I Blame My Twin Sister For My Fear Of Haircuts

Twins blame each other for lots of things that aren't actually their fault. This is not one of those things.
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Pia and Runa
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Twins blame each other for lots of things that aren't actually their fault. This is not one of those things.

It’s me, Runa. There’s no way I’m letting Pia chime in on this simultaneously because you won't get the whole story that way.

I've always had long, super-straight hair. And while I love my signature look, there's a girl with blunt bangs and a bob somewhere inside me, kicking and screaming to get out. Down girl, you’re gonna be trapped in there for quite a while.

I want a change, but I just can’t bring myself to do it. I can't commit. I want a choppy, razored, spiky style one day and then I crave long, sex-kitten waves the next. I flip-flop. My hair has been neither spiky nor wavy. It remains long, straight and simple.

I’ve made several attempts at trying a new look, but every time I make it to the salon, I freak out like I'm a dude about to get a vasectomy. I get anxious and fidgety, my eyes widen, I sweat, and I end up telling my stylist, “Just a trim.” Then I get annoyed when my boyfriend doesn’t notice I got a haircut.

I chopped off my hair to a shoulder-grazing length once and loved it, but less than 24 hours later I found myself sitting in front of my mirror contemplating extensions, wigs, anything to get my length back. I swore that I'd never do it again. As of writing this, I haven't cut my hair in over a year.

I can't quite figure out the reason for my phobia, but I’m happy to blame it on my real-life evil twin, Pia.

The day before kindergarten picture day, my mischievous sister decided that I needed a sophisticated new look, and I trusted not only her opinion, but her skills. Her collection of bald Barbie dolls should have been a warning sign, but being the child prodigy that I was, I expected that my hair would grow back the very next day.

Dramatization.

Dramatization.

With total confidence, she went to our father and said, "Mom said I can cut Runa's hair for picture day with my scissors." (Lies, Pia. Lies!) Dad, thinking she was kidding and having too much faith in a five-year-old’s ability to understand sarcasm, told her to go ahead.

Ten minutes later, I emerged from the bathroom missing half an eyebrow, with bangs that resembled piano keys.

Clearly, the scissors had malfunctioned. We pinned my mutilated bangs back in barrettes and hoped for the best. When our mom got home from work, she found the hairy evidence on the floor and proceded to lose her mind. She dragged me to a real salon where they don’t employ kindergarteners, but not until after picture day. (They ended up having to chop them down to an inch long just to get them even again. It was like Amelie, but not really and actually more like Jim Carrey in Dumb & Dumber.)

Picture day came and went, and I honestly didn’t give a crap about my bangless, browless, gap-toothed (not Pia’s fault) appearance. In retrospect, it’s one of my best (read: most amusing) school pictures. But a small part of me may still see a scissor-wielding twin in every pro that attempts to cut my hair.

And since there are two sides to every story, I’m giving Pia a chance to redeem herself by issuing a statement because, frankly, she still hasn’t and probably never will live this down.

Pia's side

The perks of having a twin include having someone to test outfits on, try new looks, and be an all-around guinea pig for your wacky beauty ideas. As a little kid, Runa was the best kind of twin because she was also a very cooperative test subject.

I took those scissors to her bangs thinking I was creating a masterpiece. I like to think I was an edgy innovator who was ahead of her time, even though I realize the time of uneven bangs and one-and-a-half brows hasn’t arrived yet. (Just you wait.)

I’ve since been known to experiment with haircuts while Runa becomes paralyzed with fear at the thought. Whether this has something to do with the Great Hair Massacre of ‘92, who knows. And if I don’t sound sorry, it's because LOOK AT THIS PICTURE IT'S AMAZING.

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