“Bad hair, don’t care!”      

Q. My daughter has always paid attention to her looks and I suppose that is hopefully because of my teaching her to bath daily and make sure she has on some clean underwear! Lately though as she has entered her teen years she has become quite slack about her hair and perhaps the most aggravating to me are her nails. She keeps them it seems with a continuous polish of cracked and chipped colors. This drives me crazy and it has become a point of contention between us. How can I get her to go back to her clean and well presented self? 
Auntie A : My dear, all children at some time go through a stage where they consciously decide not to bathe or brush teeth and these things usually pass fairly quickly. At least… I always hope that they do! I completely agree with you about the nails and hair. Cleanliness, as my grandmothers both taught me; is right next to Godliness and so therefore keeping at the bare minimum yourself clean is a must! As for the polished perfect nails…I also agree that you should either be polished perfectly or not at all. Nothing really makes a person look more unkept than chewed off, hang nailed ridden or mis- manicured nails. The reason that this has become an issue, and I suspect that you already know this , is because she knows that this gets on your nerves! It is best to keep a tight lip during these few years of stages of defiance! You can offer to take her with you to the nail salon and see if this fixes the problem. It would be a nice outing for you to spend some mommy/daughter time together. I would not worry too much over it though or make a fuss. Chances are very high that once she realizes how tacky this looks and, more importantly; discovers the opposite sex, she will want to return to her prissy self once more.

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