Make no mistake: I love my waist-length hair. I’ve been cultivating those hippie strands since I was 14. (Rosario Dawson’s wild mane as junkie Mimi Marquez in Hollywood’s less-than-stellar Rent remake was solid inspiration.) Now, it’s the first thing people notice. Friends stroke my head and braid the ends, envying its healthy, product-free freedom. It’s a big part of who I am—until suddenly, it isn’t.
Perhaps nonchalance has given way to neglect. I never brush my hair. It sits in a tangled mass at the neckline of my jacket, and a five-minute walk on a gusty day results in stringy dreads. I’m not good at beauty maintenance—my vanity feeds an outsized clothing obsession. Compared to the breezy, short cuts I keep seeing on models and fashion insiders, my one-length locks are beginning to feel flat, heavy—not to mention boring.
Emily Weiss, founder of beauty blog phenom Into the Gloss, is a well-photographed short-hair convert. “It’s fun to change your look,” she tells me at a Holt Renfrew event in Toronto. “It’s just hair. It grows!” Karlie Kloss, Daria Werbowy and designer Olivier Theyskens have all lopped off their locks recently, which Weiss attributes to fashion’s current androgynous mood (see Winona Ryder in Reality Bites for inspiration). Weiss, 28, took scissors to her own hair a year ago, shearing it into a severe, chin-length bob. “I kept snipping and snipping, and the next thing you know, I had a Leonardo DiCaprio circa 1994 haircut,” she says of her boyish crop, now maintained by famed hairdresser Didier Malige.
The idea of severing your strands has a way of taking hold. In the face of “Don’t do it!” doubters, I grow steadfast in my resolve. But like a lover languidly enjoying that final tryst, I decide to savour my last 10 days of long hair, wearing—with help from Toronto’s coolest salons—all the styles I’ve always wanted but never tried. See the gallery to check out Emily’s 10 styles, pre-chop.