by Nicole Fonovich, co-creator of the "Luca Lashes" app / eBook series
Will your toddler get hysterical at the hair salon? There are plenty of reasons kids fear the haircuts: sharp scissors, the buzzing of the clipper, the huge cape, and that big metal chair, for starters. So many new sights and sounds at once, and baby's first haircut can quickly turn south.
Getting a haircut shouldn't be a scary "first"—it should be fun! These five pointers will help you avoid a salon meltdown, so your little one can enjoy him/herself —and the new "do" too!
1. Find a salon that caters to children.
Hair salons can be intimidating places for children. Thankfully, the hairstyle industry has grown with the times and helped parents by designing kid-friendly, family salons. Children can sit in fun seats with special designs, even in racecar-style chairs. Waiting rooms at family salons usually have children’s toys and books or even a children’s movie playing. Finding a family salon, rather than relying on your own personal hairstylist, will make your life easier when it comes time for the first cut.
2. Be prepared.
Going to a salon a day early, and just walking around with your child can be a great experience to help prepare for the first haircut. This way, your child gets a chance to see what the salon looks like, what tools are being used, and what the person who will cut their hair looks and acts like. Going along ahead of time with family friends or relatives on their positive hair cut experience can also really help! There is nothing like seeing other kids they look up to having fun!
3. There’s an app for that!
Take an extra step in prepping for the first cut—enlist the help of an app, like Luca Lashes and his First Haircut. In this app/eBook, kids join Luca and his mom as they learn about the hair salon, meet the stylist, and see all the tools used in getting a haircut. Let your child interact with each illustration to become familiar with the sights and sounds they soon will see!
4. Time it right.
All parents can sense their child is crabby. Whether anxious, overtired, or hungry, there are specific times of the day that can be the best times to have a new experience. Haircuts are events that can be planned with appointments; just be careful to plan the times appropriately so your child is, hopefully, on their best behavior.
5. Make new memories.
First haircuts are a major life event for both parents and children. Make sure to have a digital camera or smartphone ready to snap "before" and "after" pictures, so you can show your child how awesome the new haircut looks right away. Kids love seeing themselves on camera! Remember to keep that first lock of hair for your “memories” book.
As with all of your child's "firsts," ask them how they feel about the new experience both before and after. These moments are great times to soothe your child and share the feelings and excitement that all childhood discoveries bring.
Remember to have as much fun as you can and revel in these moments together, before you know it, they grow up.
Nicole & Damir Fonovich are co-creators of "Luca Lashes," an eBook and app series that turns “fear of firsts” into fun. The series is aimed at kids ages 0–4 and is available in English, French, Italian, Spanish, and soon, Chinese. The first app, Luca Lashes: The Brown Eyed Boy with the Magic Eyelashes, is free on iTunes, and the other apps can be downloaded for $1.99 at all major marketplaces and at www.LucaLashes.com. Nicole and Damir both have backgrounds in teaching, writing and publishing. Together, they have 17 years of experience in the education field, in both teaching and administration. They have a 3-year-old son and live Chicago