My step-daughter Julia was here last week for half term. She is fourteen and I thought that she was old enough to come along with me for a manicure and a pedicure. We eased into our comfy chairs feeling jolly pleased with ourselves. Then I spotted her. A girl who could have been no more than seven years old having her nails painted a glittering silver colour.
“What on earth is that child doing here?” I asked my manicurist.
“Oh her,” she said, glancing over her shoulder, “she comes every week.”
Apparently lots of them come every week, especially when they have a party to go to at the weekend. They come with or without their mothers and they have their little fingers and their little toes done and then go off for more I assume; facials, hair extensions, belly-button piercing, massages…..
Is this normal behaviour I ask myself? I wasn’t allowed to have my ears pierced until I was sixteen. I didn’t even know about lip liner until last year. Call me old-fashioned, but does a seven-year-old really NEED perfect nails?
I am going to write a feature on the topic so would love your views, experiences, comments etc. Is it just harmless fun or is it deeply disturbing to see little girls dolled up? Is it industry driven or can we blame the likes of Hannah Montana? Should Olivia and Bea have a manicure and join the crowd, or should they remain natural?
Copyright: Helena Frith Powell 2008