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Fuss-free Frizz

Mumbai’s monsoon can really test your nerves. And your hair

Written by Namrata Zakaria | Published: July 24, 2013 3:10 am

I’M convinced my hair has a mind of its own. And its mind and mine don’t seem to gel very well.

I have been trying,ever since I was a young girl,to figure out what my tresses were up to and never succeeded. Sometimes,it was poker straight,other times it was full and bouncy and,rather often,it seemed to curl into coils of different sizes. The thing is — I have wavy hair. It’s neither here,nor there. It’s just plain confused. And confusing.

Like many women of my vintage,I’ve barely meddled with my hair. As a preteen,I wore it long,and school demanded it always be braided (black scrunchies only,mind you). My teenage years saw me get a fringe; it masked my adolescent insecurities. And the shoulder-length bob was freedom from hair accessories of all hues. I’ve coloured it once when a pushy socialite was trying to promote her hair salon. But I stuck to the shade closest to my hair. I have still to start dyeing,my few greys are comfortable being hand-plucked so far.

Women in Mumbai,where I live,haven’t seen the sun all week. The rains have wreaked havoc on the city’s roads,traffic and daily life. Understandably,social soirees beyond a 15-minute drive are abandoned. What took 15 minutes to reach last month,now takes 45. But oh,the blow-dry can’t wait that long. It is now dank,clammy and wisps of monkey hair have appeared.

The funny thing is,I’m not a fussy client at a salon. Sometimes,I’ll try out a new place recommended by a friend. I usually sit down in front of the top stylist

and pretty much let him have his way with me. I pay a pretty penny for my haircut,but he hasn’t had enough. In the last year alone,I’ve been talked into buying several hair products,none of which work at home.

I have bought a Paul Mitchell Heat Seal,which does nothing to stop my cowlick from burning within the hot-iron tongs when I’m trying to straighten it. L’Oreal’s Volume Lift root-lift spray mousse is for when I’m looking for bounce and

volume,but the humid weather turns it into hair oil in my mane. I was also made to buy L’Oreal’s Liss Ultime to apply to my tips after a blast-dry,but the bottle remains unopened. The frizzies,thanks to the moisture in the air,are beyond serums,mousses,sprays and creams. When I want them

to zig,they zag.

Last week,a strange thing happened. When I was looking (and feeling) my worst,thanks to the wet weather,an electric-curled friend said my hair looked great that day. My friend is tall and broad and blessed with a thick mop of curls. She tried straightening her locks and it fell like a curtain on her face.

Many of us aren’t blessed with hair that suits our faces or our frame,and I’m all for a little salon science to correct that. But what I needed was to realise that my hair is telling me that it is versatile. It can be anything I want it to be. It won’t let me take it for granted and likes to throw me the odd curveball.

It’s forcing me to be adventurous,come rain

or shine.

namratanow@gmail.com

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