Q: How do I prepare my 2-year-old daughter for her first haircut. She gets really anxious about everything, and I want this to be a good experience or she may never go to get another haircut.
Cozy: The first haircut can be a rather hair-raising experience for both you and your child, but it can also be a lot of fun. You are smart to prepare in advance! First, decide whether you are going to do it at home or take her to a professional. Either way, it will be a special occasion. Here are some tips to make that first haircut less stressful, whether it happens at home or the salon:
- Make sure to choose a good time of day for the haircut. Avoid nap time or meal time when your child is less likely to cooperate and may be cranky.
- Choose a stylist who enjoys working with children. Call the salon in advance to find out who the right stylist will be.
- Distraction, distraction, distraction! If you're not going to a children's salon, bring your own distractions. A book, toy, DVD, healthy snack or treat will keep your child’s attention so there’s less chance of your child getting upset.
- Bring a spare t-shirt in case your child doesn’t want to wear a cape. This way you can easily change her when haircut is over.
- Never refer to it as a hair CUT! This can sound very scary for a child. Instead call it a trim.
- Try to get an idea of what type of haircut you are looking for in advance. Look through magazines and tear out photos to help tell stylists what you want. Spray comb with water rather than spraying water directly on child’s hair. That can be scary for children not knowing what to expect.
- Don’t forget to save the first lock of hair for your scrapbook.
- Try not to be too nervous. Children pick up on this and will feel nervous because you are!
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