As parents, Brian and I made the decision early on that raising thoughtful kids who made informed decisions was very important. That in the issues of style and appearance, we'd give them the freedom to make decisions with some basic guidance. But if they weren't harming themselves let them explore and fill in their own personalities.
I didn't push for Sidney to get her ears pierced, nor didn't do it for her as an infant. I simply decided when she was ready for the commitment (and pain), we'd support her in it. She REALLY dislikes pain and when she made up her mind she could do it as a 7 1/2 year old, we supported her and made it a special event.
Charlie has wanted a full blown mohawk with colored tips since September. Yikes, I wasn't ready for that from a then 5 year old. Besides, we really loved the shaggy boy look that he'd grown in and it was our preference (key word our). So it's summer, and Charlie's been dealt a crumby hand. He had to miss the first half of the final day of Camp Invention today, which he adores. We had 45 minutes to kill before his doctor's appointment, so we went to fulfill his wish.....in part.
He got a compromise, for a 6 year old, fauxhawk. He looks so stinking cute with it!! It is so his little personality to a 'T' and he's thrilled.
And so it begins, the little challenges on allowing our kids to make decisions on their appearance. The most important decisions are the good ones they make in life. Having a strong sense of self, right and wrong, living with joy, problem solving, interacting appropriately with their peers, and sticking up for who they are. And we're off!