Friday, August 13, 2010

Pink hair

I caught a few minutes of Debbie Travis' show "From the Ground Up" on HGTV the other day.  This reality show features a group of young people, with varying backgrounds, learning all areas of the construction industry.  I was somewhat amused to watch a pink-haired young woman wearing a sparkly belt lamenting that it was "unfair" for her to be judged on her appearance.  She felt that she was looked at differently because of her choice in hair and wardrobe.  Now, I may be in the over 30 crowd (ok, over 40 crowd), but isn't that why she chose bright pink hair, to be looked at differently?
Here's the challenge- she's a young woman in a male dominated field with enthusiasm but no technical skills and she thinks she should be able to look any way she wants.
In real life- you earn the right to stand out by being skillful in your craft.  If you are a computer programmer in a corporate setting that has saved and earned your company millions, and you want to walk around in bunny slippers, you probably can.  If you are a real estate magnate that has built an empire in New York and Atlantic City, and you want to wear a comb-over, you've earned it (but people may still talk).  If you're an awesome hair stylist, who's been in the business for almost 20 years, that clients (like me) will drive 180 miles to have their hair done, you go ahead and have pink (or purple or blue or...) hair.  You've proven that you have the chops to back up your "look at me" appearance.  When people look at you, they see your experience, substance, success, wisdom and skill.
But, until you can prove yourself in your industry, pink hair is probably just annoying your mother.

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