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Friday, February 7th, 2014
* guest-edited by Cozy Friedman, founder of Cozy’s Cuts for Kids in Manhattan and the SoCozy line of hair products, and author of Cozy’s Complete Guide to Girls’ Hair
Q: My daughter has super-curly hair and I don’t…the shampoos I’m used to just make her hair wild. How often should I be cleaning her tight curls, and with what?
Cozy: Curly-haired kids don’t need to shampoo as often as their straight-haired friends. Over shampooing is very bad for curly hair. It ruffles the cuticle, which makes it hard to manage and look frizzy. Always use a paraben-free (and tear-free of course) shampoo on them, like my SoCozy Shampoo in Verry Berry ( $12, socozy.com). I also strongly recommend using a thick and creamy conditioner that will hydrate and keep hair smooth.
The other mistake people make is brushing curly hair. You should NEVER, EVER brush curly hair! After bathing, ‘scrunch’ hair dry with a towel and scrunch in a light-to-medium hold gel (always alcohol-free) like my SoCozy Gel in Groovy Grape ($14, socozy.com) to help hold the hair’s natural curl. Air dry or dry with a diffuser. This topic is close to my heart because I have curly hair, but growing up I never really knew it or understood it. I would spend hours blow-drying my hair and then go outside and POOF- it was a frizz ball. I learned how to care for my curls the hard way!
Q: My son wants his hair so long, it’s getting in his eyes. If I force him to go short he’ll be mad, but I am hating this monster look. What do you suggest?
Cozy: You’ll be comforted to know that you are not alone! I believe that a person’s hair is a very big part of their self-definition, as well as their self-esteem and that it’s important for a child to be able to express themselves. However, as a parent I know only too well how important it is that your child looks great. I think it’s important to find out why your child has a style idea in mind (is it to look like his friend or is it a power-struggle issue), so you know what is driving it and how to address and negotiate.
One summer both of my boys wanted buzz cuts. They both had long great hair and I really didn’t want them to cut it, so I said no and off to camp they went. Wasn’t I surprised on visiting day to find them both with buzz cuts?! I was even more surprised by how much I liked it and how happy they were with their cool new look. They are now 16 and 14 and needless to say they have gone through many different hair phases. One of my sons went through a phase where he wouldn’t cut his hair for over a year. He looked like he was wearing a wig! But he liked it and it made him feel good about himself and of course he eventually got a haircut. I can’t assure you that it will always be easy to navigate, but I can assure you that hair is just hair and it will always grow back!
Q: We just heard from the school that there’s lice going around! How should I check my kid and, if she’s got it, treat her?
Cozy: Oh boy, that’s never pleasant! I recommend that you check often. Be sure to check the head section by section, paying attention to the nape of the neck and area behind the ears, where lice like it most. (Here is what full-grown lice look like.) Also keep in mind that you aren’t just looking for the lice itself, but also for nits, which are the lice eggs. If you see tiny whitish/gray teardrop-shaped specks attached to the side of a hair strand, try to remove it with your fingernails. If it feels “stuck”, it may very well be a nit.
As for how to treat lice, there a few different schools of thought. Some people use chemicals and some prefer to smother the bugs (usually with thick, white conditioner or something like mayonnaise or olive oil). Regardless of which you choose, the most important part of lice removal is getting rid of every nit! I can’t stress this enough. If you leave even one nit, when it hatches you will have lice again. That is why it’s so hard to get rid of it. There is no way around physically removing all the nits, best done by sitting down and combing section by section (with a nit comb). That’s why so many parents choose to give boys, at least, a crew cut, because getting rid of the hair automatically gets rid of any nits on that hair. You will still have to comb out, but with less hair! It’s not fun, but unfortunately it’s often a part of growing up.
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Thursday, February 9th, 2012
10 States Given Waivers From No Child Left Behind Law
President Obama will waive central provisions of the No Child Left Behind federal education law for 10 states that have embraced his educational agenda and promised to raise standards, and improve accountability and teacher effectiveness, the White House announced on Thursday morning.
FDA Approves a 10-Minute, No-Comb Treatment for Head Lice
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved on Tuesday a prescription-strength lotion for the treatment of head lice in children 6 months and older.
C-Sections Can Increase Premature Babies’ Risk of Breathing Problems
Contrary to popular belief, cesarean section appears not to be the best way to deliver preterm babies who are small for their age, according to research presented Thursday at the annual meeting of the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine.
Youths Are Watching, but Less Often on TV
Americans ages 12 to 34 are spending less time in front of TV sets, even as those 35 and older are spending more, according to research that will be released on Thursday by Nielsen, a company that tracks media use.
Pageant Mom’s ‘Go-Go’ Juice Comes Under Fire
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One mother routinely gives her daughter caffeine before each pageant competition.
c-section, head lice, Lice, lice products, no child left behind, Obama, preemies, premature births, Television, Toddlers & Tiaras, TV | Categories:
Monday, September 12th, 2011
Head lice. Tiny critters that provide tremendous problems. Now that the majority of kids are back in school and spending their days mingling with other kids, they’re more susceptible to getting head lice. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “an estimated 6 million to 12 million infestations occur each year in the United States among children 3 to 11 years of age.” Just in time for September, which is also National Head Lice Awareness Month, here are a few head lice prevention tips and pesticide-free products that are available to help your kids combat the creepy-crawlies.
1- The LiceGuard Robi Comb (Retail price: $29.95) offers a unique way for parents to locate and eliminate head lice. As the resuable electronic comb passes through a child’s dry hair, lice are immediately destroyed and removed. We asked two separate testers to try the comb on their daughters, ages 9 and 4, though neither had lice at the time of testing. The first tester and mom of the 9-year-old, really liked the comb. She shared, “My daughter was excited to try it. She has long thick hair, and [the comb] ran through it easily (after I brushed it thoroughly). It beats the conventional lice treatment method that I have had to use several times before. I highly recommend!” Our second tester and dad of the 4-year-old, had a different experience. He revealed, “My wife tried to use it once on our daughter. She said it hurt and won’t go near it now.” The comb may be a better experience for kids older than 5, but it’s still a safe, eco-friendly product for kids with lice. Plus, LiceGuard also offers a non-toxic Head Lice Shampoo that helps with destroying more lice and their eggs.
2- Licenders offers a variety of all-natural products (Retail price $20-35) that include shampoos, combing solutions, natural oils, laundry additive, and more. There is also an Essentials Kits that includes four products for $65. The company was founded by Adie Horowitz fifteen years ago, after her kids returned home from school with head lice. Horowitz researched ways to remove lice without chemicals and decided to create her own non-toxic items, along with a special lice removal process (that uses a little baking soda). She worked with a manufacturer to produce special shampoos and conditioners containing enzymes and peppermint oil. Licenders also offers personal home and school consultations with professional clinicians in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut, and a Head Lice Salon opened in New York City to provide individual treatments.
Horowitz also shared these tips for head lice prevention:
- Know the time of year when lice is more likely to appear. In winter, lice can come from traveling and be likely found in layers of clothes (hats, gloves, scarves, etc.). In summer, traveling is also a concern along with summer camp, playdates, and hats.
- Use shampoos/conditioners that contain peppermint since the scent deters the head lice.
- Throw backpacks, hats, and jackets in your dryer for 20 minutes once a week.
- Tell your kids to avoid sharing hats, hair-bows, jackets, and gloves with anyone.
- Check your children frequently for head lice; removal is easier if you discover lice at an early stage.
3- The Facts of Lice iPhone app (Free) from Fairy Tales Hair Care is handy for moms and dads who want to keep track of lice outbreaks in their neighborhood. We even featured it in our piece about back-to-school apps for parents. Through the app, receive real-time alerts of local lice issues, report oubreaks near you, read guidelines on how to check for and remove lice, and access a database (organized by state and zip code) of outbreaks across the U.S. from the past four weeks. Fellow Parents editor and blogger, Diane, also recommends Fairy Tales Hair Care products for preventing and destroying lice. Various natural products are made from organic ingredients that include aloe, citrus, rosemary, and lavender.
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Friday, April 16th, 2010
Lice! How panicked parents get help. The New York Times
The nurse/doctor distinction may soon mean less in many states. Yahoo! News
Spanking backfires, making children more aggressive, finds a new study. Time
What it’s like to be a pediatrician in the military. The New York Times
Why working at home doesn’t necessarily translate to quality time with your kids. USA Today
South Carolina kids are 4 times more likely to get kidney stones than they were a decade ago, according to a new study. Reuters
Original photo via
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