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  • Writer's pictureShelly Nicholas

"Anyone have an extra hair tie?" Our History: Part I

Shelly Nicholas with her sister, Kristen Ouellette

If we're gonna take it back to the start, let's go wayyyy back. Check out that mop. It's serious.

Can you believe my parents brushed it for the first 10 years of my life? ...and then made ME brush it until I was 17? Yup - it's true. We can exchange curly hair horror stories some other time.

Cue the entrance of a kindhearted hairstylist at Scruples Hair Salon in Avon, CT who casually asked me why I was brushing my curls. WHAT!? #gamechanger

Growing up, my sister and I played sports. You name it, we tried it. We might not have like them all, but we certainly tried. Like swim team, for instance. Who can really wash their hair that often? After every practice and meet? Nope - I couldn't hang.

But there were other sports that we loved... soccer, basketball, hockey, baseball, lacrosse, and karate to name a few. My sister, Kristen Ouellette, is a true athlete. She has a PhD in Exercise Physiology... NBD, right?

I, on the other hand, liked being on a team with my friends a little bit more than seriously competing. I still have much love and respect for those other girls. Girls who play sports are cool... and tough... and not afraid to get dirty or sweaty. My people!

It was while playing sports throughout my life that I constantly struggled to find a hair tie or hair elastic that could manage the wild beast that is my hair. Just like sports, I tried a wide variety of different types of hair ties that are available on the market - the ones with the metal clasp that breaks your hair and rusts when it gets wet, the fabric covered ones that stretch and break, the thick, rubbery ones that pull out your hair, the ones with a rubbery tread that damage your hair, scrunchies (don't even get me started) - none of these every really offered the security and support that I needed when competing.

For those of you who play sports, you know that terrible sinking feeling when your hair tie breaks at practice or a game. "Anyone have an extra hair tie?" You can only hope that your teammates have one that can make do.

I always thought, "why hasn't someone made a better hair tie? that's strong, stretchy, and durable without breaking or damaging hair?" Well, I guess maybe because Pretty Knotty hadn't been started yet. Stay tuned for Part II - we'll explore how this idea developed into a reality.

Hair Up, Game On, Shelly

PS - Around this same time as the photo above, Jacob was crushing some push ups with his dad counting reps.

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