Thoughts: Curly vs. Straight

Lately I am stuck in a continuous argument with myself over what I should do with my hair. Thanks to many bad experiences, I absolutely dread haircuts. I only get a haircut once a year when I finally accept to myself that my hair is too long.

Generally speaking, I like my hair. It’s straight and not too thin and fairly obedient when I wake up in the mornings. But I guess it’s true when people say, “The grass is always greener on the other side.”

My Korean friend decided to get a perm after high school and I was genuinely surprised when it turned out nice. Until then, all the perms I had seen led to not-so-great results. She goes to get it re-permed every now and then, and each time I am tempted to get one as well because hers looks so great and natural. So then I start wondering to myself: Instead of cutting my hair,  should I just get a perm?

To me, curly hair sets off a completely different vibe than straight hair. Yeah… it’s still your same face but the feeling is different.

Curly hair seems beautiful in a very natural kind of way. I imagine a girl with beach wavy hair walking in the sand with the glow of the sunset illuminating her silhouette. Or I imagine a girl in a white dress standing in a green meadow with flowers in her curly hair. Curly hair seems like it is a look that does not require any effort at all (which is very misleading!).

Also, what do girls do for weddings? For prom? For nights when they go out? They curl their hair.

A lot of hairstyles look better with curly hair such as braids or up-dos. And even when you don’t do anything with curled hair and just leave it down, it almost always looks fancier. Look at Girls Generation (SNSD). Most of the time, their hair is curled.

So what am I waiting for? If curly hair is so wonderful then just go get the perm already!

There are a lot of problems I face that have stopped me from getting a perm so far.

First, what if it looks bad? Like I’ve mentioned before, I’ve seen countless perms that look horrible. Not only is it quite pricey (especially if your hair is long), but you can never be 100% sure how it will look in the end.

Second, how do I maintain it? I don’t know the first thing about how to maintain a perm because I’ve always had straight hair. I never really had to do anything to it to ‘maintain’ it.

Thirdly, what if I simply look better with straight hair? After all, this is what I am born with. I’ve never really had any issues with it in terms of how it looked. Just because I feel my friend looks nice with hers doesn’t mean I will also look good in one. And here I am looking at all these pretty photos of girls and celebrities with curly hair… but I shouldn’t really be comparing myself against them. They look good with any hairstyle.

Fourthly, curly hair can sometimes make a person look older. Straight hair tends to make you look younger (or so I have been told).

And lastly, if you have straight hair you can always just curl it with a curling iron whenever you want. It’s might more difficult to try to straighten your hair with a straightener.

Because I’m not the best at adapting to change, I already have a prediction that I’ll end up just getting a normal haircut instead of a digital perm. But until then, my ongoing mental war continues.

The girl in all these pictures is Su Min Baek.

Do you think curly or straight hair is better?

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4 thoughts on “Thoughts: Curly vs. Straight

  1. Ah, the million dollar question. My sister and I both have very curly hair – hers even more so – and I love it. My sister hates it and has been doing keratin treatments for a couple years to straighten her hair. When my hair is straight, I look like a high school student (though I do look pretty young anyway) and when my sister’s hair is curly, she looks much younger than when it’s straight. The moral of the story is, it’s just hair. If you don’t like it, cut it off. It’ll grow back.

  2. I actually got a digital perm a few years back! Just like you, I was quite nervous with how it would turn out due to a traumatizing incident back in elementary. A few reasons why my mom successfully convinced me to go along with getting a perm was because it increased volume. It’s relatively soft and thin, to the point where it was difficult to manipulated with curling and straightening irons. I do confess that it saved me a lot of time getting ready to events because all I had to do was wash my hair instead of spending time curling it. =P

    From my knowledge, digital perms tend to be more expensive and time consuming compared to the cold perm. I remember enduring countless hours hooked up to a machine that looked an alien contraption used to suck brains out in movies (http://is.gd/KX77Nv LOL). But the upside is that the curls are more natural looking and more long lasting. When I first got my digital perm, my hair was just a bit below shoulder length. Needless to say, I went home looking like a puffball because the curls were quite tight. As time passed my hair grew longer (and thanks to gravity), the curls unravelled and gave off a more natural look.

    Careful maintenance can extend how long the curls will last. Avoid the hairdryer as much as you can, and when you can’t, be sure to twist strands while drying. Avoid ruffling your hair with a towel after washing. Pat it down and don’t comb through it until it dries completely. As fabulous as perms sound, it does have a few downsides. Your hair is more prune to having split ends which means getting more frequent trims. I kid you not, sometimes it feels like dead grass.

    I definitely agree with your point that curly hair gives off a more mature look and if it’s something that interests you, why not give it a chance! If you do decide to get a perm sometime in the future, start off with a cold perm and if it’s something you like then go for the digital option.

    Best of luck!

To Loewe:

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