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When to let them start shaving? - Page 2

post #21 of 51
My 9 1/2-year-old 4th grader has extremely dark hair that grows very thick on her arms and legs (and face). For the last few years, I've used a personal trimmer on her upper lip and between her brows and on her forehead (she gets hair that grows from her brows up to her hairline).

She asked me about 6 months ago if she could shave, and I taught her how. She's still too young to feel comfortable, though, so now I do it for her when she feels she wants it done. She asks me to shave her arms as well as her legs.

It's fun for us to have the time together, and she LOVES the way her arms and legs feel when they're smooth! FWIW, I don't shave above her knees or elbows.

My other daughters had lighter hair and began shaving later (12, 13).
post #22 of 51
Honestly, I don't feel like it's an issue worth battling about. It's her legs and her hair and her reasons, and unlike most body modifications, it's totally reversible (just wait a few weeks). I'd agree, just let her shave. Make sure she knows the ropes and is comfortable coming to you if she does screw up somehow, that's the most important part.
post #23 of 51
My oldest was around 10, my 12 year old started around 8-9, she didn't ask permission, just started shaving. i didn't make a big deal about it, if they felt they wanted to do it, I let them decide. i try not to get too excited over the little stuff, i think letting them have control over some aspects, especially their body, helps when they are nearing puberty.

of course, i just pierced my daughters nose for her 18th birthday and my husband about fainted, but I think it looks nice! I'd rather do it myself, then have her get it done unsafely or worse, rebel and get an ugly tattoo!!! I want her to talk to me about stuff and come to me before she just goes out and gets stuff done.

I want to get a tattoo now,she she'll have to wait until she's 37 like me, lol
post #24 of 51
Our rule is that when they have the dexterity and desire to do it, they can do it. What difference does it make, what age they start at?

I don't regularly shave my legs, but I don't like my hair to get too long because it feels funny on pants and tights. I regularly shave my pits for comfort. My nether regions get a trim because I could grow pubic hair long enough to braid, and that is not comfortable. So, I guess I'm mostly for comfort.

My oldest is almost 13 and hasn't started shaving yet. My youngest is 10 and has no desire to. I asked the oldest once if she wanted to (we were discussing this because she was telling me about a friend who started shaving) and she said Oh god no, I'd probably cut my leg off.

My girls are blonde and fair, so you can't even tell if they shave or not. I on the other hand am a bushy beast, so the day I don't shave my legs, it's quite obvious. I really feel like, as long as they are clean and safe, it's their body. If they want to cut their hair, grow it long, dye it green, shave their legs, wear makeup, whatever; I just want them to do it in a safe, clean way. Their body, their decoration, their comfort.

Well, that's my say, fwiw.
post #25 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by lorijds View Post
Our rule is that when they have the dexterity and desire to do it, they can do it. What difference does it make, what age they start at?

I don't regularly shave my legs, but I don't like my hair to get too long because it feels funny on pants and tights. I regularly shave my pits for comfort. My nether regions get a trim because I could grow pubic hair long enough to braid, and that is not comfortable. So, I guess I'm mostly for comfort.

My oldest is almost 13 and hasn't started shaving yet. My youngest is 10 and has no desire to. I asked the oldest once if she wanted to (we were discussing this because she was telling me about a friend who started shaving) and she said Oh god no, I'd probably cut my leg off.

My girls are blonde and fair, so you can't even tell if they shave or not. I on the other hand am a bushy beast, so the day I don't shave my legs, it's quite obvious. I really feel like, as long as they are clean and safe, it's their body. If they want to cut their hair, grow it long, dye it green, shave their legs, wear makeup, whatever; I just want them to do it in a safe, clean way. Their body, their decoration, their comfort.

Well, that's my say, fwiw.
Ditto. My parents had to "approve' of when I started shaving. From the age of 9-22 I hate, hate, hated any body hair other than my eyebrows. Shaved everything else. I never understood why my parents insisted I wait until they were ready to deal with the fact that their daughter was not a baby anymore. I was menstruating long before I got their okay to shave, though I did it in secret plenty of times.
post #26 of 51
Simply put: their bodies, their decision. Shaving is so trivial, too. I really see no reason to want to delay it, especially if she's really self-consicous about it. I've seen what something like that can do to a (pre-)teen girl, so if she wants to, I suggest you go along with it and show her how it's done.

My oldest started shaving at 11 without my knowledge (I really don't know why she chose to hide it from me), using my husband's razor. The first time she did it she ended up with a mad razor burn because she dry-shaved (ouch!), so I think it's good to inform/guide your daughter instead of banning it. DD2 started shaving her legs when she was 13/14 but it was always a lesser issue with her.
post #27 of 51
I started shaving at 10. I had very LONG DARK THICK hair on my legs, and it HURT. Putting on my socks was painfull, sheets on my bed were painfull. I didn't tell my mom, I just started shaving. She noticed about 6 months later (I was very careful, cleaned up after myself, and didn't share razor's as my older brother's instructions) and she was more hurt than angry.

My advice is this, She is comming to you asking your permission and advice in a very uncertain time and age. She is going through LOTS of changes, experiences, and has started puberty. I think this is a test for most girls, to see how their parents respond to this first situation, if you handle it poorely they may be less than enthusiastic(sp?) about comming to you for something more serious.

My advice is to teach her how to be careful with a razor, clean up after herself and let her shave. If you make this about growing up, and that she has responsibility now, and you focus on the positive then this will work out. Hugs to you that your DSD is growing up, be happy that she WANTS you to be part of it!
post #28 of 51
Let her shave.

I remember when i was 11, everyone at school would make fun of me because my legs were hairy and my parents wouldn't let me shave until i was 13. It was horrible. I think she should get to shave if she really wants to, which obviously she does.
post #29 of 51
I didn't want my daughter to start shaving either, but it was because her hair is fine and blonde and practically invisible, so I started taking her to get her legs waxed. We did that for two years, then she asked about getting her arms waxed, so I told her she could pay for her arms, so she went and shaved her arms :

Now I just let her shave her own legs (and arms) whenever she wants to (she's 14 now). I think you should let your daughter shave, or take her to get waxed.
post #30 of 51
My now 11yr DD started shaving her legs and arm pits last year. About two months ago while doing laundry I noticed some quite large blood spots on her underwear. The spots were up high (above what one would consider the normal area for blood ). I asked her about it and she sheepishly admitted that she shaved her pubic hair : She doesn't even have that much to shave! At first I was upset, but cooler heads prevailed. I told her it was her decision, but that shaving down there can be risky and that she needed to be extremely careful. I think what concerned me most, however, was where she got the idea. She said her freinds were talking about it and she decided to try it.

Just a thought for the rest of you with DDs who are shaving. You might want to have this discussion. I never would have thought my DD would try doing that.
post #31 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by cait_sharp View Post
This is my first post, but I've been a long-time lurker. I have a beautiful, smart, and passionate DSD who is 10 years old
Looking at it from stepmom's perspective... I have DSD who is almost 15 here. In situations like this I always try to figure out "What does her mom think of this?" I personally don't see it as a big deal, I'd encourage her to wait until her first period, but wouldn't fight it too much. However, I would leave the final decision up to DSD's mom (if mom is present and involved, of course).
post #32 of 51
nak

My mom didn't want/let me start shaving in middle school. I had very hairy legs. Co-ed gym class was humiliating. The others weren't subtle about making fun of me. Not light teasing; real mocking etc. So one day I got fed up and started shaving. I got in trouble but it was worth it to stop the torment.

I say, whenever she grows extra hair and feels uncomfortable with it is the right time to let her. It wouldn't even cross my mind to try to limit that.

Also, I agree about the sensory issues. The feeling of hairy legs/armpits is horrid to some people. I can't stand it.

ETA: Why all this emotion about shaving? Mothers being hurt, angry, etc. I'm not trying to be rude, but can someone explain to me what the big deal is?? I understand about having to be responsible etc but why all the drama involved?
post #33 of 51
I don't understand why it's mom's decision and not the kid's decision. My mom never told me I *couldn't* shave but never brought it up so I decided on my own one day that I was just going to do it and hoped she didn't figure it out.

I cut a huge gash in my knee without noticing it.. I think this is pretty normal as you learn to use a razor (esp. if nobody explains it to you!) and not something that really warrants any fear. I got out of the shower, patted off (still not noticing my knee) and walked into the kitchen in my nightgown for bed. My mom FLIPPED and pointed out all the blood on my leg, reamed me out for shaving, made a HUGE deal out of it. I said what? Men cut themselves shaving all the time...

I have a little purple scar under my knee from the first time I shaved and I have nicked myself only 2-3 times in the last 12-14 years that I have been doing it. I think if she's asking you about it, it's a good indicator that she's ready for the task and it's better to explain to her how razors work, how to shave ankles without cutting half of them off LOL, etc. and get her her own pack. It's not a permanent alteration to her body and she can stop anytime without repercussions. If she was asking for a piercing, I would have a different response. I think if they can cut their own nails, they can shave their legs if they want to.

post #34 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by truemists View Post

ETA: Why all this emotion about shaving? Mothers being hurt, angry, etc. I'm not trying to be rude, but can someone explain to me what the big deal is?? I understand about having to be responsible etc but why all the drama involved?
Probably because shaved legs are considered sexual, to a degree. Most girls usually get the desire to shave right around when puberty starts. I think, to some mothers, especially of older generations, it meant that their child was no longer a little girl and very quickly becoming a woman, long before they were prepared for it. It's misplaced anger. It's not about the shaving, it's what it symbolizes - looking good for the opposite sex (or same, but you get what I mean).
post #35 of 51
I would let her. Just talk to her about safety/ hygeine if you're concerned about that. I was a hairy little girl and it's painful to not be able to remedy that if it's bothering you.
post #36 of 51
I let her when she wants to, I don't have to be ridiculed in school. Once she wanted the hair from her arms removed when she was 8, it was a one time thing and didn't reoccur until now, she'll be 11 soon.
post #37 of 51
My dsd is the hairiest little girl I've ever seen. She asked for a razor at 8, and I got her one. She's got dark hair and it's very visible and she was doing the sweatshirt thing, too. I've got fine white-blond hairs that I can't see unless I'm in the sun, so it's really hard to relate. I was completely shocked when she asked, but when I took a closer look I understood.

It's the one subject MIL and I disagree on. Most of the time we're on the same page.

If it bothers her, by all means let her shave.

For razors, I started her on a women's razor with disposable blades, but only because she's kind of clumsy and I'm afraid she'll cut herself. When she's older I'll hip her to the men's razor doing a better job. I only use men's razors myself for that reason, can't stand those lousy women's razors that leave stubble.
post #38 of 51
I remember when I wanted to shave the first time, at the beginning of 5th grade. My best friend was able to shave. I had light blonde hair so it wasn't like you could see it, but I was very conscious about it and would use scissors to trim my leg and arm hair at the time. My mom must have bought the stuff because I had it in the bathroom. I think she wanted to help me the first time I did it so I would do it without cutting myself and to have one of those mom & me moments. I didn't have the patience to wait for her so I decided one day to do it myself. I shaved and nicely took a piece of my shin with the hair I shaved. My mom's comment afterwards was that she really wished I would've waited so I wouldn't have gotten cut in the process and that shins scar pretty easily when cut. Looking back it would've been neat to have my mom help me and I wish I would've been a bit more patient.

I'd set a date together for the occasion - play it up to be fun and that you just want to make sure she learns correctly the first time so she doesn't accidentally cut herself and she can see how you like to do it. I think it could be a fun mom & me moment - you're respecting her wish to start shaving and she's respecting your motherly advice.
post #39 of 51
I have dark hair and relatively light skin. It is totally a vanity thing and I started plucking my eyebrows too, and I *know* it's not natural, but ugh! When you see light-haired, skinny-eyebrowed (naturally skinny-eyebrowed), shiny-shinned girls in school all day, you can't help feeling a little hairy.

I think that around 9 - 11, we dark haired females start getting our hair and that it is perfectly normal in our society to shave or wax.

I agree with those who suggest making it a day. Have a little spa day. Buy her a nice razor- the nicer the razor, the less likely you are to get cut.

(But the pubic area thing is a good point!!! We didn't have that trend when I was younger. Explaining that we only shave the bikini line when wearing a bikini, or when we are in a monogamous, loving relationship, would not be a bad idea.)
post #40 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by aliinnc View Post
I have to say that I commiserate. I have very dark hair and lots of it. If I go without shaving for a few weeks in winter, my legs look like a hairy man's. Even the thighs.

That type of thing can be mortifying. Let her shave.

As far as razors, I use my husband's

scurries to bathroom to look at razor

Gillette Mach something. Believe it or not, it doesn't say it on the razor or the blade package. I read once that this is the razor most stolen by wives from their husbands. Did that make sense?

Ali
This is funny to me because I have a Gillette Venus? I think and my husband used it for the longest time, even though he has to shave everyday because he's in the military. Finally he admitted that he used it because it usually had a fresh blade in it and his razors always had dull blades because he would forget to change them. I finally bought him a Mach 3 and plenty of spare blades

On the topic though, I started sneaking shaving on and off when I was 11 because I knew my mom wouldn't let me if I asked. She didn't figure it out until I was almost 14 and about to start high school. Now I hardly ever shave at all.
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