Bangs, the Eternal Struggle

Bangs, the eternal struggle.

Serious bang attitude.

Serious bang attitude.

We cut them off, we grow them out. Again and again and again. If you look to your right in my sidebar, you can see my bangs being secured by a sparkling barrette three years ago. That was the last time I grew my bangs out. This was before the last vestiges of Botox faded and I developed a triangular shaped set of lines between my eyes. I do not like these lines, not because they make me look old, but because they make me look angry. Grumpy Madge is not my best look.

In my lifetime I have had all manner of bangs. Bettie Page inspired shorty bangs, Mod style longer bangs, swept to the side bangs, weirdly choppy bangs, subtle piece-y bangs, frizzy perm bangs, and the dreaded solid wall of bangs that weighs on my forehead like a bag of bricks.

I said bricks, get your minds out of the gutter, people.

I like bangs, when they’re banging, but not so much when they’re not…so much.

My daughter had bangs cut recently. It took months of careful consideration. She bought fake bangs and wore them around to see how people reacted. She asked me at least twenty times if I thought she should get bangs. This is a tricky question, because if you say yes and it doesn’t work out, you risk becoming the villain in this hair-story. Yet, I took the risk and suggested she go for it.

“What’s the worst thing that can happen? Other than complete hair failure and months of headbands? Hair grows!” I said, knowing this is cold comfort when you are gazing at a chopped up mess hovering defiantly above your eyebrows.

Thankfully, the bangs were a success! Perfect for her fall semester in Paris peeking out from under a jaunty beret, accentuating her large electric blue eyes, giving her a gamine appeal with that certain je ne sais quoi. She was worried they’d make her look younger, but they gave her a new sophistication instead. Hooray for bangs!

Feeling the rock and roll vibe here.

Feeling the rock and roll vibe here.

I decided to trade my side bangs for straight across bangs last week. I needed a change, but not a drastic change. It’s amazing to me how a small change in your bangs can have such a big impact in your looks. Bangs give you a lot of bang for your buck, folks. Pun intended. Groans ensue. But seriously, depending on your face shape, adding bangs really frames things nicely and shifts focus from forehead to eyes. This can be a very good thing.

Cutting your own bangs, though, can be a very bad thing. I have done it many times and every single time I have immediately regretted it. I have very strange hair, and it’s difficult for hair stylists to cut, let alone me with whatever scissors I dig out of a drawer in my craft studio. Yeah, that happened…more than once. I have no excuse other than temporary hair-sanity.

I like the new bangs, they have a 60s into the 70s appeal. For now, they’re working. I may change my tune as time passes. It’s just hair after all.

Speaking of hair, I just finished a new video with an essay from my new book Fifty and Other F-Words all about my lifetime of bad hair. It’s funny, give it a watch!

What about you? Do you like bangs? Have you had a bad bang experience? Do tell!