STYLE IN THE CITY/Susanne Seidman – Hair brained dreams

STYLE IN THE CITY/Susanne Seidman – Hair brained dreams

Is there really any more risky relationship than a woman and her stylist?  

You put your entire head literally in his or her hands. A stylist can make our break your interview, first date, or long term relationship with yourself in only a few snips.  

Your hair is truly an extension of self. Just ask anyone who has lost it due to male pattern baldness, or worse, to cancer. You always remember your first love. You can still wax poetic about the butterflies, the bliss, the heartbreak. But nearly all move on and let go.  

Listen to a tale of a stylist break up and you can’t help but sense the lingering frustration, the agony of perfect hair gone bad, the bitterness. For many of us, our relationship with our stylist is as committed as our marriage. Part necessity, part security these relationships can get hairy! 

Remember those eighth grade graduation bangs you just had to have? Or “the Rachel” on “Friends” flippy, mid-length, shag you couldn’t live without? All those emotional cuts and celeb dream styles make or break this relationship.  

We are talking stylist, your trusted confidant, your unlicensed therapist, your personal risk and reward guru. So, what spikes the loyalty meter? 

As a newly engaged bride I set my lifetime appearance goal, settle into a style that would be my signature. Jackie O had the modified bouffant, Farrah Fawcett the long feathered layers, Liza Minelli the short pixie. By the time my bridal portrait was shot I would be me, hair and all, for the record books.  

Oh, please.  

As I moved seemingly schizophrenically from bob, to short waves, all the way to strait tresses, one person besides my husband remained a constant, my stylist Rebecca.  The only relationship in my life that has remained as steady is Marcia, who waxes me without judgment, at Sugarhouse. Even though I detest purple with a passion, there is no one else I would trust my brows to, let alone the nether regions. As I climb winded and frazzled to the third floor, she is so serene, an angel of mercy in her white uniform. There is a special place in heaven for those who snip, strip, and coif us. 

I too had a celebrity hair dream. Never mind that my stylist audibly coughed as I handed her the People Magazine photo of an updated, sleek Jennifer Aniston with a middle part and long, straight, angled hair. Could I possibly maintain that look without a team of in house stylists and in my allotted mourning routine she questioned?  Rebecca would stick with me and I with her in the good times and the bad.  

Once of Alexandria, she has long since sold her salon on King Street and started The Studio in Arlington. Over nearly a year of growth and despite the absurd commute of nearly 25 minutes without traffic, we are linked, and achieved my hair goal, minus the middle part that made me look more like Marcia Brady.  

Who else could still love my curious daughter, even after innocently turning on a sink without permission causing an arc of water the size of a double rainbow to shoot out a hose and sail across the salon into the equipment and station of a Euro chic male stylist unaccustomed to the antics of children?  I was momentarily frozen my hair’s life flashing before my eyes wondering if she could actually short circuit the entire building. My daughter spent a long afternoon penning a picture and apology. I’m not sure who cried more, me looking at my roots until I got the courage to book my next appointment or her coloring until her fingers ached; we could not afford a break up! 

On a mundane early spring day I nearly dropped the phone on my toes as my unassuming neighbor and mother of two casually mentioned she was headed to Circe in Old Town to get her hair cut like one Katie Holmes and was I free to watch her girls. My calendar was free but was my conscious? I chocked down my swig of Diet Coke. Really???  

Had she been watching too much E! True Hollywood Story?  Had she gotten subscriptions to People and US Weekly?  While Katie’s bangs and short bob seemed simple enough, my sweet and casual neighbor’s slightly New Mexico style and unassuming routine seemed a stretch for the feted bride of Tom Cruise, whose precision groomed gal pals include Jada Pinkett Smith and Victoria Beckham! Maybe I missed a copy of L. Ron Hubbard’s “Dianetics” on the coffee table at our last play date.  

Her husband, a Captain in the Army who served a tour in Iraq, would be a stretch for Adam Sandler, let alone our beloved Top Gun, Tom Cruise.  

At the capable hands of a stylist at Circe she had never met, Lisa fulfilled her celeb dream of capturing the effortless bob of Katie Holmes. Ironically, her identical twin was undergoing the same transformation in Seattle but with more bangs. Yes, this pair does dream of a reality show appearance on the Amazing Race. I have to admit I admired her bravery.  

With only the recommendation of a casual friend, she chopped her long mane and went for the “it look.” The cut was a huge splurge, both in price and in style. And she deserves it!! Circe is a welcoming and calming oasis in bustle of daily Alexandria life.  Owner Shelia Mc Gurk is attractive, funky, and a keen businesswoman. She welcomes her clients warmly, and you can tell she listens, a key trait in a stylist. This Lisa to Katie transformation made a believer out of me!

So, while I try to justify trekking across multiple zip codes to maintain my look, I say why not go for it. All you need is a tabloid and a dream!  And if you can’t book ahead, you can even score a last minute appointment at a discount.  With deals like this, online only specials, and a fantastic referral rewards program, you cannot afford not to log onto

When she isn’t in a no blackberry salon zone, Susanne Seidman can be reached at