Preschool beauty secrets…

Her costume was set out.  Her makeup was laid on the counter, ready for application.  Her routine had been practiced 70 times that morning.

And Mommy was in the shower.

What better time to try her hand at this:

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Yep, that’s right.  A mere hour before her first dance recital, my daughter had taken scissors to her hair while I cleaned myself up.

When I got out of the shower, she came bounding in my bathroom, a huge, proud smile on her face, and exclaimed “Mommy!  I cut my hair!”

I have to admit, I didn’t make the best choice.

What I should have done:  Perhaps acknowledge her pride and independence, not overreact but instead calmly explain that we don’t cut our own hair.

What I did:  Stomped. Her. Buzz.

A total killjoy, I yelled “NOOOOO!” and scared the crap out of her.  Then searched her hair like a mother howler monkey preening her young, trying to assess the damage.

And when I pulled away from her scalp to look her in the eyes, I was met with tears.  She had come to me, all excited and proud, and I had made her feel horrible.  What’s a mom to do?

Thankfully, she actually did a pretty decent job cutting her hair, creating a little fringe near her chin line in an updated “Rachel” for the preschool circuit.  It was still long enough to put back for her recital, so all was fine.  But I did have to have a conversation about how we don’t cut our own hair, because those snips are real.  Speaking from experience, bad haircuts are hard to recover from.

Still, I think there’s some merit there to her sense of self and beauty.  I wish that I could feel as confident in myself when there are markings on my face (in my case, zits and wrinkles instead of markers and Curious George stamps).  That it might not be a bad idea to not put so much stock in to how my hair looks.

So, I’ve come up with a few preschooler beauty tips to try and follow.  Because, seriously?  That girl could do anything she wanted to herself and she’d still be the most beautiful thing on the planet to me.

preschool beauty secrets Preschool beauty secrets...

Less is less.  More is more. 

If a little dab of lotion works wonders, a huge blob should provide enough moisture to turn back the hands of time, circa the Newborn Era.

Matching is for ninnies.

Want to wear two garments of uncomplimentary shades in contrasting patterns? If you’ve got enough sass, then coordinating isn’t an issue.  You wear the clothes, they don’t wear you.

Jewelery is best worn in quantity.

See “Less is less” above.

Go au naturale.

Why bother wiping that peanut butter off your face?  Its natural (and organic if you swing that way) properties will provide just the right balance of foundation and protective barrier you’ll need to face your date night with confidence.

That Bed Head look is totally in.

No need for brushing that mane! Knots and matted sections really emphasize that wild side of you. Not to mention that avoiding a comb shaves time off your morning ritual.

If you’ve got it, flaunt it.

You should feel comfortable in your own skin.  So comfortable in fact that clothing is optional.  It’s all beautiful.  And clothing only gets in the way.

When in doubt, flash those pearly whites.

A preschooler’s precious grin goes a pretty long way, so why not try this fashion accessory out for yourself?

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The Jimmies on Kid Tune Tuesday…

I am in desperate need of some coiffing.  I’ve been letting my hair grow out a bit in order to be able to erase the memory of the wretched haircut I had back in September.  Two trims later and I’m still nowhere close to being able to hide these hideous layers.

What all those layers do is make in virtually impossible for me to roll out of bed in the morning, throw on some nicer sweatpants and take the kids to school.  My morning hair is less than rom-com bed hair.  It’s more like a bird’s nest.  A haystack.  Just shy of looking like I’ve been electrocuted in my sleep.

My kids, on the other hand, wake up looking like little angels.  Even Miss P’s hair, on the longer side, in its disheveled state still has some bounce and manageability to it, only requiring a quick brush through to get out the door.

But I do believe my kids are in the minority.  Maybe you have that kid, the one that has to get their hair doussed wtih water to tame his ragged mane before heading to homeroom.  Or you have the arsenal of detangler on hand to tackle that mop of knots that greets  you in the morning.

If so, this week’s song is for you.

The Jimmies  is a great little band spearheaded by the funkily adorable Ashley Albert.  Her voice has that cuteness about it that appeals to young kids (no wonder she’s done numerous voiceovers!), but it’s not so grating that you can’t listen to it for long.  Imagine a cleaner version of Sarah Silverman, and you’ve got Ashley Albert.

Songs from The Jimmies are indeed like a great haircut – just the right length, a good mixture of spunk and sophistication, with fun lyrics, rockin’ guitars and catchy melodies.

Some of my favorite tunes by The Jimmies include Gonna Get a Hamster (a proclaimation to a hopeful furry pet with a humorous twist at the end) and Do the Elephant, which I featured in a guest post about kid songs that deliver great messages.  And so appropriate during this vicious flu season!

But perhaps the song I’m enjoying the most lately is The Jimmies’ Bedhead.  If I’m not dating myself too much, one thing that I love about this song is that is vaguely remininsicent of Violent Femmes’ “Blister in the Sun.”  A little grungy, with some fierce percussion and a great rhythm, something both kids and adults alike can rock out to.

This song is definitely my Theme Song Du Jour.  Until this wretched cut grows out, at least.


The Jimmies music  is available for purchase through, iTunes, and Amazon.  Check it out now!

What does YOUR hair look like in the morning?  Like a princess?  A Ken doll?  Or a hedgehog?

Top 5 Tricks To Surviving a Bad Short Haircut…

Hiding it..

I’ve lived with this bad short haircut for about a week now.  I’m passed the point of wanting to wear a bag on my head every day, but not past the point where I spend more time than I should styling it in the morning, cursing at my mane and resisting the urge to fling my brushes at the mirror.

I’d been going to the fabulous Roxy Blu at Rebelle in Denver for 6 years, and she knew my hair so well that she could cut around it’s unpredictable cowlicks and quirks and produce a cut that was easy to style, yet had some sass to it.  And I loved my last hair style from her. But after my last cut here in Ohio, I contemplated booking a flight ASAP to Denver, just to get in to see her.  Sure, it’d be a $400 haircut, but I wouldn’t come out of the experience needing a bender either.

My first short haircut here was lackluster, so for Round 2, I decided to put my trust in a Yelp review and went to a different salon near my home.  Oh, wait.  It’s not a “salon,” it’s a studio.  As in, there are “artists” working there.

When I sat down in the chair, the stylist and I seemed to be in agreement about what my hair needed, and I sat their feeling optimistic.  But when all was said and done, I gaped at the amount of hair piled on the floor and immediately thought “Oh crap, this didn’t turn out well.”

In the salon, it’s hard to really SEE the cut because it’s been over-styled and all those Wrong Issues don’t throw red flags just yet. You leave thinking it’s not too bad.  Then you hit the light of day, take a look at your Mullet in the rear view mirror, and the next thing you know you’re drowning your sobs in an extra large glass of Cabernet and Googling wig stores.

For those of you that have short hair, you probably already know the pitfalls of your style.  A bad short haircut is tricky to conceal and hard to recover from. So, I present to you…

The Top 5 Tricks to Surviving a Bad Haircut

5. Adult beverages

Okay, this happens to be my solution of choice, but it’s not for everyone.  Receiving a short haircut that makes you look like an 80′s high school soccer team can have a crushing impact on your ego.  Sometimes, numbing that emotional fall-out with a bit of wine/cocktail/chocolate/manicure/nap can allow you to see that maybe your new appearance is not all that bad.  Whatever your comforting vice of choice is, you’ll need it.

4. Cover the mirrors in your home

I can see you thinking to yourself “my household will never go for this.” And perhaps you’re right.  But constantly looking at your haircut in the mirror and picking apart everything you detest about it isn’t good for your well-being either.  So I say, either cover those mirrors up, or stop looking at them every chance you get. Because that horrid cut won’t magically change it’s shape in the next 3 minutes.

3. Invest in hats

I’m not a head-covering kind of gal, but some of you can pull this off remarkably well without looking like Alfred E Neuman.  For that, I applaud you and encourage you to break out the scarf/fedora/baseball cap/beret and wear it with pride.  And when you do? Make sure you feel as if you’re showing off the hat, and not covering up your bird’s nest.

2. Earrings, earrings, earrings

Baubles around your neckline can do wonders for adding some character and playfulness to your undesired locks. Go big! Go funky! Now is not the time to be demure.  Breaking out those giant hoops can avert the eye away from your hair.

1. If you can’t beat it, join it

In all seriousness, if you’re unhappy with the cut you’ve received, and you don’t feel comfortable trekking back to the salon to get it corrected, explore your hair’s possibilities.  Maybe it’s not the cut you wanted, but are there other options for styling?  Maybe you need to purchase a different styling brush.  Experiment with the way it moves.  It might not lay down flat with all the layers and layers your stylist has installed, but can those layers work in your favor?  Try styling hair the opposite direction and see what happens.  You may be trying to go for smooth, but perhaps a more chunky bed-head look is easier to achieve.  And when all else fails, call on your sense of humor.  Sometimes you do have to laugh to keep from crying.

Know that in the end, as awkward and butchy as you may feel with this new coif, it’s just hair and it will eventually grow back.  I’ve found that these bad cuts usually tame themselves about three weeks after the butchering process.  And this experience has taught me to chose my words carefully when talking to a new stylist, make sure that we’re on the same page before the scissors even touch my tresses, and that I can’t assume they know what I mean by “too much length.”   That kind of talk will only increase my chances of needing a vodka tonic later.

Have you had this experience?  Any tips you want to share on surviving a bad short haircut?

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Snip, snip…

It was about time.  I needed a haircut depserately.  But I’d also been sporting the same haircut for a while now.  I was in that in-between stage of not being able to decide whether I should chop the whole head of hair off, or let it grow long.  And in that brief space of indecision, my hair stylist made a choice. 

Now, let me just say, I’ve been going to Roxy for over five years, and I think I maybe had a bad cut once.  And it wasn’t even a bad cut, it just wasn’t what I wanted.  Her cuts last a while, grow out tremendously well, and she gives me just a small enough nudge to try something new.  A few months ago when I suggested I start the painful process of growing my short hair out, she looked at me and with a straight face said “yeah, I don’t think you’re ready for long hair.”  And I love that about her.  Surely, if I was adamant about growing my hair out, she would have supported me.  But she takes all of me in to consideration, not just the rash decision I might have to sheer my hair down to the length of a grain of rice, but the reason or energy behind it.  Which is why I put my trust in her suggestion on Friday to go a different route with my hair.

I believe she was going for Amelie.  And man, is it short in front.  I’ve never had bangs like this before.  And the sides are blunt, much more bold than I’ve ever sported. 

I know, I can hear you all saying it.  “Gina, just shut up and show us the haircut already!”  Fine.  You win.  To give you an idea of where I came from, here’s a “Before” pic:

IMG 0869 Snip, snip...

Keep in mind this is what we were going for:

And here’s what I have now…

IMG 0948 Snip, snip... IMG 0937 Snip, snip...

The bangs were a shock.  And I got it colored as well, a deep cherry reddish color.  In the chair, after Roxy was done, I loved it.  But once I got home?  My stupid superego went wild over this kind of thing.  It kept saying things to me like “You’re too old for a cut like this” or “You’ve cut off all your womanly hair and now you look like a little girl” and “This cut makes your face look fat and your wrinkles stand out.”  I’m trying to keep out of my own head, but at moments I fear I look like this:

110922063356 girl with the dragon tattoo rooney mara story top Snip, snip...

or this bizarre chick from the 80′s flick Real Genius:
sr4ef1777c Snip, snip...

or, God forbid, even this:

I’m still trying to get used to it, but I do have to admit that this haircut is the easiest one I’ve ever had.  I wake up in the morning and my hair looks normal.  No squirrel’s nest or wall of hair sticking straight up.  Miss P’s reaction was the best though.  As I met her at the stairs when I came home from my haircut appointment, she took my face in her hands, looked at my hair, and said “ooooohhh, Mommy!  It’s beeee-uuuuuu-teeeeee-ful!”  I’m gonna keep her around…