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Interviewed about curly hair on Sydney Morning Herald
06-21-2013, 03:20 PM
Post: #1
Interviewed about curly hair on Sydney Morning Herald
Hey gentlemen,

A guy published an article on the Sydney Morning Herald about living curly hair as guys, and I was interviewed some time back for it. It was published today in Australia, here it is:

-------------

After years of battling his curls, Joel Meares has learnt to go with the 'fro.

The goal was Leonardo DiCaprio, circa 1997 - it always had been. There was something about that Titanic hair: the zig-zag part, the flecks of gold, the way the silken wave up front flopped expertly across his brow and caught every bit of light on set. The obstacle was the mop of curls growing from my own head. The owner of that mop since birth, I was never going to have Leo's locks. But all through my teens I tried.

I flat-ironed it into smooth planes. I wore beanies on hot summer mornings to de-kink it before coating it in goop. Finally, a young hair stylist with a shock of pink hair doused my mop in a Japanese straightening chemical that shrunk the diameter of each hair shaft. She promised I'd emerge from the dome dryer with needle-straight locks - my stubbornly twisty hair proved her a liar.

There are two truths for any bloke with curly hair: one, that they will always have it, and two, they will always hate it. (It's frizzy, it never does what you want it to, it's messy, it's clownish and unprofessional. It will never be Leo's.) That day in the salon, both truths hit home. It was also the day that I just gave up and let what was happening upstairs just happen. It fuzzed out into a pouf and for the past eight years I've been rocking what a street hawker on Venice Beach once stopped to tell me was "an awesome soft 'fro".

If you're reading this while having to brush stray strands of straight hair from your eyes, you may be wondering: so what? Why does a matter of pure genetics grate on us curly folk so much? But then you'd also be a straight-haired reader in what Rogelio Samson, author of The Curly Hair Book, describes as a world biased in favour of the "straight-haired perspective". A world where barbers train on straight-haired mannequins, the mad scientist in the movie never cackles from beneath a crew cut, and only four blokes from the 30 hunks on People's three most recent lists of sexiest men alive have a curl in sight.
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In this particular world, the curly haired bloke is an oddity. This is true both literally - among those of European ancestry, just 15 per cent of people have curls - and figuratively.

"Longer, curly hair is dirty and it's unkempt - it's like a yard that hasn't been mowed," says Dr Midge Wilson, a professor of psychology at Chicago's DePaul University who has conducted extensive research in the field of "impression formation". Particularly in a professional workplace: "It's the opposite of 'clean-cut'.

"For women, who have to strive very hard to be taken seriously anyhow, there's a lot of concern about taming their wild, curly hair," says Wilson. "And it's the same for younger men, particularly when trying to establish themselves in a serious career like finance." Wilson says a mop like my own suggests someone is more likely to be in a creative field - a journalist, say - where curls are more permissible.

Curly hair was at one time the norm, or so some versions of prehistory tell us: the tightly curled locks that allowed air circulation and reduced intense UV radiation for ancient man in Africa only straightened as he moved north, evolving along with pigmentation for the colder climates. One theory has it that flatter, straighter hair reduced cold airflow to the scalp, warming the head. Today, we know that curly hair is inherited - in 2009, geneticist Professor Nick Martin, of the Queensland Institute of Medical Research, isolated the trichohyalin gene as one that dictates curliness in Europeans - and is the result of a number of microscopic happenings on the scalp: physically, the degree to which a follicle (the sheath from which a hair shaft grows) is hooked; and chemically, the number of connections between sulfur atoms in the hair strands (the more the curlier). That's a lot for a straightening chemical to overcome.

My hair has long marked me out as "childlike" and that most horrid of things: "cute". I'm pushing 30 and my parents' friends still call me Goldilocks and cop a feel whenever we catch up; after recently meeting a friend's mum, she told her daughter that I would have made an adorable kid ("All those gorgeous curls!"). If life as a ringleted lad has taught me anything it's this: curls don't get the girls, they get the older women.

But Rogelio Samson says they can get both. In his book and on his website, he flings advice out to curly hair sufferers across the planet: don't just buzz your hair off - a buzz cut is like "being mentally castrated" - embrace it. Find the right "awesome mane" for you. And when you do, the girls will love it: "If you have curly hair that's well looked after, it means that you've taken something that is taken as a liability and made something of it. It shows you have confidence in yourself."

I'm not much for follicularly led motivational talk, but after speaking with Samson I decided to give it a go. I booked an appointment with Tony Vacher of Sterling Hairdressing Parlour & Barber Shop in Sydney's Surry Hills and told him I was after a cut that made the most of my curls. While there are certain styles you simply can't wear with curly hair, like mohawks, he says it isn't that different. "You have to understand how curly hair works but you're using the same techniques. The secret is you've got to sneak up on it. You have to build up on the haircut and be prepared to have a little bit of flexibility in the finished result."

Vacher leaves the front of my hair long, the sides cropped close and the crown short so that I can comb the heavily pomaded front across the scalp in a tight wave that crashes on the side with just a lick of curls. Staring in his mirror as he reflects the clean-cut neckline back at me, I realise that yes, this is about as "awesome" as I can look.

As we chat, Vacher says something that curly haired folk normally hate hearing: he envies me my hair. Growing up in England, Vacher used to watch '70s sitcom Bless This House religiously and developed something of an obsession with British actor Sid James's hair, a silvering wave that sprung backwards from the borders of his receding hairline. "I used to say to my mum, 'I want hair like that,' " remembers Vacher. He's never been able to get a Sid James cut, he tells me, because his hair is simply too pin-straight. With my waves, he says, it would be a cinch.

It's almost enough to make a curly haired man feel sorry for the straight-haired guy. But only almost.

By Joel Meares

Source: Sydney Morning Herald

Author of the two bestselling hair-care books:

The Curly Hair Book: Or How Men Can Now Rock Their Waves, Coils And Kinks (CLICK HERE to read more about the book)

The Men's Hair Book: A Male's Guide To Hair Care, Hair Styles, Hair Grooming, Hair Products and Rocking It All Without The Baloney (CLICK HERE to read more about the book)
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06-21-2013, 03:50 PM
Post: #2
RE: Interviewed about curly hair on Sydney Morning Herald
....no words

Who is this Joel Meares dude? he just keep going on and on about himself LOL only times he stops talking about himself is to either paraphrase you in a couple of lines or to state incorrect stuff or half assed stuff about curly hair. Does this guy even genetics?? looks like he went on a Wikipedia rampant and just threw the name of a scientist for the sake of it.
Poor article written by what looks like an emo kid with a bit of a diva case. I know u are about spreading the curly hair word etc, I've read your other interviews so dont know why you let this one in mate.
Anyway...we need a misc section in this section for threads like this.

Oldschool barber getting it on with the internet era.
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06-21-2013, 04:02 PM
Post: #3
RE: Interviewed about curly hair on Sydney Morning Herald
good to hear you getting more interviews Curly Hair as i love your site and what ur doing but i had to stop reading when he wrote 15% of men with european ancestry have curly hair Rolleyes
p.s. we dont have a facepam icon in the text editor?? just found out lol

(06-21-2013 03:20 PM)Curly Hair Wrote:  Hey guys,

A guy published an article on the Sydney Morning Herald about living curly hair as guys, and I was interviewed some time back for it. It was published today in Australia, here it is:

-------------

After years of battling his curls, Joel Meares has learnt to go with the 'fro.


By Joel Meares
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06-21-2013, 04:55 PM
Post: #4
RE: Interviewed about curly hair on Sydney Morning Herald
Damn, so many inaccuracies about hair the few times he stops talking about himself, let me guess, this Meares guy is just one of those random writers and did his hair research thirty minutes before handing in the article, right? I hope he did at least quote right what you actually said in the interview Huh

Quote:In this particular world, the curly haired bloke is an oddity.

LOL No, it is not.

Quote:Among those of European ancestry, just 15 per cent of people have curls - and figuratively.

Rolleyes It's actually about 50/50 with straight hair because curly hair is a TEXTURE. Jeez, so difficult to understand? Does this Meares dude know what curly hair is or is he just parroting what he read in the Daily Mail?

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-...-gene.html

See why it's pointless to use the word curly as a hair type? Wavy hair ALSO curls around itself for crying out loud. That Daily Mail article is the article this pseudo writer pulled his stuff out from, an article that made the rounds in late 2009 and was labeled as pop science back in the day. The only thing certain is that curly hair is inherited and that there are certain genes involved of which the trichohyalin gene is one of them.

If you're going to state figures, might as well define what "curly hair" is. But he probably ran out of time with all the talking about himself Wink


Quote:Curly hair was at one time the norm, or so some versions of prehistory tell us: the tightly curled locks that allowed air circulation and reduced intense UV radiation for ancient man in Africa only straightened as he moved north, evolving along with pigmentation for the colder climates. One theory has it that flatter, straighter hair reduced cold airflow to the scalp, warming the head.


Let me guess, Wikipedia huh? I remember when there was an incident in the same Wikipedia stub this guy got the above paragraph from: someone wrote racist garbage about curly hair and it went unnoticed for days, sort of tells you the amount of verifying taking place at Wikipedia...

Also, what is this guy referring to with "evolving along with pigmentation for the colder climates"? Is this guy aware that pigmentation was LOST as a survival adaptation to decreased SUNLIGHT exposure (not cold!).

I have a question for you, Mr. Meares, very curly kinky hair remains upright when wet whereas flat straight hair hangs down and increases the risk of hypothermia which is obviously a disadvantage in norther latitude, can you explain the reason for this? (without Googling it up, the answer is very easy)


Quote: Today, we know that curly hair is inherited


Well, he at least got that one right.


Quote: - in 2009, geneticist Professor Nick Martin, of the Queensland Institute of Medical Research, isolated the trichohyalin gene as one that dictates curliness in Europeans - and is the result of a number of microscopic happenings on the scalp: physically, the degree to which a follicle (the sheath from which a hair shaft grows) is hooked; and chemically, the number of connections between sulfur atoms in the hair strands (the more the curlier). That's a lot for a straightening chemical to overcome.


Yes, because humans don't have enough genes to blatantly state that a specific one dictates the hair's curliness...Rolleyes I love the "microscopic 'happenings'", I guess he could not find a word in Wikipedia for "happenings".

I don't understand this guy, instead of not picking the first article he saw on Google and writing some gool ol' pop science, why didn't this guy talk about proven stuff such as the specific cross circumference of curly hair or how the building blocks of hair are laid asymmetrically to produce curliness? You even explain this in your book Rogelio!!

The rest I won't waste my time on but I think this was a missed opportunity to talk about some of the real stuff that men with curly hair face on a daily basis and to reach out to lots of dudes. Also, I agree with him that he doesn't need follicular motivation, the guy reads like an EMO kid (LOL at Barber, I was thinking the same!) and we all know EMOs are a lost cause.

Rogelio, what did you tell this man?? Big Grin Big Grin I know you are big on helping other curly men etc but this article is just a monologue of some dude who hates his curly hair, tries to fix it, fails, then writes this garbage while using your brand name and getting it all wrong. And I'm not trying to be harsh on this kid but The Men's Hair Forum ain't the Men's Health forums where all sort of rats makes it through Smile

I'm one of the admins of this forum. Any questions/issue? Contact me directly or any of the moderators. We welcome any feedback to improve our community.

You can also check out our forum's BEST HAIR PRODUCTS FOR MEN thread to read opinions and useful information on men's hair products.
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06-21-2013, 05:10 PM
Post: #5
RE: Interviewed about curly hair on Sydney Morning Herald
You so mean TMHF...Big Grin
i'm surprised you didnt pick up my do you even line in my post.

Oldschool barber getting it on with the internet era.
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06-21-2013, 05:16 PM
Post: #6
RE: Interviewed about curly hair on Sydney Morning Herald
I have a couple of good friends who are newspaper journalists and they tell me a lot of inaccurate stuff is allowed so long as the audience will not question it or know about it. I guess thats what this kid did as it looks the article is for a lifestyle section of a newspaper perhaps?
Lifestyle sections are usually the worst as the writers tend to pull their information from thin air and quick google searches and cling to whatever myths help their articles.
Rogelio, kudos to you for being in the line of fire helping curly men, even if it doesnt always pan out Smile
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06-21-2013, 06:24 PM
Post: #7
RE: Interviewed about curly hair on Sydney Morning Herald
(06-21-2013 05:10 PM)Barber Wrote:  You so mean TMHF...Big Grin
i'm surprised you didnt pick up my do you even line in my post.
LOL I actually read it as -does this guy even know genetics- not-does this guy even genetics-.

I'm one of the admins of this forum. Any questions/issue? Contact me directly or any of the moderators. We welcome any feedback to improve our community.

You can also check out our forum's BEST HAIR PRODUCTS FOR MEN thread to read opinions and useful information on men's hair products.
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06-21-2013, 09:58 PM
Post: #8
RE: Interviewed about curly hair on Sydney Morning Herald
My brother works in the media industry as a pr manager and he tells me newspaper and magazine writers/editors come a close second place to politicians in the game of talking nonsense xD -- especially in the country we both live
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06-22-2013, 03:10 PM
Post: #9
RE: Interviewed about curly hair on Sydney Morning Herald
i have curly hair too and the amount of self loathing whoever wrote that does over his hair is funny,but funny pathetic. Most exposure curly hair gets in the media either for women or men is negative so I cant see the point of writing that article considering he got to talk to a leading authority on curly hair and to a psychology professor and the guy himself has curly hair too. Guessing the newspaper needed to fill up some empty spaces and sent some emo to do the job.
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06-23-2013, 10:15 AM
Post: #10
RE: Interviewed about curly hair on Sydney Morning Herald
g, have to agree that kid Joel Meares has more problems than his curly hair, looks like he is traumatized of some sort from having curly hair, perhaps getting a testosterone shot might do him good lol. I thought we black folks had it bad but apparently theres some emo somewhere in sydney who's got it worse..
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06-23-2013, 06:11 PM (This post was last modified: 06-23-2013 06:12 PM by Anton.)
Post: #11
RE: Interviewed about curly hair on Sydney Morning Herald
what an idiot that guy who wrote that is, Europeans dont have curly hair? Has this guy even been to Europe??
I go on holiday to Spain and Italy every year and I can tell you a good % of their nationals have curly hair. Been to Spain every year for 12 years now, have travelled all of southern Europe and I can tell you finding blokes with straight hair is actually rare.
It's idiotic to make those assumptions of Europeans when this geezer is from Australia. Seriously mate, have a look around our part of the world, travel a bit, and then write. And dont get me started with your whining, one lad took the chance to write a massive book on the stuff you whining about, read the book and stop the emo stuff.
Nuff said, guys I second what Barber said of a misc section, this mess dont belong in this section!
Cheers
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06-23-2013, 08:07 PM
Post: #12
RE: Interviewed about curly hair on Sydney Morning Herald
(06-23-2013 10:15 AM)Toulalan Wrote:  g, have to agree that kid has more problems than his curly hair, looks like he is traumatized of some sort. I thought we black folks had it bad but apparently theres some emo somewhere in sydney who's got it worse..

LOL

(06-23-2013 06:11 PM)Anton Wrote:  what an idiot that guy who wrote that is, Europeans dont have curly hair? Has this guy even been to Europe??
I go on holiday to Spain and Italy every year and I can tell you a good % of their nationals have curly hair. Been to Spain every year for 12 years now, have travelled all of southern Europe and I can tell you finding blokes with straight hair is actually rare.
It's idiotic to make those assumptions of Europeans when this geezer is from Australia. Seriously mate, have a look around our part of the world, travel a bit, and then write. And dont get me started with your whining, one lad took the chance to write a massive book on the stuff you whining about, read the book and stop the emo stuff.
Nuff said, guys I second what Barber said of a misc section, this mess dont belong in this section!
Cheers

Pretty much says it all.

I'm closing this thread. No point in keeping a thread alive over some absurd article. And yes, we will soon have a Misc section Smile

I'm one of the admins of this forum. Any questions/issue? Contact me directly or any of the moderators. We welcome any feedback to improve our community.

You can also check out our forum's BEST HAIR PRODUCTS FOR MEN thread to read opinions and useful information on men's hair products.
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