Family life

How I accidentally got a mom haircut

"I know it never looks the way it does in the salon, but this mop was a hot mess."

katie-dupuis-haircut It took 45 minutes to get the cut to this state for a holiday party. The baby was unimpressed.

Before you get too far into this post, and before the short-haired mamas of the world get offended, I want to clarify what I mean by “mom haircut”: By definition, a mom haircut is one where the poor beleaguered mother in question gets a cut (not necessarily short) whereby the aim is ease of style, only to have it fail miserably. She cuts her hair thinking those long layers, bangs, spikes, shaved sides, purple faux-hawk, etc. will simplify her life.

Sometimes it works for her—I’m sure Kate Gosselin with her signature long-short-spikey ‘do figured out how to execute that style in under two minutes while wrangling her eight children under the age of six—but in my case, it just plain did not. Hence, my accidental mom haircut.

Here’s what happened: I blame Instagram. Sometime in my constant sleep-deprived state last fall, I saw a picture of a woman with what seemed like my hair type and texture, who also had a newborn, with a chic, intentionally wavy-messy, longer-in-the-front bob. After a quick Google and a few minutes on one of the various entertainment magazine sites that popped up, I learned this style was called a “lob.” “Yes!” I thought. “This is the solution to my post-pregnancy hair crisis. I’ll get this cut, buy some curling mousse or sea salt spray, and call it a success.” I booked the appointment.

To be fair, it was not my wonderful, talented stylist’s fault. He did exactly what I asked, down to recommending a sea salt product he loved. I left the salon feeling lighter—my hair had been falling out in clumps (thanks a lot, hormones) and he combed it with a fine-tooth comb before cutting it—and way sassier. Which is really saying something, since I was pretty sassy already. For about 36 hours, I thought, “Man, I don’t know why I didn’t get this cut sooner.”

And then I washed my hair. Now, I know it never looks the way it does in the salon, but this mop was a hot mess. Somehow the cut made all my natural wave pack its bags. No product would bring the curl back. So instead I had to dig out my hot rollers to make it work, which is the exact opposite of the reason for getting my hair cut in the first place. After two weeks, I gave up and went back to my rightful place as Queen of the Ponytail.

I’m now in the "growing out" process. When I went back to work, to a new job, in April, I taught myself a side rope and an inverted braid to wear in place of the pony—I call the look my “professional ponytail” because it’s a little more polished but takes all of three minutes to do. Hilariously, it’s how I wore my hair, more or less, in grade 10, so I’ve actually gone backwards in time. But hey, I got carded at the liquor store the other day so I guess I’ll take it over my accidental mommy cut, right? Word to the wise, new mamas, when you feel the lure of easier style: Sleep on it. Wait a few months, until you’re not existing on caffeine and covered in spit up, to make sure you really want to do it. And for god’s sake, don’t get anything with a ridiculous name.


Walmart Live Better editor-in-chief Katie Dupuis likes structure and organization. A lot. Now, imagine this Type A editor with a baby. Funny, right? We’re sure you’ll love Katie’s musings on life with Sophie, Juliette and husband Blaine. Read all of Katie’s Type A Baby posts and follow her on Twitter@katie_dupuis.

This article was originally published on Aug 26, 2015

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