Sunday, November 16, 2014

Aqua Net Memory

When I hear the words Aqua Net hairspray, a certain olfactory memory zooms to the front of my brain. It is the 70's, children. My mother wore her hair in a swept up French roll which she sprayed into place with a generous top coat of Aqua Net. It had this solvent-like scent that could travel through walls with incredible speed. I swear I could smell it three rooms away before I heard her pop the cap off the can. Which brings us to yesterday. When I heard the term Aqua Net bangs for the very first time. Without Googling up an image I knew precisely what they were talking about. Just for fun I Googled anyway, and was treated to this. Immediately I thought of a woman whom I have known for thirty or so years. And she still wears her hair the very same way she did back then. Observe her bangs.

This was on a relatively calm day, hairwise. Probably soon after a haircut. My memory is that when she would complain that her hair was much too long and in need of a trim, her bangs were at least twice this high. She continued to crimp and spray them into a mostly vertical position as they grew out. She left in her wake the distinctive smell of Aqua Net. I point this out not to be bitchy, because suddenly it feels as though I am being pretty bitchy, petty even. I point this out because we are all survivors of questionable hairstyles. Particularly those from the 80's. I personally am still in recovery from those dark times before good anti-frizz, curl-taming products were available. But most of us move on to commit new and interesting and perhaps even more regrettable crimes of coiffure. Maybe it makes sense to stick with what you know. The only real advantage to changing up the style is that I can accurately date a photo by how my hair looks. 

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