What to Do about Kids Who Hate Haircuts
By Cozy Friedman on December 03, 2011
I started Cozy’s Cuts for Kids with a mission to make haircuts fun and easy for children—and their parents! It is normal for kids to be scared of getting a haircut, and oftentimes tantrums and tears are involved. If your child hates haircuts, these tried-and-true tips might be just what you need to get through a trim fuss-free!
Do Your Research
- Look for a kids-only hair salon in your area. Children’s salons are stocked with distractions and stylists who know how to navigate around squirming little ones to get the job done quickly.
- If you don’t have a kids’ hair salon nearby, call your local salons and ask if any of their staff specialize in cutting kids’ hair. Make sure you tell them that you can be flexible with your appointment schedule to ensure that you get the right stylist, and not just the first one available.
- A few days before your child’s haircut, visit the salon you’ll be going to. If you are going to a children’s salon, let them watch another kid (ideally one who is comfortable in the chair!) get their hair cut.
- Take your child with you when you get your hair cut so they are familiar with the salon atmosphere. Talk to them throughout to assure them that there is nothing to fear!
- Be sure to schedule the cut during a time when your child will be able to cope (read: stay away from nap or lunch time!)
- If you aren’t going to a children’s salon, bring along a book, a portable DVD player, bubbles or a favorite toy to keep your child’s mind off the haircut (distraction is key!!)
- Keep in mind, your child may not want to wear the cape, so bring along a spare shirt, just in case…
Make a Day of It
- Sweeten the deal by making the haircut just a stop on a day of fun. When kids have something else to focus on, like a trip to the park or library, they will want their haircut to go as quickly as possible!
- Tell your child that if they sit through their haircut without fussing, they will get a “big kid” reward. It doesn’t have to be anything grand—maybe an ice cream on the way home or 15 extra minutes of TV time at night. Make sure they understand that this is only if they sit nicely through the cut.
Get to the Bottom of It
- Put yourself in your child’s shoes—what makes a haircut scary? Ask them why they hate getting their haircut and talk about it, so you can ease any fears.
- If the sound of the buzzer is too scary, ask if your stylist can just stick to scissors.
- For little boys, it sometimes helps if Dad or big brother comes along. I’ve found that boys are less likely to act up when they are trying to be a big boy like Dad. Lastly, if they are more comfortable sitting on Mom/Dad’s lap, let them!
The bottom line is – it is unrealistic to think your child will be able to sit still for the duration of the haircut but with a little thought and preparation you’ll both skate through just fine.