A boys first hair cut was once a major step in growing up. Baby hair was cut at home and varied substantially among boys. There was some difference of opinion among 19th century mothers as to when a boy's hair shold be cut, before or after he was breeched. This might occur anywhere from 3 to 5 years of age, although some boys wore long hair much longer. The first hair cut is no longer such a major event, but it still very impotant. A modern boy generally gets his first hair cut at about 2 years of age. The trip to the barber shop later became a monthly ritual. At first with his dad, armed with detailed instructions from mom, and then by himself as he begins to develop his own ideas about how his hair should be styled.
Most children are not born with long hair. Many children have litle hair during their first year. Thus the fashion of boys wearing longer styles did not generally begin until boys were one or two years of age. This section provides details on the various hair experiences of younger children, including children from various countries.
Opinions varied greatly in the 19th century concerning a boy's first hair cut. A boys first hair cut was once a major step in growing up.
The first hair cut is no longer such a major event, but it still very impotant. A moder boy generally gets his first hair cut at about 2 years of age. The process can be a little frigtening, going to the barber for the first time. Boys differ greatly as to how much hair they have to cut at that age. There are also some differences among racial, national, and religious ggroups concerning the first hair cut.
The trip to the barber shop later became a monthly ritual. At first with his dad, armed with detailed instructions from mom, and then by himself as he begins to develop his own ideas about how his hair should be styled. The traditional American barber shop was a male preserve. They were stocked with sports and fishing magazines. Barbers were always men. Mother would never venture there. Dad brought the boys--but mother always gave him instructions on how the boys' hair should be cut. After a while, boys would go by themselves--at least before the exodus to the suburbs and a car was needed for trans portation.
Some boys had a rel fear of having their hair cut. Of course this was primarily younger boys who had not yet had their hair cut. For many this first hair cut was a very scary experience. While most boys with this fear were very young, there are occassions where older bear also avoid going to the barber out of fear. A HBC reader writes, "I have come across this problem once. Boys with a great fear of the barbar and will refuse to have their hair cut. A little boy I taught with this phobia took alot of getting to the barber's. We had to find a kind child centred barber who was really kind. I took the boy to the barber on the understanding that I too wuld have my hair cut. The little chap always let me go first. Then he had his hair cut. I think its the sissors and fear of getting stabbed or something."
Hair styles have primarily been determined by a boy's mother and increasingly by the boy himself as he got older. Sometimes the father would get involved as the boy got older. After the boy began school, his hair style would sometimes be vetted by school authorities. This has varied over time and by country to country. This began to be a probem in the United States in the 1950s when school officials began to take issue with trendy hair styles. In the 1950s the question was side burns. In the 1960s the question of long hair appeared. Many schools required boys with offendung hair styles to get hair cuts.
One problem with bangs are they are not easy to cut. They take a bit of effort to cut and then have to be maintained. This is one factor to consider when assessing the popularity of these hair
fashions. It affected who could wear some of these styles. Mothers with largev families could not afford to chose hard to cut and maintain hair styles unless they were an affluent family. One father
provided the following guidelines as to an easy way of cutting a boys' bangs:
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