What Age Should You Start Wearing Makeup?
How young is too young for your daughter to wear makeup?
If you are looking for advice on simple teen makeup tips (like when to begin?) you have come to the right place…
So it turns out this is a question that comes up sooner or later.
“When can I start wearing makeup?”
It may come up earlier however by the time your daughter has hit her teen years there is a good chance you have heard these words breathed out loud.
For starters I should note there is no right or wrong answer to this question. It is up to the individual preference of the parent.
It also depends a great deal on your own relationship with makeup. Do you depend on it daily? Or it is something you put on as an afterthought when you want to appear to be making some effort?
Unfortunately (or is it fortunately?) for my daughter, I fall into the latter group of women who could happily survive with just a dash of lipstick.
This is how I have tackled the question, now that my daughter is nearing the age of fourteen.
Firstly I should note that she loves the idea of makeup. She spends a lot of time watching her favorite YouTubers doing makeup tutorials and has spent the greater part of the year perfecting her skills on me.
Turns out she is fabulous at this skill and yes, I secretly love being a guinea pig for her.
By the end of the session she manages to turn me into someone who looks fresh-faced and plain into a way more attractive version of myself.
I can see and understand the appeal that makeup has for teenagers.
Still until this day I have never given the all-clear to my daughter wearing makeup in this house.
Because I have always thought it was important for kids to first and foremost embrace their natural beauty.
I fear that girls could potentially grow addicted to the idea of painting their faces with makeup that they don’t comfortable going anywhere without a layer of war-paint on.
Pretty radical fear, right? Or maybe it isn’t, given the amount of teens that I see out and about who look like mini-adults with their full-face make-up faces on.
Still I have recently had to answer this makeup question because hey, I can’t keep on ignoring it forever. So this is the plan I came up with.
(Note: this question doesn’t pertain to wearing makeup during dance recitals or the like. Sometimes makeup is required for younger girls – whether it is for a dance performance or role as a flower girl – and this is completely different from the topic at hand – which is optional makeup FOR LEISURE.)
PHASE 1: LET’S START SLOW (FROM AGE 12-14)
MAKEUP: Concealer and Tinted Lip-gloss
It is only fair if your teen breaks out with a pimple that they will want to cover it up with concealer. I mean, I would want to cover up a pimple too if it wasn’t pretty (and pimples never are, right?).
Tinted lip-gloss is also a great place to start as it isn’t too obtrusive (a little like putting pawpaw cream on your lips or am I just kidding myself?). At this stage, it is all about BEING SUBTLE I believe.
As my daughter pointed out, it’s not that kids her age want to wear makeup all the time. It’s just that they want to be ALLOWED to wear it on occasion. This is definitely a reasonable request in my opinion.
Once they reach high school (which happens the year they turn age 12 or 13 here in Australia), we admittedly expect our teens to act with more maturity. We give them more responsibility; we let them stay up a little later; we allow them go out more often with friends.
So it’s only fair that they earn a few privileges along with that. If everything else happens in baby steps then it only makes sense that makeup wearing should too.
PHASE 2: LET’S LEARN THIS STUFF (FROM AGE 15-17)
MAKEUP: All the other stuff, including concealer and lip-gloss
By this age, teens are going to want to experiment with makeup, which is totally normal and to be expected. Makeup can be fun! Makeup in fact SHOULD be fun. During these years it is fine for them to give things a go and see how they can enhance their natural beauty.
Ideally makeup should still be saved for special occasions at this age, as opposed to a daily full-face obsession for obvious reasons.
KEY WORD: NATURAL BEAUTY
Girls need to know they are beautiful WITHOUT makeup too. They shouldn’t feel like they NEED to put on makeup before they leave the house.
This is why I am a little stricter when it comes to makeup. My mind boggles when I see other articles suggesting that makeup is fine to wear regularly from age 10. At age 10, they should still be having fun with their dolls and playing outside with their friends, not focused on staring into the mirror, trying to make themselves “look prettier!”
I know this potentially goes against popular opinion but I’ve always told my kids to just enjoy each year as it comes.
When you are 10, enjoy being a 10 year old and have fun doing things that are appropriate for a 10 year old.
When you are 13, enjoy being a 13 year old and have fun doing things that are appropriate for a 13 year old.
Don’t try to be a 13 year old when you are 10.
Don’t try to be a 16 year old when you are 13.
And don’t try to be a 21 year old when you are 16.
Why rush kids through their years? There is a right time and place for everything.
PHASE 2: IT’S NOT UP TO YOU ANYMORE FROM AGE 18 and up
MAKEUP: Could be anything and any style, including Gothic.
Ah this is the point where you need to step back as a parent and let them do their own thing. They are adults now. It isn’t up to you anymore. Trust that they can make their own choices, just like you did when you were a young adult. They can really wear whatever they like at this stage.
As for the definitive answer to the question: What Age Should Girls Start Wearing Makeup?
I think it comes down to what YOU AS THE PARENT feel comfortable with.
I didn’t feel comfortable saying yes at age 12 or early age 13 but as my daughter nears 14 the idea is growing on me that the world won’t fall apart if she starts to wear makeup.
You can use this post as a guide but it’s also fine if you think “gosh, she’s so old-fashioned. I don’t mind if my daughter starts wearing it younger.” And that’s totally cool…Your kid, your rules. You need to decide what YOUR FEELINGS are on the matter and choose WHAT IS RIGHT FOR YOU.
I think the hardest thing is accepting that they are growing older every day. But rest assured, they can still grow up to be confident, compassionate, responsible, great kids, whether they wear a little makeup or a lot.
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