Today I’ve had my hair cut. It’s the third cut since I decided to go short again. When I told my hairdresser (who is also my sister-in-law – v handy) to snip it all off a few months ago, she predicted that it would gradually get shorter and shorter still. And she was right. My instructions today were to make it as short as possible without using clippers. At the moment I’m thinking I probably won’t have it shaved off, as I have in the past, but I wouldn’t bet that I won’t change my mind somewhere down the line. Looking back, I can’t actually remember why I abandoned the crop and grew my hair into a bob. I may have just fancied a change, or perhaps I felt a need to conform to more conventional “feminine” appearance. My decision to grow my hair certainly coincided with some of the rockiest times in my life, when I felt extremely vulnerable to outside pressures and uncertain of my own self and identity. Growing my hair seems like a particularly odd choice as I love short hair so much. It has always gone beyond symbolism in its effects on me. Leaving the salon with short, short hair always gives me a rush, an intoxicating sense of liberation, a swagger of empowerment. The relationship between women and their hair is so complex, so embedded in social and cultural mores, that I wouldn’t even attempt to try and psychoanalyse what this means or what it says about me. All I know is that short hair feels like freedom.

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