Why am I struggling to cut dd's hair short?

(144 Posts)
BlameItOnTheBogey Fri 23-Nov-12 14:21:04

DD is 2 (nearly 3). She is rough and tumble and gives her older brother a run for his money in any physical activity. She's not at all interested in dresses/ skirts and wants to be in jeans and trainers all the time. All good.

But she HATES having her chin length hair brushed. It's semi curly and knots a lot. It hurts when I brush it for her and makes her cry. She has repeatedly asked me to cut it short like her older brothers (cropped very short). I have no idea why I am reluctant to do this; I don't want to hurt her. I guess I have never seen a two year old girl with cropped hair and I worry about what people will think. I know this is ridiculous and that I my refusal to do so is down to gender stereotyping.

Does anyone have any thoughts on this? Would you consider cutting your young dd's hair very short?

AbigailAdams Fri 23-Nov-12 14:30:42

Yes I would. In the main my hair was always very short when I was younger (mind you this was the 70s) and it was much easier to manage, quicker to wash and dry. I much much preferred it. However, I can understand your reluctance as I can't actually remember seeing a girl with hair shorter than shoulder length for a while <cue loads of people coming on and telling me about their DD/nieces/friends DD etc etc smile >

However at 3 she probably won't notice her peers have longer hair and is probably just wanting to be like her brothers. I'd let her. It isn't as if it won't grow again smile

I can understand your relucance, DS1 had the most beautiful curl long hair and didn't want to cut his (I didn't until he was 4.6 and insisted sad ).
Short hair looks lovely on either sex - at a festival recently I saw a 5 yo girl with a pixie-ish cut. the fringe had been kept longer, thinned at the tips, and she had lovely wispy 'sideburns' and the back was a bit longer and very wipsy too. It was really striking.

BlameItOnTheBogey Fri 23-Nov-12 14:54:50

Thanks for the replies both and for not saying I am being ridiculous! I agree she just wants to be like her brother and she won't care what others think. I just an't understand why I care so much. In other areas I am happy to buck the gender stereotype (e.g. DS' favorite colour is pink and I am happy to send him in to school in all pink...)

Would a bob or something short yet 'feminine' work?

You need to be prepared for people to assume she's a boy. I have 3 dcs all of whom have long hair, 2 girls and a boy. Most people assume I have 3 girls. It does not bother my DS at all to have long hair and it is his choice so we go with it.

I'm sure your DD will look beautiful in an elfin way. Go for it.

maybenow Fri 23-Nov-12 17:47:14

i'd be reluctant to crop any small child's hair actually, but i think you should go for a shorter cut for her, she wants it and it'll make your lives easier. I wouldn't crop to begin with - just go for 'short' sort of ear-length and take it from there.

when i was her age i had a fuzz of curls but no real length to it till i was much older 5 or 6 ish i think.

maybenow Fri 23-Nov-12 17:49:36
LadyMargolotta Fri 23-Nov-12 17:52:39

I kept my girls' hair very short when they were smaller. One had a very short pixie crop, the other a short bob. It was great. There is nothing worse then a crying child while you try and brush their long hair, especially when they have nits.

Short hair is so much easier - they can go swimming and it's dry quickly; easy to wash/brush; and can still look very pretty.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Fri 23-Nov-12 18:20:36

I can empathise with why you are struggling but think you should let her have it cut, it's more practical for both of you!Maybe gradually, if that would help.

AmberLeaf Fri 23-Nov-12 18:33:19

I think I'd learn to manage her hair better before I cut it off on that basis.

People will think she is a boy, are you ok with that? more importantly how will she feel about that?

She may well be a very rough and tumble and anti dress girl, but that is very different from being a little girl that people think is a boy.

Don't underestimate how that may make her feel.

I say all of this as a former rough and tumble anti dress little girl, whos Mum had all her hair cut off aged five. I hated it when people thought I was a boy.

I don't know why I couldn't be a rough and tumble girl with long hair TBH!

StewieGriffinsMom Fri 23-Nov-12 18:41:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

As an aside, if you decide to keep her hair long for now I can't recommend the Tangle Teezer enough.

chipmonkey Fri 23-Nov-12 18:59:23

SIL keeps her dd's hair in a short bob, it's still not a "boy" cut but very easy to keep.
I struggled to cut ds4's lovely hair especially as he only wanted it cut as a brat boy in his class told him he had "girls hair". But as it was his hair and what he wanted I went with it. He still looks cute but I so miss the curls.

VolumeOfACone Fri 23-Nov-12 19:03:40

DD wants short hair and I really can't bring myself to do it. She has a chin length bob. I am worried she might get picked on if it goes any shorter. She wants a pixie crop. That's probably silly of me, but you just NEVER see girls with short hair now. I fear her regretting it straight away too. She is five.

AmberLeaf Fri 23-Nov-12 19:11:49


Are the bristles on a tangle teaser rubbery?

Amber No, hard plastic, but still fairly flexible.

AmberLeaf Fri 23-Nov-12 19:16:40

Thanks smile

maybenow Fri 23-Nov-12 21:20:38

I had short hair for a while around age 10 and then again at 16. I think girls should be 'allowed' to cut their hair short if they want to. So what if they regret it? It'll grow in a few months, no time at all, better to try it now at 2yrs and see how she likes it than at say 5 or 6.

I also think that girls who want theirs long should be allowed to - with rules like plaits for school if it's very long.

My friend cuts her dds hair in a pixie cut for all the reasons you mention OP. it looks fantastic.

BlameItOnTheBogey Sat 24-Nov-12 01:53:53

Thanks everyone for taking time to reply; have been out all day so only coming back to this now. Mixed views here but it's reassuring to hear that I am not the only one who struggles a bit with this. It's not like her hair is long at the moment (it's just above the chin) but long enough to get very knotty. I guess whoever it was who said up thread that I should learn to manage her hair is right. I have straight boring hair but she has inherited DH's curl. I will look into the tangle teaser - that might solve the problem.

The poster who said that I should consider how she might feel if people thought she was a boy has really cut the the heart of my concern. I don't care what she looks like so long as she is happy. But if cutting her hair relieves the crying because it hurts when I brush it but creates tears because people thing she is a boy then I haven't really solved anything...

But thanks for some thought provoking responses.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Sat 24-Nov-12 07:47:32

It may happen that she is mistaken for a boy, it may not.
If it does happen, it may upset her, it may not.
But the status quo is definitely upsetting her.

Could you put hair grips/hair bands in if it does happen and it does end up upsetting her?

JuliaFlyte Sat 24-Nov-12 07:57:37

A tangle teaser will sort you out, they are really fantastic. They are more expensive than regular brushes, but well worth it. Also buy a bottle of spray on leave-in conditioner to spray on her hair before you brush. Dd is growing her hair down to her waist, so I know all about hair brushing difficulties grin

bigbadbarry Sat 24-Nov-12 08:08:23

DD1 cut off DD2's hair when she was about 18 months. Once the hairdresser had tidied it up a bit and the actual bald bits had grown back in she looked amazing and nobody would have mistaken her for a boy, if they had I think she'd have corrected them quite firmly. I wish she'd let me do it again (she's 6 now) to save all the mucking about with bobbles and clips.

BloooCowWonders Sat 24-Nov-12 08:08:24

Dd hates the tangle teaser. Me too as its useless on her- I find it only works on straight hair.

She has very curly hair and it got really matted. She took the matter into her own hands with my dressmaking scissors...

I straighten up the edges and her hair doesn't reach her collar. She brushes it herself with a normal hair brush.

And she's never once been mistaken for a boy.

Much more interesting from my point if views is that people notice dd as a whole, she's not a cloud of blond hair.

SamuraiCindy Sat 24-Nov-12 08:16:37

I love short hair on little girls. They always look so elfin and gorgeous. Having said that, my daughter is also two, with the most beautiful wavy, siky hair, and I know I would HATE to cut it. I think that if we can just get through this stage, where it is around her shoulders, the weight of the hair as it grows will pull down the waves so that they aren't as curly, and make it less tangled.

Ploom Sat 24-Nov-12 08:30:08

I was made to have short hair as a child - parents used the "its easier to manage" line but the memory of being mistaken for a boy has never left me.
I was 13/14 before I was confident enough to say no to having it cut & its been long ever since.
If your dd wants it cut short, she needs to know that people may mistake her for a boy - will she be ok with that? I certainly wasnt!

LadyMargolotta Sat 24-Nov-12 09:13:33

As far as I know, my girls were never mistaken for boys, probably because from their faces/clothes they are clearly girls.

When they were old enough to accept hairbrushing (about the age of 6), I let them grow their hair.

I had short hair until I was a teenager. I have had long hair every since but I am not resentful about having short hair as a child.I was mistaken for a boy - people used to think me and my brother were two boys - but that certainly didn't bother me.

pictish Sat 24-Nov-12 09:24:35

My dd aged 3 has short hair. It's cut in a French bob style. Not even quite jaw length, but sculpted and feminine at the back.

Like this

Such a style will work on even curly hair as the cut is very feminine and girlish.
I LOVE her short hair...it's so easy, and makes her look gamine and funky.

pictish Sat 24-Nov-12 09:26:53

When my dd is older and wants long hair, that's fine, so long as she accepts that it must be brushed and styled.
As it was, she's 3 and doesn't care, and I cba with the daily screech over getting the hair done. It used to spill right down her back. Don't miss it.

AmberLeaf Sat 24-Nov-12 09:38:04

Re short cuts and curly hair, they don't work, not in the same way as they would with straight hair unless you go down the route of straightening hair which I would be loathe to do even as an adult.

That style pictish linked is lovely, but wouldn't look like that with curly hair!

pictish Sat 24-Nov-12 09:39:43

No no - it wouldn't - but I'm saying that short curly hair can look feminine if it's cut right.

pictish Sat 24-Nov-12 09:41:15
InNeedOfBrandy Sat 24-Nov-12 09:41:40

The picture pictish put up is how my mum used to have my hair, I always hated it tbh looking back on pics I see it looked nice, but Ive never once cut dds hair and I longed for long hair like the girls in school.

pictish Sat 24-Nov-12 09:42:49

Or [http://www.google.co.uk/imgres?q=short+curly+hair+for+little+girls&start=224&hl=en&sa=X&tbo=d&biw=1920&bih=921&tbm=isch&tbnid=YZI1cq2BtTZNVM:&imgrefurl=http://www.shorthair-styles-cuts.com/curly/curly-short-hair-fluffly-messy.php&docid=VC4-VnAk-1bgCM&imgurl=http://www.shorthair-styles-cuts.com/graphics/curly-short-hair-fluffly-messy.jpg&w=333&h=408&ei=XJawUMXXEqKM0wWr8YG4AQ&zoom=1&iact=hc&vpx=1674&vpy=558&dur=113&hovh=249&hovw=203&tx=124&ty=207&sig=109566088544734393619&page=4&tbnh=140&tbnw=118&ndsp=80&ved=1t:429,r:76,s:200,i:232 double awwww]]

pictish Sat 24-Nov-12 09:43:22

Try that again.

double awwww

SminkoPinko Sat 24-Nov-12 09:55:44

Cute hairstyles but what on earth is the text on your link trying to say pictish?! It's total gobbledigook!

My daughter has terrible cradle cap and curly tangly hair. Hates hair brushing. I gather it into a pony tail and cut it close to the nape of the neck into a short messy bob.

pictish Sat 24-Nov-12 09:56:54

No idea!

You could try the curly girl methods with her. It suggests not brushing curly hair.

curly girl

LadyMargolotta Sat 24-Nov-12 10:43:09

Mt dd2 has thick, curly hair. The best cut for her was a very short elfin cut. DD1 with very straight hair suits the french bob very well, but I don't think that would work for curly hair.

KRITIQ Sat 24-Nov-12 10:46:38

What SGM said.

Sime of the discussion makes me feel incredibly sad. As a child in the 60's and 70's, I mostly had short hair because I hated the detangling and at the time, I dont'think there was today's preoccupation with ensuring children conform to the appearance of one gender.

If another child or adult thought I was a boy, I just told them I was a girl. It didn't bother me any more than if they'd got my age or name wrong.

Something makes me feel uneasy that it seems necessary put in extra grooming time and cause pain with detangling that the child doesn't want, just to ensure she's considered socially acceptable. Does that not rather give a message about female appearance being the most important thing about being female?

Bue Sat 24-Nov-12 11:14:55

Growing up in the 80s almost ALL the little girls had short hair. It is adorable, not to mention far, far easier to manage. It really is thoroughly depressing that society has become so rigid about these things that even little people's hairstyles have strict gender rules. I didn't even realize until this thread that is now apparently an issue sad

pictish Sat 24-Nov-12 11:27:13

That was precisely the motivation I had to give dd the chop.
She had lovely wavy silky long hair. She looked beautiful with her boho bun, her bunches, her plait...but she didn't care for it. She cried. Every morning. A lot.

I felt awful about it because she's pretty placid and amenable in the main, and I came to realise that the long hair was more for my benefit than hers. She's 3 and doesn't care about her hair. Neither she should.

The cropped bob she has now is fabulous. It makes her stand out a bit, she looks very funky, and all I have to do is run a brush through it. She still hates it but it takes 10 seconds. She gets compliments all the time.

If, when she is older, she wants long hair, then she has to understand and accept it must be brushed and styled. If she can agree to that, then fine. Otherwise it stays short.

I have short hair myself. I cut all my bum length hippy tresses when I was 24 and have never looked back. I far prefer short hair. Long hair is a faff too far for me. I hope dd wants to keep hers short.

TheSmallClanger Sat 24-Nov-12 12:17:25

I have had short hair for 24 years now, after being made to grow it as a child.
In my experience, the people who will "mistake" a little girl with short hair for a boy are trying to make some stupid point about gender and hairstyles, and deserve to be talked down to by the child in question.

I never used to quite understand why mothers in particular got so attached to and invested in their daughters' hair - my own DD has had shortish hair for most of her life, partly because it is quite fine and lank. However, you only have to look at other threads on here about haircuts to see that female hair, wherever it is growing, is really seen as public property for some reason.

AmberLeaf Sat 24-Nov-12 12:34:05


No extra grooming time is necessary if you learn how to care for particular hair types, its no big deal.

I think it is far more damaging to a childs self image to have their 'unruly' curls chopped off, just to make it easier for their parent to manage.

Curly hair is not that difficult to manage. Curly hair is not bad hair.

All three of my boys have had at some point long hair, their hair is very curly, yet we still manage fine. It's no big deal and they are now old enough to care for it themselves anyway.

This goes both ways, you shouldn't use your daughters hair to make a political point, anymore than one should use it to conform to societal gender requirements IMO.

I don't think it was any coincedence that my hair being cut off coincided with the start of my Mums journey into radical feminism!

Anyway, Im quite possibly projecting.

If a child wants short or longer hair, their wishes should be respected.

There are two issues here, if its about conforming, then Id say to any Mothers, do what you like to yourself, but listen to what your daughter wants, don't push your ideals onto her.

If its about managability [sp?] then learn how to deal with the hair type, there is no excuse, the internet has masses of info on how to easily care for curly hair types. Don't chop it all of just because you see it as the 'wrong' sort of hair.

AmberLeaf Sat 24-Nov-12 12:37:35

In my experience, the people who will "mistake" a little girl with short hair for a boy are trying to make some stupid point about gender and hairstyles

In my experience, people that cut off little girls hair, are trying to make some stupid point about gender and hairstyles.

HullyEastergully Sat 24-Nov-12 12:39:32

I'd cut it.

When I was young we all had short hair (and no conditioner), now the fashion is for long, but that's all it is, fashion. And so impractical.

And so what if people think she's a boy...who cares?

StewieGriffinsMom Sat 24-Nov-12 12:41:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AmberLeaf Sat 24-Nov-12 12:44:49

Thats bollocks.

I used the word managed, because some seem to find it a huge issue.

Curly hair is not hard work. Unless you make it hard work.

Its faff all to do with the patriachy, its about being bothered or not to put a brush though a childs hair in the morning.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Sat 24-Nov-12 12:45:11

Amber this child has asked for it to be cut.

DD has bum length hair and I really want to chop it off but she doesn't want me to! She's almost 4.

I always had it cut when she was smaller, cut very short, like a pixie cut.

My son has a ponytail,

go figure grin

AmberLeaf Sat 24-Nov-12 12:47:47

Yes because it is hurting to have it brushed.

Five mins on the internet will tell the OP how to brush her childs hair without making her cry.

Do that and then see if she still wants it cut.

LadyMargolotta Sat 24-Nov-12 12:48:16

Amberleaf - I assume, from what you say, that you are making a political statement by having boys with long hair.

AmberLeaf Sat 24-Nov-12 12:50:47


No my boys are old enough to choose their own hairstyles, they chose to have longer hair. I was fine with that because keeping it tangle free wasn't a big deal.

They are old enough to do their own hair now, but when they were younger I did it, no big deal.

They can do what they like with their hair.

TheSmallClanger Sat 24-Nov-12 12:50:49

The issue isn't the time spent with the brush, it's the pain it's causing this little girl, who has repeatedly requested a haircut.

Obviously, we don't give in when our DCs request everything, but if the girl wants shorter hair, and her mum can see the benefits, it should be a win-win situation.

Amber, haircuts are not about making a political point. It's only hair for fucks' sake, why is women's hair so pwecious and important?

HullyEastergully Sat 24-Nov-12 12:53:11

Forgetting all the rest, if one human being, of whatever age/gender, says "please cut my hair off" why on earth not do so?

AmberLeaf Sat 24-Nov-12 12:53:40


There is no need at all for hairbrushing to be painful.

Your last question, ask yourself.

StewieGriffinsMom Sat 24-Nov-12 12:59:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

sausagesandwich34 Sat 24-Nov-12 13:01:02

why are you even brushing curly hair?

wash it, condition it + leave a bit of the conditioner in the hair

when she gets out of the bath get her to turn her head upside down and run your fingers through it, and then just leave it

if it looks untidy in the morning, sprits with water and give it a quick scrunch

I have curly hair, my mum cut it and then when I was old enough for her to let me grow it, I spent 3 years looking like a mushroom -I used to have enough kirby grips in my hair to try and tie it up, I kept them in business

as if the teenage years aren't bad enough hmm

TheSmallClanger Sat 24-Nov-12 13:02:21

I've already asked myself, and the answer is "I don't know". As I said. I do know that when I cut my hair off, my face shape, my comparatively big eyes and my long neck become really apparent - in one way, it's about emphasising my best features, instead of hiding behind impractical long hair.

Why should little girls have to undergo lengthy, uncomfortable hairbrushing sessions in the morning, when no-one insists on tedious grooming routines for little boys?

reddwarf Sat 24-Nov-12 13:03:32

why don't you cut it shorter as an interim step? Maybe she will be happy enough with it? My dd had long hair and it got knotty and she hated having it brushed too. She also refused to wear ponytails/plaits/hair bands or slides, so in the end I had it cut into a bob - fringe about a cm above eyebrows and hair straight cut just below ears. It really suits her, she still looks like a girl and hair hardly gets knotted and never in eyes/mouth now.

Most hairdressers don't recommend a drastic cut, but if it's long, go first for above shoulder length and work your way up if she still wants to go shorter.

AmberLeaf Sat 24-Nov-12 13:05:06


I wasn't one of those people, I told my story from the point of being the child.

I didn't like having long hair one day, then having none the next.

I won't go into it, but my hair being cut off was practically a ceremony!

Ive heard all about the politics behind feminism, I was raised by a feminist.

AmberLeaf Sat 24-Nov-12 13:07:06

Why should little girls have to undergo lengthy, uncomfortable hairbrushing sessions in the morning, when no-one insists on tedious grooming routines for little boys?

They absolutely shouldn't.

But that is my point!

Hair is only a big deal if you make it one.

It shouldn't and doesn't have to hurt.

StewieGriffinsMom Sat 24-Nov-12 13:08:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AmberLeaf Sat 24-Nov-12 13:09:53

I have very curly hair.

I wash and dry it on average once a fortnight.

Inbetween, my morning routine is, get up, shower, dress, look in the mirror and smile.

That is it, I am not one for faffing with my hair and I haven't been to the hairdresser or cut my own hair for years.

So please don't think Im suggesting lenghty ablutions in order to look pretty for the boys,.

MiniTheMinx Sat 24-Nov-12 13:11:28

The child wants short hair, so cut it and then give her the confidence to say "I'm a girl" job done. But she probably already has the confidence, that gets kicked out of you later when you realise that to be a girl, you must look like one, act like one and be deferential to men and apologise if you are in anyway displeasing in looks or behaviour. By insisting she have long hair you are reinforcing the idea that women/girls can only be valued by some pre-conceived idea of what is feminine. She might grow up flat chested, above average height, live in trousers and want to be an engineer, what will you do then? instead of focusing on what she looks like, focus on how she feels and what she wants and what she says.

TheSmallClanger Sat 24-Nov-12 13:12:24

You only wash your hair once a fortnight?
You are either lying, or you stink. I work with airline pax and you can smell the ones who don't wash their hair from a mile away.

TuftyFinch Sat 24-Nov-12 13:15:30

I have always had short hair. Everyone thought I was a boy but that was more to do with what I wore I think, I didn't want to wear dresses and my mother didn't make me (apart from the awful bridesmaid episode). I've got short hair now, when it grows I just chop it a bit. I even let the DC cut it with safety scissors grinDD has a short bob, I'd like to cut it shorter because it's very fine <but> she wants it long. Because all the girls she knows have long hair. I've said she can grow it if she /let's me brush it twice a day. Otherwise it gets cut. Also i'm rubbish at bobbles and clips. Although luckily, at 4, she wants to do it herself. This results in some <head tilt> looks from patents at school but ...
So, ramble, ramble I think you should cut it because she wants you to and it would be easier.

sausagesandwich34 Sat 24-Nov-12 13:15:53

clanger you are lovely!

lots of people with curly hair wash their hair pretty infrequently -every 2 weeks is not unusual

I wash mine more because I work in a very dusty environment but if I have a fortnight off I will only wash it once

DD3 is 2.3 and has very short hair, grade 8, after her 4 year old sister decided to play hairdresser. I have had very positive comments from all but 3 people and what they said made me hmm so I didn't pay any attention (supposedly girls should have bunches and she is going to be a lesbian!). She does get mistaken for a boy quite a bit but she doesn't notice.

I am going to keep it like this until she asks to grow it long. It is easy and quick plus she really suits it. I have a picture on my profile if you want to have a nosy smile

BlameItOnTheBogey Sat 24-Nov-12 13:21:35

Gosh thanks for a really interesting discussion (I'm in the States which is why I am replying at odd hours). I read one reply here (e.g. KRITIQ) and think 'yes' that's what I mean. And then I read another (e.g. Amberleaf) and it cuts a bit close to the bone! I am coming to feminism quite late in life and I would never have considered cutting her hair had she been born 10 years ago before I started thinking about these things. So Amber's statement about cutting hair coinciding with feminist journeys really hits the mark in an uncomfortable way.

On the other hand.... she has asked for it to be cut. It does hurt her. I could find a better way to brush it but surely since she wants it cut, the easiest thing is just to cut it? The only thing that stops me is the concern that it doesn't conform to stereotype. And I realise this is rubbish. I realise that for this reason, I should cut it. And yet I am struggling to do so....

BooCanary Sat 24-Nov-12 13:21:39

It's a tricky one. Part of me thinks why the hell shouldn't a girl have really short hair - there is no reason why not. From a women's rights view - of course we shouldn't feel pressure to have long hair to fulfil some feminine ideal. But the reality is often not so simple.

However, when I was young (6 or 7), my mum (who is of the practical 'it's not a fashion parade' school of thought and is actually a keen feminist) cut my hair VERY short. She encouraged me to keep it short for quite a few years, as it was easier to manage (she also refused to let me near pink/pretty dresses etc as blue jeans and a red jumper were much more suitable for active children). I repeatedly got mistaken for a boy and teased about it at school. I do believe it is part of the reason I don't feel attractive or feminine as an adult - the knowledge that actually it is only my hair that stops me looking masculine. Sounds silly, but there you go!

Saying all that, many women and young girls look lovely with short hair (I dream of the sort of pixie features that can pull it off!).And the main thing is what your DD wants. I never wanted short hair, but it seems like your DD does, so go for it. It will always grow back.

<my DD has long blond curls, and it would kill me to cut them, but I have been sorely tempted during many screaming tantrums whilst hairbrushing>

BlameItOnTheBogey Sat 24-Nov-12 13:23:47

Cross post a bit; MiniTheMinx, yes I think your reply has to be right. I just need to get over myself really.

TheSmallClanger Sat 24-Nov-12 13:26:31

There is a particular nasty smell which correlates to "unwashed hair". If you only wash your hair once every two weeks, how do you avoid it? I'm genuinely interested, although this is veering off-topic.

I think this is demonstrating the rigmaroles and "routines" that we get into with hair, and how almost-obsessed we are with it. I bet men with curly hair don't go through this amount of soul-searching (and I've smelt some of them wink, they don't.)

AmberLeaf Sat 24-Nov-12 13:41:28


No Im not lying and No I don't stink.

Sauagesandwich is right, lots of people with curly hair don't wash their hair that often, as it strips healthy natural oils and makes it dry and can give you an itchy scalp.

Im actually laughing here that you took that line and were so rude to me about my hair washing habits TBH.

Im thinking it makes you look like a bit of a hypocrite on this thread.

sausagesandwich34 Sat 24-Nov-12 13:46:10

I know the dirty hair smell -bit like a sheep

however curly hair is much less oily and it takes a long time for that oil to travel along the hair shaft so it doesn't look greasy

it also doesn't smell

I have 2 dcs, one with curly hair and 1 with a slight wave

if the wavy hair one doesn't wash her hair every other day we know about it

curly once a week, no smell

EmmelineGoulden Sat 24-Nov-12 14:18:18

My two 3 year old girls have very short hair. One of them a pixie cut, the other a short bob. The have the shortest hair of all the girls in their nursery class. They do get mistaken for boys most of the time. When it's other kids who won't accept their assertions that they are girls (this happened a fair bit at the playground until they started choosing pink wellies etc., but not in more controlled settings like nursery) they do dislike it.

But they don't cry everyday because of it. So I'm sticking with short (though the pixie cut is going - it really doesn't look very pixieish, just a mess).

I find it amazing in this world where the merest hint of physical chastisement is so strongly rejected by so many parents, that the idea of a three year old being made to wince or cry from pain every morning (which even with well "managed" longish hair appears to be the case for a lot of girls) is seen as just fine. It really isn't. It's vile to think it's OK for her to hurt so she conforms to an image of femininity.

MooncupGoddess Sat 24-Nov-12 14:48:19

I had a short back and sides, just like my brother, until I hit 9 and wanted to grow it. Occasionally I got mistaken for a boy, which would make my week. I don't remember giving any thought at all to my hair except for whinging when my mother washed it once a week.

That was in the 80s and I knew quite a few other little girls with short hair too. It is terribly dispiriting to hear that little girls' hairstyles are now so closely regimented by society.

MiniTheMinx Sat 24-Nov-12 15:46:58

I think children are quite good at knowing their own minds smile their minds have not been shaped by the thinking of others. Children are not born ready socialised to conform to gender stereotypes, that is something we foist upon them.

With girls esp I think parents need to listen, women spend a great deal of their lives trying to get people to focus on what they are saying and not what they look like!

Anyway do we really need to look at a child and quickly decide what sex it is? do other children really care that much? if they do, is that not because their parents and society have already been socialising them to think in this way?

StewieGriffinsMom Sat 24-Nov-12 17:25:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TheSmallClanger Sat 24-Nov-12 17:39:21

SGM, those people then come through my airport and have the irritating habit of having stuff on them of concern to my department. I'm feeling a bit sensitive to this kind of thing this week, after an incident involving lice. Bleurgh.

Not shampooing and not washing your hair are also two different things - the examples I was thinking of are mainly women with "set" hairstyles, mainly ones who smoke, and men who habitually wear hats and don't wash their hair. Also bleurgh.

Anyway, I am going to stop derailing Bogey's thread now.

EmmelineGoulden Sat 24-Nov-12 17:45:37

Mini I don't think we need to know. But plenty of children do seem to care, I assume because they've been socialized to. Doesn't stop it feeling alienating to a 3 year old if they are targetted by those children for not comforming.

On the hair washing front - I didn't use shampoo on my hair for years; it didn't 'stink' it just smelt of nothing much rather than the smell of shampoo. Left to it's own devices hair really does sort itself out.
DD has only once had shampoo on her hair when my mum used it on her and then waited until it was dry to brush it. Bouffant frizsbal doens't even get near. It took weeks, and a some applications of olive oil, to get beack to anything resembling normal.

TeiTetua Mon 26-Nov-12 17:29:24

Just by coincidence, the cartoonist Alison Bechdel was just visiting London, and look what she found at the first place she stayed:

Here's the whole story:

TeiTetua Mon 26-Nov-12 17:30:30
KRITIQ Mon 26-Nov-12 21:01:48

This article and Facebook posting by Jada Pinkett Smith about her daughter's hair is somewhat relevant I think.

BlameItOnTheBogey Mon 26-Nov-12 21:56:56

UPDATE: So, I was totally convinced by those who argued here that I needed to let DD decide and that if she wanted short hair then she should be allowed to decide. I found Emmeline's post really helpful - so thanks everyone for your input.

I took her to the hairdresser's today. I told her to tell the hairdresser what she wanted (because she is very vocal on this and I wanted them to hear it from her). She said loudly: I want short hair like my brother. Me to hairdresser: she is sure of this. Hairdresser: What? Why would you want to cut your pretty hair? YOu will look like a boy? Do you want to look like a boy? DD, to her credit, remained resolute, insisting that she wanted short hair. The hairdresser was lovely but basically did not want to cut her hair short and instead cut it to ear length. DD had a fit and said repeatedly that this was not what she wanted, pointing to DS for emphasis. I backed her up and so we started again. In the end, we have ended up with something in between. It's still longer than she wanted but is definitely 'short' and it has layers in it. I think it looks great. But I also feel a bit like I have wimped out because it isn't a short, short cut that she wanted. She did proclaim herself happy with it but the whole experience - with a hairdresser who basically did not want to cut a girl's hair short - really reinforced how stuck we are in gender roles.

TheSmallClanger Mon 26-Nov-12 22:32:24

Bogey, I remember my own first drastic haircut, at 14; the hairdresser reacted in exactly the same way. Part of it is they don't want a scene, and to lose custom if the customer really doesn't like it, but part of it IS down to society's expectations about, and obsession with, women's and girls' hair.

Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith have both expressed how I feel about it quite eloquently. Good on them, and on Willow.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Mon 26-Nov-12 23:11:35

Well done bogey and bogey's dd. sorry it wasn't more straightforward...

madwomanintheattic Mon 26-Nov-12 23:19:57

I remember getting 10 inches cut off dd1's hair when she was about 5. You would have thought I was actually asking the hairdresser to commit infanticide, not give a kid the haircut she wanted.

That said, dd1 did refer to her new short crop as 'princess hair', so lord knows who was the winner really. grin

Let her go shorter next time, bogey. wink

reddwarf Tue 27-Nov-12 04:55:33

My ds had let his hair get longer, probably almost shoulder length, and the hairdresser reacted similarly, didn't say he would look like a boy obviously, but was ver wary of cutting it off. Not necessarily to do with entrenched gender roles etc etc, but more to do with drastic cut.

I mean I was at the hairdressers with ds yesterday, he wanted his short hair shorter (becasue the hairdresser successfully put his off getting it too short the 1st time) and even then, at the thought of cutting 2cm off, she was very cautious and tried to warn him.

YOur dd is clearly very confident and brave to not waver, but i think this is just normal hardresser caution, as they must have experienced a million times people who ask for big change who are then shocked or disappointed.

i also don't think there's anyting wrong with girls and boys looking different. There's nothing wrong with a girl looking like a girl or wanting to. I was mistaken many times for a boy and it got me down. I felt embarrassed by it.

EmmelineGoulden Tue 27-Nov-12 07:49:36

Hi Bogey - good for you and your daughter.

reddwarf - Exclusion is horrible. And I think there is nothing wrong with looking like a girl. What frustrates me is that, at three years old the acceptable marker for looking like a girl isn't being a girl, but growing hair to such a length that it will make her cry every morning. I think that a society that goes along with that idea is not one that likes girls by much.

AbigailAdams Tue 27-Nov-12 08:01:19

Good post Emmeline. I am finding it a bit odd that in the feminist section there are suggestions for beauty practices for a 2 yr old rather than the practical and sensible option of cutting it short as she had stated vociferously she wanted on a number of occasions.

Well done Bogey. And well done your DD for standing her ground. The hairdresser was a bit hmm. Now it's already short maybe next time the hairdresser won't be as reluctant to cut it to the length your DD wants.

LadyMargolotta Tue 27-Nov-12 08:40:53

BlameItOnTheBogey that hairdresser sounds very annoying.

Hope mornings are a bit less stressful now she has shorter hair.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Tue 27-Nov-12 08:46:06

Abigail that's a bit unfair, since Bogey said from the outset that she herself was struggling a bit with balancing her daughter's choices and social norms, so those giving tips were suggesting another way to strike the balance. Also some people probably came on through Active Conversations.

SminkoPinko Tue 27-Nov-12 09:01:03

I think this is actually a perfect dilemma for the feminist topic. Sexist cultural and societal norms and stereotypes are endemic and, like it or not, and most posters here quite clearly do not, these impact on children and parents from the moment they pop out and are identified as male or female. I worry all the time about things like shaving my legs in front of my toddler daughter, putting on make up, etc. I felt unfairly annoyed with my teenage son when he,asked if I'd stopped plucking my eyebrows the other day! it was apparently a genuine query and he was quite surprised when he got a lecture about men having no right to not dictate how women look... then there's all the stuff about whether to get the pink or blue v tech camera and whether the cheap doll from Argos is too thin and if you should buy a princess dress as requested. It's all the personal as political stuff that interests me most and I have been fascinated to read about Bogey's decision making process here, the views of the hairdresser and the loveliness of the haircut.

SminkoPinko Tue 27-Nov-12 09:02:16

men having no right to dictate

AbigailAdams Tue 27-Nov-12 10:00:52

I wasn't having a go at the OP. If you look at my first post on the thread I am fully sympathetic with her and the dilemma. But the OP wasn't asking for suggestions of tangle teasers or whatever. She was asking people's thoughts on bucking a gender stereotype and how hard she is finding it. I am totally with her on that.

And suggesting beauty practices isn't striking a balance though is it Doctrine? It is maintaining the status quo, maintaining the gender stereotype when the girl doesn't want to. So at 2 yrs old she is already being influenced by the patriarchal standards for women. And I find that very sad - as I am sure the OP is too.

AmberLeaf Tue 27-Nov-12 10:27:08

I don't consider successfully [ie without causing pain] combing curly hair a 'beauty practice'

I would suggest the same advice to a parent of a boy who had curly hair.

MiniTheMinx Tue 27-Nov-12 11:08:32

I have boys, both have long hair, through choice. Most hairdressers have been loathe to cut it. confused hairdressers have no such qualms about listening to boys. Seems to me that with girls it is about how they look, whereas with boys it seems it has more to do with how they behave. Which I think has implications later on.

AbigailAdams Tue 27-Nov-12 11:17:00

I don't think that this thread would have gone the same way if it had been a boy the OP had been describing and he wanted to cut his hair short. In fact the OP wouldn't have even been written as would have been a given that the practical solution would have been the route to go.

MiniTheMinx Tue 27-Nov-12 11:32:08

Yes boys looks and boys decision making processes are not questioned. They are upheld to be valid because they are male.

I think having spent years dealing with curly tangled hair I identified more with the practicalities of the OP than the politics, and I replied the way I would have in Chat. This thread's made me think more about why I keep my hair long though.

TeiTetua Tue 27-Nov-12 13:50:45

I question whether a boy would have more freedom to decide how he wants to look. Most boys get short haircuts and no arguments about it. If the parents don't insist, the other kids will hassle him until he conforms.

You have to have some sympathy for the hairdresser. She spends her day styling women's hair, and a girl comes in who wants her hair so short it can only be worn one way--to the hairdresser, that's just likely to seem totally wrong.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Tue 27-Nov-12 13:52:49

Sorry Abigail, I didn't think you were criticising the OP, just that people suggesting eg tangle teasers were trying to be helpful given the OP's mixed feelings.

I take your point about how there wouldn't be a dilemma at all if it was a DS under discussion.

TeiTetua Tue 27-Nov-12 13:55:00

No dilemma because all options are available, or because none are?

AbigailAdams Tue 27-Nov-12 13:57:37

Yes I see what you mean Doctrine - especially with Ria's comment as well. I just find it a bit depressing that even so young, boys=practical girls=pretty.

And I agree TeiTetua about boys being restricted, only I don't think that they would be expected to "manage" their hair or put up with discomfort just to keep long hair (unless they wanted to).

NoWayNoHow Tue 27-Nov-12 14:02:47

Haven't read the whole thread, so sorry if I'm already saying what others have said, or if the thread's moved on from the original OP.

I think parents and children can cut their children's hair however they like. However, pre-puberty, and especially pre-school, before there's facial hair and boobs and face shape and feature distinction, there is very little to tell the genders apart besides clothes and hair, so parents just need to be aware that there might be misunderstandings and should try to be tolerant and understanding of this.

My mum was very upset last year at a festival we went to when DS was playing with a child there, because my mum referred to the "little girl" and the mother of the child absolutely laid into her as it was her little boy, not girl.

In my mother's defence, there are very few boys around with hair down the middle of their backs. She wasn't being mean or insulting, she just made an assumption based on 59 years of looking at boys and girls and assimilating appearance.

MiniTheMinx Tue 27-Nov-12 14:15:11

NoWayNoHow, so easily done though and unless we can find another way of referring to people in the third person rather than using him, her, she,he that is always liable to happen. That mother's reaction was strange to say the least.

TeiTetua Tue 27-Nov-12 14:57:33

One would think that the mother of the boy with long hair would be used to him being taken for a girl. She could just say "Oh, people think he's a girl all the time. But it really doesn't make much difference, does it?"

I wonder how much he has to endure in order to wear his hair down his back. If he isn't being allowed to be a wild child, surely the burden would be the same as for a girl. But then think of all the ribbons, clips, clasps and bands that a girl might use. Would a boy? If his styles went beyond loose or a simple ponytail, then people really would look at him doubtfully.

boys=practical girls=pretty Yes, that's it exactly. And it stays with us our whole lives...

I get fed up with being pressured to cut ds1's hair and keep it short - in fact when I finally gave in took him to the hairdresser last week I was annoyed when the hairdresser made a comment about ds having a 'girls' hair do (it was verging on a chin length bob but still hmm keep your comments to yourself when I am paying please!).

I do admit to keeping dd1's very thick, wavy and lovely hair long out of a desire not to shear her like my mother did to me, I had a terrible bowl cut throught much of the eighties, as Ma had never heard of conditioner and didn't want to deal with my tears every morning, as she tugged a comb through my wavy/ tangly hair! Not that I am bitter or anything blush. If she starts asking for a short hair cut then I will consider it but knowing how flighty she is I will want to be sure she is sure first.

I think there is more you can do with long hair I enjoy having longer hair, so I feel sorry for men feeling they should have short hair rather than the other way round. But I can see there is a pressure on girls to look pretty - I prefer the wild untamed look my self (so dd can spend weekends looking like cousin it!) so silly hair frippery I tend to avoid.

This is a fascinating thread.
DS is two, he's has had four haircuts at the hairdressers, and the last two times we did it with clippers at home "Just like Daddy" - because we're skint, we already cut DH's hair that way, and because he hates, hates, hates having shampoo (and/or peanut butter or whatever's ended up in his hair) rinsed out, so shorter makes more sense.

Dmum hates the way we cut his hair 'so short' and tells me 'he looks scalped' and etc. I knew she would, she's been saying the same about my nephew for 8 years or so. My baseline is that I won't make DS more uncomfortable/miserable than necessary by having him endure multiple rinses of longer hair (it's very thick) when I can keep his hair short and it's a quick rise job at bathtime.

I wonder how differently I'd feel about it if he was a girl, though. Most of my friends who've had DDs around the time DS was born are just getting into the clips/bows/need something to keep her hair out of her face phase now. If I'd never cut DS's hair it would be almost shoulder length by now, I imagine....

I don't know where I'm going with this, to be honest, but it is very interesting to me. DS needs a bit of a trim as he's starting to look like a fluffyheaded dandelion but part of me doesn't want to as it's so damn cute like this.
And yet. And yet. He hates having his hair rinsed. And do I really want him to cry because I think he looks cute with longer hair? It's not my call, really, is it? It's not my body.

hotbot Tue 27-Nov-12 20:06:04

Another v. Short pixie cut on dd here as well, she is now 6, but short since 2yrs old.
She looks funky, cute and incredibly cheeky, but of course I am biased.

InNeedOfBrandy Tue 27-Nov-12 20:17:06

Iv'e been watching this thread with interest.

My dd has always wanted short hair as she hates me brushing and combing it. She has afro hair it's no joke it's hard work to look after. But I haven't ever cut it (she's almost 7) because I always wanted long hair as a child (instead of my very very bobbed hair) and I don't want her to not be beautiful. That sounds terrible saying it's because I don't want her to not be beautiful but I can't explain it another way.

InNeedOfBrandy Tue 27-Nov-12 20:19:01

By the way my very very very bobbed hair looking back on pictures looked really cool but I just wanted long princess blonde hair instead of short and ginger.

That's interesting, InNeed - but a bit strange.... Have I read it right, because it does read a bit like you're saying "because I couldn't have the haircut I wanted as a child (long) my daughter cannot have the hair she wants as a child (short)."

InNeedOfBrandy Tue 27-Nov-12 21:38:31

Yes blackcurrent although I didn't realise it was that till now. confused

I'm not having a pop - like I said, no one judges me for keeping DS's hair short even though it's primarily for his comfort and my convenience, so I don't have to deal with what you have to deal with regarding conventional beauty standards for little girls ... but I thought it was so odd I had to point it out!

You're doing the same thing to her that your own mother did to you, just for different reasons. Your mother wanted you to be practical, comfortable, etc. You want your daughter to be beautiful, happy, feel good about herself, etc.

She's the one who should decide what makes her beautiful, though. Not anyone else. I think 7 is quite old to be 'not allowed' to do something to her hair. Hair grows back, after all.

InNeedOfBrandy Tue 27-Nov-12 21:49:07

Yes I will ask her tomorrow what she wants to do, the only problem would be due to her mix race afro hair it couldn't be a short bob unless it was chemically relaxed/permed/or straightened every day. So its shoulder length how it is (it goes up more then down) or sut right right right off.

TheSmallClanger Tue 27-Nov-12 21:49:08

It's all about listening to her wishes and taking them seriously.

I was never allowed short hair until I was a teenager. I spent my early 20s with a Grace Jones flat-top, despite being a white person with very straight hair. Despite this, and having numerous older men find excuses to "mistake" me for a man*, I had boyfriends and met my DH. It did not turn me into some sort of sexless boychild.

*I know they were doing it on purpose. Half the time, it was in situations where they shouldn't even have needed to talk to me. I am also not much over five foot, with hands and feet like a 9yo's, unmistakable hips and a really high-pitched voice.

**The fact that I needed to add that says all we need to know, really.

InNeedOfBrandy Tue 27-Nov-12 21:49:58

*cut right right off because I'm not about to start putting chemicals on her head or straightening.

TheSmallClanger Tue 27-Nov-12 21:51:51

Oh and Brandy, I see lots of black women with very short hair, and they look great. Forgive me if the terminology here is wrong, but a sort of "shaped" Afro a few inches long, looks lovely.

InNeed I just noseyed into your pics and your daughter is GORGEOUS and will be GORGEOUS whatever she does or doesn't do with her hair. Not that looking gorgeous is what matters most about anyone, but still, she's adorable! smile

trockodile Tue 27-Nov-12 21:52:14

I love seeing the photos of Brad and Angelina's daughter Shiloh-not mad fans of theirs particularly, but they really seem to let her express herself and have her hair/ clothes etc the way that she wants.

InNeedOfBrandy Tue 27-Nov-12 21:55:39


is what she and her hair look like now, pics a bit old. I don't see the point having a shaped afro as it would still have to be combed which she'd still hate. The way I do it now is annoying but not painful just time consuming. I quite like the halle berry short hair but her hair is to frizzy for that. confused not sure what to do...

InNeedOfBrandy Tue 27-Nov-12 21:56:05

pics on profile a bit old I mean*

InNeedOfBrandy Tue 27-Nov-12 22:00:36

Oh and her hair only gets washed once a fortnight and does not smell grin

HalloweenNameChange Tue 27-Nov-12 22:24:32

not read 6 pages, but I wouldn't cut curly hair short on a girl or a boy. it's much easier to plait or put in a pony tail

HalloweenNameChange Tue 27-Nov-12 22:26:23

My nearly 2 year old daughter is practically bald except for a tiny little rat tail mullet she has grown hmm.. People sometimes think she is a boy.. I really don't care and tbh.. it's not always a bad thing.

HalloweenNameChange Tue 27-Nov-12 22:30:10

short hair require lots of upkeep too, whilch is timely expensive and not practical on a baby as well..especially one who doesn't even like her hair brushed. Will she sit and have hair cut ever few weeks?

TheSmallClanger Tue 27-Nov-12 22:33:35

Mine is cut once a month, but it only takes about 20 minutes. Of a morning, I spend between 0 and 3 minutes styling it. Not high-maintenance at all. Sometimes I wake up with it looking all right. grin

One of my aunties told me that mine would never grow back properly if I started having it clippered. If only that were true.

It's only hair.

InNeedOfBrandy Tue 27-Nov-12 22:38:13

She's goes to the hairdressers quite frequently to get it plaited but I don't pay for that, thats when her dad thinks to take her. I really don't need an extra expense every 6 weeks and I don't think the £5 barbers will cut it. When she's older and can really choose if she wants to relax it or perm it straight to have a short cut then I won't stop her but now I don't want her hair damaged by that.

If she had straight hair I would really really consider a pixie cut they do look super cute, I also love love love www.google.co.uk/imgres?imgurl=http://ia.media-imdb.com/images/M/MV5BMjIxNzc5MDAzOV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwMDUxMjMxMw%40%40._V1._SY314_CR9,0,214,314_.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000932/&h=314&w=214&sz=13&tbnid=Oea6kydJcljXZM:&tbnh=186&tbnw=126&prev=/search%3Fq%3Dhalle%2Bberry%2Bpictures%26tbm%3Disch%26tbo%3Du&zoom=1&q=halle+berry+pictures&usg=__A3ZPP6w7gymIn5aGqFTtDBpMTMc=&docid=hnn5tmhn2PfOXM&hl=en&sa=X&ei=tEC1UOadOOna0QWYpYGQDA&ved=0CC0Q9QEwAA&dur=628 but again would have to be straightened.

HalloweenNameChange Tue 27-Nov-12 22:45:04

I meant high maintenance in that it needs frequent cutting, which my dd definitely wouldn't not deal with. But like I said it really doesn't matter if people think a baby is a boy or a girl.. For me it is more about the practical, and as a curly haired person.. I don't find it practical to have short hair and dd and ds when they ever get proper hair I will keep it long... (people will probably decide ds is a dd then but hey ho)

InNeedOfBrandy Tue 27-Nov-12 22:47:40

No she'd be fine getting it cut I don't think a number 2 all over would look right though...although I am quite tempted and she'd probably pull it off.

BegoniaBampot Wed 28-Nov-12 12:03:42

I always had very short hair up to my teens really. I wanted it long but mum always cut it. I did often look like a boy especially as i was a bit of a tomboy and sporty. I think it did affect the way i saw myself and my confidence with boys. But if your daughter realy wants it short then there's probably no r eason not to. She can always grow it again. Cropped is quite a severelook on a little child, never mind a girl though.

I'd cut it if that's what she wants. It's her hair not yours! (OK she's only 2 grin). You don't have to cut it that short, and anyway it will grow back.

Guess my view is coloured by my mother, who was the opposite of you and wouldn't let me grow my hair till I was 8 or 9, and people were forever thinking I was a boy. When I finally got to grow it I let it go down to my waist and didn't get it cut for years.

BlameItOnTheBogey Sat 09-Mar-13 10:54:29

I just thought I'd come back to this some months on and say that after the failed attempt to cut it short detailed above, we had another go a few weeks later with a different hairdresser. She cut it really short. DD loves it. Does sometimes get taken for a boy and doesn't care less. She is super proud of her short short hair. And best of all, we have stopped having tears in the morning as it no longer hurts when I brush it.

I don't like it as much but realize I am projecting my views of what is 'pretty' on to her and this is exactly what I have vowed not to do. The main thing is she is happy.

UptoapointLordCopper Sat 09-Mar-13 11:26:35

Well done to you and your DD!

Trills Sat 09-Mar-13 11:32:15

Well done! smile

Chubfuddler Sat 09-Mar-13 12:14:29

My daughter is getting on for two and her hair is still very short and stating to curl around the ears and at the back. It's so darned cute as it is (a bit like the toddler in the high chair with the French sort of hairstyle someone linked to up thread) I'm thinking of keeping it short so many toddler girls have really long but straggly wispy hair and it looks awful BUT I have hair hang ups due to having a mother who hated me having long hair. I don't want to do the same thing to her. I think I'm going to keep it short while she's pre school age and once she's old enough to start to care for it herself she gets to decide.

Our hair is a massive part of our identity. That's probably because society has decided that to be the case but its still difficult to buck the trend.

Macdog Sat 09-Mar-13 12:20:32

My dd had her hair cut short when she was 3 because it was tricky to manage.
She swam a lot and it was basically turning into candy floss!
First hairdresser we went to cut it into a short bob and refused to cut it shorter.
Second hairdresser was a mum, and made a cracking job of the pixie crop
Dd adored her "Tinkerbelle" hair until it was time to go to school, then people mistook her for a boy! Even in a school dress ffs!!

Now she has shoulder length hair, but is older and more able to cope with tangling etc.

weegiemum Sat 09-Mar-13 12:21:44

When I was small my hair didn't grow much. People thought I was a boy (early 70s) and it was hard on my mum. I was 5/6 before it got long enough for bunches etc.

I've got 2 girls. Dd2 has hers pixie-ish (needs cut actually) and dd1 has the most amazing long hair - and is probably the most outspoken feminist I've ever met (she's 13) and my degree is in Geog and Gender Studies!!!

Hair doesn't define you unless you let it!

AtiaoftheJulii Sun 10-Mar-13 02:20:25

Good for you, BlameIt and dd smile

My ten year old has had a pixie cut for a couple of years now. She doesn't wear pink or dresses, so she has been mistaken for a boy many times (lots of "young man"s for some reason!), but she doesn't care. Sometimes she corrects them, sometimes she just laughs.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Sun 10-Mar-13 02:25:25

Well done BlameIt and DD.

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