What the ‘no make-up selfie’ says to our children
The #NoMakeUpSelfie has been without doubt an incredible phenomenon, raising millions of pounds for cancer charities. Our regular guest blogger and parenting expert Belinda Hayes from TLS Parenting has taken the opportunity to look at it from a different angle.
I don’t know about you, but I have been really interested by the reactions to the ‘no make- up selfie’ requests on social media.
Some friends have been happy to reveal their true selves, some have ignored the request and others have said, “well this is what I look like anyway – so here goes!”
When I asked my daughter what she thought about the trend, she couldn’t see a problem – why would people get so stressed about make up when they are naturally beautiful.
Now, I know that she is 10 and this can all change, but I was really pleased to hear her say that.
Often as parents we build our children up, while dragging ourselves down, and we don’t even realise we are doing it. When we criticise others, or ourselves based on our looks, our children see this, and what we model to them undermines our efforts to build them up.
Never before have children been so influenced by the visual. Television, apps and even communication is more than ever about images – with many children as young as 9 using instagram regularly. Judgement about appearances are quickly attached to these communications – like with the “hot or not” app where people are judged on their looks.
I have always thought that home should be a port in the storm of life, so this should be the one place that goes against society’s grain; and I know that we try to be, it is just that sometimes our actions and thoughts about ourselves contradict our best wishes for our children.
Now, I am not saying we should never diet, or wear makeup, but I am saying that we need to be mindful of how we do these things.
I am a fan of praising children, but don’t forget to praise yourself too! Let your kids know when you have done something well, or when your look great – they will catch on and praise you too.
And finally, when you are applying make-up, remember that you are merely enhancing your natural features, because let’s face it – those gorgeous kids of yours got there looks from you!
Photographs: Free Digital Images
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