So, yeah. I let my eight-year-old daughter wear make-up whenever she wants.
Continue reading whenever you’ve finished giving me the side-eye.
Anyway, the hard thing about this kid, I keep saying to anyone who will listen to me when I whine (usually with wine), is to parent her while respecting her passions, but without degrading them into the usual sort of stereotypical girly-girl pop culture fluff. So yeah, the kid puts on make-up when she wants, because she wants to, but when she runs to show me I tell her not how pretty or fancy it is, but how glittery! How colorful! How “Ooh, the way that you blended that blue and green eyeshadow onto your cheeks is VERY interesting!”
One of the trickiest problems when parenting an occasional make-up wearing kid is what to buy her. Not play make-up, obviously–we treat make-up as an art supply in our family, so it needs to actually work. Not Dollar Store make-up–I have no idea what goes into that crap, but I’m sure it’s not good. I won’t even buy the kids that cheap clown make-up at Halloween, so I’m hella not going to buy them that same contaminated-with-heavy-metals nonsense for everyday play.
And yet the good quality make-up that I do mostly buy isn’t necessarily a great choice, either. It’s pricey, so I cringe inside my head when I see the kid experimenting with it in off-label ways. It also has a bunch of gross chemicals, too, whether it be fragrances or petrochemicals or the billion other toxic things that I don’t super want on my kids’ faces. AND it tends to all be pretty saturated with pigment, and my kiddo especially, because she’s worn her fair share of stage make-up in her time, does not embrace the concept of “less is more.” For her, more is more, and if she can make her eye shadow look like she painted a crayon across her lids, then she probably will.
1. It doesn’t contain freaky cancer-chemicals. The make-up in these sets has no synthetic ingredients. Heck, the lip gloss is even organic! There are complete ingredients lists posted, as well, so you can double-check if your kid has any sensitivities. These make-ups are also made in the USA and Canada, so you know that nothing with dangerous ingredients has slipped through customs.
2. The packaging design is minimalist. No gender-stereotypical graphics of Girls Doing Girly Things. No sexualized images of fully, glossy, pouty, “Momma, why does the lady do her mouth like that?” lips. Just a little pink, but lots of blue and green and orange and 100% recycled fibers brown.
3. “Less is more” comes more easily. I really, REALLY love the blush and eyeshadow applicators here:
The blush and eyeshadow are loose powders, inside a container that has holes punched in. The kid takes the pouf or one of the little brushes, dabs it across the holes, and automatically gets an appropriate amount of pigment to apply. Once I’d stopped my kiddo from simply holding the applicator upside-down and attempting to dump it onto the brush to get more pigment, she was able to happily dab and apply, dab and apply, without ever looking as if she’s smeared crayon across her face (if that’s the look that she wants, she can easily get out some of her other make-up supplies, of course.
My only beef with the KLEE girls set is the same beef that I have with everything, everywhere, all the time. I wish that products were not marketed towards a specific sex, especially when it comes to kids. In my opinion, the longer a person can go in their life without feeling like some cultural something or other is or is not assigned to them based on the circumstances of their biology, the better. But hey, I also dress my kids in “boy” clothes, because the idea that boys should wear long, baggy shorts while girls should wear short shorts, and that boys should wear long, baggy swim trunks while girls should wear fitted bathing suits also offends me, so clearly I’m on the pretty extreme end of the spectrum and no, I don’t get invited to many dinner parties.
I received this set of KLEE girls make-up for free from Luna Star Naturals, on account of I can’t review a product unless my kid has put it all over her face and then gone out with me to the grocery store. And you think that YOU gave me the side-eye at the beginning of this post!