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personal hygene time

Posted by shannon01 (My Page) on
Tue, Dec 5, 06 at 10:19

My dd is 9.5. She, is like many of her friends, have hairy legs. She has made a few comments when wearing skirts this last summer about her legs being hairy. No big deal. I told her when the time was right to shave, she could.

Well, last night I noticed she had a few long, dark hairs under her arms. Luckily it is winter so no one will see. My question is this...

When do girls start to shave? I would not say she is overly developed at all. Very on schedule for a girl. My mom never discussed anything, I mean anything with me. I think I used scissors when I was in 6th grade. I avoided wearing short sleeves. I think when I was in 9th grade and got job at McDonalds I bought razors without her knowing. Again, she saw the stuff in bathroom but never asked. She never provided deoderant until the school sent list home with PE items that were needed.

I do not want my dd to experience this horrible upbringing. But because of my lack of experience, I do not know when the time is right.

The boys at school have not commented on any girls legs. But they may comment on the underarms when they play basketball next year, or maybe in winter on a sunny day.

I really need advise on this one. Lets not even go to the bikini line thing yet. That is another issue I fear like the plague. Annoniminity on this site really makes dealing with such things so much easier. I do have a girlfriend I could ask but I would like some other opinions too.

Thanks in advance.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: personal hygene time

IMO, 5-6th grade or so is an ok time to start shaving especially since some girls start having their periods then. It all depends on your families genes and physical maturity. Girls who are darker haired may need to start a little earlier.

I think you need to do what you feel is best for your daughter. I had a friend who's parents didn't tell their kids about that kind of stuff. My friend found out about menstration when the school showed the 5th grade class the video about how our bodies mature. This same friend was not allowed to shave her legs until 9th grade. She was a member of a pep squad and had to wear short skirts.

I guess if I were in your shoes, I'd start talking about that stuff now and have supplies on hand. Make them available to her so she doesn't have to ask for them the first time she needs them. You might even give her a small shaving kit from Santa so she knows its ok to use it.

Good luck. My oldest is 6 1/2 so I haven't had any of these talks yet. My day is coming.


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RE: personal hygene time

I think I remember having training razors at that age. My dd is only one, so I haven't hit that hurdle, yet. I don't know where to find them, but I do remember having them. They were round with five razors around it. They weren't very sharp, or effective, but they did the job, and I didn't cut myself. Ha, I'm 30 now, and still cut myself! I would definitely talk to her about it. I'll bet she hasn't even noticed it yet. Good luck :) Christy


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RE: personal hygene time

If she's getting underarm hair, it's time... Underarm hair traps moisture and bacteria, leading to odor, which is one of the primary reasons most American women shave their underarms. Since she's already commented about her leg hair, allowing her to shave it if she wants would also be a good idea. She probably won't be the first in her class, but shouldn't be the last either.

If you haven't already, researching some books about puberty to select one that's appropriate for your daughter in tone and content would be a good idea. You may have to go through quite a few to find one that's a good fit.

An electric razor would be a nice little thing to have under the tree if it wouldn't embarass her to death. If it would, I'd slip it to her quietly in the next few days. One thing I always do for Christmas is have a little care package from 'Mrs. Claus' for those little 'motherly' items that are necessary but not thrilling, or a package from 'The Grinch' for underwear or items the kids will groan at.


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RE: personal hygene time

I don't think age or grade level has anything to do with this. I simply cannot understand the imposition of an arbitrary date upon something so totally individual in nature.

When a girl becomes uncomfortable about it she should do something about it. No one should be contributing to her discomfort. There should be no teasing about hair whose appearance she obviously had NO control over. And SHE should do something about it - not Mom. I remember my own mother telling me that I could shave my legs just as soon as I was ready to take on the personal responsibility for it...regularly and for the rest of my life. That did put me off for a month or two but eventually I decided it did matter that much to me.


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RE: personal hygene time

If your daughter feels uncomfortable about her leg hair, buy her an electric shaver. Girls with dark hair usually want to begin shaving sooner. Same with underarm hair. My daughter did competitive gymnastics so she was more body conscious about hair than some other girls. She would shave periodically when she was younger, now at 14 she is faithful to shaving regularly.

As for the bikini line thing: by the time I mentioned to my daughter, she had already taken the situation over on her own. She was horrified at an older gal pal who wore a swimsuit without a trim.


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RE: personal hygene time

I think I would let your daughter dictate when she wants to start shaving her armpits and legs. I am sure she will let you know, but having a little chat would also be a good idea.

I wish I had never started shaving my legs ! Its a real chore, lets face it.


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RE: personal hygene time

Regarding the bikini line. Since I had no maternal help, or sisterly advice I feel helpless giving my dd help. I have tried shaving myself and it still looks horrible. I have used Nair and it doesn't work well either. I have resorted to wearing swim shorts or boyshorts or avoid swimming completely. I really regret missing all the fun due to lack of help. I certainly don't want my dd to suffer like I did. We are fair haired but there is always razor burn, need to shave daily but still have stubble. What is the best way to do this. I am ready to head to the waxer but cannot imagine my dd having to do that so young. Or do they?

I asked dh last night how much info he wants regarding what I have discussed with dd. Does he want to know when I talk to her about deoderant, shaving, etc. Obviously, when it comes to facts of life stuff he needs to know what she knows but this other stuff is kind of personal. He just cringed, eyes bulged and he did the "I don't want to know these things" kind of look. I just laughed. I guess that means he trusts me to take care of the girly things and he will take care of our son.

I will look into the youth products for her. Don't think I want to involve Santa here. I will let her know what I found and that should open door for her to let me know when she is interested. Like most girls she is trying to grow up so fast, but I do agree this should be her desire and I should just let her know what is available when she is ready.

Thanks for the advice.


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RE: personal hygene time

ah. It's tough when our moms were too emotional about information that we had to learn the hard way. I've decided to be direct and matter of fact about everything - if I'm embarassed or ashamed, then she is. If we want our kids to talk to us, we have to make it OK. So chin up - teach your daughter that it's okay to have a conversation about anything, whether or not you have ALL the answers. Teach her to try things- different razors, different products - teach her it's okay to discuss things because suffering in silence only makes those awful developmental things unbearable. Good luck!


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RE: personal hygene time

I think you should talk to her. Maybe sometime soon you can stage it so she sees you shaving, or putting on lotion having just shaved. Say something like "A friend of mine asked me the other day if girls your age shave. I didn't really know. Do you know if any of your friends shave? Does the idea scare you?" And kinda go with her reaction to take it further or let it go for now.

If the interest is there, help her make an informed decision, not just "to shave or not to shave." But what to use, how often to shave, and be sure to tell her to NEVER use a razor someone else has used or to let someone else use hers, that it could spread disease or cause an infection. That is an important health rule she needs to follow, and probably would not think of it herself.

Take that for what it's worth, my only DD is just 7. I just really wanted to make the point about teaching her not to share razors.


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RE: personal hygene time

I thought i'd give you a couple of recommendations being the mother of a daughter who is now 20. Firstly, I think she should begin shaving if the hair under her arms and legs is noticeable. Kids at that age can be mean and may say something that will hurt her feelings. Secondly, I recommend Schick Intuition shaver. It's gentle on her skin and helps avoid cuts. Thirdly, she should not shave the bikini area. The hair will regrow too quickly and cause itchiness. At her age, i wouldn't think any hair removal in the bikini area would be necessary. Once she's in high school and she absolutely has to have hair removed from the bikini area, take her to a Esthetician at a salon to have it waxed off. The pain is rather mild and quick. And the results will last at least 3 weeks. I also don't think any of these things should be given to her as Christmas gifts. They are part of everyday life.


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RE: personal hygene time

The time is right when she is getting hairy! dont let her get made fun of in school for that.Ew,exspecially the underarm hair.Try buying her one of those finishing touch shavers they now sell at walmart that were on tv. She wont hurt herself using it like with a razor,and it wont burn up her legs/arms like nair.
We got one for my SD when she was 11.
I mean,it's your call,but at least let her shave the arm pits.


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RE: personal hygene time

I agree with all the others here. Maybe I'm naive because I have all boys, but I don't see what the big battle is here. I was not allowed to shave until I was 14.5, and I remember the arguments well. Please, she's old enough to notice her hairy legs, and the ARMPITS? Let the poor girl shave. But, does sensitive skin run in your family? My skin is very sensitive, and when I finally was allowed to shave, I suffered serious razor burn, even with the sensitive razors. Nothing helped, and lotion made it sting sooo bad. Nowadays they sell Skintimate shave gel and aftershave gel, and I tell you, they're a Godsend, but I have not tried the other products mentioned. The fact that she has armpit hair tells me the deodorant talk is in order as well? And periods are coming soon! I foresee a mother/daughter shopping trip? Oooh!!! (clapping hands!)

Now I know why God didn't give me a daughter, LOL! I'd embarrass her to death!


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