Being half Chinese, half English, I’ve found that both mentally and physically I don’t quite fit in with either crowd. I’m 100% British and have lived in England for my whole life but I am quite obviously Asian just from looking at me. In England, a lot of people assume that I’m fully Chinese (which only makes me more frustrated with the stereotype that all Oriental people look the same!) but this is just wrong, wrong, wrong. In China, nobody thinks I’m Chinese. They don’t even think I’m half Chinese. People usually guess that I’m Russian or Mongolian, thinking that I must come from the border between East and West. My eyes a lot bigger than those of most of my Asian friends and my body shape is far from that stereotypical petite Chinese frame. However, I do have very fine, thin Asian hair (except my hair colour is brown, not black). A real mix as you can see.
Here are three hair care struggles that only Oriental people will understand and a few tips on how to combat them:
This is the biggie. People used to compliment me on my hair because it always looked the same with little effort. When straightening hair became trendy at school, they’d say I was lucky because I didn’t have to go through that hassle. What a lot of them don’t realise though, is that this is because there is only one way to style fine, asian hair: straight or more straight.
I could spend an hour curling my hair and within another two, it will be completely flat again. No amount of hair spray can fix this problem, it can only slightly delay the process. There is no other style for my hair other than flat. Believe me, I’ve tried everything. In order to make curls stay in my hair for an event, I need to curl my hair into really tight ringlets and use a tonne of hair spray to hold it in place. Then by the time I get to the event, I have normal, loose curls, but I have to make-do with looking a bit like a poodle for a few hours beforehand.
Really thin and fine hair feels nice and silky but it can be very difficult to style and cut well. I used to wait until I went back to China to visit my family to cut my hair if possible because Chinese hair dressers can handle my hair much better (this cut-your-hair-every-three-months thing is not something I have ever paid attention to whoops). I haven’t been back in a few years however and since then I’ve been hairdresser hopping in London trying to find the right one for me. So far I’ve had some decent cuts but none have been that great so watch this space 😉
A lot of Asians also have really sparse and short eyebrow hair too, which is a bummer these days when strong brow game is so trendy. Obviously you can fix this problem with eyebrow makeup but this often looks unnatural and is a lot of hassle in the mornings. An alternative solution is the fairly new technique called Advanced Tricho Pigmentation Treatment or ATP for short. This technique is a similar to a tattoo in that pigments are applied to the brow area (or scalp!) to replicate the appearance of real strands of hair. Natural strokes on the brow area replicate each individual brow hair giving you natural looking brows, all day long.
Whilst there seems to be little scientific evidence for proving that white hairs are caused by stress, almost all of my Asian friends have developed a few white hairs during exam season. Coincidence? I think not… This isn’t something any of my Caucasian friends have ever complained about so I suspect it is also something to do with Asian genetics. Obviously you could just cover up these greys with hair dye or even pluck them out individually, but to really try and slow the growth of white hairs you need to adopt a healthy diet, quit smoking and perhaps even take hair supplements such as melanchor tablets.
What sort of hair do you have? If you have any other tips for how to combat these problems, please send them my way as I’d love to hear some real, working solutions!
*This is a sponsored post but, as always, all opinions are my own.