Monday, September 22, 2014

Doll-A-Day 241: Red Heads Week:Fashion Fever Gillian

  Today's red head is Fashion Fever Gillian.

 I got her at a yard sale, so she's not wearing her own clothes. She just threw this look together on the spur of the moment...

I never noticed until I looked at these pictures that she's a bit wonky eyed.
She has the Kayla/Lea head mold, like the Vitamin C doll I showed you in the Mulder and Scully post a week or so ago. They look very different though.

The later Fashion Fever dolls had what seemed to be the same old heads molds, only blown up in size.

She has great dark auburn hair and freckles.

Of course, not all red heads have freckles, which seems to be what doll makers think.

   Yesterday I talked about what causes red hair and the rarity of it. Today let's tackle some of the myths and truths about red hair and red heads.
   Red heads are known for having freckles, but that's not always the case. I don't have freckles, and neither does my son Fuzzy. My daughter Ivy has some at the moment because she spent some time in the sun this summer. If she's like I was when I was young, the freckles will fade and go away this winter. We're also supposed to sunburn easily, but I never did. And red heads aren't supposed to tan, but my dad and I both tanned. (I tried not to, to maintain what a friend used to call a  'perfect fish belly complexion'.) 
  Red hair is caused by a gene mutation called MC1R.Those with the mutation have a higher concentration of the pigment pheomelanin.(They have more pheomelanin than the dark pigment eumelanin.) Fair skin is associated with red hair because low concentrations of eumelanin can cause both red hair and fair skin. It's possible to have one without the other though.Red heads most commonly have blue eyes, because that's also caused by a lack of melanin. However, even though my dad had blue eyes, I had a brown eyed mother,and they produced a hazel eyed daughter, (My brunette sister.), and a brown eyed red head. (Me.) Of my two red heads, Fuzz has brown eyes and Ivy was born with blue eyes that turned to 'green with brown in the middle', as she says.Of course,babies are usually born with blue eyes too,and I and both of my brown eyed children, were all born with our brown eyes. (So I guess we're just a family of mutants!)

  According to a couple of studies done, red heads have a different sensitivity to pain than other people: We're supposedly more sensitive to thermal pain,but less sensitive to other types of pain.This is supposed to be because red heads have a mutation in a hormone receptor that responds to endorphins, the chemicals in the brain that act as a natural pain killer.
Red haired women supposedly require less of certain painkillers than women of other hair colours. I seem to bear these theories out, as my hands and feet actually experience pain very quickly in cold weather, (Although they didn't when I was younger, so it could just be my age.), but I have a high threshold of pain for things like injuries, and childbirth. I have a bad back, but I never take any pain medication and just keep going. I gave birth to my kids with no pain medication or numbing. (I tended to just concentrate on the pain, laying still with my eyes closed. This caused the nurses to think I was sleeping through my labour with Ivy. As one of them watched the monitor showing the contractions she said to the other nurse, "There goes a big one. I can't believe she's sleeping through this." I didn't open my eyes, but just said, "I'm not asleep." She was kind of stunned I had answered and said, "You must have a tremendous threshold of pain!" My dad was the same way. In the 50s he was building a garage onto their house when a hammer fell on his head. He continued to work, until my mom came out of the house and started screaming. What he thought had been sweat running down his face was blood from the hammer injury!
  Red heads bruise easier than those with other hair colours, but this could just be because, for the most part, we have fairer skin and the bruises show up more. I know I have always had more bruises than I could even account for. There is no proof though, to the theory that 'red heads are bleeders', a theory one obstetrician I had tried to put forth all the time.
  Another belief about red heads is that they require more anesthetic than other people. Well that's one I don't help prove. I was supposed to be made just 'drowsy' for a procedure,and not only did I not make it past 8 counting backwards from 10 when they gave me the anesthetic, but I only woke up once when the procedure was almost over and immediately conked back out. I didn't wake up again until I had been in the recovery room for quite a while, and then kept falling back to sleep. Eventually they threw me out of the recovery room and told me to go home and sleep! I went home and slept the rest of the afternoon! I conked out the same way when I had Fuzz, (After going through my whole labour until it was time to push, they decided I needed an emergency Caesarean because Fuzz's heart rate had dropped.) , and when I had my gall bladder removed. The other weird thing is, I have very little memory of several months surrounding both those events. Unfortunately, they were within a year of each other, so I have little memory of Fuzz's babyhood.
  And on that somewhat depressing note, I leave you until tomorrow, when we'll see another red haired doll.


  1. Hi Tam, your doll has a beautiful hair color. Seriously, it's like you write about me with these facts! It's exactly the same with me with pain & anesthetics! My freckles tend to fade in winter too, but in summer they appear again :-). Unfortunately I don't tan at all. I look forward to read more facts, it's very interesting, and a lot I didn't know of yet!

    1. Are you a red head too? Do you have a high or low threshold of pain? Are you one of the ones who need more anesthetics? I'm fascinated by these things, but other than my family I know few other red heads. When I was a kid both of my best friends were also red heads.

    2. Hi, yes I am. With anesthetics it's like this: I definitely need less anesthetics. I've had a laser-operation once to remove a cyst in one of my oviducts (I hope this is the correct word in English :-) ). I needed anesthetics, but was supposed to wake up after a few hours. I slept way too long and was very sick when I finally woke up. About pain, I can stand a lot of pain better than other people I know. On the other hand, I have - severe - chronic muscle pains for many years now (and I've had it since I was about 18, but it gets worse and worse), and they are still unexplained (I never went to the doctor with it and just kept on going for all those years, until I couldn't get out of the car properly anymore 7 years ago). My eyes are dark brown and the color of my hair was (now darker, faded, with gray, I'm 46 now) like the hair of your doll but slightly lighter, more red). And my best buddy Ben in Kindergarten and the first year of primary school almost had the same hair color as me. Weird isn't it? I think you commented on my post about my doll & me with the same knitwear on :-). Here's the link: My hair is colored with color-shampoo to hide the gray, but it's close to my natural color, only with less red and darker. If you like to know more facts, you're welcome to send me an e-mail! (You can find it on my blog).

  2. Hi Tam, the post you replied on was, sorry for the mistake :-).

  3. I use to have dark hair with an auburn tint and I have freckles and don't tan well, so it isn't just red heads.

    1. Definitely. I've seen very pale people with black hair and freckles. And I've seen red heads who tan, (Including me and my dad.). None of those things are set in stone. That's kind of my point when people assume all red heads have freckles.


Thanks in advance for your comments.