I often find that parenting is like politics… Everyone has an opinion and it almost never matches with your own. Seriously, if you can find friends that match your parenting style completely.. KEEP THEM AROUND <~ Because that is rare.
A few people have shared with me their distaste for my latest parenting fiasco. My mother included.
I let my daughter wear makeup.
I’m not talking a little lip gloss here or there. I’m taking make yourself be noticed in a sea full people makeup…
I can’t help but giggle when I see her proudly display her work. It looks like she took makeup classes from Mimi
(image from community.sephora.com)
I never put makeup on with the exception of some eyeliner so people don’t constantly ask if I am sick. I have that eyeliner, a thing of mascara and some powder (which if I’m being honest I don’t even know what it’s called) and that’s seriously it… I have no idea where this sudden fascination with makeup has come from….
My daughter has quite the collection that she has paid for using her allowance:
Girls are usually first introduced to makeup in their teens when insecurites about their bodies amd self images have fully cemented. Let’s face it.. Society makes it really hard on teenage girls to be anything but self loathing about themselves.
Society teaches them that makeup makes them beautiful and these insecure girls hide behind this mask for the rest of their lives. As such we see makeup as a tool for beauty and ONLY that. When we think of little girls wearing makeup we instantly assume that we are teaching little girls to be as self loathing and that they are hiding behind masks. We want them to feel that they are beautiful just as they are, yet by the time these girls reach teenagehood the cycle repeats. And I’ll admit that I do see this cycle happening earlier on with girls..
But I can’t help but ask… is makeup really a tool for making us beautiful? We’re told all the time it’s not, despite how society contradicts that notion… Again: is makeup really a tool for oversexualizing the wearer? Society again tells us so by adopting the notion it’s a “mature” item.
It’s not folks.. It’s not makeup that does this.. it’s society’s interpretation of why we wear makeup that does this.
I have never seen makeup as society does.. Maybe because my own insecurities about myself knew that all the makeup in the world wouldn’t ever make me “beautiful”.. so I didn’t even bother to try…
As such, I am letting my very self confident child learn that makeup is like any other accessory she would wear. It should be used as an expression, kind of like art. She chooses the really loud and in your face colors because that’s how she feels inside. Why would I ever want to take away a part of her ability to express herself?
Just because the majority of people have only learned to interpret one way in which we use makeup? Because they want to project their own insecurities onto my daughter?
My daughter and I have discussed appropiate times to express herself through makeup. She wears nothing to school, with the exception of some lip gloss here and there. She knows that school is a time to learn and that the bright colors can be distracting to other students. Like any other accessory, there are times when it may not be appropiate to wear it.
My daughter has heard more than one adult gasp and tell her that she shouldn’t be wearing makeup (my mother included). She holds her head up high and ignores them. She is learning the world is going to have an opinion in how she does things but she has to do what is right for her. And so long as it doesn’t harm her or anyone else, I will support her and be her diligent advocate to all those that dare question her.
So I will oooh and ahh over her makeup sessions. Ask her why she chose the blue today over the purple and let her know that I think she looks fantastic. And every time I will end that conversation with “It’s not the makeup that makes your beautiful Miss.” And she will smile and say “Oh I know mommy, I just wanted to be colorful today.”