My last visit to the salon was supposed to be like any other appointment. A boozy, carefree three hours spent gossiping and bitching to the righteous tune of Sia. And at first, everything was business as usual. My hairdresser rhetorically inquired “red or white?” while simultaneously uncorking a bottle of red. He revived my tired soul with an aromatherapy scalp and neck massage. He bounced around fun new words like “lowlights” and “warmth,” which we both laughed off as he effortlessly foiled in light shades of platinum. It wasn’t until I was at my most vulnerable — after the wash, draped in that stupid neck poncho with nowhere to look but the reflection of the ugliest version of myself I’d see all day — that he broke it too me: he’s retiring. He had recently gotten married, and the trophy husband life was calling his name. Obviously, I get where he’s coming from. It’s calling my name, too, but unfortunately not all of us have been so #blessed as to have already met our rich soulmate Nathan while perusing Hermés scarves at Neiman Marcus. Lucky bitch.
My life was suddenly spiraling into a tornado of fiery rage and anticipation of bad hair days. How dare he leave me! Has he not cherished the last nine years we’ve spent together? I bet this was the stupid husband’s idea. What a controlling, jealous psychopath. I did my best to hold it together: “How great for you, congrats!” Asshole. “You’ll have so much more time to relax!” Have fun getting fat. “I’m sure Nathan is thrilled!” Grotsky little byotch. As soon as my blowout was styled to perfection, I was out of there with nothing more than a one-armed hug, soft smile, and fabulous tip (he seriously is amazing). I ugly-cried all the way to Total Wine, which for the record was like, twenty minutes away, and spent the remainder of the evening drowning my sorrows in a double bottle of Malbec and angrily wailing out the lyrics to early Taylor Swift ballads (I briefly attempted Sia, but it was just too soon).
Being abandoned by your hairdresser is basically like getting dumped by your boyfriend, but ten thousand times worse. First of all, my hairdresser practically was my boyfriend. I mean, look at our dates: he always gave me wine, massaged my shoulders, and told me I was beautiful multiple times. He was also my best friend, therapist, and every six weeks he was my very own Joyce Bonelli (for hair). My life is over, and way more over than if I had only broken up with some boner in a button-down.
So long as your boyfriend breaks up with you after Valentine’s Day and before the start of Christmas season, you basically get nine months free of particularly romantic holidays to forget that tool you thought was the one. You can heal at your own pace, go through a dry spell, a slutty spell, whatever suits you and your needs. Alternatively, my hair’s needs require me to rebound in a little over a month. And then, if I don’t find “the one,” I’ll have to relive this misery again, and again, and again. I’M JUST NOT READY. Is there a Tinder for colorists? Should I ask my friends to set me up? What if I talk about my ex [hairdresser] too much? What if Sia comes on?
There isn’t a happy ending here, ladies. No lesson learned, no advice from the other side. I haven’t found my rebound, and I probably never will. I’m just a root-heavy, blonde-ish wannabe now, and my hair (life) is likely destined for dull, damaged failure and fallout. Joyce, if you’re out there, please put me in touch with Kylie’s wig guy..