Hairy Houdini

Photos by Jeff “Turbo” Corrigan

Envision a cool, breezy spring day. Across the street, a lady sashays down the sidewalk. Large-framed sunglasses cover her face, her body hidden in a Maxi dress. You find your eyes fixated on this vision walking toward you for one reason: that long, flowing hair. It looks like a silk waterfall cascading down her shoulders. And chances are, it’s fake.

I’m going to go ahead and say fake hair today is as commonplace as a depressed teenager. So guys, if you had this knowledge during an encounter with a sexy lady, would her hotness factor plummet?

Back in my college days at USC, I’d wait on my hair to just grow already. That hair let me down, only reaching my upper back. Sexy, long hair just wasn’t in the cards.

My hair stylist roommate in La-La Land had a number of celebrity clients. One evening, I came home to find her sewing clips onto rows of fake hair. For hours she sat
Indian-style on our couch with a needle and thread. “What are you doing?” I asked.

“I have to get this weft* done for my client by tomorrow,” she said. “It freakin’ takes forever, but it’s going to look so pretty when it’s in her hair.”

“How much does it cost?”

“A lot. All the celebrities are getting them-you think their long hair is real?” she said, chuckling. Hair stylist roommate went on bashing the extensions of Paris Hilton, Brit Brit and Tara Reid. She was convinced their stylists were lying to them.

When I moved to Vegas to work at FOX TV in 2007, my mane-envy came along for the ride.

It was hard to ignore the clusters of Victoria’s Secret model wannabes swarming the clubs with curls twisting down to their butts. It was instant sex appeal, upping their hotness exponentially.

A few years later, I moved to San Diego and succumbed to the temptation, rocking extensions on New Year’s Eve 2011 at Searsucker Downtown. I felt sexier than ever, but my O.C.D. reached new lengths, along with my hair. Every 15 minutes I felt compelled to “tap” my scalp and make sure a track wasn’t showing.

“Tapping” checks became less frequent over the next few months. But then the comments from the boyfriend started:

“I like your real hair better. You don’t need the fake stuff.”

“Really?” I asked. “Don’t you like how it looks when we go out and I’m on your arm?”

“Well, yeah, but I don’t like feeling the clips on your head. They feel ghetto, like paperclips. I’m just saying, you look pretty without them.”

So I gave the fake hair some time off and let it just “hang” in my closet.

Recently I returned to Vegas for my birthday weekend with the girls.

It looked like a bomb exploded in our hotel bathroom: fake eyelashes covered the counter, fake tanner fumes danced around us in the air. I stole one final look at myself as we rushed to make our 10 p.m. dinner reservation. Something was missing.

The hair!

Out of the suitcase and onto my head it went. I rearranged the last two clips inside the cab. As we stepped out into the Vegas night, I caught a glimpse of my reflection in the mirrors covering the facade of The Cosmopolitan. That sexy silhouette I’d been searching for was finally found. Façade or not, I had arrived. -Leslie Marcus


Weave: A hairpiece, usually with layered gaps woven into it. The weave is placed on a person’s head, and his/her own real hair is interwoven into the hairpiece.

Weft: Temporary hair extension, which is glued into the hair.

Track: Parting or a cornrow that establishes the placement pattern of wefts or strand additions.

Model: Me, Leslie Marcus (writer)
Extensions: Real human hair, three 16” clip-in tracks*
Styled by:Candice Bucket at Diesel Salon
Installation time: five minutes

Tips for the fellas:

1. Don’t be surprised if you meet a girl, go out, make out and feel some paper clip-like things on her head while running your fingers through her hair. Relax, continue on, and don’t bring it up...EVER.

2. Don’t complain to your GF when she’s wearing hair extensions by saying, “I like your natural hair better, you don’t need those things.” That’s B.S., and we see you checking out that chick with fake hair walking down the other side of the street.

3. Don’t be surprised if you wake up in the morning to find a Cousin It-like thing lying on the living room chair. That’s where the fake hair likes to rest while away from the head.

Hi there. I’m Leslie Marcus, the supervising producer of the Fox 5 Morning Show in San Diego. My days are filled dreaming up segment ideas and bringing them to life on your television sets. On a typical morning, you’ll find me running a five-and-a-half-hour circus of sorts at the Fox 5 studio. Tune in at 8 a.m., and by 9 you might catch Dr. Booty teaching a new workout, anchors licking iPads, dogs talking and bikini-clad models strutting on a boat in our back lot-all available for your viewing pleasure on YouTube.