Through no fault of my own (well, okay, it was purely my fault to begin with), I am bald. Not quite bald, but my head is shaved shorter than the buzz cut my 9-year-old kid is sporting. Backstory: when HTB and I broke up, I did everything I could to distance myself from all that he preferred about me. He liked my hair a bit longer, kind of curly, and never jet black. Immediately, I took my own clippers and a box of hair dye from the local drugstore and turned myself into a 44-year-old goth kid with short black spikes and kohl-rimmed eyes. This phase lasted well through my mourning period. Lately, with fall coming on and my propensity for self-transformation with the seasons, I went to the salon to have my color lightened to something in the dark auburn family.

Little did I know that when you used multiple boxes of Garnier Nutrisse in blackest black, the process is tantamount to putting shoe polish on your hair. It is impossible to lighten. But we tried. First we did a clarifying shampoo. Nothing. 30 minutes of a clarifying treatment under the hair dryer and my hair smelled like death but emerged with spotty patches of brown intermixed with that stubborn jet black. My brilliant idea was to just strip all the color off and put on a golden wash and I’d be blonde. Fine by me…I’d been platinum once before I got preggers and it was actually kind of fun. So, 50 minutes of peroxide later, my hairdresser throws up her hands after examining the results—now five shades of burnt follicles. Ouch. My head felt as though I’d been bathing in a vat of ammonia. “Nicki?” I said, “Let’s just shave it off.”

She was mortified. She recently had to shave the head of a colleague who was facing chemotherapy. She couldn’t imagine a perfectly healthy woman asking her to shave her head as though she’d just asked for a drink of water. But, hey, it’s just hair, right? I went back yesterday morning and sat in the chair with a fairly nonchalant attitude. I watched as she tentatively started from the back, asking me constantly if I was sure. My son stared wide-eyed next to me as chunks of hair fell to the floor. I was okay with this. Really. And then she did the sides. Wow. That’s short. I now had a mohawk. Interesting. That gone, the only thing left on my head was 1/2 inch of blonde and white virgin hair (the blonde due to the bleach which had aggressively attacked my naturally dark roots). Okay. It’s done. I can do this. I can do this. I can do this.

There are many women out there who completely rock the androgynous look. Some are so feminine with gorgeous thin faces, great bone structure, and lithe bodies. I will admit to being an attractive woman. I am not conventionally beautiful. The only thing I was truly happy about after the fact was that my head has a nice shape to it. I could pick apart my facial flaws, but I won’t. However, I immediately went home and darkened my lipstick and my eyeliner, put on a skirt, and the largest hoop earrings in my extensive jewelry collection. I do NOT rock the androgynous look, nor do I want to.

I have nothing against those who buck the binary gender system. Truly, this comes from a woman who was engaged to a transman. A woman who gravitates toward the butchest of women. Those who wear men’s clothes and men’s cologne and get “sir’d” left and right. I, myself, do not have a masculine bone in my body, nor do I want one. I love being high femme. I love everything about being a girlie girl. I am a strong, independent, assertive, and sometimes intimidating woman, but I am by no means interested in looking anything but really, really femme.

I got up this morning and looked in the mirror. What reflected back at me was this make-up free woman with a blonde crewcut. She was androgynous. She was me. I worry that my lovers will not be pleased with this new look. In church this morning I got all manner of responses from “are you okay, dear?” to “you work that look, girl!” to “oh, well, honey…you can always try a wig.” You know what? I fucking LOVE this hair! I have no bedhead. I did nothing after I showered but towel dry it. Everyone is saying that they think it will be so cute to watch what happens as it grows out. Guess what? I may not LET IT! I may decide to keep it! Hell, I’ve got the balls to do it. I CAN rock this hair. And if I happen to rock androgyny while I’m doing it, so the fuck what? Yeah, former HTB probably hates it and won’t want to be seen in public with me. Um…give a shit, much? And as for anyone else, if you really care about me, you really don’t care what I look like. Hair or no hair.

I think I’ll send a photo of the new me to Queer Eye Candy. ‘Cause, baby, I’m workin’ it.



  1. Oh girrrrrl I have absolutely NO doubts that you look super, super hot. And if you send in a pic to QEC, you can damn well bet I’ll feature it on Femme Friday. 🙂

  2. ooh wow!!! what bravery!!! i bet its fabulous beautiful!! CONGRATS!!!

  3. I would be happy and proud to be seen with you in public, hon, I have no doubt you are rockin that look. I love your attitude and confidence.

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