Bite Size Memoir

Bite Size Memoir: Bad Hair Day

Posted for Lisa’s Bite Size Memoir: Bad Hair Day using the 10 ‘I remember’ statements instead of 150 words.

“Velvet”, 5 blocks of yellow soap in single bar, wrapped in red & blue printed paper… From the Powerhouse Museum Collection, NSW, under Creative Commons License: Attribution Non-Commercial

I remember when my hair was washed once a week, on Sundays. Mum used yellow Velvet soap as there wasn’t shampoo those days. Velvet (now made by Pental) was sold in Northern Australia as Sunlight soap.  Do you remember how hard soap was, once? Nowadays, I remove the packaging right away, to let it dry  out.

Velvet soap, a later style

I remember my sister usually kept her hair short. One day she told me how she had always felt disgusted, standing behind me on the school bus, looking at the dandruff on the shoulders of my high school blazer.


1969, pigtails

I remember wearing my hair in plaits, a ponytail, or pigtails – kept under control with rubber bands, ribbons, scrunchies, hairclips, or headbands. My aunt fixed it in a bun a few times, and I pestered mum to do it every morning before school until the novelty wore off.

1971, single pigtail

I remember the first time I had my hair styled. It was for my first wedding in 1973. It was lovely and boofy for days.

April Fools Day, 1973

April Fools Day, 1973

I remember how your scalp itches like mad as soon as anyone mentions nits or lice. I don’t recall having them at school, myself, but the pesky little critters swept through my children’s primary school. We took preventative action.

I remember cutting my fringe and trimming my hair for years. I thought I did a pretty good job, too. Nowadays, I still just hack at my fringe when I feel like it. Who takes notice of someone nearly sixty! I intend having a trim for my sixtieth.



I remember putting colour rinses  and permanent colours in my hair, usually chestnut or cherry – never ever blonde. The closest I ever got to blonde was tips in the late 80s. My sister peroxided hers, but the idea just never appealed to me.


1989, with blonde tips

I remember the first time I had a perm, an afro of course, about 1980. The hairdresser commented on how uneven my hair ends were. Not surprising. I began using conditioner for the first time after my perm. I still have my afro comb.

1980, with my Japanese penpal. The afro is half grown out by now.

1980, with my Japanese penpal. The afro is half grown out by now.

In 1990, I remember seeing a barmaid with a glorious head of hair of all shades of brown and grey, and I thought to myself, if I go grey like that, I will be happy. Now, in full sunlight, my hair gleams silver.

2011, with my self inflicted style

2011, with my self inflicted style

I remember my sister’s memorial service, one of my nephews saying: “Oh yes, Christine, of course I recognize you. Still got the mullet, I see.”  I had it cut shortly after that.

2011 - shortest haircut - ever

2011 – a few days later with my shortest haircut – ever


45 thoughts on “Bite Size Memoir: Bad Hair Day

  1. Don’t do that shortest ever one again: it looks like Pauline Hansen !!!!!!!
    The others – all great fun. 🙂 As for having your hair washed in Velvet soap – only the gods knew what that was doing to your scalp, you poor little bugger.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh yes, M-R. I took Pauline Hansen’s photo from the TV Week in to the hairdresser and said I want it like that! True. I think it was a reaction to my sister’s death. Actually, my hair badly needed a good cutback. It grows quick and now is only an inch or so from my waist.

      What sort of soap was your hair washed in, M-R? Velvet is a ‘pure’ soap, and would be far better for my scalp than shampoo, but thanks for the kindly sympathetic thoughts. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

    • Pth-th-th to Margaret-Rose! That short-short cut on you? Fabulous! Gorgeous! You have a beautiful face, and that shows it off; your eyes are striking and impish, and a short cut with no hair down along your sides or jawline draws attention to them.

      Just one woman’s opinion. The correct woman : )

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Sue says:

    Only have one picture of my horrible “curly do” only reason I don’t throw it is that my 2 boys look so cute. I remember grating the velvet soap, & do you remember how it used to crack when it got too dry. I agree with M-R about the short style, definitely not you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • LOL, Sue. Then the edges of the cracks in the soap would change colour after some more time. I’ve grated soap when I’ve run out of laundry powder. I won’t be going short hair again – not that short – no matter how everyone told me I looked younger.


      • Sue says:

        They lied to you. I suppose they didn’t want to tell you how it really looked. The way you have your hair is very soft around your face. Mum said she used the Pears soap, you know the brown oval one, for washing our hair. I’m getting very tempted to cut my hair & perm it again, had 6 inches off about 6 months ago, but as I’m getting older it is thinning a bit and won’t sit the same. Mostly wear it pinned up on top of my head as I hate it blowing in my face.

        Liked by 1 person

        • You reckon, Sue? Yeah, they probably were just being polite. Probably both wishing they still had their own long hair back – peer pressure thing. I remember Pears soap too. I usually just wear mine twisted through a scrunchie on top of my head. I hate it around my face and neck when it’s hot weather. I’m getting thin around the forehead, so I’ll be keeping my fringe.


  3. I LOVE your cute short haircut in 2011! I guess we must be roughly the same age as I see my own hairstyles here through the years. Except the mullet, Christine, of that I am innocent! And bangs are “fringe” in Oz? See how quickly I catch on? Fun post!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I love old pictures–someone else’s of course. 😀 😀
    You are gorgeous in all the pictures! Shortest and long.
    Is that a kaftan you have on in 1978. I was wild about them and made many As soon as I saw interesting material, I’d buy it and throw together a new one.What about you?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m glad you enjoyed my post Kayti. Yes, I do remember reading on your blog about your hair fetish. 😀 (I thought I had commented on this the other day, it didn’t go through, it seems – my internet connection has been dodgy since the weekend.) ❤


  5. I’ve been surfing through the bowels of my mailbox and found this post I had missed a month ago.
    I really enjoyed this post … what a lot of fun. Like Barbara from Silver in The Barn said … we all seem to be of a similar age. I’m sure I too could produce an interesting collage of hair over the decades. Actually I think mine would be scarier! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Sunlight soap – oh how I remember it – pure yellow bars, cracked and hard> I loved all your hairstyles, and as another said, your smile shines brightly through all of them. I think I had just about the same perm and dye jobs you did too.
    Now my hair is super short, 2 months after the “shave”. I think I will be putting some Indigo through it soon for a change from the grey – or maybe I’ll just shave it off again.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are talking about those hair sprays again? So, it’s been two months since I visited your blog then, because I remember that. I’ve walked the dog, done my own walking and now ready to pick up where I left off on your blog this morning. Can’t be much left until I find my previous tracks. Thanks for your thorough visiting. 😀 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I remember my sister giving me my first perm when I was 16 and using the wrong size rollers! I ended up with tight little “Shirley Temple” ringlets instead of the loose waves I wanted. It took forever to grow out!!! Did you ever spray your hair with “Sun-In” to help the sun give you highlights? If I remember correctly, it usually turned my hair orange! 😊

    Liked by 1 person

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