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  • Writer's picturesophie sherwin

What a Hair-Raising Experience! Hair in Perimenopause


Hair after visit to hairdresser
Not quite what I imagined

So, recently I have noticed how my hair has changed, clearly with age (hair in perimenopause). Gone are my long, conditioned, thick, sleek locks and instead I have frizzy, matted looking, unruly hair that has seen my hairline running for the hills, and the rest of my head of hair seems to end up on my bathroom floor, coating it like a shag pile rug! I also thought about the ‘should you have long hair as a mature woman’ debate so I decided to go to a hairdresser to tame the creature…well now…turns out it was far from tamed – it was tortured to the edge of its life.


For many years I have not had a regular hairdresser, my last one was the amazing Michelle and she would come to my house, I would crack open a bottle of something with an alcoholic percentage only for mature people, we would chat away whilst she would work magic on my hair. She was so good and hard to beat, but surely will not be impossible to find someone the same level. I have faith there are people out there (oh and FYI….she did not have a drink until she finished my hair, otherwise that would have been a different story).

After leaving where I was living, I have found myself being a nomad alongside being completely broke so my hair was not a priority and luckily for me that is why we have hair bands so we can just put it up when it looks like shit. In the couple of times I have gone to get my hair done, I have never met anyone I gel with enough to go back to.

Also, I do not know about you but my experience of hairdressers can lack listening skills as when I ask them just to blow dry it straight, very rarely do they do that, they try to curl it and I end up looking like an extra from Dallas in the 1980’s! It looks awful… but I am not going to tarnish every hair dresser with the same brush..(hee hee).

So, I have been walking past this hairdresser near to where I live and I quite liked the look of it, so I booked an appointment online and said a prayer to the hair gods.


A few days later, I excitedly walk in, after giving my name was told to sit down and of course even though I am on time, my lady was running late, so I say yes to a glass of water as they don’t seem to have anything sensible to drink, sit back, relax and watch the goings on. Eventually, someone comes over and takes me to the sink and washes my hair, I have to say, I love that bit….and especially if they ask if I want a massage….oooh yes please……mmmmmmmm……….Wash done, wet hair neatly tied up in a towel I am ushered to a chair. I am nervous so it feels like I am waiting for the dentist.

Just as I am studying myself in the mirror, noticing that my turkey neck seems to wobble more when I move or was it just bad lighting - over comes this nice girl who smiles at me (let’s call her Irena) with lovely long luscious hair and very white teeth. I smile back until:


Irena – Hello - Irena (in a VERY thick foreign accent)

Me - Hi

Irena – Cut hair?


I nod nervously and grin through fear.


Irena – How long?


And queue the babbling, especially when I am nervous – it quite literally can go on for minutes and this went something like this….


Me – Well, I think that it is in such bad condition that it needs quite a lot off. I have come to that age where I think it is also good to go a little shorter, so I am thinking maybe 1 and a half inches? Since I started peri menopause it has gone to shit and falling out, I am quite concerned…..blah, blah, blah…..


I keep talking, she unwraps the towel, removes it and brushes through tangles. Then stops and stares at me.


Me - What do you think?

Irena – How long you want

Me – ummmm…an inch and a half?


She shows me an inch and a half and I nod slowly.


Irena – Okay


She goes off to get her tools and I sit there with a wave of wonderment, wondering if I should back out and not go so short but then I think of the everyday battles I have with it and….


Me – Do you think an inch and a half is too much?

Irena – You want this much


She grabs my hair again and points to a length. I always think that it is silly to ask how long on wet hair as when it dries it springs back but I kind of thought, she is the expert.


Me – Is that an inch and a half?


She just stares at me and so I nod very slowly as though I am sentencing someone to death.


Visit to hairdressers
Were you supposed to cut that much?


An hour later, looking like an 80's Charlie’s Angel I emerge from the hairdressers with a length I have not seen since I lost weight and wanted to have a new identity (so, at least 15 years ago). I swallow back tears hard and the worst of it was I gave a tip!

I live in London and have lived in many different countries so I really appreciate how difficult it can be to fit in and learn a new language BUT I have to say…surely if you don’t understand or speak the language then get someone to translate? She was super sweet and she tried but it was awful….Oh why didn’t I complain? Why didn’t I stop her? I know, I know – yes I should have but in the moment I just wanted to follow the yellow brick road and get home.


I kept telling myself that ‘it will grow back’, ‘it will grow back’ and of course it has but just much slower. MICHELLE – where are you????


Back to the drawing board of where to go and have my hair cut and yes next time, I would say something to the manager but that may have unleashed my peri menopause fiend that would not have been pretty….as I say, my hair does grow back and no one has died. I am a great believer in picking my battles and ensuring my energy is used wisely, so that was the persona that paid through gritted teeth, smiled and flipped my '80's waves as I said goodbye!


Until next time….ciao for now

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