Saturday, 29 October 2011

Hair here, hair there

That filamentous material - Hair, is one of the key defining characteristics of the mammalian class. So much has been written, researched and practised in the pursuit of hair perfection.

It is also a conundrum, in that I for one, am a bit lost. There are people who will go to any length and depth to ensure hair is one of their outstanding and constantly evolving features. And then there are people who are particularly dedicated in the search and removal of hair. Of course, not to forget many of us, who have our acts set rather firmly on both sides, or should I say above and below the neck line!

From the bald to the bountiful, from the curly to the straight, from the roots to the cutting edges of a hairstylist's blade and everything in between, hair is the cause of much joy and sorrow. Poems have been composed and sung, films have been made and dedicated, even glorious work of many an art has been about the mane on top of your head.

What is it, with this obsession about hair? I recollect watching a rather interesting debate about hair, length, colour, texture, thickness, styles and more on a local Malayalam language TV channel, that I rarely switch to. The debate was heated, would be a understatement. Especially, with the female participants being very vocal in their views.

Trial pack received from Unilever
It is also a fact that hair and it's associated industries are worth billions of dollars today. When Indiblogger put up the contest, on a whim I thought let me try. Ever since, I actually received the 'Dove hair care pack' from Unilever, through a courier firm right at my door step I have been a bit impressed. Usually, courier firms have a problem delivering to my current residence, given that I am not living in a 'proper' city right now. Yet, for the first time ever, this pack was delivered. Nice job.

Unilever's marketing of Dove has been a major high point, apart from the product quality. The positioning using women who could be easily recognised as similar to the audience, talking about and attesting to the quality of the product has been maintained throughout the various ad avatars across media - both conventional and social. As a marketer, I have to give two thumbs up for not deviating from the positioning, packaging and branding over the years.

Back to the reason, why such products exist. We, men and women have at some evolving stage of civilisation realised that below the neck, hair is optional whereas above the neck, attempts to retain, maintain and style the hair is not optional. Not if we want to appear 'normal' and 'appealing', to both genders.

And herein started a tale that really has no end. Bereft of the thick mane by default, many a man has felt compelled to put up a removable piece of hair or go in for expensive hair transplant operations, just so, to feel normal. Yet, equally there are many men who have deemed to remove their beta-carotene based strands from the fields on their heads, altogether by choice. Each sort have made a statement about themselves.

Even today, in his sixth decade on earth, my father carries a comb in his pocket for 'styling and setting' his last remaining tufts and fringes of hair. Says a lot about how much it matters, doesn't it? However, it is the feminine species who have truly been at the cutting edge (pun intended) of the hair styling and caring part of life. Though today's metrosexual men are catching up fast, indeed.

From yoghurt, coconut oil, eggs and even beer to colourants, shampoos, conditioners, gels, masques and sprays - many such ingredients have been touted as the helpers and guardians of these tiny filaments, over time. I do realise that over time, our knowledge on caring and sharing has risen to great heights and that has, had an impact on how much attention we provide to our manes and more importantly to what others possess!   

Yet, sometimes I wonder in the daily grind of our lives, how much of a difference do the dead cells making up our crowning glory, have in the attempts of living a better life.

This post has been written in response to Indiblogger and Dove sponsored 'Love is a two way street' contest.


  1. Nicely written. All the best for the contest!

  2. @Chandrashekhar: Thank you :)

    @Saru: Thank you and appreciate the wishes :)

  3. I totally loved this one. A neat and a perfect take. :) Best wishes for the contest!

  4. Nice post there!
    You know, hair can take up a lot of space in the mind when it's not in the right frame!
    It really matters a lot to us women :D

  5. Thank you Princess for the 'like' :)

    As regards the hairy matters of frizzy, broken, split, curled, twisted, extended, coloured, permed, straightened, set, styled, OMG moment, and I'm sure many more...LOL. Yes, given I'm a male, I still do attempt to understand and appreciate the serious mind space is taken up within feminine gray matter :D

  6. excellent penning. very well conceptualized.
    best wishes.

  7. lovely Anish - enjoyed the piece immensely -best wishes from a fellow contestant!

  8. Thank you Sunita :)

    Your post does have quite an interesting poetic angle. Good luck to you as well.

  9. A well written post -enjoyed it immensely- keep up the good work going and good wishes

    i Guesss u would like this..if u like plz promote it..

  10. Thank you Sampath, for the positive feedback. It is, indeed, such comments that make bloggers want to blog more :)

    Regarding your post, it is a good attempt and I wish you good luck too.

  11. very well written .. keep it up :)

  12. Well written with great vocab. These dead cells are making indibloggers come alive :-)

  13. LOL. Indeed, what a participation. Thank you 'bemoneyaware' for the like :) And best wishes for your entry too.

  14. Awesome blog post :-) just loved reading :-)

  15. I love it. I hope that more and more Blogger will use this feature in the future, because it just makes the internet better I think!

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