Tuesday, January 2nd, 2007
Review: Lil’ Sugarplum Hair Clips
Alternate title: Come on dads, it’s time to treat the light of your life.
Double alternate title: What do you mean you need your wife to do your daughter’s hair? Be a dad.
When Lil’ Sugarplum offered to send me a couple hair clips to review, two questions occurred to me. How much can I possibly say about a hair clip, and are these clips something I would recommend to my readers? In short, a fair amount, and yes.
A gift-wrapped box arrived a few days later. Inside was a 1.25" Bliss flower snap clip and a 1.75" alligator-style Dragonfly hair clip. Those measurements are the outside visible lengths, not the metal clip beneath (see close-up photos below). A snap clip is the type you bend to open or close. The Dragonfly is a good hair control mechanism while the Bliss’ smaller size makes it ideal as an accent, even in a baby’s tuft of hair.
The clips are made from satin, grosgrain (a woven silk or rayon fabric) and/or nylon over metal. Both have a piece of Velcro in the closure grip. At first, I was annoyed because my daughter’s fine hair drags a little over the Velcro when removing the clip. However, after using the clips for a few days, I realized the Velcro makes these true no-slip devices.
We own a ton of cheap store-bought hair accessories which claim to be "no slip," but in every case do eventually slip and need to be reapplied throughout the day.
I found myself using these two Lil’ Sugarplum clips in my daughter’s hair every day for a second, unexpected reason. They are beautiful, and because they are beautiful, they conceal my own inexperience with hair styling. I pull back some hair, attach a stylish clip and I’m done. Our store-bought clips are so ordinary I get preoccupied with making naked hair look perfect.
The Lil’ Sugarplum web site is run by Monique, the mother of a 1-year-old girl and 4-year-old boy. She was an elementary school reading teacher prior to choosing to become a full-time mom.
Monique learned digital scrapbooking for her first child, and that gave her a jump-start when she launched her web site last May. She explained via e-mail, "It all began with wanting to make my daughter her own hair clips. [â€¦] I had a hard time finding clips to stay in her hair so I was able to design some that would. The business is a creative outlet for me; it keeps me sane when I’m changing diapers, making meals and cleaning house 24/7â€”it’s nice to look forward to something for myself too. I kept thinking bigger and said why not have an online baby boutique and sell whatever I make with my own hands."
She has a true stay-at-home-mom business, from making the hair accessories to photographing and designing the web site. Sales are conducted through a PayPal shopping cart which, if you’re unfamiliar, you’ll be happy to know does not require you to have a full-blown PayPal account to make a purchase.
Lil’ Sugarplum sells more than hair clips. There are also bobby pins, teddy bear pony tail holders and headbands. If you have a bald baby girl with gender-neutral clothing, a cute headband is essential for stopping strangers from complimenting your "beautiful baby boy." Sometimes even a pink dress isn’t enough to dissuade the kindest stranger from thinking that bald equals boy.
My message to dads of daughters: I’ve previously come down squarely against promoting princess syndrome in girls, but there is a difference between raising a Disney princess clone and embracing femininity. Surprise mom by indulging in some classy hair accessories for your child. And if you didn’t grow up with sisters, remember that the toddler years are the time to experiment with hair styling, before your daughter is old enough to formulate an opinion about your clumsy or capable cosmetology.