Why I have Cleopatra hair

I will tell you why.

But, first, allow me to say a few words in my defence.

  1. Stop hating my Cleopatra/Emily the Strange/China doll hairstyle. I can’t help my hair being this way.
  2. Stop envying my naturally straight, silky, never-rebonded hair. Yes, it sounds like a shampoo ad dream but it’s really nothing but trouble.

Let me illustrate.

I was going for an audition the other day. It was for a young mother role, so I decided to gel my hair back in order to look older.

First, I tied it back in a low ponytail. Then, I brushed my Cleopatra fringe to the side with the help of hair wax. Once I’ve got it into satisfactory shape, I hairsprayed liberally all over to set it in place.

I was pleased that I was able to recreate my Kao Magiclean look.

All set, I left for my audition.

Walked to the MRT station and took the MRT to Chinatown where my audition was held.

When I reached Chinatown MRT station, I went to the ladies to freshen up and I saw that my hair had become thus:

Went for the audition, nevertheless.

Did the audition and went in search of another toilet to recover from post-audition nerves.

Alas, I saw that I was looking more and more dishevelled. Where did all the hair wax and hairspray go?

By now frustrated by my rubbish hair and also by the audition (I either get post-audition jitters or post-audition blues. This time, it was post-audition blues), I went straight home.

Another trip on the MRT and a short walk home.

By the time I reached home, my hair had gone back to almost square one.


Compare again the first and last pictures. And this is like less than two hours apart. And this is also with tons of extra strength hair wax and hairspray to supposedly hold it in place.

In the past when I needed to keep my hair up, I would bring my hair wax and hairspray out with me. When that happens, you’ll see me going to the ladies every half an hour to spray my hair back to where I want it to be, because no matter how many times I spray, it just keeps falling down again.

By the end of the day, I am a walking can of hairspray and I still look like a China doll.

It was similarly frustrating when I had a long fringe.

It was forever covering my face, which was very, very annoying. And I realised one day that I had developed a very ugly head swing to shake the hair off my face.

I saw myself do it on TV too many times to count.

Cameramen hated my long fringe because they could never see my face when shooting profile angles. And they were always asking me to stick all the hair behind my ears, which just makes my whole hair look flat.

Yes, my long fringe looks really nice on photos. But those are still photos and my hair can be manipulated for split seconds, long enough to allow a nice picture to be taken.

But in real life and on TV, the long fringe is just too much trouble.

I have tried dyeing my entire head of hair. I thought if I damaged my hair, it wouldn’t fall so straight anymore.

Didn’t work. My hair got damaged but it was still as straight as ever.

I have tried perming it but the fringe still falls into the front of my face.

So, to beat all the frustration, I cut my fringe short.

Now, I can concentrate on acting without having to worry about my ugly head swing or stress about my hair covering my face.

In fact, I think my acting has improved since I cut my hair.

Unfortunately, I can’t do anything about the Cleopatra look. I have tried to wear it to the side as you can see, but it just keeps wanting to be straight.

What can I do?

Even if I look uglier with this hairstyle, I’m keeping it because it’s less frustrating and it makes me a better actress.