How Old Should My Daughter Be Before She Starts Using Makeup?


We have all been there, your baby girl wants to play in makeup. I know my husband was having a really hard time with letting our three year old daughter wear makeup…

That’s what spawned this article.

Where to Start?

That’s the argument.

Should toddlers be allowed to even play in mom’s makeup??

Should be allowed to wear it of the house??

In my opinion, playing in makeup and wearing in everyday life, are very different.

When a child gets ready with Mommy or Daddy every morning, they are going to want to do what Mommy and Daddy are doing.

Brushing teeth, combing hair, deodorant, etc.

Why would it be any different with makeup.

When your little princess is a toddler, introducing her to makeup control is okay.

But only at home.

And I’m not talking about using the good makeup, either.

I am talking about pretend makeup and chapstick….

Let me explain.

Buy a cheap brush set of less then $5, a little makeup box just big enough to hold those brushes, 1 tube of $1 chapstick and clear mascara (they make some specifically for kids).

For less than $10, your toddler will have her little hears fill.


Give them your empty powder and empty eye shadow so they can look like you.

And begin teaching them how to properly apply makeup and how to control the amount.

Now, you know and I know there is nothing actually going on their face. But, the act of learning the process builds a confidence in themselves and gives the allusion that they are growing up to be just like you.

“This blog is for Dads” you say…

Well, Dads can do this too. Just, instead putting the makeup on “Dad’s face” he helps put it on his little girl and tells her how beautiful she looks.

Also, Dads, at the age of 3-5 this process is okay.

If you and Mom decide you want to start adding in real blush and real eye shadow, that’a okay, but keep the colors light and watch how much they are using it.

What About the Public?

Again, in my personal opinion, I do not feel girls under the age of 13 should wear real makeup out in public.

Playing with it home and learning how to use it is one thing. But allowing your 10 year old to wear as much makeup as you do on date night gives the wrong signal to teenage boys.

Dads, I know allowing your little girl to wear makeup at all is a big step for you. Here is what I feel would be an appropriate guide to how much makeup should be allowed to be worn out of the house:

Ages 3-10 NONE

Ages 11-12 Skin toned powder, light blush and light lip gloss (not lip stick).

Ages 13 – 15 Learn to use skin toned base to help hide pimples, skin toned powder, neutral eye shadow, mascara, light blush, and lip gloss (not lip stick)

Ages 16 – 18 Base, Powder, Can start playing with eye shadow colors, blush, bronzer, eyeliner, mascara, start experimenting with lipsticks and lip liners, and lip gloss.

Ages 18+ They are old enough to know what is hooker makeup and what brings out their natural beauty.

Final Thoughts

For all you single Dads out there, you may need to turn to YouTube and learn how to to apply makeup so you can teach your little girl.

Or, speak with your sister, mother, female friends, etc and see if they could help, as well.

You must educate yourself on natural beauty vs “contouring”.

Your pre-teen is going to try and push it. Most of the other girls in her class will probably be using contouring and caking on pounds of makeup and she’ll want to do it, too…

Be strong.

Don’t give in.

Also, do not buy super expensive brands for your child. At 16 years old, maybe surprise them with something special and then build from there.

But anyone under 16 years old does not need $50 – $150 foundation or $30 lipstick. You’re just not ready for it.

If your kid gets an allowance, make them start purchasing their own makeup at the age of 14.

This will help them learn to work for something they want while teaching them that money doesn’t grown on trees.

If they do not get an allowance, make them earn their makeup starting at 14.

Chores, babysitting siblings, great grades, etc. Same lessons are learned but though a different style of currency.

Again, this is just my opinion. I have a 14 year old sister that is like a daughter to me and a 3 year old daughter.

They are at way different stages in their lives but the makeup argument is almost an every morning discussion.



Hi, I’m Amanda Dempsey. Now, obviously I am not a Dad… But I am Mom. A Stay at home, work from home mom that, sometimes, has to embrace the role as Mother and Father. From sticky jam messes to crayons on the walls – From brooding teenager to letting them make their own mistakes – I have been through it all. Expert I am not but sometimes, Dads just need a little help from a Mom ;-)

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 0 comments