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That Girl with The Neon Yellow Hair

Meet Lirminta Rongpipi, 25, who’s turning heads with her neon yellow hair

Updated
Fashion
3 min read


Lirminta Rongpipi, 25, stylist. (Photo: Karishma Bedi Photography/ Rod Anker Salons)

She’s wild, yet a bit fragile. Her face bears a silent rebellion.

This is Lir, and she doesn’t need anyone’s affirmation.

“I don’t care anymore of what people think of me”, she says, nonchalantly. Lir is used to the jibes of people commenting on her appearance. That she is lives in Delhi, a city where many from her native place, Assam, feel the strange scrutiny of unsolicited stares, doesn’t affect her one bit. “Sometimes people stare at me, some others laugh at me, but I don’t care”, she says.

Even though Lirminta Rongpipi, better known as Lir, works as a junior stylist at a city-based street style magazine, her relationship with style is strained at best.

I don’t like pretty clothes... I like to pick ‘ugly’ things, and somehow, make them work.
Lirminta Rongpipi, 25, stylist


Lirminta Rongpipi, 25, stylist. (Photo: Karishma Bedi Photography/ Rod Anker Salons)
Lirminta Rongpipi, 25, stylist. (Photo: Karishma Bedi Photography/ Rod Anker Salons)
With her fiery yellow mane and pierced septum, it’s easy for Lir to stand out in the crowd. But it’s not like she is seeking this attention. Her look is simply an expression of her individuality.

Now I have seen many Indian women paint their hair in many different colours. But Lir’s yellow mane intrigues me instantly. What could have prompted this girl to get this colour? Is this a rebellion against something? Is this her big F** You to society? I start throwing away my volley of questions but she seems amazed at my attempt to intellectualize her hair colour.

“I just like it”, she says, simply.

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Lir’s neon yellow hair glow in the dark, attracting a lot of attention at parties (Photo: Karishma Bedi Photography/ Rod Anker Salons)
Lir’s neon yellow hair glow in the dark, attracting a lot of attention at parties (Photo: Karishma Bedi Photography/ Rod Anker Salons)
I coloured them yellow because I hadn’t tried this colour and I hadn’t seen anyone else do it in India before. Also, it glows in the dark so everyone loves it at parties.
Lirminta Rongpipi, 25, stylist
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Lirminta Rongpipi, 25, stylist. (Photo: Karishma Bedi Photography/ Rod Anker Salons)
Lirminta Rongpipi, 25, stylist. (Photo: Karishma Bedi Photography/ Rod Anker Salons)

Born in Assam, this Delhi-based stylist is no stranger to acid coloured hair. In the past, she has painted her hair blue and pink, among other pop colours. Perhaps it is because she identifies herself as a punk rocker at heart. And it’s no surprise that she’s grown up listening to Blink 182 and Good Charlotte.



Lirminta Rongpipi in an earlier hair colour. (Photo: Rod Anker Salons)
Lirminta Rongpipi in an earlier hair colour. (Photo: Rod Anker Salons)

Last month, when she got a call from Delhi-based Rod Anker Salons saying they had a newly arrived shipment of neon yellow hair colour from hair color company, Alfa Parf Milano, and that they were willing to try it on her, she immediately jumped and said yes.



Lirminta Rongpipi. (Photo: Lirminta Rongpipi)
Lirminta Rongpipi. (Photo: Lirminta Rongpipi)
One thing I like about Lir’s style is just how removed it is from the ephemeral fashion scene, even though she happens to be at the centre of it by virtue of her profession. Every look of hers seems to have soft undertones of punk. Each outfit screams unabashed inhibition.


Lirminta Rongpipi in her signature punk rock look. (Photo: Lirminta Rongpipi)
Lirminta Rongpipi in her signature punk rock look. (Photo: Lirminta Rongpipi)

Even though Lir usually buys from high street fashion labels like Zara, H&M and Forever 21, like any committed thrifter, her favourite shopping spot happens to be Sarojini Nagar in Delhi.

Lir identifies strongly with her gender and gets very affected by the patriarchy and sexism she sees in the country, she tells me. She can’t stand the daily humilation Indian women are subjected to, just because of their gender. In one way, her distinct look also seems to be a rebellion against the idealized notion of female appearance in India.

“I think it is more brave to do something crazy than getting drowned in a sea of ordinariness”, she says. “And anyway..I am free to do anything I want to do”. I couldn’t concur more.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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