Monday, May 4, 2009

Beauty Faux Pax

I've committed a beauty faux pax: in my writing. My curly-haired protagonist in My Big Nose And Other Natural Disasters would never brush her hair so much, according to reader and blogger Underage Reading

I had no idea. See, as a straight-haired person, I've always envied those with curls. I watch them emerge from swimming pools looking like Venus, while my hair dries plastered to my head in a gargoyle-like fashion. I've watched them bunch wild tangles into cute ponytails at slumber parties while I slick my greasy hair into a scrunchie that overwhelms my thin hair (and did I mention, greasy?). I refused to listen to their complaints. 

But I've learned my lesson! I guess we all manage our hair with various tricks, whether it's lots of conditioner and little brushing, or little conditioner and lots of brushing. As a writer, I vow to do better beauty research too! 

Now, what beauty faux pax do you hate to see when you read?


  1. I think it depends on the tightness of the curls. (Although I could be wrong since I too have SUPER straight hair.) I mean I can see tight curls would never want to brush yet, loose spiral curls could get away with it.

    I dont think I am really too picky about beauty descriptions in books. At least nothing that comes to mind right away. Although--now that ya mention it I'm sure the next handful I read I'll be paying attention.

  2. AnonymousMay 04, 2009

    I read your book and I can't recall the character brushing her hair even once. But then, I have straight hair too, so it wouldn't stand out to me!

  3. I don't remember writing about hair brushing, but that doesn't surprise me; I forget all kinds of little details. I know an author who failed her own book's Accelerated Reader test because she couldn't remember her characters' physical characteristics. LOL.

    I agree also that tightness of curls has to be a factor. But I defer to those with more body : )

  4. I just finished My Big Nose yesterday (loved it!!) and I don't remember being struck by your character brushing her hair very often, or that I thought she shouldn't. I have pretty wavy hair...meaning quite wavy, not necessarily pretty...and I brush my hair. I didn't get the impression Jory had SUPER curly hair. After all, when she cuts it off, it sticks up in straight tufts. If it was really curly, she'd have a poodle head at that point.

    My 2 cents :)

  5. Following are short summaries of the most common arguments made by researchers, teachers, parents, and students as to why using AR is counterproductive: