In Vietnam, It’s not strange to have a lot of women growing long hair, because Long hair with “Ao dai” has now become the symbol of Vietnam. However, finding a woman with record-long hair like Ms. Hoang Phuong Lan is truly a big challenge.
Ms. Lan, the manager of a restaurant in northern Thai Binh Town, was working on a Sunday afternoon when a female customer approached and said: “Please take a photo with me. I saw you on the news.”
To pleasure the customer, the 46-year-old woman unfastened the bun at the back of her head and let her 2.4-meter-long, straight hair down for a short selfie. After that, she retied her hair into a bun with practiced ease and returned to her task.
Ms. Lan has not trimmed her hair since she was 20 years old. Her hair is so long that every time she goes out, she often has to wrap her hair in a bun to keep it from reaching the ground.
She was also given the moniker “Long Hair Lan” because of her 2.4m long hair, which is longer than her body. She has received a lot of public attention since she was recognized by Guinness Vietnam as The Woman with The Longest and Straightest Hair in Vietnam on October 27th, 2012. She holds the record to this day.
Ms. Lan had a special love for hair from a young age and always told herself that she would grow up with long hair to her heels. She stated that when she was 20, her hair was shoulder-length and she had to cut it for a variety of reasons; she always felt very regretful, and every step felt empty and very uncomfortable. Lan has vowed never to cut her hair again.
She said that washing her hair was quite challenging and takes a lot of time. She shared the secret to keeping her hair always black, smooth, and straight: “I rarely use external shampoo, I often wash leaves such as lemon leaves, grapefruit leaves, lemongrass. Those are natural flavors, you can find them everywhere. It makes the hair always healthy, black.” She usually massages the head very slowly and gently to avoid hurting the roots. She cherishes the hair.
It is difficult to wash and even more difficult to dry one’s hair. She avoids using a hairdryer because she is concerned that the heat may damage her hair. She usually stands in front of an electric fan for an hour to dry her hair before combing it with her fingers for another hour. In the winter, this chore becomes incredibly difficult.
Ms. Lan said she washes her hair once every four days when the weather is hot and once every week when the weather is cooler. “I only untangle my hair when I have free time. It can take up to three days sometimes. But by then, it is time for my next hair wash.”
Too long and thick hair also causes her numerous hassles in life. Every time she rides a motorcycle, she often has to choose a customized half-cap or a low bun to keep the helmet from covering her head. Ms. Lan also avoids high-impact sports like gyms, jogging, and aerobics since the bun on the back of her neck is rather hefty, preventing her from having fun like everyone else.
Ms. Lan’s family frequently sleeps on the opposite side of the bed due to her long hair. At the time, her hair had fallen to the floor and was not interfering with the family’s sleep. “In order to have beautiful hair, I have to realize that I will have to give up certain pleasant hobbies or other things,” Lan explained.
Lan moved to Dubai, the United Arab Emirates in 1998 when she was 27 years old to work in the textile industry. Locals were enamored with Lan and her hair. “People would compliment my hair and tell me, ‘Vietnamese women are gorgeous.’ I recognized that my hair contributed to the beauty of Vietnamese women in other nations, therefore I chose not to cut it any longer.”
She currently cuts and trims a bit at the ends of her hair to make it not grow longer because she only wants to maintain her hair that long, not any longer.
While today’s youth are preoccupied with following imported fashion fads, Phuong Lan’s long hair is a lovely and graceful symbol of Vietnamese ladies from ancient times to the present.
Natural long hair, glossy black and pure smooth, with the delicate and graceful features that only Asian ladies possess.