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Nair: Now For 10-Year-Olds!

Remember the story about pre-teens' crazy beauty routines? It looks like those girls might be part of a bigger trend. The New York Times reports on Nair's new endeavor: Marketing a new product line to 10- to 15-year-olds.

Intended for middle-schoolers, Nair Pretty is a chemical hair remover that comes in kiwi and peach scents. The packaging features illustrations of teenage girls, and along those lines, the print advertisements target the girls directly. “I am a citizen of the world,” they read. “I am a dreamer. I am fresh. I am so not going to have stubs sticking out of my legs.” (Heaven forbid a 10-year-old girl might have hair on her legs.) And then there's the website:

It's not that you're obsessed or anything but maybe you've noticed that the hair on your legs (and other parts of your body) is just a little bit thicker and darker before. Chill. You're growing up... it's all good.

("It's all good?" What is this, 1995?) Dorky "teenspeak" aside, it bothers me that Nair is going after sixth graders. I'm sure pre-teens are curious about hair removal, but by actively targeting them, Nair is creating even more anxiety about puberty—an already anxious thing for most girls. Likewise, the emphasis on being pretty is a little depressing, since the implication is that you won't be pretty if you've got a little fuzz on your legs (or bikini line, as the Nair website helpfully mentions). I have no problem with girls eventually choosing to remove their hair, but there's something sad about thrusting that expectation on ten-year-olds. What do you think? Let me know, and then tell DearSugar what you think, too.

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