It seems like children grow up quickly. One day your daughter is selling Girl Scout cookies, dressed in the fashionable khaki uniform; next, your daughter is pleading to wear a half shirt with low rise jeans because “they so are in style”—and so is makeup. Their friends are allowed to wear makeup, their friend’s friends are allowed to wear makeup; heck, Miley Cyrus was allowed to wear makeup at their age. How do you handle this situation? Teens see makeup as a whole new world, and without proper guidance will look more Lady Gaga than Lauren Conrad.
First of all, there are no hard and fast rules about when girls should begin to wear makeup. It all depends on your daughter’s maturity and how comfortable you are with her before you start the makeup journey.
Skincare is a critical first step. Makeup counters often have specials where you can attend and work with a skincare specialist. Even if you do not buy their products, you will leave with an idea of what skin type your daughter has—at least knowing oily, dry or sensitive skin really helps get skin prepped and also helps when buying proper foundation and cover up.
Next, I really recommend calling or going to Sephora or Macy’s, and scheduling a makeover (when calling, double check to ensure it is free. Some counters will not have a fee, but will require a purchase of lipstick or $30.00). Make sure you mention the look you are seeking is an everyday, natural look.
Skin: If your daughter has the unfortunate issue I did of dealing with cystic acne or other skin issues, you will definitely want to get her to a dermatologist and find the proper method to clear up her face so she will not need foundation. That is the goal—to not need foundation. Teenagers should avoid a pancake face, or looking like they are wearing a mask. A light moisturizer foundation with SPF pulls double duty—covering up imperfections and protection from the sun! Other recommended products include: Bare Minerals and Maybelline’s Dream Matte Mousse
Next, work with the makeup artist to choose makeup colors and formulas will softly enhance your daughter’s other features. Make sure she gets a sample of a few different foundations to try on at home and in natural light. Discuss which look good on her and have the artist show her how to apply them. Choosing the colors are just as important as knowing how to apply them.
Blush: Ask for a natural look. Teens look best with a flushed look, like they just came in from a jog, so peaches or pale pinks look great. For ethnic skin, a more vibrant pink will really show her cheekbones. Make sure your daughter understands the importance of blending.
Eyes: Teens really do not need to go overboard with eye makeup, but there are so many vibrant and beautiful colors out there is can be easy to do. A good starter's kit should include a few neutrals and a colorful eye shadow, eye shadow brushes--I recommend Sephora’s as they are inexpensive but quality-- mascara, and maybe a neutral liner. A good idea may be pre-packaged colors, like Almay’s eyeshadow collection that come with colors that not only complement each other, but they compliment your eye color. Companies are making it easier not only to put together shadows, but they also tell you exactly which liners and mascara work together. The colors are all neutral based but lovely. The most important information to learn from a makeup artist is how to apply the colors—the light shade goes all over the lid, the medium shade over the crease and blend; finally, the highlighter is applied to the brow bone to bring show off the beautiful eye color. Eyeliner should be basic; no need for a smokey eye at school. Apply the liner as close to the lash line as possible.
Lips: Teens have probably been wearing lip balms, and the next step is gloss. There are just as many great drug store glosses (L’Oreal Color Juice is my favorite-long lasting, smells good, pretty colors). MAC LipGloss in Oh Baby was a one of MAC’s most popular products for quite a while.
Shimmer/Highlighter: Teens can get away with a light coat of shimmer applied to either eyes or cheekbones. The key is to use a light hand. This is just to draw attention to a particular feature. I always get compliments when I wear beneFit's High Beam dabbed on the very top of my cheekbones. Wet n Wild's Twist Up Blush 724 in Flirt also allows a beautiful gleam.
Teaching your daughter to wear makeup can be a complicated issue if you do not have open communication. Before going to a counter or a store, make sure you have clear expectations as to the look you both agree on. Make sure there you there is a set budget and she understands what that budget is, as well as discussing expensive does not always equal better. The desire to possess the best labels—Louis Vuitton, Dior, Chanel—is something that doesn’t always goes away as we grow up, but for every Chanel lipstick there is a Maybelline lipstick in a similar shade and a good twenty dollars cheaper. Along with teaching your daughter how to enhance your beauty, you can also teach her about budgeting and spending, and use this as a bonding experience!