How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

I promised my daughter that when she starts middle school, she would be allowed to wear appropriate makeup.  I figure now is a good time to get her started so that she has the summer to get the hang of it.  Any suggestions for how to go about making this a special occasion and what products to start her with?

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

Hey their Smiley Happy,I'm currently a sophomore in high school, and my parents never really let me wear makeup in middle school, until i was a freshman in HS. But anyways a lot of girls now-a-days wear a complete mask, and from personal experience when so many girls (besides the ones who had a full face of masking makeup that just looked to old for them) wore makeup it would make me a bit jealous; they would look so pretty and they would get so many compliments. Now i know school isn't for impressing anyone its for learning and having important life knowledge, but its always nice to learn and experiment yourself, your doing great by letting her try some stuff out. I highly recommend these things:

1) (not makeup) but its always nice to have a nice cleansing product so after school or whenever you can let your skin breathe and at that age i had acne so it was a life saver Smiley Wink try a mud mask or something like the biore pore unclogging scrub, i still use it to this day its cheap (around $10) and works great with all skin types 


2) BB cream, its light weight, and benefits your skin while covering some needed spots. I reccomend laura mercier the coverage is amazing!


3) a beauty blender, I've noticed many young girls cake their makeup on, and the L.M BB cream i recommended up their isn't sheer at all so sheering it out with the beauty blender will give an even coverage that will let your daughters skin show through (a lot more natural)


4) concealer, try the drugstore brand L'Oreal dream lumi, it highlights and corrects so its like killing 2 birds with one stone


5) a nice lip tar that's a little bit darker than her natural lip color, as they say (your lips but better), you can also opt for a lip gloss or even better a lip butter they moisturize and add a pop of color i recommend the korres ones i have them all and i absolutely love them  


6) a nice shimmery eye shadow for inner corners (you can skip this if you don't want her wearing eye shadow yet)


7) eyeliner, if you want a more natural look try a brown eyeliner she can also use it to fill in her brows a little


8) and last but not least Mascara, i feel like this is a must have and try the drugstore ones (high end ones are honestly no different than low end) i love the rocket! 

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

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My mom started me out by bringing me to Sephora and getting my foundation matched there. Then she brought me to Shoppers Drug Mart and we just picked an eye liner and mascara and a little lip gloss to complete the look. I think these aren't over the top products, but definitely the products that a lot of teens start out with. Overall, the experience was great!! Also, another idea would be going through your old makeup with her (if you have anything extra) and asking her what she wants to try! You'll get rid of some old makeup and she'll get some new makeup! 

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

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It's a special tradition in my family, so maybe it could work for you?


  • Upscale tea
  • Followed by full face makeover at the Clinique counter (speak to them beforehand, set it up, let them know the purpose, how much makeup you really want her to have on her face, etc)

She can have fun at the counter, picking out products with some "expert" guidance (hey, it's not you- which was a plus when I was that age)- and the person doing the look can walk her through it step by step.


She feels like you're treating her more like an adult (makeup, letting her have input and deferring to someone at a counter), and you can have fun with her later with some of the products showing her different looks, etc.


Just my $0.02.

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

Maybe I'm shooting out here for a bit but what about giving her options? There seems to be a consensus here on what a lot of people think but maybe let her choose what she likes, with your guidance? Not saying like, "here's $100 OKAY GO CRAZY" but more like, "this is what mascara does, this is what concealer does, and this is what lipstick does. What do you think you want to try first now?" That way, it's giving her the power of choice of what she wants her style to be, rather than say "you're too young for this" or "you'll look older with this" - lots of tweens want to be like their moms, so it's best to sit em down and talk to em and get to know em a little better, ya know? It's a new chapter for em, see what they want to write about. 


Sincerely, a newly graduated teen

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

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I LOVE this advice. I so wish this is what I'd had when I was a teens back in the dark ages Smiley Wink My mom decided it was time for me to have/wear makeup and I felt pushed into it. At the same time I see teens now wearing makeup that does nothing to enhance their own features. Letting her be part of the decision making and helping her know how things look and what they do will empower her, and that is great in so many ways. 

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

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I think everyone has posted some great suggestions! I definitely agree with the idea of keeping it simple and fresh for someone so young. Getting her in a good skincare routine will be something she'll appreciate for many years to come. I wish I had done more to protect my skin from the sun and to combat acne when I was in middle/high school!


As for makeup I would say to leave all of the heavy face products (foundation, concealer, primer, powder, etc.) out of the picture for a little while. Stick to things that are natural looking, and easy to apply. Colored lip glosses or balms and mascara can go a long way to making you feel polished, or "grown up". If you want to go a step farther, a cream or gel blush is always nice, and maybe a shadow stick (a la Clinique Chubby sticks). I feel like powdered shadows/blushes/bronzers/etc. really are applied best with a set of quality brushes, which might be something she can invest in when she gets a bit older. For now I think makeup that doesn't require any extra tools and doesn't take more than a few minutes to apply is perfect for that tween age.



Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

I agree with some of the other ladies, i think she is a little young to start experimenting and its nice to keep their face fresh while they are young. i started wearing makeup around 13/14 and it was more like mascara and a sheer powder. Nothing over the top at all. I didn't start to love makeup until i was around 21 towards the end of college. 


Maybe just mascara and some tinted moisturizer or powder. I think something like foundations/bb blush and eyeshadow are better geared towards those in hs, but thats just my opinion

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

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my mom started letting me wear makeup so young and honestly i'm so grateful, she let me experiment with makeup so by the time im 18,19 i already know what looks good and how to do the majority of my own makeup...


anyway! she started me with a foundation, and a good mascara and eyeliner, thats it, and a small eyeshadow palette of nude colors (think like naked 2) just so i could have that if i wanted too. 

the foundation and mascara was enough, and if i went to the mall with my friends i'd put on some eyeliner. 


whatever you feel comfortable letting her wear, but also it is very important like what Spyski said about the skincare rountine they have one cleanser from bareminerals which is good for everyone, its not so harsh. s1318781-main-hero.jpg 

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

I personally don't think there is such a thing as "appropriate makeup" beyond clear/sparkly gloss and nail polish for someone who is that young.

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

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Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

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Keeping it simple is essential. I suggest:

-Tinted moisturizer: Covergirl makes a great one that is less expensive

-Lipgloss or Tinted Lip Balm: Many brands make chubby sticks that can be sheer enough for everyday use. I absolutely love the entire Fresh line of lip products, and these are tinted so they might make her feel more grown up and girly.


-Mascara: Any brand should do!


Depending on how you feel about it, a lot of brands have good cream shadows that would be perfect for just starting out. I'm currently obsessed with Benefit's creaseless cream shadows. They come in shades that will be neutral but still make your daughter feel pretty.s1490580-main-hero.jpg
Best of luck!!!

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

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Don't get her hooked on face makeup---it might break her out and ruin your skin. Plus, children that young don't need to cover up anything. Since she's just starting middle school....I would let her play around with lipgloss, neutral shadow and nailpolish. Full on makeup at that age will just make her look older.

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

Oh and I almost forgot!! Make sure to get makeup wipes or face wash so that she washes her makeup off every night. This will really make all the difference with her skin!

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

Yikes middle school!  My daughter starts this fall & I'm not sure if I'll be letting her dive into eyeshadows & all that!  I'd agree with Janines suggestion with the Benefit Boxes, since those are the simple, fail proof stuff.  Lipgloss, blush & maybe a highlight and/or mascara....  Anything beyond that is a little much for girls that age.  My one advice, stress the importance of NOT sharing her makeup or others makeup to avoid any contamination! 


Benefit Cosmetics - Primping With The StarsBenefit Cosmetics - Feelin' Dandy Lip & Cheek Kit

If she insists on a foundation like product, go for a BB Cream Smiley Happy


Urban Decay - Naked Skin Beauty Balm Broad Spectrum SPF 20


xo, Mia

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

What an exciting time for your daughter Smiley Happy. I wish beauty resources were more prominent when I was first starting to dabble into makeup.


I'd say checkout Sephora TV, we have all sorts of simplistic tutorials for natural looks appropriate for someone just getting started in makeup. Maybe you two can make an afternoon of watching videos and playing with the new products.


I loved blush and lipgloss when I was first starting out, I'd occasionally wear one color on my lids, but didn't usually do more than that. Lylysa has provided you with some great products, Benefit has a lot of nice starter kits for makeup newbies.




Whimsically yours,

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

Start with less is more and introduce her into neutral colors so that your comfortable with what she is wearing and also making it fun for her.

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

Start with a good skincare regimen since those are the years of puberty which can lead to the dreaded 4-letter word A-C-N-E.


Know your makeup! Being knowledgeable about what's inside makeup can help with impurities. Bobbi Brown has a great book for teens called Bobbi Brown Beauty Rules, she also has a very great manual to makeup as well. 


Keep it simple. Foundation is often too heavy for younger faces. A light, airy BB cream or tinted moisturizer is best. Many also have SPF in them to protect against damaging UV rays. Go for PINK! Pink glosses, balms, and blushes will keep the youthful appearance without going over the edge. A natural looking mascara will do the deed for the entire eye area. No need for eye pencils, shadows just yet. We don't want her looking older than she really is. 


Make a game out of it! Let her do your makeup, and ask why she chose certain colors, etc. 


Hope this helps!

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

LOVE that you advise she also get a good skincare routine going too! So important!

Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

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I recently got to give a make up tutorial at my friend's daughter's birthday who turned 11.


Start of with basics, like good skin care and prep. I got things like face wipes (convenient and doesn't even require a sink/water), lotion with SPF (because sun care is important), basic brushes (ELF at Target, Kroger and online have a great range of brushes from $1 to $3), good hygiene (brush cleaner, washing brushes, not sharing make up), and then a noncomplicated routine.


Obviously there's no need to drop a mega load of money on super high end gear since your daughter is first learning and starting, but if you want to amp it up a little and make her feel like she's getting more than just drug store make up, look into sets from Benefit, Stila, or items from the Sephora line. The Benefit and Stila kits are a great deal and provide a good range of trial sized items and the Sephora items are at a good price point and of good quality. Bring her into your local Sephora and have her pick out eye shadows to build a custom palette (show her how having a few basic/natural shades will allow for practice and maybe pick one or two pops of color so she can have fun).



I got the birthday girl this set:


It provides a removable compact to fit 3 trays she can mix and match with eye colors and lip colors.


ELF has a basic shadow primer for $1, so it allows you to show her how priming and prepping will help blend, prolong wear, and help colors come out to true shade regardless of brand.


Benefit has some kits that focus complexion, eyes, and lips with basics like primer, blugh, mascara, and gloss:




Stila offers some great mini $10 kits that have eye shadows and convertible cheek/lip color for on-go use:



They even have a cute gloss trio in natural, sheer shades that are really pretty and won't look over-done for $12:


Re: How should I introduce my tween daughter to makeup?

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The Stila $10 pallets is what I've started my 11year old  with. (Middle school here is 6-8 grades). I went ahead and got them so we could practice over the summer. They are great! Not super pigmented but just enough. We have Seoul which is her favorite. Very pretty soft colors but she is biracial so color is her friend. She also has the Vancouver which isn't out there enough I guess. My little one is very flamboyant, a mini fashionista, she wears sequin skirts with crazy leggings and boots so she'll go as crazy as I let her. 


Hello Kitty is also really nice and sheer and easy to use. There are some cute neutrals in that. 


I also love the Fresh lip tints for her. They pull double duty as balm/chap stick and tint.

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