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Because I Am Ready For My Close-Up, Mr. DeMille

By Amalah

Don’t forget, we’re spreading out the questiony goodness this week, so each question will be its very! own! entry! Yesterday’s question can be found here, while tomorrow’s question only exists IN THE FUTURE, like, whoa, man. WHOA.
Dear Amalah,
First of all, the baby of yours is divine.
Second, I have a problem. Either my head is too oddly shaped, or my hair will not hold a head scarf. Am I not intended to wear a beautiful head accessory? I have all these beautiful silk scarves, and not ONE of them will stay on my head for more than five minutes (you know, unless it’s tied SO tight that I look as though I have no hair what-so-ever, and really that’s not a good look for me). Even WITH hair pins the dammed scarves won’t stay on. My hair is straight, thick, and slick. I don’t generally wear any product in my hair, as it just ends up in a pony tail. However, I am really, really, really wanting to wear a scarf. It will allow me to show off my mane, and also keep it the heck out of my face ( i.e. the ponytail). Plus, I look really cute with a head scarf on. Even if it is just for five minutes. Do I need to add some texture to my hair before I tie it up? So I guess my question is this; How do you properly tie a headscarf and am I missing a key point in head preparation before putting it on? In any style. Headband stylie? Bandana-like? African queen? And so on.
Scarf Lover

Going on my own limited scarf experience, I don’t have any magic tips for keeping scarves on your head. Mostly because I am completely unable to keep scarves on my head.
The last time I really tried was a few years ago when those little crocheted kerchief things came back into style. I bought a couple and oh man, they were adorable. For the whole five minutes I was able to keep them on before they slid right off my straight and apparently uber-slippery hair. Sigh.
And you know, I still kept them. I still have them. Along with an absolutely gorgeous silk scarf from Coach that someone gave me as a gift. It’s meant to be word headband- or gypsy-style and knotted at the back of your head. And I have never worn it outside the house ONCE because it just doesn’t stay on, period.
I did some Googling and pretty much came up empty, although I admit I gave up early after slogging through so many religious-garb-type sites to find one seemingly regular headscarf fashion site, only to realize it was actually some kind of…um…erotic scarf-tying light bondage site and people, I CAN ONLY BEAR SO MUCH.
So then I asked Amy, of the AlphaFoxyMama Squad, who was the only volunteer who mentioned anything about hat-and-scarf knowledge, furthering my suspicion that headscarf-tying is quickly becoming a lost art. Or something only the curly-haired girls seem to be able to do. Or maybe evolution has changed the shape of the human head since the days of Grace Kelly and we’re all a bunch of weirdo-skulled mutants.
Anyway, here’s what Amy had to say:
I’ve never really encountered this problem, as I tend to only wear scarves on my head when I’m doing housework or riding on the motorcycle (to help prevent helmet hair). Hope this helps.
I generally tie my scarfs on extremely tight, as they will loosen up during the day. Usually I do find myself readjusting the scarf fairly often during the day, so I think this is just part and parcel of wearing a scarf on your head as opposed to wearing it around your neck.
Another problem may be the material. A really slippery scarf will not stay on your head (Like a silk scarf from Coach? Wah! — Amalah). I usually grab a more crepe-like material (if that’s the right term)–something with more a little more grab. Wearing a scarf over slightly dirty hair may help as well.

Readers? Commenters? Are we missing something? Some special kind of styling product or hairpin? Staples? Paste?

Published October 11, 2006. Last updated October 11, 2006.
About the Author

Amy Corbett Storch


Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy’s daily mothering adventures at Ama...

Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy’s daily mothering adventures at Amalah. Also, it’s pronounced AIM-ah-lah.

If there is a question you would like answered on the Advice Smackdown, please submit it to [email protected].

Amy also documented her second pregnancy (with Ezra) in our wildly popular Weekly Pregnancy Calendar, Zero to Forty.

Amy is mother to rising first-grader Noah, preschooler Ezra, and toddler Ike.

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