Is you daughter asking to shave her legs? Or is she at the age where you are ready to have a conversation regarding this topic? While not all girls want to shave, or will even choose to do so, it is important to let her know that it is an option. And it’s vital to teach her how to safely do this task before she decides to explore and try it on her own. Below are tips for teaching your daughter how to shave her legs when the time is right.
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In 1920 a woman cut her leg shaving and it made national news. At the time, it was so shocking that someone would have actually tried to shave on purpose! However, by 1950, it became the norm for woman to shave their legs.
Many people contribute this shift to the beauty industry after they began campaigning that a woman’s body should be smooth like her face. Over time the clothing styles changed as well to show off more skin, and a bare leg was considered more attractive. According to recent studies, up to 95% of woman were believed to have shaved up until the early 2000’s when the trend began to slightly decline. Now it’s estimated that over 80% of woman, and even 30% of men, shave their legs for various reasons.
Reasons to Shave
- Appearance. Plenty of women, and even men, choose to shave or “manscape” in order to maintain their preferred appearance.
- Sports Advantage. Having a smooth body can help an athlete move faster, especially in the water.
- Skin Care. Shaving can help exfoliate the skin.
- Wound Healing. Sometimes a doctor will need to shave an area to properly clean and care for a wound.
- Tattoo Preparation and Display. Tattoo artists often shave the area before they can begin the ink.
Cons to Shaving
Shaving can cause inflamed hair follicles, itching, ingrown hairs, and razor burns. Using a dull blade can increase your chance of getting a cut or having skin irritation. And improper technique is often the culprit for many of these issues. That is why teaching your daughter how to shave her legs properly, and with the right tools, is essential!
How to Teach Your Daughter to Shave
Since your daughter will be using a blade, or an electrical razor, it is recommended that you show your daughter how to shave – verses her exploring on her own. If you are uncomfortable demonstrating, there are plenty of videos online that you can direct her to as well. However, it’s a good idea to view them first to be sure they cover all of the basics and safety aspects.
Some electrical razors work best with dry legs, and others can be used in the shower. So make sure you both read the directions thoroughly before its first use. Especially since the wrong type of razor around water could be dangerous!
While the market is flooded with tons of options for blades, I recommend looking for something that is made for teens and/or sensitive skin. If you choose a razor that has many rows of blades, or advertises to have the closest shave, this could potentially result in more cuts. Instead, consider starting out with something that offers a guard or a buffer to help reduce the chance for injury. Did you know that there are razors out there that have a thin mesh wire over the blade? And there are razors that have a moisturizing bar which can be another great option!
Once your daughter gets more experience, you can always explore other options. But it is better to start with something safe and easy to use when she first attempts to shave her legs.
Safe Razor Recommendations
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How To Begin Shaving Legs
Once you read the directions for her new razor, you will need to set up the space. Will you be doing this on the bathroom floor? Or sitting on the side of the bathtub? Consider laying out a clean towel, some water, shaving gel, and lotion all within reach.
You may want to consider exfoliating your legs to start. Exfoliating not only feels good, but it also helps to ensure a closer shave. But if her goal is just to trim, or if she is using an electric razor, then this step is definitely not needed.
Once the skin is prepped, cleaned, and ready for the razor, it’s important to remind her to make long strokes slowly, and explain that you do not need to push hard. You may want to even demonstrate on one of your own legs before allowing your daughter to try on hers. Depending on your daughters age and maturity level, you might need to help her, or even do it for her the first few times. But once she becomes comfortable with it, and has properly shaved her legs in front of you, then she should be ready to tackle this task whenever she chooses to do so in the future.
While eventually your daughter might opt to shave with just soap, starting out with shave gel is a great idea as it can provide a thick lather and help reduce the chance of razor burn or leg rash. Then after shaving, show your daughter how to rinse off her legs and razor before patting everything dry with a towel. And then be sure to offer her some lotion or oil to soothe her skin.
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Shaving Over Kneecaps
Shaving over kneecaps can be tricky, so don’t forget to explain to your daughter how to handle this area. Explain that when shaving around the knee cap, it can be helpful to fully straighten your leg and gently shave over it. Then curl your leg and lightly go over it again depending on how your skin folds. Keeping your skin tight and flat will help reduce nicks, so you may need to move and adjust to get a perfect shave.
Steps for Shaving Your Legs
- Prepare Your Space
- Exfoliate Your Legs
- Apply Shaving Gel or Oil
- Slowly Make Long Gentle Shaving Strokes
- Bend Knees If Needed for a Flat Surface
- Rinse Legs and Pat Dry
- Use Lotion or Oil to Sooth Skin
Remember, not all girls will want to shave, and that’s ok! It’s their body, and some girls are proud of their hair. As their parent we want to encourage them and help build their confidence in any way possible. But we also want to make sure they know their options, and how to go about it safely in case they ever decide to give shaving their legs a try. We hope after reading this article, you will have a better understanding for how to teach your daughter to shave her legs.
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