A girl's teen years are exciting, but can also be peppered with self doubt about appearance. A young girl's body and hair rapidly changes during puberty, which can bring about anxiety over wearing the right clothing or sporting the right hair style. Help put your 13-year-old girl at ease by creating hairstyles for -- or with -- her so that she can look pretty and feel confident during these sometimes awkward years.
Get the right cut. Pretty hair starts with a hairstyle that complements the face shape. Having shoulder-length hair or longer is one of the easiest cuts to style. Wear it as a blunt cut or in layers that frame the face and extend down past the shoulders. Layers make curling easier and add flexibility and bounce to the style. Trim hair every two months to cut off unsightly split ends.
Start with clean hair. A 13-year-old girl with oily skin and scalp can use a specially formulated shampoo and conditioner once a day to keep oil at bay; a girl with dry, coarse hair should use a hydrating shampoo and conditioner and can go several days between washings.
Brush hair over to one side and loosely braid it down to the end. Fasten with a hair tie and then take a piece of hair from the end, wrap it around the tie and stick the end into the tie. This hides the tie and gives the style an interesting twist. Another popular braid style involves leaving hair down and giving it a wide part. Take a two-inch section at the front, braid hair back and then repeat another section just below it. Fasten these two braids at the bottom for a cute Bohemian look.
Create soft tresses that can be flipped up or turned under with a 1-inch curling barrel. Pull curled hair back in a bouncy ponytail, wrap it around itself for a loose bun or pull the sides back and leave soft curls at the bottom.
Make mermaid-style waves by spritzing wet hair with a curling product and sectioning it into 2-inch strips. Twist hair down to the bottom, roll it up and secure with pins. Sleep on this style and remove the pins in the morning. Use your fingers to tousle the hair and manipulate the pretty waves.
Add strategically placed adornments, such as jeweled bobby pins, textured headbands and discrete bows, to give some sparkle to the hair. Pop in some color by adding bright yarn strands to braids and fishtails. Simply tie a few pieces of yarn into square knots underneath the hair and then include the pieces as you braid. This is a fun way for a 13-year-old girl to get hair color without the dying commitment or damaging effect of adding real color.
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- Stand in front of a mirror while you create hairstyles so the 13-year-old girl can learn for herself.
- Styling products such as mousse, balms, straighteners, curl gel and hairspray can cause hair build-up. Have your 13-year-old occasionally use a clarifying shampoo if hair seems difficult to style.
- Over brushing hair can lead to breakage.
Based in Los Angeles, Lisa Finn has been writing professionally for 20 years. Her print and online articles appear in magazines and websites such as "Spa Magazine," "L.A. Parent," "Business," the Famous Footwear blog and many others. She also ghostwrites for mompreneurs and business owners who appear regularly on shows such as Ricki Lake, HGTV, Carson Daly and The Today Show.