I don’t mean to oversimplify, but you’d think that rich women have it pretty easy these days! No matter how sad an heiress or CEO might be, their wealth affords them an indescribable level of luxury. When they’re feeling down, they can, hypothetically, take private jets to various remote islands and post bikini photos with their venture capitalist boyfriends. If the world were to end and everyone they loved perished in the literal fires of climate change, money would grant them access to the austere solitude of palatial underground compounds in New Zealand.
Many rich women also live in gated communities and high-rise penthouses that protect them from the looming threat of class war. And some are even famous, and blessed enough to do all of this while appearing on television! Which makes it even weirder that so many are getting pin-straight bobs—haircuts normally reserved for super-villains armed with nuclear weapons. I thought only struggling 20-somethings in movies cut their hair off when going through it! Are rich women OK?
Siobhan Roy, fictional media heiress in Succession, has loomed large over Ivanka Trump in recent weeks. Both are rich, white heiresses desperate for power in the capitalist fun-houses built by their megalomaniacal fathers. They also chopped their hair off simultaneously! In Season 2, the political “consultant” and power-hungry daughter of a media patriarch semi-styled after Rupert Murdoch has been menacing the Waystar Royco offices with a bob eerily similar to the style unveiled earlier this month by Ivanka Trump, the political dilettante and power-hungry daughter of a media patriarch semi-styled after wax left out in the sun too long.
Trump made headlines with her brand new bob while meeting with government officials and police cadets in Colombia to promote “women’s empowerment.” Later that week, she danced with women in Paraguay with the bob on full display. It simultaneously screamed, “I’m fucking rich!” and “I’m overcompensating to mask my participation in a violently racist administration!” The visuals have haunted me for weeks! Just look at the way she bares her teeth when she smiles, like a predator flexing its ability to rip your throat out. Ivanka, are you doing OK?
Let’s also not forget Kim Kardashian, whose own bob surfaced on Instagram in April after she announced her new career path as a lawyer and frequent advisor to Ivanka and the Trump administration. In a recent interview with Vogue Arabia for the September issue, West revealed that she was once “embarrassingly obsessed” with fame, and that money was “always the goal” in driving her ambitions. Throughout this, long hair was a staple of her public image and fashion sensibility. But as her quest for cultural domination lengthened towards the overtly political, conversely, her hair got shorter. Just like Siobhan and Ivanka!
This isn’t to say that the bob’s only sole purpose is one of evil intent. Jennifer Lopez, for example, debuted a bob amidst the Hustlers press tour after it was reported that Constance Wu would be receiving top billing at the behest of her publicists. What was J. Lo telling us when she cut all her hair off—was it a power move, a cry for help, a desperate bid for control in a press tour that was slowly being stolen away from her? A month later, she’d walk the red carpet premiere with an even shorter bob, as if to say, “I might not lead this film, but you’re gonna fucking look at me.” Cate Young, reviewing Hustler, wrote: “Jennifer Lopez isn’t the lead, but her star power eclipses everything else in the film.” Similarly, her bob eclipsed everything else on the red carpet as well.
Regardless, it’s clear that these these bobs are in conversation with each other. Rich women worldwide appear to be metastasizing into something far more nefarious than I ever could have imagined. As wealth continues to concentrate, and apocalyptic anxieties tighten their grip on the cultural conscience, I’ve begun to fear that more bobs will continue to sprout up in the most unlikely of places. I could have sworn I saw a union-busting media buyout and private equity hostile takeover both sporting a sleek bob just the other day! (That, or my sleep paralysis demons have begun to manifest in the waking world.) I also reached out to numerous salons while researching the haircut’s return to power and none would return my request for comment. Perhaps stylists are fearful of the retribution they’d experience at the hands of cold, uncaring, bobbed clients. Or the Big Bob Lobby’s power runs deeper than anyone yet realizes. Despite this, it’s incredibly clear—rich women are not OK.