Cross dressing involves doing many everyday things in slightly changed ways. Pulling on a pair of heels seated and with leg flexed at the knee rather than jamming the foot into a pair of loafers while standing. Fumbling in a purse for keys rather than diving a hand into a trouser pocket. Backing into a car seat and turning legs in together rather than extending one leg and folding the rest of the male body in behind.
Cross dressing involves doing many things that are (largely) exclusively in the realm of the feminine. Adjusting bra straps and closing hook & eye clasps. Centering zips on the back of skirts. Touching up lipstick after a glass of wine.
And then, there are places for cross dressing. Places that are the exclusive domain of women. Places designed to repel male boarders. Places whose very color palettes, accoutrements, and conversational sound track compels most men either to flee or to uncomfortable occupy a chair and lapse into a comatose and catatonic state.
Such a place I visited last week, breathless with anticipation, that flouncy fulcrum of femininity, the Wig Salon.
Regular readers of Voyages en Rose will remember that I picked this milestone as Shrine # 10 of the 14 Stations of the Cross Dresser. For newish visitors, you might like to take a moment to read some background information here, here, or even all the way over here. Alternatively, simply search here on site for Stations of the Cross Dresser for the whole story.
A woman’s hair is indisputably and beautifully different than a mans hair. Short, long and in between, something in the way it is cared for, styled, worn and touched sets it apart, and sets me mad with desire to possess it. It has an X factor. I have a Y chromosome. Something must be done, and can be done with the help of the correct wig.
My wig shopping to date has been well intentioned but poorly executed. Cheap showgirl numbers pulled from chipped head forms in bargain basement beauty supply stores. Indifferent cashiers stuffing them into plastic bags and likely not to tender an opinion along the lines of “now that just won’t do for the shape of your face…”. I knew I could do better, and so my sorceress of transformation Ramona and I set out for Sunny’s Hair & Wigs. (Atlanta shop, pictured above)
We were met warmly upon arrival by Dafina (pictured below with your correspondent), a second generation hair enthusiast. The families first salon in Minneapolis has thrown shoots out to warmer places including Atlanta, Las Vegas, and Mesa AZ. A vast range of product from custom designed natural hair masterpieces to mass produced synthetics and everything in between. The Sunny’s people very much operate at the fashion forward edge of hair style. The aesthetic is very young, very fresh and very creative. If you do not live in or near these cities, they do sell online, but would admit themselves that you cannot beat taking the time to audition a whole line up of wigs live, en femme and in your favorite local salon.
Dafina took the time to walk us through the shop, speak briefly about the virtues and price ranges of the lines, and then provided space for us to explore, talk and just generally get comfortable with the pretty pink space. She had great questions about how often I dress that helped her start to recommend qualities and price ranges that would make sense for me. We three ended up clattering armloads of contestants to the setting booths discretely tucked away in the back of the shop.
Something beautiful happens to a wig when it is lifted from the lifeless head form and fastened to a living, breathing, made-up and hopeful face. It grows light and takes wing. It wants to move and is dieing to be seen. And when you are in a salon chair, legs crossed just so, on full mirrored display, and syncopating the O so natural pas de deux that they stylist and the stylee assume, well, let me simply say that this is a happy time.
I found I have critical faculties I did not know were there. It was as though the Hair Matrix was revealed to me. Winners emerged clearly and quickly. I really felt as though I was working with a professional, someone who knows their product, who has passion about hair, and style and beauty. It made me very happy as well that this cross dresser was simply and openly welcomed. I felt like a valued customer, not a curiosity. I believe I will be remembered and welcomed again on my next visit. I think these are characteristics that you can determine with a phone call or 2 before choosing a salon for your next (or first) Wig splurge.
And so, what did I buy? A beautifully banged, brown bob with auburn highlights wig. It frames my face nicely. It feels light on my head. It falls back into place after being wind tossed. It did not break the bank. It is mine and I love it. So much so that I am sure I will provide her with company soon. I so want to do this again. And again.
I have read a good many stories from CD’s and TG’s on a variety of online forums. I could really feel the excitement of the authors in their posts, and anticipated feeling all of that myself, when the time came. The event did not disappoint. This is intimately feminine stuff. If you have dabbled around wigs, if you have borrowed, if you have not gone full force femme on a mission to get wigged up, I highly recommend it. This is a truly worthy Station of the Cross Dresser.