You all know this guy:
He’s the boy that made me a mom and is one of my two main reasons for living. I almost can’t believe that he’s THIRTEEN now. Omg you guys – I am the mother of a teenager. How did that happen?
I don’t want to embarrass him too much, but I’m going to share a story with you. About a year ago or so, he came off the bus from school and I was waiting at the door to greet him (like always). I wait for him inside the door of course because god forbid his friends on the bus see me outside anxiously waiting for him to come home. Anyhow, like I always do, I went to give him a big hug and kiss the second he walked in the door. Except this day was different. My sweet, sweet little boy almost killed me with the stench that immediately filled the room when he lifted his arms. My god, I almost passed out. I actually I did fall to the floor and pretend to faint because I figured that it would be less humiliating for him if I made light of it at first.
regained consciousness got up off of the floor, I explained to him that it was time to start wearing deodorant. Every. Day. The weird thing is, that smell came out of no where – one day he didn’t smell and the next day he did. He’s an active kid and now that his body is changing, he’s sweating a lot more.
The thing is, having those “awkward” conversations can be tough sometimes. Especially when it’s a mom having to bring up topics related to puberty to their sons. I am a boy mom and while I tried to make it as light-hearted as possible, it was hard for me to say the words “You are starting to grow into a man and you need to start wearing deodorant every day now”. And once you start talking about why it’s important to bathe and use deodorant every day, it leads to other topics like oily skin/acne and hair growth (and I don’t mean the hair on their heads!).
When it comes to puberty, I have always felt like girls take front and center most of the time. I’m a girl, or at least I was once, and I have first hand experience with the changes us ladies go through. But when it comes to puberty in boys, it has always seemed to have been downplayed a bit more. Until now!
Introducing the NEW Old Spice School of Swagger, an online, video-based puberty curriculum. Old Spice has been helping guys navigate the seas of manhood for nearly 80 years, so it’s pretty safe to say that they “get” guys. To help, world-famous Old Spice Guy Isaiah Mustafa is back to say, “Hello, Puberty!” The four-part edutainment video series covers awkward topics guys face as they enter puberty, from that funky new smell to hair growth and oily skin.
I had a chance to meet Isaiah at the School of Swagger launch event. At the event I also learned lots of fantastic information from Jaime Stahl, the Old Spice Sweat Scientist. Jaime is a Chemical Engineer by degree. She spends her time as an Old Spice Sweat scientist developing technologies to meet men’s personal care needs. You guys, Jaime is legit! I learned all about the science behind what you see in the videos.
Speaking of the videos…here is the introductory video in the series.
The rest of the videos in the series can be found at schoolofswagger.com! If you have tween boys, I highly recommend watching them. They are fun and most importantly, educational.
Old Spice’s Wild Collection (as seen in the School of Swagger videos)
Inspired by the wild kingdom’s personality traits, the Old Spice Wild Collection is available in anti-perspirants (NEW Invisible Sprays), deodorants, body washes, body sprays and shampoos, in the following scents:
● NEW Krakengärd – Smells like citrus, fresh herbs and the unspeakable power of the ancient ocean
● Bearglove – Commands grizzly-bear-level respect with smells of apple, citrus and spice
● Wolfthorn – The sort of sophisticated wolf who wears a suit that has a suave, sweet orange scent
● Hawkridge – Outwits unsuspecting stink with its sandalwood and vanilla scent
We’ve tried them all and Hawkridge has definitely won out as the favorite scent here in our house.
My youngest son just turned 10 (OMG – double digits!!!) and is going to be experiencing those changes real soon. My boys, husband and I sat down and watched the videos together and while my oldest pretended not to be interested (even though he clearly was), my little guy hung on every word. He has seen his big brother starting to experience changes with his body, so he knows his turn is coming up. I love that these videos provide a good explanation as to why the changes are happening, what to expect as they happen and that they are done with humor.
I also wanted to mention Old Spice’s new eGuide “The Struggle is Real: A Wild Guide to Growing-Up for Moms & Sons” (available for download here). It’s designed for moms and sons and they’re sparking conversations by sharing some hilarious (and shocking) new national mom/son study findings. In the guide, you will also find some really helpful tips from popular parenting expert and mom of 4 boys, Deborah Gilboa, M.D. (aka “Dr. G”). I had the chance to sit in on a conference call with Dr. G. while I was at the launch event for the School of Swagger and learned so much!
One of my main takeaways from the conversation with Dr. G. was that often times boys don’t even realize their underarms smell. Our brains are programmed to ignore our own smells since we use our sense of smell to seek out danger. Makes sense, right? That’s why these awkward conversations are completely necessary and thankfully the new School of Swagger videos are here to help!
Another thing I learned was that shampooing regularly actually helps reduce acne! How about that? Shampooing regularly washes away the bacteria, hence less acne! Talk about a good incentive to stay clean. Dr. G. explained how kids are all about the “why” (which I think a lot of us have already figured out), so the new Old Spice videos aim to answer their questions by providing simple and easy to understand language – and most importantly, they’re hysterical. Kids, especially boys, respond well to humor.
Before I send you off to go watch all of the new Old Spice School of Swagger videos, I want to leave you with this: When it IS time to have the harder talks with our tween boys, DO NOT do it in front of other siblings. Make sure you have them alone without distractions (such as siblings) to ensure you have their attention.
Now, off you go to the School of Swagger with you….