Music & Culture
How Old Is Old Enough for Makeup?
Written by T.M. Gaouette | May 9, 2012
Just recently, a blogger and mother admitted to putting makeup on her 4-year-old daughter. I’m not talking about a little lip gloss while she was playing dress-up at home, either. I’m talking a full face of makeup for events and occasions outside of the home.
Why do women wear makeup? The main reasons are to look older; to look presentable, attractive, pretty or beautiful; to cover blemishes, scars and birth marks; and to create a consistent skin tone. With these reasons defined, do you think it justifiable for a mother to make her 4-year-old child up with cosmetics?
Even though this mother has received a lot of backlash, she also has received a lot of support from other mothers who do the same thing (although I’m guessing their show of support may be an attempt to justify their own actions). But isn’t 4 too young for makeup? Aren’t these mothers making their young daughters look attractive, even if it’s unintentional? And if 4 is too young, how old is old enough?
The answer to this is obviously subjective, but I do think 4 is much too young. I also think age 10 is too young. In my opinion, 13 is the best and most appropriate age to start experimenting with makeup, but to a very limited extent. Why? Here are some of my reasons:
- A child has no business trying to look pretty or attractive. Her physical self, as far as beauty, shouldn’t be an issue. Her focus should be on behavior and internal beauty, such as being good.
- All girls should be comfortable in their own skin before making it up and covering it over. If girls get into the habit of wearing makeup every time they leave the house, they’ll never feel complete without it. And that’s just a bad habit to get into.
- Girls shouldn’t wear makeup to make themselves look pretty. Sure, it can highlight or define features, cover flaws and soften the skin, but if you think you aren’t pretty without it, then that’s a problem.
- Girls should have stages to look forward to as they grow. Girls have such a limited time as children, but so many years to be a grown up and do grown-up things. I believe wearing makeup should be a fun thing to look forward to when a girl gets older. If girls are wearing makeup and high heels when they’re 4, what do they have to look forward to? What do they have to establish each level of maturity in their lives as they get older?
- Young skin is very sensitive, especially a child’s complexion, and makeup is not healthy. It clogs the pores.
I also believe there should be a progression when it comes to introducing makeup into your daily life, and that progression should be determined by your age. I think it’s okay to begin including makeup in your regimen at the age of 13. Following is my progression suggestion:
- 13 years old–lip gloss
- 15 years old–face powder, lightly tinted eye shade and lip gloss that enhances your natural coloring
- 16 years old–foundation, mascara, moderately tinted eye shadows and lipsticks that define your natural coloring
- 18 years old–eyeliner and more defined eye shadows and lipsticks, including lip liners
You shouldn’t wear makeup to cover your face. If you look completely different once your makeup is removed, then you’re putting on too much. Makeup shouldn’t mask your face, it should highlight it.
Ladies, what do you think about moms who let their little girls wear makeup?