I shaved my head last week. Well, I didn’t. My hair stylist, Morgan, did.
Since then, I’ve heard the phrase, “pull it off,” many times.
“You have a good face, you can pull it off. ”
“I’ve thought about shaving my head, but I could never pull it off.”
So I looked up the meaning of “to pull it off.”
To pull something off is to “succeed in achieving or winning something difficult.”
Which got me thinking…
What is difficult about shaving one’s head?
It didn’t hurt.
It only cost me 20 bucks (compared to hundreds). I saved a boat load of time that would have otherwise been spent having it foiled and treated and blowdryed and styled. And now I don’t even need to shampoo it (or do I?).
Getting ready in the morning is so FAST now…
Shaving it didn’t seem that tricky. It only took Morgan a few minutes.
If you asked a dude to shave his head, I doubt he’s consider it much of an achievement.
A lot of women have pointed out to me that they could never “pull off” shaving their heads because…
Their head is too big or too lumpy or they don’t have the “right” face.
Here’s why I think shaving one’s head is so difficult for women…
Because in our culture beautiful is…
Young, blond, skinny, preferably with big boobs, and white.
With hair (on head but NOT in armpits, along the bikini line or on legs).
For years I met these requirements.
And people treated me like I was special because of it. My father, my mother, my husband… friends, strangers.
As if looking like I stepped out of a beer commercial was some kind of accomplishment.
People ask me how I feel now…
I feel like me (with a shaved head).
But I also feel more exposed than I have ever felt in my entire life.
Because this is me NO LONGER “beautiful” according to societal standards.
And if you think it looks nice – that I pulled it off — I thank you for saying that!
Not because I need your approval but:
Because isn’t an easy thing to feel so exposed. And your kindness and encouragement cradles me.
HOW I LOOK with a shaved head is both beside the point and 100 percent THE point – if that makes any sense.
Because ladies we are beautiful, hair or no hair, whatever our age, whatever our weight, whatever the color of our skin, whatever our bra size.
No one should ever have to worry about pulling “beautiful” off.
Let’s stop buying into the patriarchal bullshit that there is one kind of beautiful.
And let’s all be our own kind of beautiful. What do you say?
P.S. Of the 100 top grossing films in 2016, 99 of these films were made by white men. Guess who is setting the societal standard of what is beautiful, sexy and desirable. HINT: It ain’t women. Source: White Fragility by Robin Diangelo