Before the New Year, Team Marie Claire faced their fears and did what they thought was impossible for the longest time. Read about their experiences before, during and after , maybe you too will get inspired to do that one thing you’ve been putting off forever!
“I Made the Cut”
Lira Jamaluddin, Special Projects & Web Editor
I had straight, healthy, long hair for as long as I could remember. People always envied my hair, and I had friends telling me, “You should cut your hair. It’s too long”—only to see them trying to grow their hair to my length. I had complaints from hairstylists, saying, “You should cut your hair. It’s too long, dry and difficult to manage,” when they themselves have long hair.
I had been thinking of cutting my hair for the past five years; contemplating, but I never dared to do it. I would tell my friends that I wanted to try a really short hairstyle, perhaps like the famous Halle Berry haircut, but I would make excuses, saying I don’t have strong enough features for short hair. The truth is, I was just not confident enough.
My hair was down to my lower back, and during Hari Raya, I decided to cut my hair so it reached just below my shoulders—mid-length as I thought it was a good start. I went to a hairstylist I had never been to before, only because I didn’t want him to judge me and I wanted him to just get the job done. He happily chopped off my beautiful locks. I must say it did get some getting used to, but with the hot weather, it felt good. More positive compliments flooded in when I uploaded a photo of my new haircut with the hashtag #rambutraya, donning a new look for Hari Raya.
A few months later, my hair grew and I knew I needed to go shorter. I was going through a really stressful time in my life, and I just woke up one Saturday morning and decided that I was going to chop off all my hair. Just like that I went to my regular hairdresser and said, “I want a Ruby Rose haircut—you know, the one where they shave off half your hair?”
She had a good look at me and asked if I was okay. I said, “No, I need a new haircut.” She said, “Okay, but the cut you suggested is too drastic. Let me do a bob, and we’ll see how you feel about it.”
“Maybe a new colour, too,” I added. She said, “Okay.” She asked me what colour I would like. I wasn’t really sure about what I wanted, so I looked at Nora and said, “You choose. I’m okay with anything.” She looked at me and nodded. It was pure trust from that point onwards.
She cut my hair, and, boy, was it short! Shorter than I had ever gone, but it was beautiful. That night I dressed up, put on a new makeup look, red lipstick and went on a dinner date with my bestie. She was shocked, and said, “Wow, it’s nice, it’s really short, and I don’t believe you finally did it.” I replied, “Yeah, I wanted it short.” I knew she was shocked as my hair also had green highlights, which eventually turned ash. But I had to keep my cool.
I didn’t realise it at that time, but going through this phase and cutting my hair gave me a sense of freedom. Freedom from the stereotype that beautiful and sexy girls have long gorgeous hair which is more attractive to men.
I now have short hair, still the same facial features, and a great job. And my boyfriend who was shocked by my drastic change when he returned from a two-week work trip, still loved me the same although I no longer have the sexy long hair that grabbed his attention in the first place.