What would my mother have done?

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December 2021 News

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I should be going to the hairdressers today! As Covid_19 takes hold and we all have to get used to a different life for the time being it all gets to us in different ways. Thankfully we are not at the stage where we have lost loved ones or even know many who have the virus. So, for most, it is the inconvenience that we are noticing. For my sons, the prospect of no gym is a difficult one. For me, I am just wondering what I am going to do with my hair that grows like a weed…what am I going to look like in 12 weeks' time?


…Then I thought about my mother who was a young junior doctor during the second world war. The previous generation faced so much worse and yet they found ways of maintaining normality. With no stockings available they simply painted a ‘stocking seam’ on their legs with gravy browning!


The wartime propaganda machine instructed women not to abandon standards of dress as this might be bad for morale. Women believed it was their patriotic duty to look as glamorous as the Stars in glossy magazines. One soldier even wrote in a 1941 Vogue article, "To look unattractive these days is downright morale-breaking and should be considered treason."


My mother as a newly qualified junior doctor worked in a major Liverpool hospital doing crazy hours during the day and was often on-call during the night. She had ‘digs’ in the hospital, a small room with a shared bathroom. She was only able to wash her very long thick hair every 6 WEEKS! So how did she manage? She would put cotton wool down the teeth of her comb. Spray perfume on the cotton wool if she had some and brush and brush her hair to get rid of the dirt and grease. She also learned to cut her own hair.


What did she do for a hairstyle? It was the 40’s so she wound it up in curls secured with a hair grip. I have the same hair, wild and thick so I am going to give it a go I have also ordered some hairdressers scissors and some hairgrips….. watch this space!!!