Parenting Tips – Hair Washing

Stock Photo: Rubber Duck in Bath. Image: 8220

Most children love having a bath but will scream blue murder when it comes to washing their hair. Here are few things that I’ve done with my children to make it a little easier. I can’t guarantee that they would work for your child, I’m not an expert, just a mother. Please feel free to share you tips on hair washing in the comments.

  • Let your child know what you are doing, for example, tell them you are now going to wash their back, tell them you are going to wash their face and tell them you are going to wash their hair. Sometimes just knowing what’s coming next can ease their anxiety. And admit it, how would you like it if someone just poured water over your head without warning?
  • Sing a hair washing song. (You’ll probably find a lot of singing in my tips, not that I’ve got a good singing voice but just that it’s something that works with my kids) We sing, this is the way we was our hair, wash our hair, wash our hair, this is the way we wash our hair when we are having a bath. Usually it’s just enough distraction to get the job done without a fuss. And if they insist on screaming, you can just drown them out with your singing 😉
  • A big favourite with my older girls is the ceiling ducks. Stick some wall transfers (or paint a murial if you have painting skills like Michaelangelo) on the ceiling above the bathtub. Then when you go to wash their hair get them to look up and tell them a story about the pictures. With their heads tilted right back they hardly notice their hair being washed. My girls now insist on telling me a story while I wash their hair. 
  • For smaller babies you could apply the shampoo to dampened hair in the bath, then when you take them out, wrap them in a towel and then lower them backwards over the bathtub while you rinse the shampoo out.
  • Again, this usually works better when they are smaller, but you can try lying them down on their backs in the bath (don’t have the water too deep for this!) and wash them while they are in the water.
  • I did try one of those visors you can buy, but I didn’t have much luck, my daughter refused to wear it. It might work ok for a different child though, they do seem like a good idea.
  • If nothing else works and they don’t have too much hair, you could always use a flannel to wash their hair instead of pouring water.

As always, don’t worry too much, most children grow out of it eventually. I can still remember the day when my eldest told me to leave the bathroom as he was quite capable of washing his own hair. It comes soon enough, I promise.

This post is a part of my parenting tips series, I hope you will find them interesting. There is a tab at the top of the page where you can view other tips that I have previously posted. If you would like to share your tips I’d be happy to hear them in the comments section or please visit us on Facebook and join in there.
Thank you xx


© Photographer: Dana Rothstein | Agency:

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