Beauty Confessionals: I can’t stop cutting my own bangs

I cut my own hair on the regular. I’m only half-ashamed, which is less than I should be; in a story I recently wrote for FASHION about high-priced haircuts, I owned up to going it alone when I’m out of town or just too cheap to see my regular guy, “I use a pair of drugstore hair scissors and the memorized instructions of a YouTube tutorial to vaguely follow the lines of his most recent cut.” Yeaaaah.

Cutting one’s own hair isn’t, for the long and wild-haired of us, much of a beauty mistake, per se. I confess to nothing! The imprecision fades – mostly? – into the length and depth of my hair, which is wavy and messy-on-purpsies in part to accommodate my late-night, “what if,” WTF haircut ideas.

The problem starts when the same principle is applied to bangs, because bangs aren’t the same. Bangs are up there, right there, as much of a thesis statement about your whole look as a bold lip or one of those mega-necklaces we all wore last year. Getting a bang wrong is deadly. Knowing this, but being an idiot, I decided I needed long, heavy, undone-just-right winter bangs after watching one too many eps of New Girl, which is basically the same as being drunk when it comes to deciding you need bangs.

At first, it went… well. They looked good! I went slow and steady, just millimetres at a time, then cutting little ridges into the ends (see, I’m pro), then combing them up into a mini-mohawk and chopping the ends of that off too, for reasons of texture or weight, I don’t remember (those YouTube videos blend together). I left the sides longer, like Zooey’s, and felt mad adorable, especially in a ponytail.

However: the problem with cutting bangs isn’t just cutting bangs. The problem with cutting bangs is when you start to cut more bangs. So I did, and so I tweeted (and shamefully @-replied to FASHION’s online boss Randi’s “nooooo” with “We’re not at baby-bang level but we left Sienna Miller behind a while ago”). Preparing to enter the world with my way-wrong bang-face, I used a previously unopened straightening cream and blow-dried everything as far south as possible. “I cut them myself,” I tentatively told a boy (reader, he is cute), not taking credit so much as covering.

Bangs, of course, are unfixable. Like the over-plucked eyebrow and the wax-burned upper lip, there’s nothing to do that doesn’t make it worse, or more obvious. It’s been a few weeks, and I’ve popped Viviscal and bought little pins from Target and relied a lot (too much) on hats. It’ll take a while before I have bangs I like – and then probably another month or two before I screw them up again.

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