It’s a Viet Thing: Shave That Head, Baby!

November 12, 2012 Its a Viet Thing 10

Want to know another Vietnamese tradition for babies?!

How about shaving their heads?!

Yep, you read that right.

It’s a custom in our culture to shave a baby’s head when they’re around 4-6 months old. Why, you say?! Well, traditional Vietnamese people believe that the hair that babies are born with are “dirty” and by shaving it all off, you’re giving the scalp a chance to grow healthier, better-quality hair, faster.

Everyone knows that it’s good to get a trim every now and then to help the follicles grow more hair faster, so it makes sense to want to shave off all that old baby hair so new, more even hair can grow in its place. Although I’ll probably have people tell me that they didn’t do this and their kids’ hair grew out just fine. Yes, I know, I get it. I’m just sharing a bit of my culture and traditions, so take it as you will. And, not everyone sticks to this age-old belief or tradition though and I have plenty of friends who didn’t do this to their kids. Personally, since my mom is pretty traditional, and I never saw a problem with it, I didn’t mind doing this.

I think it even helped my kids because you can see how BG2 went from this:

To this:

To this:

In just a few short months.

I don’t know if you noticed, but her “baby hair” was already starting to thin and fall out and she had less hair at 3 months than when she was born?! As you can see at only 7 months, she had a gorgeous head full of hair, growing very evenly. Now, her hair is all kinds of wild and crazy though. And on the plus side, she looked wicked cute when she was bald (one of the rare times you can actually pull off the bald look while still being cute).

I’ve even got a nifty video of when we shaved BG2’s head:

Asian Traditions – Shaving Babys Head from Vi Nguyen on Vimeo.

It’s very easy to do, by the way. We just took a regular razor blade (like for shaving legs or facial hair), rubbed some water & soap on her head, and shaved away (very slowly and gently, of course). It helps to have the baby sleeping, of course, so there’s no wiggling or fussing; but sadly, I wasn’t that lucky with BG2 (BG1 was sleeping like a champ when we shaved her head though).

So, what do you think of this Asian tradition?! Do any of your families take part? Perhaps you’re willing to try with one of your kids one day! I’d love to know how it turns out.

ICYMI: Want to learn about another Vietnamese tradition?! Read about the One Month Celebration.

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10 Responses to “It’s a Viet Thing: Shave That Head, Baby!”

    • Vivian

      Oh, I had no idea you guys do it too! Yay! Yes, I love seeing those bald babies lol. You should post pics, haha.

  1. Alicia

    Yeah, Indians too. When I was three it was my sister’s turn, my relatives had convinced me that they were going to do it to me again, I spent the whole time hiding under a table trying to be invisible . . . I have mean relatives ;).

    • Vivian

      Oh, that’s so cool that your culture does it too. LOL, with the story! Yes, family can be crazy like that!

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