At some point in most pre-teen/teen girls’ lives, they will be exposed to shaving. It may be a friend, seeing mom and dad shave or it may be brought up by a bully. Anywhere from 8-14, girls can start puberty.
When they hit puberty, that’s when the hair on their arms, legs and even face can start showing darker and thicker. At some point during the growth, they will likely approach with the desire to shave but when is it right?
When Should You Start Teaching Your Teen Daughter to Shave?
If your daughter is old enough to understand how to hold and safely use a razor and can move the razor safely, it’s up to personal preference. There is no absolute proper age, it’s about maturity and desire.
Hair growth can get girls bullied or they can see friends and classmates with smooth legs and feel self-conscious. If you research it, you’ll find some people giving instructions for teaching an 11-year-old to shave. In the same search, you’ll find people say they are too young.
Shaving offers no medical benefits, nor does it cause any major harm to the health, outside of infected hair follicles, so shaving is a personal preference. If your daughter wants to start shaving and you think she’s too young for a normal razor, try electric. Electric razors help teach how to shave but she won’t cut herself.
What are the Reasons a Girl May Want to Start Shaving?
Most girls will find out about shaving from a parent, older sibling or friend. As girls go through puberty, their hair gets thicker and coarser so it will be more noticeable. She’ll go from peach fuzz to noticeable hair, so she’ll likely start to feel self-conscious.
Another reason may be that she is being bullied by someone at school. She could have noticed a teammate’s smooth skin, or she may have older siblings and feel it’s the grown-up thing to do. If the reason makes sense to her, it’s a valid reason to start teaching her safe shaving tips.
What are the Best Tips for Teaching A Tween to Shave?
Make sure you find a gentle, child friendly shaving cream. EOS makes a lavender-scented women’s shaving cream that can work for the sensitive skin of a child. The Venus brand razors are good for women.
They aren’t too high priced, and they work well over the course of several shaves. You can get disposable for about 5.00 a pack at places like Walmart or Kroger or you can get reusable. The reusable blades can be a bit pricy, but they come in a 3 pack.
Once you get both the razor and shaving cream, have her watch you while you shave your legs. Start with teaching legs and move on to the armpits. Going with the growth of hair makes it less prone to infection but going against can get a closer shave.
When it comes to shaving the armpits, going with the grain is how you want to teach. Go slow. Don’t try to rush when you’re shaving, razors are slick and can slip and cut the whole leg if you rush. Dry shaving hurts and can lead to razor burn.
Teach her to always shave in the shower or bath, never shave dry skin with a dry razor. If she uses a disposable razor, she needs to change it every 3-7 uses. If it gets rusty, it can lead to infection and a dull blade can cause damage or irritation to the skin.
Best Razors and Shaving Creams/Gels for Teen Girls
Women’s razors are designed for the body parts women typically shave and men’s are designed more for facial hair than any other part. Venus is a women’s brand so any of their razors do well.
Make sure your daughter understands that certain body parts may react if they use the moisturizing strip razors.
Leg and armpit skin isn’t as sensitive as the bikini area and can become inflamed and itchy if the wrong razor is used. That’s the good thing about Equate’s generic razors- they don’t have extra added to them and they don’t cause reaction on sensitive areas.
When it comes to shave gel or cream, the primary thing to think about is the area that’s being shaved. There are many shave gels and creams designed for sensitive skin but if she reacts to the scents, it might be best to go with an unscented variety.
Gillette is one of the best brands to use to introduce her to shaving. They have all varieties from scented to unscented and several for sensitive skin.
Skintimate has a whole line of different scents to unscented, normal to sensitive skin. They will leave your skin silky after your shave.
If you don’t think she’s ready for a normal razor yet, there are a few varieties of electric to choose from. With an electric razor, she won’t get as deep a shave, but it will be enough to help her feel less self-conscious and she’ll learn the movements she needs to start shaving with a normal razor.
A really good beginner razor is the Remington electric shaver. The reviews say it can work on facial hair as well as legs and underarms.
If she has a problem with facial hair as well as leg, this will help. They designed it to protect skin while also providing a smooth shave. This won’t be as smooth as a normal razor, but it will get rid of the unwanted hair while she’s learning to use one.
Common Shaving Myths
Your hair doesn’t grow back thicker if you shave. It might look thicker, but it won’t be any thicker.
Another myth is that newer blades cause more scratches and nicks than a dull blade. It’s the opposite. A fresh blade gets a better shave, you have to work harder for the hair to come off smooth with a dull blade. The pressure can cause more nicks.
On a similar note, putting more pressure on the razor makes it more likely to cut- it doesn’t get a smoother shave.
Using a men’s razor isn’t as good for leg and other body hair as using a women’s razor. Men’s razors are designed primarily for facial hair while women are designed to cover larger areas of the body.
Using someone else’s razor can carry bacteria that can be harmful if nicks or scratches are left.
As your girls are going through the big hormonal and physical changes that come with puberty, make sure she feels comfortable coming to you for all questions. The main place she will get information is online, so you want to make sure she will be fully informed. Make sure you have resources you can show and products you’re able to give her to try out.
Don’t shame her for her feelings, don’t make her feel dirty because of the hair and don’t make her feel uncomfortable coming to you with any questions. It’s much better to learn shaving techniques and information from a loving parent than from a misinformed friend.