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Watch the Hair!

“Would ya just watch the hair? Ya know, I work on my hair a long time and you hit it."

–John Travolta in Saturday Night Fever

I’d say about half of my childhood battles with my mother involved her refusal to let me wear high-heeled shoes. The other half of the battles involved my hair. (I understood what was worth fighting for at a very early age.)

I always knew just how I wanted my hair, and I would not settle for anything less (and my hairstylist Marc Mena, pictured above, knows I haven't changed one bit). Back then we didn't have the products and Web sites to refer to; but, thankfully, we are living in a whole new world where the answer to most of your child’s hair issues is just a click away.

Here are some go-to sites for the best products, accessories and YouTube tutorials:

The Products:

These few products will save many tears and frustrations. Where were the magical Wet Brush, the plethora of detanglers and natural hair gels when I was growing up?

  • The Wet Brush: It’s called the Wet Brush, but it can be used on wet or dry hair. Buy one for yourself as well. You’ll thank me.
  • Ouidad Detangler: As was told to me by a friend with curly-haired kids: If your child has curly hair, this is a must-have!

The Accessories:

Sparkly hair bows and bold flowers are the easiest way to make a simple hairstyle into a statement. I am a fan of two great companies: No Slippy Hair Clippy and Ladybugs and Lullabies. Both were founded by mothers who were looking for hair ties and clips that would truly stay put without damaging their daughters’ hair. Because no such items existed, these women created them. Click below to see their fun collections of chic bows, barrettes and headbands:

The YouTube Tutorials:

Many of the hairstyles I've seen girls sporting on the playgrounds of Manhattan are fairly simple—lots of ponytails, side ponytails and braids flourished with a great bow or barrette. I know we are all capable of pulling hair into a ponytail and adding an accessory; however, for the slightly more complicated styles, YouTube is your friend. Here are a few of the best hair tutorials I have found, all from the Web site The Beauty Department:

For mothers of boys, the road is usually a bit smoother (but talk to me in a couple of years and I might tell you differently). With boys, it really is all about the cut and having some good hair gel. There are not nearly as many YouTube videos to guide you through the process of styling boys' hair, but I suggest you bring a photo of your favorite hairstyle into the salon and ask the stylist for his or her best tips. Two of my favorite looks right now:

  • Messy Spikes: Rub a dime-size amount of hair gel on your hands and then run it through your son’s hair. Move your hands in an upward motion until you achieve the desired effect.
  • The Faux Hawk: Ask the stylist to leave your son’s hair longer in the center so you can spike it up with your fingers to create this punk rocker look.

Tell me, readers: What are some of your go-to products, accessories and YouTube tutorials? Share your secrets!

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