Some of you may remember the classic Nickelodeon cartoon show about a spunky redheaded girl. If you don’t, it’s a TV show about a girl named Ginger’s journey through middle school. I’m sure we can all remember how painful that time was, with raging puberty and hormones. In the show there is a gaggle of mean girls who try to make Ginger and her friend’s lives difficult. I’m sure we have all experienced bullying in some way or form, but I think some of the worst type of bullying is making fun of someone’s physical appearance. Throw in some red hair, pasty skin and freckles – the bullies will have a field day with you!
In 6th grade I remember a girl making fun of my eyelids having prominent veins since my skin is so pale. I’ve had people comment on my blog telling me that my outfit would look better on someone who isn’t so pale. I’ve had times where I was tested to spend hundreds of dollars a month on spray tans just so I can look normal. I have heard people say nasty comments like “well she’s a ginger so…” implying that people with red hair are inferior or ugly. I always wondered why I had to change myself to appease someone else. Was my red hair and pale skin that offensive?
In high school I was called a ginger so many times that I dyed my hair blonde for 4 years. It wasn’t until I was in my last year of college that I starting thinking about growing my hair out again. My friend Carly encouraged me, “Going back to red for fall would be perfect, I think you should do it!” And here we are.
“Someone once told me the grass is much greener on the other side…”
It took me 26 years to realize that my hair color is actually really special. I go out of my way to empower little girls with red hair, because I know how I struggled with it as a child. I used to think I was ugly for my red hair and pale skin. I saw it as something bad and something that wasn’t attractive, until I had an epiphany.
Redheads have been beautiful muses in some of the world’s most famous artworks – from portrait paintings to projections of goddesses. I share this 2% gene with Danaë by Klimpt. I share this 2% gene with Botticelli’s Venus herself, goddess of love, beauty and desire. I share this 2% with the strawberry blonde muse of Frederic Leighton’s ethereal Flaming June.
It is time to live my life like the muse I was made to be. A redheaded siren that encompasses everything her hair has. Beauty, strength, uniqueness, and beyond.