September 20, 2010

"No mention of Hillary's locks? You're slipping, Althouse!"

Says commenter E.M. Davis, who apparently thinks I do nothing but monitor and comment upon the internet all day long. But thanks for the tip, Eemie, old man. He links to a Daily Mail article titled "Oh Hillary, that hairstyle just doesn't cut it: Mrs Clinton prepares for huge UN meeting with lank locks."
The normally perfect bouffant was gone, to be replaced by what came to be known on Kate Moss at least as the Croydon Facelift.
Well, it's not "normally perfect" and the rest is British gibberish. Britterish.
Mrs Clinton's hair was scraped back and clipped on top of her head, but looked lank and in need of some love and understanding....
It's the clip that is objectionable. You only see it from the side. Maybe it was put in for a frontal photograph, but it looks way too casual (or even trashy) from the side — like showing up in curlers.
With minimal make-up, Mrs Clinton's 63 years came into sharp focus as she moved neatly from urging Pakistan to mend its reputation to an attempt to undermine Mr Ahmadinejad within his own country.
Now, there's a crazy sentence!

But, anyway. About the hair. We all know Hillary is growing her hair longer. Robin Givhan pointed that out a month ago:
Clinton's hair, now creeping toward below-the-shoulders territory, is practically radical for Washington's seasoned female power elite. Good for her....

Cultural pressure to submit to the scissors after a certain age seems rife with an unkind and unspoken subtext that because long locks are a sign of vibrancy and sexiness, it's a social contradiction to see such styles on women who have wrinkles and crow's-feet.

Another popular argument is that long hair drags down the face -- and a face that is showing the effects of gravity should steer clear of anything that might make it look even longer in the tooth.

Throw into the conversation the attitude that long locks are tools of flirtation. They are a handy excuse for a toss of the head; a strand might have to be girlishly flicked out of one's eyes or coyly tucked behind the ear. May a 60-year-old woman flirt?
I think we know what it's about: Sarah Palin. Suddenly, long hair has come to mean power, and there's no need to try to approximate the men anymore. Why ape the men when you can emulate The Divine Sarah?


garage mahal said...

I think we know what it's about: Sarah Palin.


Kirby Olson said...

Palin has given an entirely new face to power.

Feminists should celebrate this.

The only woman more powerful than Palin is Ayaan Hirsi Ali.

mesquito said...

Didn't she quit the Governorship and slink away from public life?

Geoff Matthews said...

Clinton is showing her age. I'm not a fan, but she resembled Queen Elizabeth II (just a little) in the side view.
I say this as a subject of the crown, and pity her Majesty for having sods for kids.

As my whimsy leads me.. said...

Hah! H. Clinton copying S. Palin! Do you think that is why she is also wearing more colorful pantsuits? Bright blue here, red last week (which wasn't very becoming). I agree with the Brits about the 'do. The clip doesn't work at her age. A nice cloisonné barrette would have been better.


Issob Morocco said...

You are slipping into greatness.

Trooper York said...

I reserve judgement until I hear what Margaret Carlson has to say.

Trooper York said...

And I agree with ironrailsironwright when he asks the question we all want to know about women in public life.

Sniead O'Conner or Oscar Gamble?

Trooper York said...

I know garage thinks Palin has a little Hitler's moustache. Just sayn'

prairie wind said...

Not a fan of Hillary's politics, but I do think she's an atractive woman. The first photo, where we can't see the clip, she looks pretty. I want some BLUE like that for myself.

Hairclips are bad, unless you want your hair off your face so you can wash up. Yes, like wearing curlers in public...which I haven't seen in a long, long time. Didn't realize that I was missing the curlers until I saw a woman in curlers at Penney's the other day.

This is the era of ugly-hair-things-are-acceptable. I'm tired of the clips on middle-aged women, and tired of young girls combining a pony tail with a headband. It's a belt-and-suspenders thing.

Irene said...

Sarah Palin wears a hair piece. The hair piece adds fullness and "lift" to her hairdo. That style makes Palin look concurrently authoritative and foxy. Hot Teacher.

Hillary's long locks look limp; there's nothing spunky about the style. The attempt to boost the look with the juvenile clip fails.

Journalists love to riff on Hillary Clinton's hair: style over substance. Recall when Andrea Mitchell partially attributed Hillary's abruptness in the Congo to a "bad hair day."

Perhaps it's just too hot in Iran—and in the Congo—to wear a wig.

Roger O said...

It is disconcerting how you let your career and husband interfere with your blogging.

knox said...

Cultural pressure to submit to the scissors after a certain age seems rife with an unkind and unspoken subtext that because long locks are a sign of vibrancy and sexiness, it's a social contradiction to see such styles on women who have wrinkles and crow's-feet.

Yes. I hate that so few older women let their hair grow out long. I plan to continue to have long hair well into my seniority. Or senility. Whichever comes first. Or last.

knox said...

Oh yeah, I forgot.... re: Hillary, it's the clip that's so horrifying. It is at once juvenile and trashy. I have a couple of those and I wouldn't be caught dead wearing them out of the house. What was she thinking??

Irene said...

I also forgot (Hi Knox!)—Hillary Clinton is wearing a wig in the photo that appears at the Robin Givhan link. Obvious.

Menley said...

I thought that Chelsea asked Hilary to grow out her hair for the wedding of the decade.

The clip looks bad, and some bangs (or fringe, as the British say) would soften the look. Diane Keaton is in her sixties, and she stays with a variation of the same mid-length hairstyle with bangs all the time.

Quaestor said...

OK. It's a mullet. Perhaps Hillary is honing a down-market image in anticipation of a White House bid in 2012. If things continue has they have been since Obama's inauguration we'll all be trailer trash by October '12.

deborah said...

A most unfortunate look for Hillary. Maybe this is the grow out stage with ultimate plans for stylish uplifts, such as a french bun.

In the end, I think she should stick with how she wore it during the campaign; it was a flattering look on her.

Christy said...

Ah, but those of us who remember Bill Clinton's first primary season remember that Ms. Rodham practiced law in Arkansas in a long do held back with a headband. She caught much grief over the look, and thus began the reinvention of Hillary Rodham into Hillary Clinton.

She's probably going through a mid-life crisis and wants to feel authentic again. Didn't work for me; I cut the locks and went to the Helen Mirren/Nancy Pelosi look.

ricpic said...

OK. It's a mullet.


Clinton is showing her age.

Quite the contrary. You'd think by this stage she would have found and settled on the look that is her. But maybe erstaz creatures never do settle.

ricpic said...

My own bad hair day.

erstaz = ersatz

Bruce Hayden said...

Frankly, I think it looks horrid. She is much too old for that look.

Long hair has traditionally been a young woman's thing, setting them off from the older married women.

That was what my girlfriend told me, who is 10 years younger than Hillary, and has never worn short hair.

sydney said...

She would look good with her hair pulled back in a bun - an elegant bun. But that's sort of like having short hair, isn't it?

I thought she looked good when she wore a hairband, but 62 is too old for a hairband.

She's definitely working toward a Palin hairdo. She should rethink that move. 1) It is not a style that will flatter her. 2) It is not flattering to realize she is copying another powerful woman's look.

She's been around enough she should already have her own look. A Thatcher type hairdo would look good on her.

Kirk Parker said...

"may a 60 year old woman flirt?

I believe that is a question for our hostess.

prairie wind said...

Young women get married, have babies, and before they are back in their jeans, cut their hair off. I swore I wouldn't do that, and I still have long hair. It is far from glamorous, but I couldn't accomplish short and glamorous, either.

Discussions like this (she's hot, she's ugly, she's too old, too young, too fat, too skinny) remind me how totally awful it would be to live a public life. Discussions about men are limited to whether he dresses well (and's gotta be hard for a guy to mess that up), whether he is youthful or "distinguished", whether he has a hot wife or not. Maybe we'd notice if he's portly. And we definitely notice if he looks like Lurch.

traditionalguy said...

The Clintons are always doing something to be noticed. Her style is usually hair today and gone tomorrow. Now, if she takes up jogging and has breast implants, then she plans to run for the nomination against the Kenyan and the 2012 election against Palin.

Maguro said...

And we definitely notice if he looks like Lurch.

No need to bring John Kerry into this.

vza said...

Trooper York says:
"I reserve judgement until I hear what Margaret Carlson has to say."


Mark said...

Actually, particularly in the almost-profile shot, she has a face that might have appeared on British coinage in an earlier age.

Not a bad thing for someone who might want to be the most powerful person on the planet.

dbp said...

I give Ms. Clinton this, she is brave enough to try different styles. She knows that every change will be noticed but doesn't let that detour her experimentation.

ironrailsironweights said...

Cool, a discussion about women's hair! Oh wait, it's not my sort of women's hair. Never mind.


JAL said...

Haha. Hillary Clinton is about Sarah Palin.

And GM laughs.

edutcher said...

The one shot of Hillary from below makes her look ghastly (not trying to be mean here). The way her hair is pulled away from the face emphasizes the thinness of it and, thus, her age.

A couple of commenters here have mentioned the rule that older women either have their hair short or wear it up.

Ann's hair is about the max a woman her age (I'm a couple of years older) should be for wearing it down, but her face has a bit of roundness to it that enables her to carry it off. Hillary, sad to say, has too thin a face for the do.

roesch-voltaire said...

Oh my limp locks and big busts is that how conservative on this blog judge women? Must be that old witch craft, or watching too much TV. To compare Palin to Hirsi Ali is simply absurd-- Hirsi has not quite or backed down from any job just too make more money.

E.M. Davis said...

I am glad I could just add to the steaming pile of awesome that is this blog.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Hillary has thin, limp and straight hair. She can't help it.

As such, she should never ever wear it long. In addition, she seems to have forgotten to tint/color her hair so that the grey roots are showing. Sloppy. Slovenly. Don't give a shit attitude.

There is nothing wrong with being grey or even (beautifuly)silver.

Or you can be proudly Hippie, "I don't give a shit, earth groovy bangles in her hear.

Or you can have the carefully prepared helemet hair of the professional politician.

Hippy.... Professional Older Woman.... Whatever.

Pick one!!!

Hillary is all over the place.

Her current look is very very sad.

deborah said...

"Or you can have the carefully prepared helemet hair of the professional politician."

Sydney, above said she was trying to copy Palin. No way is she that stupid to think she could carry it off. As I said, think she may be on the way to a coiffed upsweep of some kind. Something that's a pain in the morning, but stays put all day. One thing you can say for Pelosi, she's never lets her roots show. Absolutely no excuse for that in Hillary, unless she going to let herself go gray, which I don't know if that's a good idea. (I can't believe she went out in public with that clip and thin, lank hair!!)

David said...

Jennifer Grey is showing her age and it shows very well.

I had no idea she was Joel Grey's daughter until I read something this week. Joel Grey in Cabaret was about as good a performance as you will get in anything.

So Jennifer comes from good stock. Her Dirty Dancing performance was good because she had this air of being normal. Just a normal pretty girl you could fall in love with.

Becky Jo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
meep said...

A butterfly clip?


She needs to get grownup hair toys.

MadisonMan said...

And this matters because....?

AllenS said...

It has to be a lot tougher for a woman to grow old, than it is for a man.

Sixty Grit said...

Good God, she is one fat tub of goo. A massive ass in a pants suit slopping off the chair - yeah, that's a good look.

WV: stiling - something she isn't.

WV.2: woofo - what dogs say in England.

Shanna said...

I'm tired of the clips on middle-aged women, and tired of young girls combining a pony tail with a headband.

Aww, I like the pony tail/headband thing. I think it’s cute. And practical. Whenever I wear a headband alone it stays put for maybe an hour and then it starts slipping around and I have to fuss with it all day.

re: Hillary, it's the clip that's so horrifying. It is at once juvenile and trashy

I agree, very juvenile. And they make clips that don’t look like…that. But she’s SOS, she shouldn’t be wearing that clip. I don't think you have to give up long hair just because you've passed 40, but you do have to have a somewhat grown up hairstyle. And that clip is not it.

E.M. Davis said...

Jennifer Grey is showing her age and it shows very well.

Plus, she had all of her work done early on in life by a trained professional.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

And this matters because....?

Because, your outward appearance, the care you take in your personal grooming are reflective of your inner being.

If you (Hillary) as a representative of the United States, can't even take the care to look decent, what care are you taking in your job.

If you are a middle aged/older housewife and never go out except to the grocery store to buy some cigarettes and booze, no one cares what you look like. The freaking woman is the Secretary of State of the United States for God's sake!!

Her hair looks like crap. If she wants to go grey....just do it. Grey can be attractive. If she wants longer hair, at least look like you washed it once in a while and style it.

Instead she looks like she doesn't care how she looks and doesn't care about herself. She looks like she just woke up from a 2 day drunk and said Oh Hell...I'll just put these Barbie Barrettes in my hair.

Her pant suit should be burned. Shiny neon blue, cheap cheap look. Plus it doesn't fit. The pants are about to burst at the seams.

If you can't take care of your personal hygiene and take care of your personal appearance, it is reflective of some serious mental problems.

deborah said...

Two Feathers:
"It has to be a lot tougher for a woman to grow old, than it is for a man."

Oh, I don't know. I think women worry about looks, and men about loss of effectiveness:

dbp said...

One thing though: HRC does look increasingly like a witch, so she is in keeping with the times.