Long Hair Road Hazards

Woman with long hair driving a car
Photo: Shutterstock
A subsidiary of an auto insurance company published a report that discussed the findings of an independent research study on the issue of long hair and car drivers. The study revealed that around 190,000 women in the United Kingdom had an accident, a near-miss, or made a sudden maneuver due to their vision being limited by their hair while driving.
The study also revealed that 67 percent of women have a hairstyle that can fall into their eyes while driving, but only 21 percent of women always secure their hair before operating their vehicles.
Additionally, even when the driver's hair doesn't obstruct her view, it can still result in a driving hazard. 57 percent of women confessed to taking their hands off the wheel to rearrange their hair or push it out of their eyes. Current hair styling trends are also contributing to the problem, with approximately 53 percent of women prioritizing style over practicality. The current trend of longer hair and particularly long, loose bangs increases the risk for these women.
For years, there have been reports on various seemingly innocuous things that can be a hazard while driving on the roads. However, many people fail to consider long hair as a seriously dangerous factor. As someone who used to wear hair past my shoulders and loved to drive with the sunroof open, I can tell you firsthand how dangerous it can be.
As exciting as it is to feel your hair whipping out behind you in a great, arcing halo over your head, there are numerous moments in which the hair lashes across your eyes or mouth, stinging and irritating you more than you would expect from hair.
Woman with a scarf wrapped around her hair when driving
Photo: Zurijeta/Canva
Hairdressers have offered simple solutions for women who want to drive safely with long hair:
•  Keep a few hair accessories in your car's glove compartment. An Alice band, a simple headband, or a banana clip will keep long bangs out of your eyes and the hair away from your face while driving.
•  If this seems too plain for you, there are many hair slides available today, ranging from classic tortoiseshell to diamond and rhinestone designs that offer a lot of flash and glitz. Or, for the ultimate in classic glamour, a pair of Chanel sunglasses secured tightly on top of your head will push all your stray hair away from your face.
•  If you have a hairstyle that would be too messy or flattened by the use of an Alice band, comb, or barrette, consider using a long scarf to wrap around your hair and loop it back across the shoulders for a classic Grace Kelly touch of elegance.
In my own life, I quickly learned to keep a hair tie looped around the gear shift of my little sports car. This allowed me to tie back my hair whenever I got into the car. This served two purposes: it prevented the stinging and slashing hair from hitting me in the face, and it kept me from having a windblown mass of tangles and knots when I arrived at my destination.
Of course, recognizing potentially problematic styles can be tricky. Many women think that just because their hair is styled away from the face, there won't be any issues.