The Reluctant Stylista

I’ve been obsessing about Anya Ayoung-Chee of Project Runway lately, and it’s not just because of the clothes she churns out or the ones she wears (I love almost everything that she makes and I want her wardrobe).  It’s her hair.

Anya Ayoung-Chee

Anya Ayoung-Chee hair

Shaving my hair off has crossed my mind a few times in the past, but it wasn’t really after watching her on Project Runway did I seriously contemplate it.  Well that and meeting Macky Angeles, for sure.

I mean, there’s only so much I can do to my hair.  Earlier this year, what I was really planning to do was go crazy blonde.  But after my recent scare with hair coloring and other product abuse, I decided I didn’t want to destroy my hair with chemical overdose.  And besides, I colored my hair because that was the only way I could change its look without straightening or cutting it short (which would look horrendous on me and would be hard to manage).  Thus, I thought about shaving parts of my head.  And after seeing Anya, with her coloring, small face and build, I thought–”Wow. Maybe that could work for me, too.” Granted, we don’t have the exact same hair.  Hers is only a little wavy while mine is “curlier than wavy and wavier than curly”. But it just might work!

There’s just a fly in my ointment. Several, actually.  Why I’m hesitant to shave my head:

1. I want to sort of look normal in case I have to attend high school reunion this year. But that’s really just a matter of doing it after the said reunion, so this is not really a big deal.  I just thought I’d throw it in.

2. Every time someone says they like my hair so much, I feel kind of guilty when I think about having it shaved. What can I say? I’m a people-pleaser sometimes. And I like compliments as much as the next person! And one of the most often-complimented part of my physical appearance is my hair. I always get asked if it’s natural.  I think if I shave it, I’ll have to endure endless rounds of “Sayang naman buhok mo!” until it grows back. And who knows how long that will take!

3. My hair tends to naturally curl. If I’m looking for a really edgy haircut, won’t the sweet, weedle curling at the ends that my hair tends to do sort of defeat the purpose?

This is how my hair looks, unwashed, in the morning

4. I’m not sure how the shaved part will grow back.  My dad has a ‘fro.  Although I think I inherited my mom’s wavy-curly hair, what if it decides to follow my dad’s genes growing back?  I always joked that I’d probably look like Justin Timberlake circa 98 during his boyband days if I ever decide to fully shave off my hair and then let it grow back, but what if that’s actually true? *shudder*  Also, what if it’s like body hair that when you shave, it’s going to grow back thicker and less soft?

5. Last, and most important, possibly the only real reason why I still haven’t pushed through with it: I hate my scalp.  As much as I like Anya’s look, I’m not sure I can rock exposing my own scalp to the general public. I have a moody scalp!  When I’m stressed or the weather is weird, it’s dry or flaky or I sometimes get little irritations, and that’s like most of the time!  Organic shampoo helps a little but doesn’t eliminate the problem.  And shaving my hair off is not a solution–I’ve seen bald guys with dandruff before, and trust me, it ain’t pretty.

Anya's hair from the side
Anya’s hair from the side

But whenever I watch Project Runway and see Anya (who, I’ve recently found out, was Ms. Trinidad and Tobago-Universe 2008), I’m just mesmerized with her hair.  And its movement.  I just keep staring at it, it looks great!  There are some definite pros I imagine that come with this hairstyle:

1. Less pervs will accost me. Well I don’t know that for sure, but I assume most guys, especially guys that I don’t like, want long, flirty hair on girls, probably ala Anne Curtis. The only guy whose opinion I care about is in Vancouver, Canada right now and I already have his permission to go about as I please with whatever haircut I fancy.

2. It’s cool. As in literally. And in the Philippines, that’d be a great boon!

3. With this haircut, I don’t have to do much styling. I think.  Every thing I put on will all look badass!

4. I’ve never done it before.  If you look at my photos from childhood up to now, little has changed about my hair.  I had it short, I had a fringe, I had it colored–but in terms of style, apart from that one time I had it cut it Halle Berry circa 2000 short, nothing has changed.  I look the same every year.   Sure, maybe shaving it may not be the most photogenic I’ll ever be, but I’d prefer to look at some photos when I can actually say “Oh, that time was different. I went crazy.” So who cares if it may not be cool 20 years from now? At least it’s a change of scene.

5. It was never really about the issue of looking pretty, but it’s about change. I mean, it’s just hair. It grows back. Why not have fun and experiment while I’m still young?


Well?  What do you think?

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40 Responses to “Anya Ayoung-Chee hair: to shave or not to shave”

  1. Lauren says:

    I am seriously envious of your naturally curly hair! Why don’t you try shaving the bottom/back part of your hair? That way it will look really edgy when you tie it up in a pony tail, but normal when you let your hair down.

  2. Nio says:

    Faux-hawk!!! I know how to do it. :D

    Speaking of which, I need to have my mohawk trimmed…

  3. Kira says:

    Hay naku, I love your curly hair and the perfect spirals. Kainis, ako I have to blowdry my hair pa otherwise it’ll look like a rat’s nest.

  4. kaoko says:

    I’m most worried about how your hair will grow back. John had straight hair. He had a short short hair cut. POOF! IT BECAME KOKO KRUNCH!

    Seriously though, it might look awful when it grows back, parang alanganin so you’ll have to be ready to shave it all off when you want to go for a new look na.

  5. ego says:

    I say go for it. ;)

  6. Bea says:

    It’s true about being acosted by pervs. I had my hair cut short. The girls like it, educated boys like it, but pervs don’t. Weeeeeee!

  7. Mariie says:

    Omg I want to do it too! You shoulld go for it I want to badly and yesterdays project runway made me want to do it even more my sister said why not just do one half and part it that way if I don’t like it I can part it on the other half

  8. Nettie says:

    I see this style a lot especially in my school! :) I want to do it kaso baka hindi bagay :) ) Try doing it! For a change naman :>

  9. Jean says:

    koko crunch – i luv it! hehe

  10. Lisa says:

    Yeah! I just decided this morning: I want this style – so I pinned my hair back and will try it out for some days like this and then just GO FOR IT!!
    I hope you’ll do it with me! Be courageous, girl!

  11. Dominique says:

    I have my head shaved like Anya does (its basically a really wide mohawk), and I love it! I have naturally wavy hair that is down to my waist, and it curls up at the ends too. The good part is that if you wear your hair down, which I do when I’m at work, most people don’t notice that anything is different. The bad part (for me anyway) is that my hair grows fast, and its a little coarse, so I have to shave it at least once a month, or else it sticks out everywhere.

    • Alex says:

      I was kind of thinking of cutting it really close but not actually shaving it so that the hair that grows back won’t be coarse…I don’t know how that’ll work out, I’ll have to consult the hairstylist first. xD

  12. Nelle says:

    I don’t know if you alredy shaved it or not, but I just wanted to let u know that I too was totally inspired by Anya’s gorgeous hair and I got just about 3 inches on each side of my head shaved, I wanted something edgy and not everyday girlie hair. I have pretty long and straight hair, and I am very happy with the results. Almost everyone thought I was insane having a Britney Spears moment, but its so important to stay tru to yourself. And thank you for posting this, b/c it is so yummy to know there are other people like me who love anya’s hair and take inspiration from it.

    • Alex says:

      Wow, I’m so glad you rocked it! I haven’t had it shaved yet, mostly because I just remembered my brother’s having his wedding soon, but I’m totally excited about it! However, I’m leaning towards a more subtle undercut on one side first to test how my scalp will look with the haircut. Crossing my fingers!

  13. Estela says:

    Check out Lindsey Pavao of The Voice. You have the same hairstyle. I can’t post here a photo of her. But here’s a link…

  14. Reba Chapple says:

    I too was obsessed with Anya’s hair. I have super curly hair that was shoulder length. I just did. I shaved the sides of my head, and I love it. It look’s cute curly, but it can be straightened. Also, it can be styled so it doesn’t look like a mohawk. Just do it, you will love it.

  15. Juliet Farmer says:

    considering doing this right now, too. need to see photos of some of you who did it and were happy w/the results! :)

  16. Rose says:

    I did it, well not all but a side part. And I love it!! Have very long hair, so many people were shocked, but i think it gives me an edge, not the normal boring long hair :) also, if i put my hair the other way, its very easy to hide. ive had it for almost a year and still am excited every time i get reshaved. if it feels right, and youve thought about it: do it!

    (dont know if this pic works:

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