Donna Kim-Brand


Parting Is Such Sweet…Hair Psychology?

Have you lain on a couch in your hair salon dealing with deep rooted issues of your Hair Psychology? What?? I didn’t think so!!

I almost always part my hair on one side – the left- which some psychologists would say indicates a dominance of my left brain; the logical, analytical, intellectual side. I just always parted my hair there because that’s where the part naturally opened up and also because parting on the other side made the hair follicles ache to be bent an unfamiliar direction.

Psychologists would say that parting hair on the right side expresses my artsy, rhythmic, creative side. The only rhythm I get on the right is the beat of a pounding headache from those angry follicles!

Don’t get me wrong. I’ve experimented…zig zags using the tail of a comb or cuticle stick for a clear part line, extreme diagonals across my scalp for a dramatic hair sweep across my forehead, a short part then all hair swept back over the crown, and even brushing back with no part. The last option leaves me looking too much like my elderly mother, so it’s not a look I go for unless my hair is wet. And while I don’t ever plan on having a messy part, which is currently all the rage to go along with the ‘bedhead’ look, sometimes it just ends up that way.

While some heads and hair styles allow for changing it up and making style statements by parting your hair in different locations, angles or shapes, others tend towards one approach based on face shape and hair texture.

For instance, if your hair is fine or limp, try a deep side part to lift the roots and add volume. When you brush your hair diagonally back across your crown with such a part, it balances out and gives a sense of overall oomph. For curly or rougher textured hair, brush the hair back without a part for a full-flow effect, or part in the middle of your head.

Mostly, though, people choose parts that will either hide or enhance their facial shape. Square shaped heads or jaws do well with a side part and bangs sweeping across the forehead to add softness. Round face shapes can take a deep side part which cuts off some of the spherical nature by how the face is framed. Or try a middle part which adds length and symmetry, making the face look more oval. Just stay away from layers that flip out, whatever the part. A deep side part hugs the cheekbones and breaks up the chin line, which can help if your heart-shaped face includes a pointy chin. For those of you with a diamond shaped face structure, stick to side parts and avoid short bangs. Shorter styles work best with this face shape since the focus stays up towards your eyes and cheeks, rather than intensifying the length of your face.

You need to experiment to see what part-place you like best and what is most functional. I know when I part my hair too deeply on the side, I might feel sexy, but the tendency to flop in my face and cover my eyes is a real nuisance when I’m teaching. Following up by sticking my hair behind my ears really does spoil the effect! I can either let that drive me to a Hair Psychologist, or on such days I am better off choosing a higher part, which allows my hair to be more cooperative.

If your hair tends to part naturally in one spot, you can best retrain your follicles while your hair is wet. Brush freshly washed hair, choose a new part place and apply gel to hold it in place. As you dry your hair, direct the blower and brush in the new direction. It might take a few tries for both you and your hair to feel comfortable. Or you might just revert to your default parting ways. But at least it will be a conscious choice, knowing it’s the look that makes you feel your best. And that, my friends, is way less expensive therapy than a psychologist!

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