When Should My Daughter Wear Makeup

A few months into my daughter’s first year of middle school she approached me with a question “when can I wear makeup?” For her this was a major step to teenage freedom. For me it was the nail in the coffin of my little princess. I pushed it off as long as possible with the tried and true excuse “I need to discuss it with your father.” Dad of course doesn’t know the answer, he’s a guy. If it were up to him the answer to when should our daughter wear makeup, would be never.

For weeks my mind filled with worrisome questions.

Where was this coming from? Bad friend peer pressure?

How old was I when I started to wear makeup?

Will makeup cause her to act older and trampy?

What standard are we setting for our other three daughters?

Doesn’t makeup lead to boys?

How can I instill in her a sense of natural beauty with tons of makeup caked on her face?

Quickly driving myself crazy I decided to pull out some old photos to trace back my own makeup history. It was very obvious when the transition occurred, 6th grade no makeup, 7th grade “Hello black eyeliner.” I couldn’t help but laugh at my failed attempts to blend makeup with my natural beauty. In my defense my friends weren’t any better.

I realized with makeup like everything in life, perfection is a process.

So, after second guessing myself to death I surprised my daughter with her first blue/green eye shadow (her request). The look on her face was priceless and was followed by a genuine hug (it’s been awhile since I’ve gotten one of those). She informed me she had a prepared speech about “how all her friends wear makeup.” Drive around any middle school and you’ll see she’s right. Which is when I realized I can’t stop the process of her growing up, but I can slow it down and teach her about what choices to make.

For me the question of when should my daughter wear makeup turned into which makeup should she wear and when? Every mother gets to make their choice for their daughter.

My plan is to make the transition gradual

  • 5th grade – lip-gloss
  • 6th grade – eye shadow
  • 7th grade – concealer & powder (teaching her about the war on acne)
  • 8th grade – blush, eyeliner and mascara

*All the while making sure to have my camera at the ready to take tons of pictures she’ll wish to burn later in life.

There is so much we can’t control with our growing, changing children. Don’t let make up be a battle with your daughter, but instead make it a turning point in your relationship. Use this time to show her what you think makes a woman look beautiful. How she can use makeup to enhance her natural beauty. Start primping together and use the time to have a dialogue with your growing changing daughter. You can never go back to the girl she once was, but you can still influence the woman she’ll become.

MeLisa blogs about family life and more at AdoptiveLegacy.com.



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One Comment on “When Should My Daughter Wear Makeup

  1. You can never go back to the girl she once was, but you can still influence the woman she’ll become.

    That’s pretty deep… I’m so not ready for tweens! On the flip side my 4 year old told me today that she never wants to marry and that she wants to stay with me forever and I don’t think I can handle that either!

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