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Marisa Mackle: Blondes have more fun but much less cash

It's a myth that blondes have more fun. But they dig deep for the privilege anyway. I know it would be far more economical to be a brunette, so why can't I be one then? When I was pregnant I succumbed to a few low-lights, but when I looked in the mirror I barely recognised the mousey face that stared back at me glumly.

So when my son was a few months old I went back to my hairdresser and asked to swap the low-lights for highlights. It's something that men don't really understand but when I go to the hairdresser I feel human again. It's one of life's luxuries.

The other day, when my roots were looking distinctly dark, I decided to go the hairdresser for a top up. It was so nice to just there for a few hours mindlessly flicking through magazines and sipping coffee, something I never ever get to do at home.

Afterwards I treated myself to a taxi, to make sure the wind and rain didn't reverse the hairdresser's good work and the driver asked if I had been shopping.

"No," I said. "Just getting my hair done."

"Are you going out?"

I said I wasn't.

"It just makes me feel better," I pointed out.

"How much did it cost?"

I was too embarrassed to tell him. But he kept asking so, eventually, I relented. He nearly crashed the car when he heard.

"Why do women spend so much on their hair? Could you not have done it yourself?"

I could, but that wasn't the point. The point was that I liked going to the hairdresser.

"What does your partner think of you spending all that?"

"I don't have one. And even if I did, it wouldn't make any difference. I wouldn't stop going. I would do anything for love . . . but I won't do that."

He kept shaking his head.

"Look," I said defensively. "I've had the same TV for 15 years. How many TVs have you bought in the past 15 years?"

"About fifteen . . .", he replied.

I thought I'd won. I honestly thought I'd got him to shut up. But no such luck. He asked: "How long have you been dyeing your hair blonde?"

"About 20 years."

"And how much does it cost each year?"

I added it up. "About two grand."

"So," he said smugly, "do you think you've had forty grand's worth of fun?"

Yikes! Well, when it's put like that . . .


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