Cosmetic Quandary: When to Introduce Makeup to Daughters

Engage with the West Michigan Woman Community!

Daughters are wonderful. It’s a joy to watch them mature and grow into beautiful teenagers and women. Their milestones in youth are plentiful, and sometimes incredibly scary to address as a parent. Topics such as shaving, periods, bikinis, and makeup can create awkward conversations for many mothers. We want the best for our daughters, we want them to fit in and be accepted by their peers, but at what cost to their innocence? Makeup can be a very sticky situation for parents. What age is best to introduce cosmetics into your child’s life and how do you go about doing that?

Stephanie TeSlaa, West Michigan mother of four, has taken a potentially explosive situation with her daughters and turned it into an intimate, fun, mother-daughter bonding experience. Stephanie and her husband have two daughters close in age and decided to introduce makeup to them the summer before their seventh grade.

I see many girls in their tween years wearing non-age appropriate makeup. I didn’t agree with that but also didn’t want my kids to be overly sheltered. I also didn’t want it to be a me against them issue. I want to enable them to make good choices and understand how to stay simple and classy as a teenager,” Stephanie says.

Stephanie booked an appointment with a makeup artist at the Douglas J Aveda Institute for her youngest daughter, Ellie, earlier this summer. At the appointment, the artist discussed with Stephanie and her daughter what their overall goal was and provided Ellie with an introductory tutorial into the world of cosmetics.

“It was great,” says Stephanie, “she really helped Ellie learn how to correctly apply makeup and gave her some helpful tricks of the trade.”

Mom and daughter made an evening of it, after the makeup lesson they went to the nearest department store and purchased Ellie her own makeup and cosmetics bag based on the colors the artist recommended. Ellie now has the rest of the summer to practice in preparation for junior high.

“I think it’s an easy way to make my daughters feel special,” says Stephanie. “The lesson was only $25, and it gave me a chance to bond with my daughters and set them on a healthy path towards womanhood.”

What do you think? How do you tackle make-up with your daughters? What age do you think is appropriate? Let’s chat!

Written by: Chelsea Slocum is a resident of Grand Rapids. She works as an educator and freelance writer. She enjoys learning about new and different things happening in the city and spending time with her husband, two crazy kids, family, and friends.

More stories you'll love