Is Kim K wise to straighten 5-year-old North's hair?
What is an acceptable age to straighten your child's hair? Should you? Kim Kardashian's allowing North West to do so at 5 years. But is that too young?
At what age can and should you allow your child to straighten their hair? (Twitter)

Kim Kardashian West has pretty much spent the last 15 years building her empire, while the world watched the reality star grow, only to scrutinise her every move and judge every aspect of her personal life. So when she became a mom to daughter North West in 2013, the internet trolls had a whole new set of concerns with her parenting techniques.

The latest? Allowing her 5-year-old to straighten her hair.

After Kim posted an adorable picture on Instagram and Twitter of North kissing daddy Kanye, a concerned follower tweeted, “Don’t straighten her hair too much, it’ll ruin her curls. I did that to my hair and ruined it but I’m finally getting my natural curly hair back.” Kim responded, “She is allowed twice a year, on her birthday and birthday party! This pic was taken back in June on her bday.”

What do you think is an acceptable age to straighten your child's hair or allow them to if they want to? Should you allow it at all? Tell us by emailing and we may publish your comments. 

There really is no minimum age at which you can actually straighten your child’s hair, just like there’s no definite age at which you can pierce their ears or move them from bottle to cup. But being concerned about straightening a child’s hair, or doing so too soon, isn’t completely unwarranted.

We spoke to Cape Town-based hairdresser Tania, from Pinelands, who explained that it depends on the type of treatment or method of straightening you choose, but she wouldn’t suggest straightening your child’s hair before the age of 9.

“Your child is still growing and chemical treatments, especially, can be harmful,” she says.

While straightening your hair repeatedly and over a long period of time can result in breakage of the strands, drying it out and leaving it looking dull and unhealthy, Tania says, “a flat iron isn’t as bad because although it can damage the texture of the hair, it’s just on the surface. It won’t penetrate or do anything to her scalp as a chemical treatment would.

A Joburg-based hairdresser in Greenside, Ayanda, also said she wouldn't recommend chemical treatments before 10 years but said straightening can be done from even 3 years old. "It depends on the density and texture, as well as the form of the hair. There are some children who have stronger hair than adults."

She said it's okay to give your child a pink streak and let them play around during their school holidays. "How else are we going to get those Cinderella curls?"

But she also explained that it's all about the products you use, as flat irons even have temperature controls now, while many shampoos and conditioners are of such good quality, they will protect and not harm your child's hair.

And we’re sure Kim’s got Northie covered with only the very best.

Even so, just as we’d hope it’s completely up to us to make our own decisions when it comes to our children, in this case it’s all Kim’s. So disposable or cloth nappies, flat irons or relaxers – it’s each to his own and all’s fair in parenting and hair.

What do you think is an acceptable age to straighten your child's hair or allow them to if they want to? Should you allow your child to straighten their hair? Tell us by emailing and we may publish your comments. 

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