"Why I decided to cut off all my hair after my wedding."

Image: Supplied.

“Don’t you dare chop your hair.”

“No, no, no, no, no.”

“Don’t you do it.”

I did it anyway. I chopped all my hair off into a long bob – a rather long bob, but that still counts, right?

Quite frankly, these sorts of how-very-could-you comments had a counterintuitive effect on me. I hate the idea of having my identity tied to any one thing – a bodily feature, in particular. But that’s exactly how I had been feeling, tied to my hair.

It was long. It was thick. It was heavy. And it was very, very bridal.

It may sound superficial – OK, you can probably delete the word ‘may’ from there – but a hairstyle, any hairstyle, has a particularly uncanny way of marking a certain period in our lives – the places we lived, the job we walked to each and every day, the partner we were with, even ‘that’ dress; the one we probably should have thrown away after the very first wear.

Think about it.

If we look to Hollywood (like any very accurate, very non-scientific study would) it’s clear that there’s often more to a haircut then well… hair, papaya exfoliants and leave-in coconut oil treatments.

Take Hilary Swank – on November 1 2007, the actress finalised her divorce from actor Chad Lowe. And on November 2 she allowed Oprah to snip away at nine inches of hair in front of millions of viewers. In her words, “Divorce, schmivorce.”

Meanwhile, Emma Watson tamed her signature frizz with a close-cropped pixie cut after the filming of Harry Potter finally came to an end.

Emma Watson's bold transformation. Images via Getty.


Speaking to The Metro she said, "[It] felt, right, I’m 20, I’m not a little girl any more... I needed a drastic change and that’s what the crop was all about."

As women, we tend to instinctively opt for a chop after a big life change. But why?


For me, it all comes down to control - two very different types of control:

  1. Wanting control in a state of powerlessness, like a breakup or redundancy.
  2. Or exerting control over a situation rife with opportunities, like a new career path or relationship.

In my case, my dramatic (if you can call a ‘lob’ dramatic) makeover falls into the second category. As naff as it may sound, changing my hair seemed to be an excellent symbol of renewal, a way to help me feel like a new ‘me.’

After 'the chop.' Images: Supplied.


About three months ago I walked down the aisle towards my now-husband. Sitting nearly at my waist when blow dried straight, my hair at that time covered a third of my body - and that disney princess appeal was exactly what I wanted at the time.

But post-wedding it was time for a change and getting that big chop was my way of asserting control over my outside appearance, when I felt entirely different on the inside. After all, even in this era of been-there-done-all-that, marriage still affects who you are to the outside world and who you are on the inside. Post continues after gallery...

So, two weeks after the wedding day and just before the honeymoon, I booked in with hairstylist Sarah Johnson at Edwards and Co in Sydney’s Surry Hills. I brought with me a picture of Olivia Palermo, which I was told was, “far too mumsy,” and another of Rosie Huntington-Whiteley which had, “a nice amount of texture.” And that was that. The Disney-princess-hair was chopped in favour of a rather long bob, all with a little texture in the back and an angled cut at the front to frame the face.

It sounds trite, but leaving the salon with my new chop, I did feel different. Oddly, I felt more myself with my ‘lob’ - suddenly, I had a neck and shoulders and a face - a different face.

The first time my husband saw the new ‘do he said, “You look different, much older,” and then quickly - and I mean really quickly - he followed with, “in a good way.”

And he was right.

Have you ever had a drastic hair change?