I used to be ‘the girl with the thick long black shiny straight hair right out of a shampoo ad’ for quite some time, that is, until I met and befriended the girl who had seen me wear my hair in a loose plait, adorned at its start, with a half-bloomed crimson rose, at a mutual friend’s wedding. The rose of course, was a beautiful ‘prank’ from a friend, that I retained, on insistence from other friends…that (the rose story and the ad like hair) was way back in the days of my under-graduate studies.
After ‘completing’ my studies, I moved ‘down south’ as most north Indians would put it, referring to some place in one of the four states that make ‘south India’. So, I moved to A.P., having got the kind of job wanted. Once here, the dry climate/air and the hard water (…and I don’t know what not!) slowly robbed me of my ‘thick long black shiny straight hair‘ right out of a shampoo ad’, big time! Yes, it fell like crazy, until it got reduced to on quarter of its thickness. And, to make things worse as they could be, I no longer had the much so coveted straight hair! It was now (still is, actually) an unruly mass of wavy hair that culminated into something near curls! Boy, did I shock their previous admirer on my visit back up north!
And then began the unending saga of wooing an unruly mass of curls and frizz to their original straight self, that saw many a crazy twists and turns time and again. Initially, when they were just slightly wavy, they would straighten (not to the original texture though) with conditioning post wash, followed by securing a tight bun (top-knot kind) above my head, for a couple of hours. Since it made me look scary, it meant being closed in my room for the period. But I survived the small time span this trick could last! After this came the stage when I would tie the lower ends in knots, so the weight would straighten them. Then the simple knots got replaced with hanging some weight with the help of elastic bands and curlers that would leave the hair ‘in-turned only at the bottom’, and I would be good with it, given that the major length of it would be straight again…Ah! But this didn’t last beyond the first or the second time, since wasn’t a great idea–definitely not worth the effort and the ‘pain’ (pun intended)!
The craziest of such ideas was twisting the ends of my hair around a comb and then ironing them out with a hot clothes iron, down their entire length! Of course my friends helped achieve the feat. We tried ironing the entire length, and even sections…but did it work? …emmm it seemed to, initially, (or so we thought) since we tried this a couple of times…but looking back, “Nah! It didn’t work!” is what I would say!
Well, soon the friends were all bored, and I found it easier to compromise and settle for the texture they seemed to choose for themselves! But! That I did try any and every (well, almost) hair care product that vouched straight hair, is another story!
Today, I have a mane of ‘not so thick’ wavy (edging on frizzy, if not conditioned) waist long hair (I cut the lengths that went up/down/whatever to mid thighs, since it looked very thin when braided). I keep it plaited, or roll it into a bun at the nape of my neck, since either way, it’s texture doesn’t show all that much…oh, and did I say it falls into …err lovely (actually so!) curls, if allowed to dry without being combed…yes, I have been complimented for it a couple of times, recently…And yet, don’t I so so so want my straight hair that I loves so!