Monday, January 13, 2014

I Got A Middy! Styled Naturally

Well, I finally took the plunge, or um cut, so to speak, and I'm both terrified and excited all at once. Below are pictures from almost every angle of how my hair looked after leaving the salon with just a little gel put in and allowing it to air dry. I really wanted to show what the haircut would look like without vintage styling. I realize it will look different on non-curly hair, but it's actually a fairly modern looking cut overall. (I will warn you that if you have naturally curly hair, it can become very poofy and out of control quickly because it is a shorter cut.)

First, if you've been a vintage loving gal for very long, you've heard of the legendary middy haircut, and how that's the only way to get that classic 40s and 50s hair. You've probably also heard or read how difficult it can be to get a stylist to understand what it is and to actually commit to giving you the cut. I have to say I've admired many people on the web who have had cute middys for quite some time, but was scared to try it, as even the middy long is a shorter haircut by today's standards. However, I needed a change, and was hoping this would give me a chance to try more authentic vintage hairstyles. 

I have learned a few things already about a middy. First, if you sleep on it without a set in, it looks horrible, on me anyway. Second, it is short, really short, even the middy long is much shorter than the diagram looks like it would be. Third, you can and must avoid the bubble/ball effect of this potentially old lady looking haircut. Fourth, it's a medium to high maintenance cut for most people. In other words, you have to do something to it most of the time. I can already see though that once you get setting and combing it out down, it would/could actually take a lot less effort than many modern hairstyles. It just takes some planning ahead and practice.

As far as having trouble finding a stylist to give the cut, I was really blessed in that area. You see, I only get a real haircut about once or twice a year and spend the rest of the time in between growing out cuts. That said, I've had the same woman cutting my hair since my first haircut as a kid. However, she did not give me this haircut. The salon is a tiny one in our nearby tiny town and is owned and operated by three old ladies of whom the youngest in her 60s. The lady who cut my hair is close to 80 and spent the late 50s and early 60s at big salons in Chicago and Detroit. So, she knew exactly how to cut a middy and I think was a little excited to do it. The whole time she cut, she told me her life story, which I love hearing older people do that, and it was a wonderful experience through and through.

Lots of people online have written about how the new techniques for cutting hair are so different from the old that it's next to impossible to find someone who knows what they are doing for cutting a middy. Might I suggest you look to some of the older stylists in your area? Many of them are still working part time and love the opportunity to meet new people. Be aware that they are probably not working at the cool salons and may only have old ladies for customers usually, but age doesn't equate inability in all areas. Not to mention that they may be able to work you faster and charge less, because they may not be as much in demand. (My cut cost $15!) 

The salon I go to is called Main Street Beauty Shop and although it's not the first place most people would think to go, I can't imagine going anywhere else, and every time I have I've regretted it. There's just such a charm about an old fashioned beauty shop and the conversation between the older ladies is half the fun. An hour spent there is just fun, and really makes you feel girly and nostalgic.  

 Outfit Details:
Dress-vintage NOS found on eBay
Cardigan-Old Navy
Raspberry stockings-either eBay or Amazon a couple years ago
Bangle bracelets-vintage bakelite from eBay
Brooch-vintage Mariachi man from eBay
Shoes-brown suede round toe pumps I've had for years (No picture in this post, but you can see them here.)
Earrings-small gold hoops, clip-on

Overall, I'm happy, but am looking forward to posting what the middy looks like styled vintage! 

So, what has been your experience with vintage haircuts? Are you willing to take the leap?

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