Monday, August 13, 2007

Shaving 101

I had a discussion on my email loop a few weeks ago about shaving. More specifically, when is the proper time to introduce your daughter to the fine art of shaving one's legs? My friends were a little scared of letting their almost teenage daughters use razors and suggested some alternatives such as making your daughter wait until she's twenty-one before letting her shave. Now, my daughter is eleven and has dark hair so I didn't really think that idea would fly. My friends, wonderfully bright, insightful people that they are, had some wonderful ideas to share on this subject. For instance, did you know that Nair makes a product marketed specifically for teenage girls? Another suggestion made was to let your daughter shave with an electric razor. Veet, a bladeless razor that works in conjunction with a depilatory cream, was also suggested. And an Aveeno lotion that is supposed to soften and minimize hair, was brought up as well.

All of these were smart, sound ideas. Did I pay attention to any of them? Noooo. I bought my daughter a cute little pink razor and we shared a mother-daughter bonding moment as I showed her how to lather up her legs and carefully shave them while explaining that this, much like bleeding half to death every month, was just another "fun" part of being a woman.

So she's done really well shaving her legs for about a month now. Until tonight. She walked out of the shower crying with a very freaked-out expression on her face. I followed her gaze down to her leg which was dripping blood, leaving a red trail behind her. Thankfully blood doesn't bother me. I can handle blood, guts, gore, and poopy diapers. Just keep me away from vomit unless you want to experience exorcist type retching the likes of which you've never witnessed. But that's another story. So here comes my daughter crying and dripping blood. The three inch long gash on her leg looked like it had been made with a dull Ginsu knife left sitting in the rain for a decade. After a transfusion and a mile of gauze, the bleeding stopped.

Now I can say with some authority, perhaps eleven is still a bit young to let your daughter use a razor. I'll be going to Target tomorrow to get some Nair Pretty (and twenty other things I don't need, but find their way into my cart nonetheless.)

36 comments:

Trish K said...

Poor kid, just wait until she wants to wax her eyebrows...talk about pain

My daughter is only 9 1/2 and has been hinting that she wants to shave. She has fair skin and thick brown hair... so she is looking pretty grizzly but is way too young.

Leann I Am said...

Target does that to me every time! I did, however, find an electric WATERPROOF razor for my daughter. I bought it a year ago, on 'clearance' at TARGET, of course! My oldest daughter is a blonde and hasn't started complaining about the hair on her legs....YET! I know it's only just a matter of time no matter how light the hair happens to be! When it's time, I'm ready....I THINK!

elena jane said...

the nair pretty works nicely, even on my old not even close to being a teenager legs! it smells really strong tho...but it works!! :)

i read your ebay auction (hysterical)and found my way over here via that...tho i've been here before via your bloggerchicks list! ;)

Rachel said...

I'm expecting my 6th child in about 3 weeks, and I'm sure it isn't good for me to laugh this much, reading what you have to say here and on ebay. Yes, I also found your blog via your world famous ebay auction!! I'm thrilled to read that you also don't handle vomit too well, well not thrilled for you, but thrilled to find someone else like me. I'm terrible when the children are ill and I'll run out the room as often as not, or race them to the bathroom. One was sick on me once, and I instantly reciprocated. So embarrasing!

Amysue said...

I've done the same thing as your daughter-twice, once when I was 15 and again in college. It happens to the best of us :) Just make sure she knows when to use a new razor - if it was getting dull, she might've been pressing down too hard.

(I also found your site via ebay. Best auction description ever. Ever.)

Pen said...

We are adopting a nine year old girl who is already questioning me about what age she can start shaving her legs. We have a nine year old biological daughter as well. The new daughter has dark hair and olive skin and weighs 30 lbs more than our biological child.

I am not entertaining any thoughts of letting either of them near a razor anytime soon. The new daughter told me that she already shaved once, both her arms and her legs. My bio daughter is very interested because, in her opinion her arms are too hairy. Too funny, especially since she is blonde. I suppose we all shave our arms once as kids. I know I did, once.

Love your blog. I hope you follow through on one of those job offers. You are gifted at uplifting others. Interestingly I was led here by another funny mom to six.

Kate said...

This is more of a general comment... spun off from another comment... it has become my observation today that moms2LotsOfKids are so funny because we NEED to be, how the heck ELSE could we make it through our days? Honestly, could you imagine your day without a sense of humor? And, can you vividly recall the moments where your sense of humor was malfunctioning? Cuz those are the bad days, for sure :) One could also point out that it must just be a function of insanity, as we are so often told we are "nuts" for having *so many children*. I've found "are you having any more?" is the most asked question I get, even more often than "are they ALL yours?". In fact, I recently got asked if I was their math-teacher (buying candy at a bulk store, go figure).
I am amazed at how many moms.of.lots have left messages for you the past few days - it's great :) That's my rambling comments, sorry for adding to your overload :)

Anonymous said...

My daughter while at Girl Scout Camp a few years ago decided she needed to shave her legs. While at camp the kids take three min showers. Just enough to rise off and shapoo their hair and get out. She thought to shave her legs in that time. She ended up with a very large gash on the top of her leg! Guess I should have told her to shave after the shower!

Anonymous said...

My daughter was 6 when she had her first shaving experience. Unfortunately, it was with grandpa's razor and she shaved her mustache just like Grandpa. Came running out of the bathroom crying her head off with her upper lip all bloody. Looked worse than what it was. She is now 9 and remembers that clearly... just the other day she said she will never shave again! Her lucky husband! I do not know how these kids can drive me absolutely NUTS during the day, but as soon as they are all sleeping, they are all I can think about! ~Jill~ P.S. 4 days, 9 hours and 20 minutes until school begins!!!! All 3 of mine will be in school this year, after 9 years of being a SAHM I will be having a little bit of a party :-)

Becky said...

I started shaving when I was 12 not becuase I wanted to but becuase a boy at school made fun of the hair on my legs :( I would have liked to wait longer...

I heard Nair and things can actually be bad for your skin so be carefull...

Bethany said...

No, I don't work for them... I just know that I've never managed to cut myself with this razor, so I thought I'd suggest it. The cartridge surrounds the razor with the "shaving cream," and provides a nice steady surface.. and when it doesn't lather well anymore, it's a sure sign that the blade is probably worn out too. No guessing. Fancy. http://www.schickintuition.com/

GillianIvy said...

I recall one time when I was a teenager, thirteen, I think, I had shaven my legs a little too hard. Shaved off a layer of skin. Looked like a thin piece of floppy rubber. I shook it at my little sister and freaked her out. Left a scar which is still barely visible, I'm 27. I shaved a little more carefully after that. Funny, I don't recall it hurting and there wasn't much blood.

Anonymous said...

I'm not planning to teach my daughter to shave - it's a useless practice (much like skinning a cat). Haven't shaved in 8 years, and I smile just thinking about the fact that I don't have to! :) If I am questioned, I sometimes point out that no one in Europe does it.

Kim said...

Tee hee! Don't worry - my mom wouldn't let me start shaving until 13 and I still managed to give myself a 3-inch bloody gash right over the side of my ankle.

Anonymous said...

My older sister started shaving in 9th grade. My mom held us back in just about every "milestone". I learned quickly that when I started shaving I should not press down with the razor. Something my older sister learned after she shaved the skin off BOTH shins. I still remember her being mortified about the HUGE scabs on her legs. I guess hair didn't sound so bad because she didn't try again for quite a while.

Monchinga said...

Yeah , my lil sis shaves , and coming from a familty of mostly girls , I get to excperience both , bleeding to death once a month , and shaving legs ,and pre-mediposal moments...Basically all of the things a women does ,and there everyday lives. To say the least , I have a better appreciation of all women , with a better understanding of how tough and lovely it all is! Teach your sons/son all of this too! It seems sick now , but believe me , it makes for a better teenager ,and adult!

Anonymous said...

Try Schicks Silk Effects Plus razor for her!

http://www.shaving.com/products/default.asp?p=184

ElizabethAndrew said...

I'm 25 years old- I don't have kids, but I do remember when I started to shave my legs.

I thought that I had to shave the whole darn leg.

Now, a bit older, wiser, economic, lazy, busy, and aware that no one is getting close to my legs until vows are professed- I've realized that I can get away with shaving from ankle to knee.

It's the knee region that creates problems!

Tell her to not go too fast or press too hard. And don't dry shave! ooouch.

Whew. The memories.

Elizabeth
Elizabethandrew.org

Anonymous said...

There's a brand here in Australia called Nad's. A Mom invented it as her girls had very dark thick hair. And waxing causes alot less harm than shaving.

http://www.nads.com/women.html

They have hair remover gels, wax, small pens to do eyebrows etc. And having used most of their lines, they don't stink like Nair and they don't hurt. No bloody shins either.

They also do a range for men!

Hope this helps

Yvonne in Australia

Patty said...

I have six kids, but 3 of them are girls...and being that two of them are still under the age of 5, I don't have to worry about shaving for a few more years! With my oldest I hadn't planned on educating her about shaving until she was 13 but unfortunately one of her little friends and their sisters taught my daughter how to shave her legs. I hadn't realized it happened until I saw the scab on her leg...and that, is how my oldest started to shave her legs...some things you just can't be on top of :(

Mom*2*5*princesses*&*2*peapod*girls said...

LOL!!! I have gone through exactly the same thing! My daughter is almost 11 and has been shaving her legs for about a year. I DID go to Target and I DID buy her an electric razor. The finished product? She decided that she liked my Intuition razor better...the electric didn't do a good enough job for her standards. She has cut herself a few times, but, hey, so have I. If you do decide to go the razor route, this one is a good one as it doesn't cut as bad as some of the others. The cartridges are expensive, but they last a while. OH, and on a funny note...I am EXACTLY like you when it comes to bodily functions...give me blood, poopy, mucus, whatever, but if someone VOMITS...FORGET IT! That is Daddy's job. I even think about the word and I fall in to a fit of dry heaving! :) How is it that spaghetti can be so awesome the first time around but strike fear in the hearts of Moms everywhere the second time? UGH!!

Neasa said...

I was watching my Uncle shave when I was younger (about 5) but obviously he wasn't watching me because I picked up a razor and proceeded to shave my eyebrows off....I cried for a week. I'm loving your blog, so glad I found it. Yee-haw for Pokemon!!!

Melissa said...

I must say I found my way to you and my God what a blessing. To sit back and appreciate the fact that I have only 3 and should in no way complain of the typical mishaps through out our days. I know they will be cherished memories I am just waiting for whenever that will be. lol I also found you through friends and your infamous ebay auction. What a laugh - that was so needed. My daughter is 13 and hasn't asked yet about shaving, but I know this will be the year. I'm sure soon after school starts and she starts wearing shorts and skirts. Something will be said to point it out to her and that will be that. Her hair is dark too and oh how I dread the thought. What will I do have a shaving party? I guess that is a bridge I'll cross when I get to it. ha

adrialien said...

The FIRST time I shaved my legs was when I was about 12 or 13 years old and I got a very bloody 3 or 4 inch gash up my shin...I immediately grabbed for the toilet paper to stop the bleeding, and after changing the TP a bunch of times, my mom and I put band aids over the TP...I had TP stuck in the scab for months...I'm 19 now and the scar has only just gone away. Needless to say, I didn't shave for a long time after that. I still don't shave in the winter unless I want to wear a shorter (knee length) skirt to church.

SymplyAmused said...

I use an electric shaver for my daughter. She's not capable of handling a razor and it works fine.

Tina said...

Now I'm 19, and when I was 12 I got started with Veet depilatory cream, but soon afterwards I went to waxing my legs. The only thing I ever shaved was my armpits, and at 14 I decided that wax gave more lasting results. It's not that bad once you get used, really :)
Haha, forget about the topic! We DO it! Perhaps not in the north of Europe, but as long as I'm concerned (I'm Spanish), I've never seen a woman in Grizzly legs ^.^

Anonymous said...

Hey I found your blog via the ebay auction! I started shaving my legs at about 14 and at 22 I still have a 4" white scar running up my thigh.

Daniel said...

I like this:

Anonymous said...
Try Schicks Silk Effects Plus razor for her!

http://www.shaving.com/products/default.asp?p=184

August 23, 2007 7:15 PM


The author is probability not aware that if you have 6 kids - you get the budget razors. Except for the mother - she gets little extras as compensation for putting up with 6 kids.

Colleen said...

I made my daughters wait to shave their legs until the armpit hair needed shaving. But, we are blond, and not very hairy. Darker leg hair may cause teasing at school before the armpit hair shows up.

texanromaniac said...

I haven't got any kiddoes yet...found your blog the way many did...thru the ebay auction...

I totally understand about the whole vomit issue, though. I'm the oldest of seven kids and then was a nanny for a few years.

Most embarrassing thing for me was when one of my nanny charges was home sick from school and puked in the kitchen...and then I ended up adding to the mess while trying to clean it up!! YUCK!!

Anonymous said...

Oh my word, you are funny! The comment from a reader about remembering to tell your daughter when to change blades is good advice. When I was 14 and getting ready for our Spring Concert at school, I forgot that I had just changed the blade in my razor. Now this was in 1978 when razors were not as "safe" as they are now. The old blade had been dull and I was used to pressing down hard...ended up peeling the front of my shin like a carrot with the new blade. Had to wear a dress for the concert...with multiple blood-soaked bandaids sticking to my nylons...Ah, the glamor of being a woman!

Anonymous said...

I have a 11 year old and she is already asking to shave her legs, she has a lot of dark hair. First I told her she didn't need to shave untill she had underarm hair. Would you know, she now has underarm hair, (not enough to warrant shaving) Si I told I was at least 12 and she can wait untill she is 12,(in 6 months) and her father told her, she didn't need to shave becasue there shouldn't be any one that close to her legs. Gotta love dad.

MightyAcorn said...

Just a note of advice with the nair type products... DO A SKIN TEST! My dumb butt went out and bought the nair kit with the plastic "razor" and got really bad chemical burns on my legs from it (and I had it on for half the time they say to!)

you're welcome to the unused razor and the rest of the nair from my kit if you want it! I apparently have ultra sensitive skin! LOL
It was so bad that I couldn't wear pants for 3 days. So like a good mommy, I let my kids play video games all day and hung out in my underwear trying very hard not to let my legs touch ANYTHING.

I've gotten the horrible slash of death on the back of my knee while shaving. Damn did that hurt!

Best of luck and don't forget the skin test!

Kim said...

OK... this one I have to give you advice on!! I'm 38 yrs old and I can sympathize with your daughter!! I have no grace what-so-ever and my husband used to cringe when I came out of the bathroom with those huge gashes on my ankles from just shaving my legs... so he bought me a VENUS razor. They are made to help reduce nicks and I am here to testify... THEY WORK!!! I have jet black hair and shave once a week (notice I spelled once correctly :) and I can't remember the last time I nicked myself. Next time she wants to chance a razor, try that one. After you purchase the razor all you have to do later is replace the blades.

Happy shaving!

Anonymous said...

Ahh, shaving. My mom didn't want me to shave when I was 13, but when some girls in my gym class made fun of me for not shaving, I insisted!

I tried Nair once, as a teenager. I have very sensitive skin. It didn't work out well. I really thought my skin was peeling off! So be careful with that stuff.

And cuts happen. I still cut myself on occasion. If I'm in a hurry, or decided to shower before putting my contacts in (I'm pretty blind) I tend to nick myself.

Anonymous said...

I haven't seen anyone else mention this so pass this on to daughter-dear: at no time, under no circumstance, in any universe is shaving with Dad's safety razor a good idea. Don't ask me how my wonderful, tough, big, bluff and hearty Daddy always knew when I borrowed "Ole Navy" (Dad was in the service when he got his safety razor and he used it until the day he died) but evidently Daddy faces are incredibly sensitive to the blade nicks that leg hairs must inflict. I got caught every time I borrowed Ole Navy and the only time Dad didn't fuss at me was when his safety razor harvested a strip of my leg epidermis an 1 inch wide and 7 inches long. I guess Dad figured the razor had spoken for him.

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