A single father in Stoke-on-Trent, England, is instilling serious hair envy in his young daughter’s classmates.
Nate Denton, who has been the sole caregiver to his two children — Nevaeh, 6, and Dexter, 5 — for the last two years, was worried that his daughter would miss out on “girly” things with the absence of a female parent. So, he decided to learn how to style her waist-length hair in a variety of ways.
“I’ve never had to handle long hair before, and it was tricky,” Denton said to Yahoo Beauty. “I had to learn everything — what type of brushes and sprays to use, and how to stop Nevaeh from saying ‘Ouch,’ every time I ran a brush through her hair. It was just alien to me.”
He started an Instagram account in February to track their journey and it has already amassed almost 1,500 followers. His feed shows an array of creative styles, from pigtails and French braids to eye-popping creations that include add-ons like painted Easter eggs.
“There is actually nothing girly about doing your daughter’s hair,” he said to the Daily Mail. “When your six-year-old daughter asks you if you can do a fishtail plait and you can, you are a don. It’s that simple.”
The digital marketing executive’s inspiration was partly ego-driven — he didn’t want people to accuse him of always styling her hair the same way — but at the end of the day, it’s all about doing something special for Nevaeh.
“It’s an amazing way to bond with your daughter — if she asks you to make an Elsa braid for a party and you can, that’s a gift. And it’s nice to give mothers a run for their money in what is considered ‘mom territory,’” he said.
Apparently, mothers have started to approach him during school runs to inquire on his daughter’s hair, and Neveah’s classmates have even requested his services.
Although Denton concedes that Dexter doesn’t have much patience for his amateur hairstylist’s chair, he has managed to whip his son’s hair into stiff spikes to resemble animated character Ben 10.
Styling Nevaeh’s hair takes about 30 minutes each morning — at times, Denton says they have to finish it over breakfast — but the happiness that it brings her, regardless of the results, is what keeps him going.
“When it is such a pleasure to see your baby so happy, who wouldn’t do their hair?”
As for those dads who are all thumbs when it comes to keeping their kids groomed, Denton has one piece of advice: “Come on — step up your game.”