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Has Little-Girl Primping Gone Too Far? In a Word, Yes.

We've already witnessed the puzzling phenomenon of young girls wearing makeup, and there's always Nair for kids. But what would you say if I told you that girls as young as eight were getting bikini waxes? A new Philadelphia magazine story delves into the troubling world of little-girl grooming, uncovering stories of young girls being plucked, scrubbed, waxed, highlighted, and polished into doll-like versions of their former selves, all under the watchful eye of their equally appearance-obsessed mother. Here are a few more of the shocking things observed:

  • An 8-year-old getting a bikini wax
  • A mother demanding that her 8-year-old daughter's brows be waxed like a supermodel's
  • Sisters, one 9 and one 10, getting microdermabrasion (what, to reveal even more youthful skin?)
  • A mother requesting a chemical straightening treatment on her 12-year-old's beautiful wavy hair
  • A 12-year old getting a full body wax
  • 16-year olds getting breast augmentations

It's easy to just blame these girls' mothers (and, ahem, where are their fathers?!). But I find it just as troubling that spa owners allow these unnecessary (and sometimes painful) procedures to be performed on children. Since the mothers are willing to drop big bucks on a regular basis to keep their daughters perfectly preened, salon owners risk losing the lucrative business should they refuse to perform a service. And from the sound of it, most of them would rather keep their traps shut than jeopardize their profits.

To see what I think about this, and to share your opinion,


Girls are bombarded daily with images of women, all flashing bleached-white smiles, flawless skin, and tan, hairless bodies. It's bad enough that they feel pressure to live up to those unattainable expectations, but you'd hope that their moms would hold their daughters' hands through those awkward years. Instead, some parents are encouraging them to get bikini waxes before there's anything there to wax. I'm deeply worried for girls who, in their formative years, are being taught that their self-worth is only as good as their outward appearance.

I realize that there is the potential for a happy medium when it comes to personal grooming at a young age, but there's a difference between a mini-manicure party and a full body wax for a 10-year old. What do you think about this? Are you as disheartened as I am?


L0neLyHeArT L0neLyHeArT 8 years
Surgeons aren't allowed to perform breast augmentation on girls who are under 18 years old.
MsChoo MsChoo 8 years
Thats it! My kid is going to live under a rock until shes 19!
mehollowell mehollowell 8 years
This is so sad...
lilacwords lilacwords 8 years
Seriously, what 8 year old even has hair down there? And I would never get a chemical straightening treatment, plus isn't microdermabrasion for REMOVING WRINKLES? And I didn't even start shaving my legs til I was 12. This is horrible.
0037sammie 0037sammie 8 years
Wrong on so many levels. Need I say more?
Surferchic95 Surferchic95 9 years
THIS IS ABUSE!!! I can't believe mums are doing that to their daughters...sure, my mum let me get facials when I was 13 bt that's because I'm a MODEL! My mother comes from a strict Jamaican family, which is why I had to wait until I had hair long enough on my legs to cornrow them (lol im EXAGGERATING!)before I could shave...This is way too sad...I've gotten my eyebrows waxed before-when I was 13 (and that was because of the fact that I accidentally messed up my eyebrows which made me look weird lol)...and when I first got it, it hurts so badly that I can only imagine a BIKINI wax! I know that in a few years when I am 18 (in about 4 years) I will probably be able to wax my bikini area, but right now i am stuck to just shaving the parts that can be seen.. I have a question to those mothers: ARE YOU GIVING YOUR 9 YEAR OLD TAMPONS TOO ALTHOUGH THEY HAVEN'T EVEN GOTTEN THEIR PERIOD YET?? Since you monsters have pretty much given your kids everything that they are not ready for-physically and probably mentally... NEWSFLASH! Your daughters aren't perfect baby dolls...they poop and eat like regular people. Stop treating your kids like Barbies!!!
caitibear caitibear 9 years
okay, these are the girls who will be, in about 2 years, leaning over the toilet puking every single thing they've ever eaten out. and the parents will sit and wonder...why? and maybe from the sound of this, the moms will be right next to them puking in the sink. i can understand if the girl has jungle-like eyebrows and needs a self esteem fixer, but seriously, a bikini wax? children have only one chance for a carefree childhood in their lives, and these horrible excuses for mothers are ruining it. this is sad. some people shouldnt be allowed to reproduce.
juicylove juicylove 9 years
why would these little girls want to wax anything.. they probably dont know what it is and their mothers are just like.. go do this. i didnt know about plucking eyebrows or anything when i was 8. and even the makeup thing is annoying.. my friends and i wore like some cheap like children eyeshadow to school when we were probably 10 or 11, and i rmemeber the teacher making us wash it off right when we got there.
Leilanic1 Leilanic1 9 years
i agree this is insane! what hair does an 8 year old need to have waxed off in her bikini area?? seriously? i agree that this all boils down to the mothers and their own unresolved issues and passing these on to their daughters. so sad. i didn't start shaving my legs until i was 13 and my bikini waxing didn't start until i was in my 20's. actually i think my first bikini wax was at 25! i wore makeup but would be grounded if it was over the top and looked 'like a street walker' (my dad's words). :) crazy
brutalcupcake brutalcupcake 9 years
This is so ridiculous that it's become depressing.
ayuninur ayuninur 9 years
This is just sad..
htiduj htiduj 9 years
i dont get it. what does an 8 year old have to wax?! i certainly didn't have anything to wax when i was 8!! i didn't even have to shave my legs until i was 12!! and what kind of place does kiddie waxes?! thats so inappropriate, i feel like it would qualify as breaking some sort of law. i dont know. as for the microdermabrasion, thats also pretty sick. i mean i started washing/toning/moisturizing when i was around 9 -- mostly the moisturzing because i kept getting sunburned, and then well it just blossomed from there. but thats not the same as microdermabrasion!!! is it even safe to do that to such young skin?!?! whats next? boob jobs and botox for 4 year olds?
ranksubjugation ranksubjugation 9 years
don't drape your kid in all these signs of womanhood if you aren't prepared for them to start acting like women -- i've seen too many girls getting pregnant at 15, 16, 17!
demure20 demure20 9 years
Maybe these moms are under peer pressure from other moms.
demure20 demure20 9 years
I think its crazy. This past weekend, I went to get my eyebrows threaded. I see what I assume to be a grandma with her 9-12 yr old grand daughter. There I am sitting next to the lil girl waiting my turn, thinking she's just accompanying her grannie. Nope! She's there to get her eyebrows done! My first time was when I was 16/17 yrs old, a year before I went to college. The beautician was asking why do you want to get your eyebrows cleaned when there's nothing to clean! She asked to get them more straightened.. whatever that meant. She was done in less than a minute! Anyhow I believe it's not entirely the mother's fault. These girls come home from school telling their mom, so and so's mom lets her wear makeup, get waxed, etc. I'd call it peer pressure with moms permission.
DCStar DCStar 9 years
This news is sad, but doesn't surprise me at all. I just see it as an extension of all the mothers who dress their little girls inappropriately, and want to be their friends instead of their parents. I guess they're trying to give their daughters the "edge" they didn't have growing up, whether it's better clothes, straighter hair, shapelier eyebrows (?), or just more indulgences in general. It's competition of sorts.
samantha999 samantha999 9 years
Unfortunately it stems from not being able to say NO or STOP. We see it all the time in restaurants, subways, stores. Parents will just say YES or they will allow them to run wild without teaching them manners and public decorum (whatever happened to using your inside voice). To do most of these procedures on a pre-teen child who has yet to really understand themselves or their bodies is cruel. You are just reinforcing their flaws and putting them in a habit of constantly looking at themselves and figuring what will it take to fix what ever minor "flaw" they find. Anorexia and bulemia cannot be far behind. Young girls follow their mothers and are influenced by them - good or bad. Both parents are party to this sick game but when it come to little girls its mommy who has the control.
sudenmorsian sudenmorsian 9 years
I always thought nobody makes breast augmentations for anyone under 18, huh?
ASpoonfulofSugar ASpoonfulofSugar 9 years
I'm sure there are situations where some of these procedures are beneficial to a particular case (except breast augmentation at 16--unacceptable!). For the bikini waxing, I know that if my hypothtical daughter matured extremely early at age 8 and was a swimmer, dancer or cheerleader or something similar, where her bikini area was an area of concern for her self-esteem more regularly than during summertime, I would consider taking her to get a wax (not Brazilian, god forbid). I would think it would be much safer for her than shaving on her own. Let me add that I'm a minimalist when it comes to grooming...I wear little makeup, have never waxed anything nor had any facial treatments done. So, it would have to be an extraordinary case if my hyopothetical children wanted something done about an insecurity. As for these asthetic procedures being a general, everyday way. Abosolutely, no way. And please, Sugar readers, don't forget that some children have medical procedures done at a young age where their "bikini area" is examined by doctors. I don't consider waxing "sexual abuse" any more than I consider having my vagina poked and prodded on a regular basis by a doctor at age 10 when I had chronic kidney and bladder problems. If the waxing procedure is done by a licensed professional, it is a misuse of language to call it "sexual abuse". Bad decisions by a parent to let their child grow up too soon, definitely, but watch your language about sexual abuse.
itsallabouttheg itsallabouttheg 9 years
yikes! i'm 25 & i've never had anything waxed! my mum started getting my hair straightened when i was around 10 or 11, but it's thick & tightly curled... not wavy.
precious_pets4 precious_pets4 9 years
Mortified!! Numb with disgust! There are many, many things at fault with this list! Who's at fault: The parents for putting the child in the 'mind-frame' that they need any of this (if they even want it at all -- chances are the so-called mother is making them do it); the parent for allowing or pushing the child to have any of these things done (who has hair at 8?); the salon owner for allowing any of these things to be done to young children; AND ANYONE WHO PERSONALLY KNOWS A CHILD WHO HAS BEEN PUT THROUGH ANY OF THE ABOVE AND DID NOT REPORT THE PARENTS FOR TOTAL PSYCHOLOGICAL ABUSE AND NEGLECT! Anyone who has a child must be aware that they will emulate you (found that out myself when my daughter, at the age of 2, called me a f-ing a-hole! Turns out she had heard my exhusband and I arguing on the phone when I thought she was napping!) If you have low self esteem and tend to put yourself down, keep it NON-VERBAL! Don't let your child hear you put yourself down! To your child, you are the most wonderful being on the planet! Yet you call yourself bad names! That is awfully confusing and upsetting to a kid, and they end up not having any form of self-confidence (so where did we all learn to self hate? No self-esteem? Think about where your's came from!) One Last comment: What's with all the newborn babies having pierced ears? Interesting that no one talked about that!My mother never had pierced ears and thought it was gross - so my sis and I had to wait until we were 'old enough to drive ourselves!' All of my daughter's friends had pierced ears as little, little girls. So, of course, by 6 she was asking for it also. I told her she could have it done at 11, if she wanted it that bad - and now she barely wears earrings! But, seriously, WHY DO SO MANY PEOPLE PIERCE BABIES' EARS? It always freaks me out that the infants are going to yank their earrings out! It's just gross to do that to a baby!
orisugar orisugar 9 years
And I just want to add in response to many of the comments here, that it's great to boost your kid's self esteem and love them the way they are, but it's a little idealistic to think that their self esteem won't be affected by their school environment. Kids in their early teens/pre teens can be CRUEL and no matter how much you tell your daugter to embrace her hairy legs she is going to get teased in gym class and that WILL scar her no matter what you think. So sometimes being a good mom means giving in to certain beauty treatments like waxing. And if you don't thinking that your kid will thank you me they WON'T.
orisugar orisugar 9 years
Breast implants at 16?? And 8 is wayy to young to get any sort of primping done. However, I don't think 12 is too young for waxing. I definitely started waxing at 12 because I was a hairy preteen, unfortunately. I was also on the swim team and I stopped going because I felt selfconscious. Finally, after I begged my mom to let me get waxed, she agreed and I felt sooo much better about myself. I just don't think preteens who are hairy should be made to feel bad about themselves until they reach an age that's "acceptable". Plus, it's also a cultural subject. Americans feel that waxinga at 12 is wrong, but many other cultures (especially hairy cultures haha) are okay with it. Also, Americans feel that kids piercing their ears is NOT ok, but in my culture kids a young as 6 get their ears pierced. I did! And if I should say so myself, I did not turn into an appearance obbsessed/drug addicted/licentious adult. If I have a daughter and she wants to get waxed at 12 or 13, I'd let her! But I would definitely NOT let her get breast implants ever, dermabrasion and those other things you mentioned unltil she was old enough.
Nancy_85 Nancy_85 9 years
these little girls mother's are sick!! this is so sad, why make your daughter go through the pain of waxing at 8?
CurvatudeBlog CurvatudeBlog 9 years
in a word: RIDICULOUS!
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