On Being Blonde

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The thing about being blonde is that once you’ve been blonde, you have to stay that way. Because there’ll always be that person who constantly reminds you, “Oh, but I liked you so much better blonde!”

You may have not been born blonde, but it’s OK. True blondes can also be created. Your soul is blonde, your aura is blonde, even if the hair on your head is black or red or brown. All you need is a good stylist. Blonde, like a groove, is in your heart.

Once you’ve been blonde for awhile, you have to stay that way. You begin to crave the feeling of bleach seeping into your brain, burning a little. You learn to love the smell of it. You enjoy the feeling of a head full of foils, hot under a dryer cap.

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It’s a state of mind, really. It’s a peculiar lightness.

When you’re blonde, you command immediate attention, especially in places like New York where blondes are scarce. You might be the only pale-haired person on your subway car.

Being blonde is like being back-lit.

There are so many hues of blonde to play with and all of them sound lovely: wheat, gold, honey, caramel, platinum, strawberry, flaxen, ash, baby blonde. There’s a shade of blonde for everyone.

Sometimes you burn out on blonde and try a new color. Been there, done that. But wait! You suddenly get the itch to go back. Anything can spark it: a picture of a celebrity, a stranger in the hallway, a photo of yourself as a blonde. And immediately you think, I will do anything to be blonde again. You must satisfy the blonde gods. You think, dump a carton of bleach on my head RIGHT NOW. Once you look at your newly-blonde self, you breathe a sigh of relief. I’m home, you think. I am myself again.

When you’re blonde, people will assume all sorts of things about you: you’re dumb, you’re slutty, you’re glamorous, you’re “Marilyn,” you’re a spoiled princess, you’re super sexual, you’re icy cold.

The myth of the blonde dates back centuries. The word itself was coined in approximately 1481, but the “blonde” goes back further than that. Hera and Aphrodite were blonde; so were Diana and Venus. According to certain European folklore, blonde babies were the first to be stolen by changelings. Dulcinea, the ultimate beauty of “Don Quixote,” was blonde. If you’ve got pale hair, you’re in pretty good company.

Marilyn Monroe was blonde. Beyonce is blonde. Jean Harlow was the original platinum blonde bombshell. Anna Nicole, Lady Gaga, Paris Hilton, Carolyn Kennedy, Christie Brinkley … blonde. Hitchcock preferred to cast icy blondes in his movies and delighted in torturing them onscreen. The Lannisters are blonde. Reese Witherspoon was “Legally Blonde.” Gwen Stefani has the most unattainable blonde: perfect platinum, never roots. You know that isn’t cheap. A flawless color like that with a sleek shine and no ragged ends means one thing: money.

Being blonde is like being a mermaid, a princess, an angel, a fairy. It’s like being a movie star, a unicorn, the fluff of a dandelion gone to seed. Being blonde makes you feel like the brightest, shiniest sparkler on the Fourth of July.

When you’re blonde, you’ll spend hours toning, conditioning and babying your hair. You know what it’s like to have chemical breakage, to see your precious strands fall out of your head and into the garbage. You’ll spend hundreds of dollars to attain the perfect hue. It’s just the facts of life. Once you’re blonde, it’s really hard to let it go. TC mark

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