When I was considering cutting my hair short I tried to find examples of women with short Type 2/3 curls, and as you probably know if you've ever considered a cut, they are few and far between. There are plenty of "short curly cuts" that feature curling wand-induced waves and curls, but those are not a reliable predictor of what my hair will look like when I wake up in the morning. If at all possible, I like to find my haircut inspiration and then study the cut from every angle - front, side, back - and in many different situations from wash day to gym hair to refreshed 4th day hair. Perhaps it's a lot to ask, but the world of social media has been a big help in this regard. TV and movies? Not so much.
That is, until recently.
I was settling into the latest binge-worthy drama Ozark on Netflix last week (think Breaking Bad, but set in the Missouri Ozarks and starring a financial planner instead of a high school teacher), when I was struck by one of the characters' curls. Ruth Langmore, played by Julia Garner, is the brilliant ring-leader in a family of criminals and holds her own against stars Jason Bateman and Laura Linney. Following my Netflix binge I promptly got on Google to search for Garner's curly hair routine (as you do, when you're a curly) and unfortunately I came up short. After watching and reading interview after interview with Garner throughout her career, inexplicably none of the interviews have asked her the one question we all want to know "what do you do with your hair?"
I did learn though, that she hasn't always had curly hair. Garner told TheCut "When I was like 12, suddenly my roots started growing out curly and the ends were straight," she recalls of that fateful time. "It looked like a rat's nest — it was disgusting. I went to the hairdresser to fix it and he had to cut all my hair super short, so that all of my hair could be curly," Garner recalls. "That was one of the weirdest experiences that I've ever had in my life. I went to school the next day and everyone was looking at me like, Who's the new girl? My best friend didn't recognize me."
She embraced the dramatic new look. "I also started wearing super red lipstick when I was like, 14. I just feel like a lot of boys were like, 'What're you wearing lipstick for? Are you trying to like, impress us?' And I'm just like, 'No, I'm wearing it for myself.'"
I can get behind a woman who wears her hair, makeup and clothes because she likes it, and not for anyone else.
I have cut my hair short a couple of times now, and each time I was met with a surprising number of people who felt the need to tell me that curly hair does not look good when it's short. That it made me look old. And that they preferred it long. I can honestly say that I don't care what they think, but if I were younger and less confident it would have upset me and hurt my self esteem. This is why I think it's so important that the women we see on TV, in movies, on the news, on red carpets, and in our magazines continue to push boundaries and wear their natural texture no matter what response they're met with. I'm thankful for Garner and all of the women who continue to wear their hair for themselves.
By the way, I have asked her about her hair, and I will definitely let you know if I hear back.