Yesterday morning, after forcing myself to get up and sending the boys off to school, I collapsed back to sleep on the couch. There was absolutely no reason why I was so tired, I had gotten a full night’s sleep, hung around all weekend long without answering a single email and even assigned myself zero responsibilities for Monday.

I oculd have just draped myself on the couch all day long, watching the last few episodes of Glee (I’ve been on a non-stop marathon since discovering it on Netflix and Hulu) but then the lazy Monday would very easily eclipse into a lazy Tuesday, Wednesday and so forth.

On top of that, the site was a little broken and Scott was frantically trying to fix the bugs people were experiencing. Normally when my site breaks, I turn into a completeΒ AAAACK!!!freakazoidAAAACK!!!, but yesterday I just was like, “ehhh. site’s down” and resumed Season 2 Episode 17.

Clearly, there was something wrong with me. And when I’m in a funk, there’s only ONE way to fix that.

A makeover.

So I called my hair salon and booked an appointment with whichever stylist was available in 2 hours.

After donning the shower curtain (I hate those things!) I sat in the chair. Sarah asked, “So what are we going to do today?”

“Cut it all off. All of it.”

“Uh, ALL of it? You mean like 2 inches?”

“No. ALL OF IT. And let’s make whatever hair is left BRIGHT RED.”

Sarah clearly was not accustomed to this sort of deranged clientele and she kept trying to shake me back to reality, knowing full well that if I woke up tomorrow morning with a Ronald McDonald colored stubble on top of my head I’d probaby return to the studio with my meat cleaver.

Sarah brought out color swatches, “How about a caramel highlights?” I shook my head. “Okay, how about this violety auburn?”

“Woman. I said BRIGHT! VIBRANT! Get me outta this funk!”

She conferred with another stylist, most likely telling her, “okay, call the cops if she makes any sudden movements or reaches for my clippers,” and then hestitantly brought me out a cup of hot coffee, “Here you go, sweetie.”

A few sips of hot coffee later and….uh….I snapped out of it. OH BULLDOG BARNACLES. What have I done?????

All I needed was caffeine and I’m going to end up looking like that girl from Eurythmics…..except Asian. and short. and wearing a shower curtain. and speaking in front of a crowd at BlogHer Food in 4 days.

Luckily, Sarah had just started.

I must say I can rock it with the tin foil look. Oddly, my iPhone suddenly had better reception with the foil on my head.

After 30 minutes of color setting in, it was time to cut.

Sarah asked, “So would you like to donate to Locks of Love?

After my little caffeine infusion, I really hadn’t planned to go through cutting all of my hair. Maybe a more sensible trim to knock off an inch or two. It had taken me 3 years to grow from just under my ear (the photo top right in my header) to just a few inches above my waistline. I had long, luscious, shiny, flippable hair that I like to curl into flowing spirals.

I still had half a bottle of Bumble & Bumble Brilliantine, which promised to give me “polish and a sort of languid, slept-in, sexy look” every morning.

I had sexy big hair.

Cut it all off? I could selfishly say no thank you, but…..the children. How could I not!?

“Uh, okay, I guess.”

To donate, the hair must be braided into a ponytail and the hair must be at least 10-inches long.

For just a moment, hold out your two hands to measure 10-inches. That’s a lot of hair. Which meant I was going to end up bald after all.

Every muscle in my neck was tense.

Sarah put my hair in a tight ponytail at the nape of my neck.

Yup, that measures 10-inches.

Braided it.

And the moment of truth. I held my breath so long I almost passed out until I realized that if I moved an inch in any direction it might mean that her razor-sharp scissors would accidentally cut too much off.


You know what? It was such a freeing, liberating experience! It felt like I just lost a bunch of emotional baggage (who knew I stored baggage in my hair?) and I think I even lost 2 pounds as I have very thick, heavy hair.

I was giggling so much that I couldn’t hold my phone still enough to take a photo!

The result? The cheapest therapy I’ve ever had. $100 for cut, color and a donation to Locks of Love on top of that.

Scott took this photo this morning and reminded me that I look even younger than my “pretend age” of…..uh…29.

Oh heck, forget fibbing about my age anymore!

Hello, world, I’m nearly 39 years old!

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Comments 92

  1. Shira

    You look amazing! Every mom is entitled to an overloaded melt down mom moment – you handled yours a lot more gracefully than some!

  2. Cynthia

    I love it! I did the same thing yesterday – cut lots off and instead of going vibrant red (I am 50) ending my brief two-month trial with letting my grays show through and covered them up! I have highlights, they’re golden – but I love, love, love the red. Love more so how you donated your locks – I didn’t have enough to give away. Now you need to update your website photo.

  3. Cecilia

    You look beautiful!!! I too donated my hair a couple of years ago to Locks of Love, and it felt so good! Way to go!

  4. sara

    Hurrah for playing in the hair color!!! I’m doing a flip-change on my color next for the exact same reason! πŸ™‚

  5. Kristy W.

    Love your new “do” Jaden. And I looove that you donated your hair. You are one amazingly talented hot momma!

  6. Kaname650

    I have donated my hair four times for a total of 67 inches (5′ 7″) and I’m a guy! BTW, I have also donated over eight gallons of blood. And Jaden, you are one sexy 39!!! Keep rockin’!!!

  7. Cooking with Michele

    I think the new do makes you look younger, prettier, and sexier – just one woman’s opinion! And my daughter has donated her ponytail 3 times now – it’s for a great cause and you should be proud!

  8. Pam

    Your haircut looks fabulous! Seriously. I did not expect to see that as the end to the story. Great highlighting. And good job on the ponytail. I keep threatening to cut mine off, and I had every intention of donating it through a local salon that helps cancer survivors with wigs. Now that I have your link, I may well do that instead. Thanks for the info. And I only hope my haircut comes out as good as yours when my day comes.

  9. Freetobe

    you look more like the vibrant, energetic and fun person you are! Thanks for sharing the story, I enjoyed reading it over a cuppa.

  10. sally cameron

    You look absolutely gorgeous Jaden! Love the new “do” and colors. So flattering and youthful! I’ve considered cutting mine shorter but can’t bring my self to do it! Not that it’s as long as your was. You look so refreshed!

  11. missuspie

    Your new look sparkles, Jaden! but you always look fabulous anyways! Enjoyed reading this blog entry. Thanks for putting the smiles back on my face today :))

  12. joey

    Jaden you look amazing with your new haircut and color! Just gorgeous! I now know exactly what type of therapy to book! πŸ™‚

  13. Sherri M

    Love the new you, Jaden. The hair is gorgeous and the color is so right for you. VIBRANT!!!!! You have every reason to feel proud for donating. It means so much to the folks who get it. Congrats!

  14. Wendy O

    Wow. Fantastic. You look maaarvelous. I can relate. I do the same thing when I am in funk. You feel all your energy flowing back and you look great. The donation was the icing on the cake.

  15. George Comstock

    Good move, good choice on your hair, good story. Everytime I see that main photo with the aluminum foil…I think the story is about a “baking with kids” anecdote gone horribly wrong. As a guy I’m basically agnostic if not dubious about all feminine artifice (makeup, handbags, manicures…you know, the girly stuff greatly appreciated by the fairer sex).

    But I love it when a story helps me understand how profoundly those gestures of personal care enhance women’s lives and feelings of well being. So, you go girls, get gorgeous!

  16. Kendel @ Eating Abroad

    Congratulations on your liberating new haircut. You look great. I’ve donated my hair 3 times to Locks of Love and still remember the first time I felt my hair brush against my chin as my aunt sliced through my long, thick pony tail. Such an exciting but frightening feeling after hiding behind long hair all my life.

  17. Margie

    I donated my hair about 2 years ago. I let it grow out with the intent of donating it to Locks of Love. After my mission started, a more personal meaning came from it. My brother, the light of my life, was diagnosed with chronic leukemia. It’s still one of the things I am most proud of. BTW, you look marvelous. Holla!

  18. City Girl to Country Girl

    I did that once as a 14-year-old. You know, getting a chin-length bob and dying it red (except mine had blond streaks in front) and then I decided that I looked better with long, one single color hair. It was not a good experience for me, but seeing those highlights on your hair makes me think that maybe I should give it a try again…with normal colored highlights and still…with my long hair.

    It looks cute by the way!

    City Girl to Country Girl

  19. veron

    hahaha…had my own makeover earlier this year. I was tired of covering the greys all the time on the top of my head I figured a lighter color would wouldn’t make them as obvious. Now hubby calls me his blonde chick and makes some blonde jokes sometimes…:)

  20. Lizzie Longenecker

    Good for you! You look terrific with your new ‘do. I did Locks of Love once, and it was oddly satisfying chopping off that much hair. But gosh darn it takes forever to grow again!

  21. Kiran @

    Two similarities here:

    1- I donated to Locks of Love more than 2 years ago as soon as I completed my MBA! It was liberating!

    2- I refuse to believe I am over 29 myself. You are not alone πŸ™‚

    Looking gorgeous Jaden πŸ™‚

  22. emiglia

    You’re amazing for giving to Locks of Love… and even more amazing because of how adorable your new haircut is. Love the highlights!

  23. Kim in MD

    You are adorable Jaden, and you do not look a day over 21! Kudos to you for turning a “yuck” day into a charitable event! I love your new “do”! You are gorgeous! πŸ™‚

  24. Binky

    I’m so late on this… I love the new hair! And I love that you donated the rest of it. Beautiful, inside and out. πŸ˜€

  25. Vanessa Naidoo

    I’ve just discovered “Steamy Kitchen ” and think u look beautiful with your new hairdo and you can cook too πŸ™‚ Thnx for all the great recipes

  26. Nina

    You look amazing Jaden! And still sexy and young at 39! Thank you for showing us how to turn a humdrum day into an uplifting and inspiring experience.

  27. Denise

    I just found your site (hello!), huge coincidence that I saw this post. I am planning to cut my hair to donate to Locks of Love. I want my hair to go to a little girl who has Progeria. I don’t really care which little girl, as long as one of them get it, but preferably one who wants to be a redhead! heh.

    Hooray for you, and I’m glad I saw this post! And for the record, I like the red highlights.

    Have a nice day!

    p.s. my husband is Chinese too! πŸ™‚

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