wear bangs. They had to be cut.

When going shorter it’s always best to go in steps. You can get used to the look. If it’s a mistake, it’s not hard to grow back.

After the first trim which gave me long center bangs that swung to the side I had a shock when I looked into the mirror.

For the first time ever, I looked like my mother. My hair was still much longer than she wore it and a different color but there was something about the way my bangs waved over my eyebrows that reminded me of her.

We have a lot in common. She took in strays and I’ve inherited that trait. Now I also have this big freaking wave on my wrinkly forehead.

And I like to complain about my hair just like she always did. It’s hard to find a stylist that can make me look like Meg Ryan. Maybe just another snip will do it.

My idol! My hair NEVER looks like this!

My idol! My hair NEVER looks like this!

46 thoughts on “A chip off the old block or shades of Tess!

  1. When I pass a mirror, sometimes I wonder when I turned into my mother! Not the hair part though. Last month I had 4 inches cut off my hair and my bangs cut again after trying to grow them out. I never wore bangs as a young child or teenager. I believe I was in my 40’s when I took the plunge. Does that say something about my forehead? ~Elle

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  2. My mom always complained about her haircuts. “I told her to make it shorter here and longer there,” she’d say. “That woman never listens to me. It makes me so mad.” She had perms until the day she died. She even gave me a Toni home perm when I was about seven years old.

    A good hairstyle does improve a person’s looks, but it’s not easy to achieve, and it takes a lot of work. When I was in high school I slept on curlers and back-combed my hair. Now my simplified hair style looks about the same as it did when I was two years old.

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    • It’s a cycle, isn’t it? Eventually we all revert to Depends too. My mother occasionally did perms. It was the thing. She really didn’t need to but all her friends had fuzzy hair so…..And yes I remember sleeping on curlers and I’m not doing that again!

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  3. At least the cats don’t care about your forehead ;). Mine has gotten way worse. But then everything has. It’s appalling. I love that your mom took in strays, too!

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  4. I recall one time when my Mum looked in the mirror and said “I look just like Gran” … and now I do the same. To skip a generation is even scarier!! She had bushy eyebrows though…

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    • I don’t remember my grandmother at all. I have two blurry pictures of her and in both she had her hair pulled back in a severe bun. Next to here my Mom looked so young although I could see they had the same shaped face. Other than that, I couldn’t see a resemblance. Some families have a remarkable resemblance between members. Our family not so much.

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  5. LOL!! It’s so funny how we chase after a look. My mom had beautiful thick, wavy hair. My dad’s hair is thin and lifeless. I remember the day Mom said to me, “You have your Dad’s hair.” It stung at the time but I laugh about it now. Bless her heart.

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  6. My hair is nothing like my mother’s short, straight, brown hair. I got curls and frizz and blonde. It’s taken me years to realize that I need to go with what works. In fact, I’m working on that very Meg Ryan hairstyle right now.

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  7. My mother dyed her hair blonde. I hated it. I was never, ever, ever, going to dye my hair. Until I got my first grey hair at 16. By 25, people guessed I was 30. So I dyed my hair a deep red. Then brown. But now, guess which color mixes best with the grey?

    Blonde, of course.

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    • When I was in my 20s I was good friends with a very attractive woman. Her worst feature was her hair which was dark brown but very thin and frizzy. The rest of her and her personality made her very attractive. We lost touch then re-met about 20 years ago. I was stunned because she was a blonde and at her roots was a slight growth of gray hair. She had gone totally gray and you’re right. Blonde hair disguises it much better. My mother colored her hair but stuck to her natural color (despite my urges to try other things). So do you look like your mother now?

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  8. Every once in awhile when I look in the mirror, I see my mother too. It can be startling, but I also sort of like it since I miss her so much. It’s when I look down at my arms and see her much-older arms (they can’t be mine, right?) that I am shocked. I’m with the others re Meg Ryan… lovely hair, scary face. It’s sad that she felt that something had to be done to it.

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    • I guess no one likes aging. Being an entertainer, it must be harder to age, especially if you can’t transition to non-ingénue roles. I too miss my mother a lot and it’s been a long time. Every once in a while I’ll come out with one of her sayings and I’m stunned.

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  9. Kate, I know exactly how you feel. I’ve had the darnedest time finding a barber who could cut my hair so that I look like George Clooney. For some reason, I always come out looking like Steve Buscemi. I’d wear bangs but everyone tells me you have to have hair first. I guess I need to go find a shampoo that will give me more volume. Or like other guys with thin hair, try growing it on my face. 😀

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      • I couldn’t believe how weird John Travolta looked on the Late Show last night. He got rid of his wrinkles, but ended up looking abnormal.

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        • I saw him recently too and his face was so bloated. I don’t know what causes that. Maybe it pulls out the wrinkles. I also saw Josh Brolin and his face was so big too but he had to put on 40 lbs for a movie role. He’s working on dropping it.

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  10. My mom’s hair is blonde and straight and mine is curly (code for frizzy) and red, she has blue eyes and I have hazel (code for brown) and I never thought we looked at all alike. But when I put a blonde wig on I suddenly looked exactly like her. I can’t unsee that! My mom is beautiful but you know…she’s my mom.

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  11. My hair idol is when Nicole Kidman had long curly copper red hair. (maybe late 80s/early 90s) I have desperately straight, fine, thin, mousy brown hair.
    If I were given 3 wishes, I might waste one on that hair.
    Sigh.

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