Kids are demanding luxury skincare products instead of toys, and experts think social media could be to blame. Here's what you need to know...
As a parent, you may well have spent some time trying to find the products that will help you look less tired and the best night creams to banish wrinkles, thanks to the stress and strain that parenting can put on your skin. But you may well have noticed that your kids have taken an unprecedented interest in these so-called anti-ageing products too.
Experts have warned that children as young as 10 are seeking out these expensive skincare products, and it comes not long after Dior launched a luxury skincare line for babies. It's thought that the trend largely comes from social media, which has seen young people – and mainly young girls – served adverts and content promoting anti-ageing products.
Aside from these luxury products being a redundant choice for children (not to mention a waste of money) dermatologists have warned that they could damage their sensitive skin. Dr Emma Wedgeworth, of the British Cosmetic Dermatology Group, told The Guardian, "It is something I see all the time [at work] and as a mother it is … something I am battling with as well. I have an interest in adolescent skin conditions and see a lot of teens brought in by their parents who are using expensive and extensive skincare routines."
Meanwhile, Dr Anjali Mahto from Self London told the publication, "Most have been heavily influenced by social media (TikTok in particular) and influencers who are showing their in-depth routines, most often accompanied by luxury skincare brands. There is often an unhealthy focus on anti-ageing too, despite their young age."
She added, "I do have concerns about [children] using ingredients like vitamin C, vitamin A (retinoids) and exfoliating acids like AHAs and BHAs. They’re not necessary on young skin and I think the psychological aspect of starting an ‘anti-ageing’ routine this young is detrimental."
Instead, experts recommend a simple skincare routine at a young age, such as cleansing twice a day and using a light moisturiser, as well as sunscreen if UV rays are high.
This gentle cleanser transforms from a rich cream into a lathering foam texture to gently remove oil, dirt and makeup. It contains three ceramides to respect the skin’s natural barriers and is specially designed for all skin types, so it won’t irritate sensitive skin.
Nip + Fab's teen skin range provides everything a teenager needs for calming, clearing and soothing blemish-prone skin. This moisturiser has an advanced formula enriched with purifying Wasabi Extract, sebum-controlling Zinc and mattifying powders, and the lightweight cream helps prevent excess oil build-up and breakouts, leaving your teen's complexion smooth and shine-free.
Our Beauty Editor rated this product the best sunscreen for kids in her round-up. It provides children with UVA & UVB protection and is specially developed for children's delicate skin, supporting the skin barrier too.
And the trend has been noticed more widely, with older customers and beauty store staff taking to TikTok to comment on the trend too. Hundreds have taken to the platform to share their opinions on the new phenomenon.
In one video that has been viewed 4.7 million times, TikTok user chloevanberkel asks, "Has anyone else noticed that every time you go into Sephora now it’s just all little girls?". She went on to explain how "sad" she found it that these young girls were asking for beauty products instead of toys from their parents. Search the #sephora tag on TikTok and you'll find hundreds of videos like these, with users talking about their experiences of witnessing children in beauty stores, browsing pricey products such as Drunk Elephant, Sol de Janeiro and Rare Beauty.
In fact, the trend has become so widespread that cult skincare brand Drunk Elephant has even posted on Instagram explaining which of their products are suitable for kids and tweens. In the caption, it wrote, "Yes! Many of our products are designed for all skin, including kids and tweens. First, I would say stay away from our more potent products that include acids and retinols – their skin does not need these ingredients quite yet."
A photo posted by drunkelephant on
The skincare company added, "Here’s a list of our products that are safe for kids and tweens to use: Beste, Lala, Bora (it’s very rich, so this one depends on level of dryness), F-Balm, Wonderwild, Virgin Marula Oil, Umbra Sheer, B-Hydra, D-Bronzi, O-Bloos, Lippe, Pekee, Kamili Body Cleanser, Sili Body Lotion, Sili Whipped, Wild Marula Tangle Spray, Cocomino shampoo + conditioner."
However, followers in the comments weren't impressed with Drunk Elephant's attempt to market their products towards kids – many of which cost upwards of £30. One user commented, "But why are kids using any kind of skincare besides sunscreen. It’s so unnecessary", while another said, "No KID needs skincare but unfortunately social media is convincing them they do".
Others defended the brand, with one commenter writing, "I'm so over adults deciding what a kid should use. If it's not your kid, keep quiet and let people enjoy things."
Looking for top beauty buys? We've rounded up the best perfumes of all time and the best long-lasting perfumes too. You might also want to check out these hand creams for dry hands and these eye creams for dark circles.
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Ellie is GoodtoKnow’s Family News Editor and covers all the latest trends in the parenting world - from relationship advice and baby names to wellbeing and self-care ideas for busy mums. Ellie is also an NCTJ-qualified journalist and has a distinction in MA Magazine Journalism from Nottingham Trent University and a first-class degree in Journalism from Cardiff University. Previously, Ellie has worked with BBC Good Food, The Big Issue, and the Nottingham Post, as well as freelancing as an arts and entertainment writer alongside her studies. When she’s not got her nose in a book, you’ll probably find Ellie jogging around her local park, indulging in an insta-worthy restaurant, or watching Netflix’s newest true crime documentary.
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