Saturday, December 6, 2008

Straight Hair and Swing Night.

Women Utility: What's most disturbing about this sign is that it was over the children's section of the bookstore...

I went to Korean class yesterday for the first time in a few weeks and had a great time. After class, I wanted to get my hair dyed again, so I went the The Wiz, a popular place downtown near 2.28 Park. I'd had my hair cut there once before and the English speaking stylist remembered me.

Note to self: Hair CUTS in Korea--cheap as hell; Hair DYE in Korea (especially for long hair)--guaranteed to make you eat kimbab and ramyeon only for the rest of the month. Eek.

Well, the color IS pretty, so I don't mind. And then I got them to blow dry it straight as I never have the patience to do this to myself, but it does look (and feel) pretty nice. (Note--it took two PROFESSIONAL people about two hours to blow it out... this is why I don't do it to myself.)

The only evidence of my straight-haired styling... gone as soon as I shower.

I had another hair-identity-crisis last night as a result...

My Korean nickname is 금라면 because usually my hair looks like gold ramyeon noodles. My hair is a huge part of my identity and my only real beauty indulgence. Whenever I straighten it (or let it get too blond for that matter), I feel weird. Like glamorous and pretty, but not myself. I used to HATE having curly hair--it's such a pain to take care of and if you get it even a little off, instead of looking pretty, it looks like a frizz ball exploded on my head. Now... I think it's unique and interesting. I finally learned how to stop fighting it (never brush when dry, for example, and usually let it air-dry) and now it often looks fun and cool.

In Korea, the permanent "magic straightening" is affordable (compared to the U.S. where initial treatments at reputable salons begin at around $500). I've considered it, because dammit you girls with straight hair don't know the half of how easy your life is... And then last night, as everyone was complimenting me and saying how I should do my hair like this every day (I know full well if I did it, they'd be asking three weeks later why I never wear it curly anymore... *sigh* There's just no pleasing folks...), I started to consider taking the plunge once more. I've had two friends here do it (one who has curlier hair than mine and one who has much closer to wavy) and both were really happy with the results. But as I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror, I realized that I don't yet feel comfortable this way... Everyone else has straight hair. Like losing weight, it's just one more thing that will make me look the same. And I don't know if I want that or not... I'm so confused.

I know, I know. It's stupid to be this hung up on HAIR for christsakes...

But well... what's your vote? Straight or curly? (And no, spending three hours every morning with the blow dryer and flat iron is NOT an option. If I go straight it WILL be chemical).

Finally, I leave you with some pictures from the party last night at the other swing club in Daegu, DNA, to celebrate their new club (which is lovely, btw).

Club owner Anna and my DNA buddy (holding the cake) blow out the candle.

A man nicknamed 나쁜사과 (Bad Apple).

Busan Boy (aka, the Impregnator, because his dancing is so sexy, you end up pregnant) holds Leah, my favorite Aussie, to his tummy.


  1. I vote curly all the way. My vote is always go natural. I don't wear any makeup or spend any time with my hair, so I used to pray for curly hair because it looks so great and you don't spend hours blow drying it in the morning. As a result, I sacrifice looking nice for being comfortable and lazy. But your curly hair looks FABULOUS and it's NATURALLY FABULOUS. What could be better? I say embrace what you've got. It's yours! And it looks great.

  2. As a fellow ramyeon head, I'm going to vote staying au naturelle. Curly girls rock! (My students in Japan used to call me "ramen sen-se.")
    You look like you've got a thick bunch of luscious hair, but my hair is super thin. So my curly curls have worked out so well for me. It looks like I actually have hair! If I yank all my hair into a ponytail and braid it, the braid is only about 8cm thick, so pathetic!
    But you should do what you want. A straight perm won't last forever, eh? So it would be interesting to try it out. On the other hand, I'll bet you get all sorts of compliments on your curls. Don't people tell you they'd "kill to have hair like yours?"

  3. Stay curly. For the reasons above, yes, but also because you can't be straight forever. It will be so hard to go back once you've lived the straight life.

    Bad Apple is pretty cute. I'm going to come back and date him...

    Hey! I just saw your post about Ha Young! What's wrong with him? Please pass a kind word along for me, would you?

  4. From a fellow curly head, I vote to stay curly.

    I, like you, only get it blown out straight by my hair stylist because I don't have the time or patience for my thick curly hair (which is quite long now!).

    Every time I get my hair blown out straight -- and she does such a nice job of it, it's as if I was born with it. I can't stop feeling or petting it.

    People oftentimes don't recognize me so I can certainly relate to the "identity crisis" that comes along with the curly hair.

    So, for a day, I'm this cool, sleek, straight-haired chick! Neato!

    Your hair looks fantastic, by the way, straight or curly!

  5. I vote straight. My natural hair is mega curly in some spots and only frizzy in others. My hair is pretty much the only thing I'm vain about. I liked wearing it curly a lot but I often wished I could have no fuss hair in the mornings.

    When I found out the cost of the magic straight, I took the plunge. I disliked it at first because it was so straight and I didn't look like myself. After a week or two, I got used to it and I absolutely love it. I love waking up in the mornings and not having to think about my hair at all because once I brush it, it dries perfectly.

    I prefer my hair short, so straight hair works better for me. But its still comforting to know that in six months, give or take, it will go away and I can decide if I want to do it again or go natural. Also, there are different levels of the 'magic straightening'. I chose the most straight level, but perhaps next time I will request a not so straight one.

    If you do make the decision to get it, be prepared to spend all day in the salon. My hair is short but it still took them three hours to do it all. Plus, given the high cost of it back home, it's one of the few times when you can actually afford it. Your hair looks beautiful either way!

  6. Well, my view on the whole thing is if you REALLY wanted to go straight once and awhile, you already have the option. If you went straight chemically, I have a very strong feeling it'd be hard to go curly here and there if you wanted it. I think I like oyu with straight air better anyway :)


  7. Straight! You hair looks absolutely fabulous - shiny, healthy, and sleek!

  8. I've always loved your curly hair, but you look lovely straight, too. I like the notion that you can try straight and then go back to curly in 6 months if you don't like it. Either way, though, you are beautiful!


  9. db,

    Haha... I'm in the natural is easiest category for beauty, too. Just straight hair is MUCH easier on a day-to-day basis than curly.

    yay noodle-haired women! and since i was a little girl (back when i had bright blond hair) people have said they'd "kill" for hair like mine. i've often wondered why i inspire such homicidal feelings...

    yes! come back and date bad apple! he is adorable and tall and single (although a bit effeminate in mannerisms and his english is pretty much limited to the lyrics of wondergirls songs). i'll pass the message on the ha young and e-mail you more details. he's fine, really. and definitely on the mend.

    that's funny. i had this picture of us from jessica's bridal shower and everyone used to think we were sisters 'cause our hair was the same.

    thanks for your insight (it helps talking to people who've made the leap across the great hair texture divide!)

    are you voting for straight or curly, then? i'm confused :)

    ok... vote counted...

    thanks. it's not quite as simple as just "growing it out 6 months later" as there would be an evil adjustment period where i'd look like crap no matter what i did... but still i consider it.

    just for the record... i've received several off-blog votes, overwhelmingly for keeping it curly...

    however, here is my current thought: honestly, the brighter red looks better on curly hair as the texture creates natural highlights, so until the dye fades it's staying curly. come march i will reconsider. i appreciate your input. please continue to remark on the matter if you have not voiced your opinion thus far. :)

  10. Oh that's great because my gaydar works in reverse. Every guy I think is hot turns out to be gay. This will be a winning situation for me. Now, if he can learn some Tegan lyrics along with the Wondergirls, that would be great.

  11. No surprise, but my vote is for curly. I now find mine quite manageable and little effort on a day-to-day basis as long as I keep split ends under control. Since my hair is curly (and I never wear it down), cutting doesn't have to be at all uniform and I can cut my hair myself whenever it's feeling a bit unhealthy.

  12. If I may add more commentary, the older I get I don't fight what Mother Nature gave me. I work with it and get cuts and color that enhance my curly locks.

    If my hair wants to part to the left, right, center, or off-center on any given morning -- I go with whatever it wants to do.



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