23 answers

Moms of Teen Boys

My 12 1/2 year old son is suddenly very self conscious about his very slight "unibrow." He wants to pluck or wax it. I have never waxed by eyebrows and only occasionally have to pluck them, so I don't have any kind of relationship with someone at a salon. Should I take him to my local nail salon and have it done or is he too young to start something like this? How long does waxing last? Does it grow in darker/courser after waxing?

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

My husband spoke with our son again and found out that someone had made a comment about his unibrow a while back. But, he's now decided that he's okay with things for now and we've held off doing anything. Thanks so much for the education, however, because I am sure it will come up again!

Featured Answers

Hi E., the girl I go to in Brooklyn waxes eyebrows for teen boys all the time. I don't think it grows in darker. I have no experience with this of my own but I do teach 7th grade and this age is very self conscious about many things. I think waxing is painful and he may not want to go back again. Grandma Mary

At his age, if it bothers him, I'd let him get it waxed. He'll probably need to do it every 4 to 6 weeks. Good luck

More Answers

I say take him! I think it's awesome that he's interested in "man-scaping" at this age. He may hate it after the first time waxing, of it may be something that makes him feel great at gives him a little more self-confidence. It will last about 4-6 weeks, if not more, and it's not expensive - it's a small price to pay for a boost in adolescent male confidence. Go for it!

Hmm...I've never been a boy, BUT...I do remember how my mother taught me to take care of my OWN little uni-friend when I was his age. She started with some topical anesthetic, and then went to town. This might sound silly, but..start in the middle. Work towards the eyes. Grab no more than one or two hairs at a time - otherwise, it will HURT. Raise your eyebrows while plucking - this tightens the skin and makes it easier, and less painful. Always pull in the DIRECTION the hair is growing. Draw an imaginary line up from the corner of your eye, angling it in just a tad towards your nose - never pluck past that line.

There - now y'all know i'm a complete and hairy geek. What's a girl gonna do, eh? ;-) Trust me - his wife will thank you some day. My BIL took care of HIS unibrow as a wedding gift to my sister. It was a dire situation!

I have a teen daughter who started to wax at that age too. waxing lasts about 3 weeks depending on the person and the hair grows back the same if not a bit finer-in my experience. It costs about $6.00 for the eyebrow.

I know this is late and you have a lot of advice already. Your son is at the age that his hormones are changing and his face is growing and changing and sometimes boys eyebrows tend to bush out before the rest of their face catches up. I would maybe pluck a few stray hairs for him (I did this for my brother years ago when he was going through this). Times have changed though, and now it seems like every teen girl gets her eyebrows waxed on a regular basis, and I guess that maybe more than a handfull of boys do too. (I'm 41 and every girl I grew up with plucked her eyebrows - don't know what method they pick now - and guys didn't do anything.) Not too long ago, maybe 5 years, I worked with a guy who was a summer intern for us and he had his brows waxed. He was very pretty, and I use that word on purpose, I'm sure the girls were all over him, but he was pretty, not handsome. So, it just depends on how groomed a look you want for him. Plucking will give him a more natural looking brow that he will eventually grow into, waxing will be more artificial and sleek (or feminine) and he will probably have to continue to do it to maintain the look. You could ask him if he knows if any of the guys in his class have done anything to their eyebrows (I doubt they talk about it, but he might have noticed).

I don't think it's too young for him to think about this, particularly if he is self-conscious about the unibrow and this might make him feel better about himself. He's also not too young to have it done -- look at it this way, if it was your 12 1/2 year old daughter who had a unibrow, would you hesitate to help her look and feel better? Just because he's a boy doesn't mean anything different.

My son is 10 and has very thick eyebrows, and both my husband and I are pretty sure that once he hits puberty and gets more hair generally, he will probably have a unibrow or something close to it. I would have no problem taking my son to a salon to wax it if he wanted when he's older.

Personally, though -- I've been waxing my eyebrows for years. It lasts a long time, sometimes 6 weeks or so, and the hair grows in finer and finer the more you keep up the waxing. Eventually the hair might not grow back at all -- I know that I have a lot less hair in some parts of the waxed areas than I did when I began waxing as a teenager.

It's really not a bad thing, and a good salon will be sensitive to the needs and feelings of an adolescent boy. They will also let you ask lots of questions and will try to help you and your son feel better about the process. But I'm for anything that will help a child's self-esteem, and if he really feels strongly about this and is self-conscious about his eyebrows, then I say go for it!

Hi E.,
I've been waxing for years so have nothing against it; however, I'm tempted to suggest that you just pluck his eyebrows for now. Waxing will tend to give him a 'perfect' look, which I'm not sure is too natural looking, especially for a boy.

Just my thoughts...

Best,
S.

it's his choice.
waxing hair comes in thinner over time.
electrolosis i really know nothing about.

Pluck

Wax

or shave NO it WONT grow in courser the roots are the roots mens hair gets courser as they age. When it grows back people THINK it grows back courser, My son has shaved so he does not have a UNIBROW for several years already.

He did it on his own and he looks better and feels better about himself

so do what he feels best with

At his age, if it bothers him, I'd let him get it waxed. He'll probably need to do it every 4 to 6 weeks. Good luck

Hi E., the girl I go to in Brooklyn waxes eyebrows for teen boys all the time. I don't think it grows in darker. I have no experience with this of my own but I do teach 7th grade and this age is very self conscious about many things. I think waxing is painful and he may not want to go back again. Grandma Mary

When I was around this age I had a major problem with my eyebrows. My mother took me to get electrolysis and it permanently removed my hair. There are a number of numbing creams available (ice works, too) and it would be very inexpensive for such a small area. He wouldn't have to keep going back for waxing (which he would always have to do). I would have a Dermatologist recommend someone they trust. Good luck!

Waxing takes less than a minute if the client stays still. Warming the wax and preparing the set up may take somewhere between 5 or 25 minutes. Waiting for anyone of them to attend to you is unknown. It will grow back in the same texture and color but not course from waxing unless shaving. The area of skin where it is waxed may look red and swollen for a short period of time and he should rub on some baby oil or skin mosturizer. Everyone reacts differently; especially, the first time waxing. For my first upper lip waxing, my skin above my lips was not only red and swollen but having blisters for days. I cleaned it with warm damp cloth before applied vaseline daily. After a number of waxing, I had no more blisters. Since your child is suddenly very self conscious about his self image, you tell him the possible image from waxing. Don't give him unrealistic expectation that he might think he will look exactly the way he expected coming out of waxing salon!

Dear E.,

I think if it is bothering him that much you should take him. Kids today can be so cruel so why not let him feel comfortable with himself. Waxing last around 2 to 3 weeks for me it depends on the person. It is a myth that the hair will grow in thicker in fact with waxing it comes in gradual so you may be able to pluck in between for him. I do know it is painful so prepare him for it. I have friends who do something called threading, it may be a better option for him and is supposed to not be as painful.

You have to be careful of who you take him to, so they don't give him an unnatural shape! You don't want him being "outed" as having fake looking eyebrows! I work with a great woman that does threading, which gives a very natural look and lasts longer than waxing. Her name is Maya and she works at Gita Gabriel Spa in Manhattan. It is at 30 East 60th Street between Park and Madison. ###-###-####. It is really worth it to pay extra to have it done right. I think it is around $40. Good Luck, and lucky for him that you are empathic to his situation!

For most people Plucking is painful and it does have to be done often.
Waxing is very, very painful and it will last about 2-3 months if one is lucky. It also has to grow back long enough to have it done again.
Like shaving, I have experienced both growing back courser but not darker.
Having both done professionally is best.

Another idea: Ask the professionals if they would consider using a hair removal cream on your son???? I wouldn't try this at home due to the location....it's to close to the eyes, therefore dangerous.

Personally I wouldn't allow him to do any of the above because of his age. Most teenages go through stages about what they look like and how they feel about themselves depending on the weather of what's in, what's popular, who's pressuring them, and the lack of self exteem. If he needs to build his self confidence, and learn to like himself as is, get him involved in some sort of sport or hobby instead. Tell him he's special and handsome just the way he is.

Hi E.-
Some barbers do eyebrows. You should see if you can bring him to a barber.

DearEllen:

It appears that you son has been watching many TV commercials and reading ads about hair removal.

You might first tell him that it is very masculline, that now he is becoming a man, he will develop differently. I would first develop his self-esteem and talk to him about it. Ask him many, many questions and let him express himself. Ask him what he would prefer to do - develop his conversational levels early, too.

Then, if you both decide that waxing is the way, well, then:
Waxing destroys the hair follicles, and after extended use, hair does not grow back in the area. ie: I started waxing my legs, and other parts, in my twenties. At first I had to do it about every 2-3 weeks, within ten years I had about 1/2 of the hair on my legs and underarms and only waxed about once a month. Now, I only wax about six times a year, as there is only little very light growth - one can hardly see it, small, thin, frail little hairs. NOW, I wax everything myself. You can do it, too. Just buy the wax, heat it, practice on your leg or somewhere, to test the temperature. It is so easy. Follow instructions, as you must remove hair contra growth.

However, you and your son must know, too, that he will be criticized when he goes to school without the roadway across his brow, so instead he could pluck just a few a day, over a ten day period...it will not be so noticeable. THEN, wax it over the long holidays, so when he returns to school the other kids won't be so cruel.

Local nail salon may not have very many men in them (except in NY sometimes), so prepare him for that, make it a fun adventure and don't emphasize that it will be all women (oh, how lucky he is to be there, the only young man, etc.)

However, I suggest doing it at home. Just follow the instructions. It is a good bonding time for you. But, should involve just the two of you. No one else.

Good Luck, B.

I wax my own eyebrows and so does my daughter. I think she was around your son's age when she started. Same problem, the unibrow. It will never be in style I suppose! Wax hurts the instant you peel it off but it's only for a second. Don't take your time--pull off very fast with one swift motion. Have some tweezers handy to pull any strays. With time the hairs may get slightly thinner and it becomes easier. First time is the worst! Follow up with some aloe very gel (we take ours straight from the plant).

I would allow him to remove the hair. However, if you decide to remove it your self, please becareful you dont "mess up" and make him look silly...ie. plucking one too many hairs in one spot, or whatever.. I have done this myself when first starting to pluck my eyebrows myself. I like what the other mom suggested about remove a few here and then a few more there, then over the holidays remove it all so the kids wont pick..I have seen this done before. I had a friend Chris, who in middle school needed to do the same, he was very hairy, and had a super serious unibrow.He shaved it but you could tell it was shaved, like a mans face, you know? and the boys did try to get on his back about shaving it. So do keep that in mind. I see nothing wrong with taking him to a salon where they will wax it for you/him. It would only cost a few bucks. You could even ask for a time slot where not many people are there, the end of the day maybe..do warn him about the fact his skin will turn red/pinkish and will go away with time,(minutes) then you and him can go do something together after, for more bonding. Good luck, hope this helps! Oh and no, it does not grow in darker or courser.

Hi E.,
I am a hairstylist (28years). I suggest that you go to the store and buy a cold wax kit. They work very well. At this age I don't think your son will feel comfortable going to a salon. It is easy to use, just make sure that you warm up the wax strip well before you use it. Follow the directions. Waxing will last about a month. His hair will not grow back darker or thicker. With years of waxing, the result will be thinner hair when it does grow back in. Make sure that you moisturize after you are finished. Good luck!
R.

Hi! I have an 11 year old who is starting to be self consious too. I would take him to a salon. My hubby has the same unibrow issue and has been waxing since he was a teen. NO he does not look feminine or anything of the sort. He asks them to ONLY wax the unibrow part. Yes it hurts a little the instance they pull it but thats it. He says that waxing has thinned out the hair to the point that he doesn't do it as often as when he was younger.

Ok, My comment on this subject is that I have recently had a personal experience with my 16 year old son. Last week he came home with his eyebrows waxed and I went a little crazy on him because he was looking a little feminine. It really upset me and I thought my husband would be really upset too. He said it was no big deal and that I was over-exagerating. I was mostly upset because he never consulted something like that with me. I would say about a year ago I discovered that he had shaved his legs and that really upset me too but he explained to me that a lot of the boys at school are doing it because the girls like it. Well I think its stupid I just don't think boys should have the legs shaved and wax thir eyebrows. Im worried that he is getting a little confused with his sexual preference. I dont know what to expect, he is girl crazy and also like all masculine things so am I over-exagerating like he says or what.

There is no need to go to a nail salon and pay money for waxing. Also, that is a very painful way to remove the hair between his eyebrows. The best way is to simply shave it with an electric razor, or with a safety razor. It takes less than 30 seconds and usually does not grow in for about 2 or 3 weeks. 30 seconds once every 2 or 3 weeks is nothing. He'll look a lot neater. If he has hair on his ears, an electric razor works best, for you can nick yourself with a safety razor. E., if you'd like some free beauty makeover tips---and would like some free samples of products, call me. I. Collins, Executive Senior Sales Director for Mary Kay, Inc. ###-###-####

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