Q: My daughter is six years old and wants to wear lipstick. Any advice?
A: Our young children see so many female role models wear make-up, including their own mothers, making it hard to form a credible argument against it. However, although we may not be willing to model going natural, we can still model something at least as valuable: the ability to problem-solve and compromise. First, try to find out specifically what’s driving your daughter’s interest by asking open-ended questions. Then, put her concern (e.g., wanting to be like mom, wanting to look prettier, wanting to look different for fun) and your concern (e.g., wanting her to feel good about the way she looks naturally) both on the table and ask for ideas to address both goals. She may suggest wearing some of your jewelry to be like you, wearing decorative ribbons, belts, or scarves to look prettier, or getting her hair cut or face painted to look different for fun. If you’re okay with her idea, problem solved! If not, continue to brainstorm until you reach a compromise you can both accept.