At the beginning of June I decided to start wearing a bandana covering my hair during my shrine rites. This decision came after reading a number of blog posts about the growing number of pagan women covering their hair for religious reasons. I went and got myself a white bandana, which covered the hair on top of my head but left my ponytail poking out the back.
Spiritually, the result was underwhelming. I don’t know quite what I expected, but the gods seemed indifferent, and I didn’t notice any stunning changes in my rituals either. Some women note that they feel more spiritually aware, or more securely connected to the gods. I felt neither.
What I did note in particular was a very practical advantage. The bandana kept my hair securely pinned to my head – meaning no fly-away hairs. I didn’t have to worry about hair in my face, or about any tendrils slipping free and drooping into a candle. In this sense, I think the gods appreciate the bandana. It takes my attention away from fretting about catching fire, and adds some additional purity, I think. For that reason I think I will keep covering my hair to some degree, in any rite where I will be serving in an official capacity. I don’t think I’ll be extending the headcovering to public gatherings and informal events, though. It’s been an interesting experiment.