kids

Mum considers daughter’s ‘ridiculous’ request after she demands to wear tights all summer.

Though there are celebrities championing their natural body hair – Madonna, Paris Jackson, Jemima Kirke, Miley Cyrus – they’re not the norm. Instagram, television, film, and advertising are all populated with perfectly smooth limbs, armpits, and bald bikini lines.

It’s no surprise that trickles down to teenage girls. But what about a six-year-old?

That’s the dilemma currently faced by one mother. The anonymous poster on parenting forum, Mumsnet, shared that her little girl has frequently expressed a desire to remove the dark hair on her body.

“A big part of me knows this is ridiculous but there’s another part that wants [my daughter] to make her own choices,” she wrote.

The mother wrote that her six-year-old has always has had “very hairy legs and a hairy lower back”, which she presumed was baby down and would disappear over time. Instead it’s grown darker as she’s gotten older.

“In the summer she became aware of it and that the other girls at school didn’t have the same,” the mother wrote. “She asked me if there was a way to get rid of the hair; we talked about it and everyone’s bodies being different, and that coupled with the [summer] sun lightening the hair pacified her for a while.

“Since she’s gone back to school she’s mentioned it again quite a few times.”

Miley Cyrus embraced her body hair so much she died it pink. Image: Instagram.

The poster said no friends or classmates have teased her or even mentioned it, but it's clearly bothering the primary school student. To the extent she's considering ceding to her requests to remove it.

"There's no way I would use hair removal cream on her skin and certainly wouldn't let her attempt anything herself but part of me thinks if she's adamant she wants it removed I should help her to do so," she wrote.

ADVERTISEMENT

"I do realise she's very young, but just want to do my best to help her."

The Mumsnet community sympathised.

"It must be so hard when she is so young but I would be tempted to let her and help her remove it. Probably with an electric razor," one commenter suggested. "I was always self conscious of my body hair as a child and my mum's refusal to let me get rid of it had me missing lunches at school so I could pay for a razor!"

Some suggested hair-removal mitts, and even sensitive body hair bleach.

Video by Mamamia

But others also urged her to address her daughter's self-esteem rather than the hair growth.

"This is so sad. If a six-year-old boy said the same would so many encourage him to be hair free? My [daughter] is just as hairy, as am I. We don't care what other people say. She is genuinely stunning."

While in many cases dark body hair is perfectly normal, Dr Geoffrey Redmond of the US-based Hormone Help Center said excessive or increased hair growth among girls is worth examination.

"If pubic and/or underarm hair is present, then a hormonal work-up needs to be done. Even without this, some evaluation may be appropriate," he wrote.

A doctor can then also guide you through various treatment options, which may include shaving or depilatory creams. But he argues that reassurance is also crucial.

"Unfortunately the increasing emphasis in our culture on females having perfect bodies has started to affect girls even before puberty," he wrote.

"Because photographs of women in the media tend to show them without any extra hair at all, many who have it think they are the only ones. You can reassure your daughter that many other girls and women have as much hair as she does."

00:00 / ???