Why Having Mermaid Hair Is My Superpower

It's not "just a phase." It's become a part of my identity.

When Having Green Hair Is Your Superpower
Instagram/kkimbunny

It all started with purple hair in my senior year of college. Of course, I didn’t realize then that that first foray into the world of mermaid hair would become a journey spanning several years, many music festivals, and featuring a veritable rainbow of colors. Somewhere along the way, my hair color became my favorite accessory. And now having green hair is so much more than a phase.

Far from it –– mermaid hair has become an integral part of my identity. I’d even go so far as to say that it’s my superpower. I won't lie, having mermaid hair makes me feel pretty much invincible, and nowhere did that become more evident than in college, through my first real foray into music festivals and festival fashion.

Even at the risk of sounding like a walking (or dancing) cliché, every time I went to a festival, I felt so free. Here was a world in which I could express myself in whatever way I wanted, wear whatever I wanted, and most importantly, apply liberal amounts of glitter upon the surface of my entire body. And the best part? I was surrounded by hundreds of friends –– ones I came with and ones waiting to be made –– doing the exact same thing.

From those dusty dance floors, I learned that my clothing, beauty, and hair choices within the festival circuit were about so much more than my physical appearance. So I took the concept of vibrant self-expression from each of those experiences and ran with it. I brought home the feeling of having a festival alter-ego, and took it with me to "reality" too, in my everyday life.

Because if you can treat "real life" like your own personal music festival, then why not? Why not be like a Sailor Moon character? Why not throw some glitter on it? (And then add more, because you can never have enough glitter.)

It had all started with my first vivid shade of purple in college (which, incidentally, matched my school robes at graduation). Next I dyed my hair magenta, salmon pink, and a glorious electric shade of cobalt blue. See what I mean about Sailor Moon characters? I couldn't help but fall in love with mermaid hair –– hook, line and sinker. Pun fully intended.

And with the obsession, that free-spirited vibe spilled over into just about every other part of my life. It also helps that I happened to go to college and live in San Francisco, one of the most accepting and diverse and gloriously weird cities in the world. So today, when I wear dramatic faux furs and sequins and full body glitter and chains and adorn myself in a bright rainbow of colors? When I act as though my entire life is just one big festival? Hell yes, it's a form of self-expression. Mine just happens to be loud.

And sure, dying your hair is trendy. But it's so much more than that to me. I’ve had many people ask me in the past why I make certain sartorial or beauty choices. Why was I wearing lavender lipstick at a party? Why was I in full rave glitter at a birthday dinner? Why was my hair neon green? And the answer to that is, quite simply, that it stands out. Personally, I have no interest in fading into the crowd, and it may be a little contradictory, but to me there’s something so beautiful about the fact that today’s beauty and fashion trends are starting to point to standout colors –– whether they are a metallic green, a dark navy, pastel unicorn shades, or even black.

So yes, there's the dichotomy of wanting to stand out while simultaneously succumbing to what has now become an uber-popular beauty trend. Because it's true that the unicorn trend has taken this form of self-expression from those wild, weird, and wonderful festival dance floors to the Discover page on Instagram. But I can't be mad at that, because that's part of the fun of it. Why shouldn't experimenting with hair, beauty and fashion be trendy? Why shouldn't it be accessible and enjoyable in a world that is completely unpredictable?

Beauty and fashion trends are ever-changing. Trendiness comes and goes. It’s supposed to be fun and fluid, a way of expressing and presenting yourself without having to say a single word. So if something makes you feel good about yourself, then I say go for it. Dye your hair green, or blue, or purple, or pink, or all of 'em at once. Why not let mermaid hair be your superpower, too?

I am a beauty, fashion and lifestyle editor at Livingly. Lover of wine, glitter, festival fashion, and everything op-ed. You can reach me at kimia.madani@livingly.com.
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