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Author Topic: School Policy and Makeup  (Read 769 times)

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Offline CaeliTopic starter

School Policy and Makeup
« on: November 30, 2011, 07:24:58 AM »
Source: Herald Sun.

Quote
PRIMPED preps, plastered with lipstick and eyeshadow and wearing skimpy clothes, have forced a crackdown by schools.

Some girls have been banned from wearing make-up and are even having cosmetics confiscated in the classroom.

It comes as a parent of a prep girl has revealed his shock at seeing a gaggle of six-year-old girls at a school disco last week with fully made-up faces.

The dad was stunned to see his daughter's fellow Yarraville West Primary School classmates dolled-up like teens.

"I was shocked: They had blue eyeshadow, lipstick, blush. They looked like they should be in Toddlers and Tiaras," said the parent, who declined to be named. "It looked like their mums had put it on."

The school did not return telephone calls from the Herald Sun.

Child development experts worried about the sexualisation of children warn there is a difference between kids playing dress-ups or being styled as adults.

Louise Newman, Professor of Psychiatry at Monash University, said childhood was being eroded as kids were being pressured to grow up too early.

"Children in primary school are already worrying about their appearance, having the right look, the right clothes," she said.

"Parents might think it is beautiful and cute but might not think about the implications."

Berwick Lodge Primary School banned make-up and revealing clothing after discussions with parents and the school council.

Principal Henry Grossek said the school acted after a group of girls aged eight to 10 turned up to school in skimpy outfits and lipstick.

"The whole issue of the sexualisation of kids too early is one the school council and I are concerned about," he said.

"And there is greater interest now at a younger age to form relationships. It's all tied up in the tween culture."

Anti-child exploitation web group, Collective Shout, has been contacted by parents of primary school children going to parties where other girls were in full make-up.

Spokeswoman Melinda Liszewski said children then put pressure on parents to let them follow suit.

Mum Gillian Southan, of Essendon, said her daughter Annabelle, 6, was "obsessed" with her make-up collection, but she would not let her wear it in public.

"She took one of my Estee Lauder lip glosses to school and she got caught by the teacher putting it on who said, 'I don't want to see this again'," she said.

"We had a laugh but both agreed it wasn't appropriate. I don't think they should wear it seriously until they are teenagers."

I thought this might be more appropriate for Ladies Only, but I also wanted to hear views from the male population: fathers, brothers, teachers, or simply as general members of society.

It's a conversation topic that comes up once in a while when I'm chatting with my friends about high school, music videos, or teeny-bopper musicians: makeup, and the prominent sexualization of popular social icons in teen culture. Outfits in music videos are getting skimpier and skimpier; teens wear more and more provocative outfits at a younger age; makeup is promoted to the younger masses; and so on.

Whether that trend was true when I was that age and I simply didn't notice, I do not know. However, I do know that at least these days, it's making headlines (whereas when I was in high school, it wasn't that big of a deal). While I am all for makeup (used moderately or lightly) as a form of creative and personal expression for girls in high school, I am more iffy on its use for middle school girls, and a bit shocked to hear that elementary school girls would be made up (by their parents, no less!) at all.

Most schools have at least some form of a dress code in place, and enforced to varying degrees. Do you think makeup should be part of that dress code? Should schools have policy in place to restrict or even ban the use of makeup (and if so, which level(s) of educational institution)?

Offline Lilias

Re: School Policy and Makeup
« Reply #1 on: November 30, 2011, 07:38:02 AM »
In the UK, makeup and jewellery are part of the dress code, which pretty much says, 'None of that while you're in uniform.'

The issue is more visible now that we are more connected, but even I can remember cases from when I was at school, back in the stone age of the 80s. We had to contend with spiky hair and sword-like nails at the time, and there was a huge debate in Year 10 on whether biking shorts are appropriate for school or not (the decision was 'not'). Plus, there was a newspaper cutting in one of my English learning books, dated from the 70s, that bemoaned nine-year-olds wearing makeup.

It's nothing new, and it's interesting to see how my generation, as parents, is reacting to something we used to (try and) do ourselves.

Offline Caela

Re: School Policy and Makeup
« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2011, 07:54:58 AM »
I don't have a problem with little girls playing dress up and wanting to get into Mommy's make up but they shouldn't be wearing said make up to school and Mom certainly shouldn't be making up their 6 year olds!

This is a part of why I, as a Mom, am so very picky about what my child is allowed to watch. She is only 3 but that's not terribly far away in age from the girls this article is talking about. She doesn't get to see the teeny bopper icons on TV or in music videos because we don't watch cable television. She gets to watch the DVD's I buy or shows on netflix that I've seen before allowing her to watch them. She has some cartoons that she watches on her grandparents "On Demand" when she is visiting them but they are picky about her view habits as well.

Some of this can be chalked up to societal and peer pressure but much of it falls on parents for not doing their jobs as well. We're the gatekeepers of what our kids see and are exposed to (especially at home, you obviously can't control everything) and when we fall down on the job our kids are the ones that pay for it. A 6 year old doesn't need to be wearing make up, period. A junior high girl I might let wear it for special occasions or the odd day here and there but not as an everyday thing and a high schooler I'd let wear it everyday if she earned the money (got a job, babysitting, extra chores etc.) to pay for it herself. There's exceptions to almost everything of course and you'd have to take the maturity of the girl into consideration as well but those are the general guidelines I have for my own daughter as she gets older.

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Re: School Policy and Makeup
« Reply #3 on: November 30, 2011, 08:16:21 AM »
I was at a friend's house the other day and her sister who is a school psychologist was talking about a show that deals with little girls in beauty pageants.  One mother dressed her daughter up like the hooker character Julia Roberts play in "Pretty Woman."  We laughed but the sister said that one facility houses both elementary and middle school and she overheard some of the middle school boys talking about a few of the girls that looked like hookers.  She thought they were talking about classmates and was stunned when she saw the subject of their remarks was a group of third grade girls who were not appropriately dress for school.

Make up and clothes for the young students is a constant subject at the seminars she attends.

Offline Envious

Re: School Policy and Makeup
« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2011, 11:14:06 AM »
I let my six year old play in makeup all the time, but she's not allowed to wear it out of the house. I personally feel it completely inappropriate until you hit the higher teens, and even then it wouldn't be an everyday occurance. I think it completely fine for for educational institutes to ban the use of makeup in all cases below high school. During high school, it would only be allowed during functions like dances.

I don't know if allowing it during pictures would be a good idea. Can you imagine the first-time makeup user getting all dolled up in all the wrong ways and then getting it memorialized in the school yearbook? Ouch.

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Re: School Policy and Makeup
« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2011, 11:32:53 AM »
There's a big difference between 'playing with makeup' (which inevitably ends up with the average elementary student looking clownish) and 'getting made up' (which is generally done by an adult who uses makeup to look 'sexy'.)  Neither one is something I'd like to see at the average elementary school, though. 

We need to let our kids be kids.

Offline Jude

Re: School Policy and Makeup
« Reply #6 on: November 30, 2011, 12:38:16 PM »
I'm also not really okay with making women in general feel like they have to wear makeup to begin with.  Maybe outlawing it in school will help turn the tide somewhat?  Why should women be expected to go to greater lengths to tend to their appearance than men?

Offline Caela

Re: School Policy and Makeup
« Reply #7 on: November 30, 2011, 04:12:16 PM »
There's a big difference between 'playing with makeup' (which inevitably ends up with the average elementary student looking clownish) and 'getting made up' (which is generally done by an adult who uses makeup to look 'sexy'.)  Neither one is something I'd like to see at the average elementary school, though. 

We need to let our kids be kids.


This. +infinity lol

I don't mind the 'playing with make-up' at home. I don't see it as much different (and often a part of) playing dress up when they end wearing our shoes and trying to get into our jewelry boxes to find things to play with. They see us use it and want to be like Mommy so they go after our make-up too. It's the parents that make up their kids that I have a problem with. That's not playing and having fun, that's making your kid grow up way too fast.

I'm also not really okay with making women in general feel like they have to wear makeup to begin with.  Maybe outlawing it in school will help turn the tide somewhat?  Why should women be expected to go to greater lengths to tend to their appearance than men?

I never feel like I have to wear make up. When I choose to wear it it's because I want to to make myself look prettier for me. I don't know that banning it in schools would really help when girls see women dolled up just about everywhere they turn. If we want them to feel good about themselves WE need to be the ones to teach them that they are beautiful and don't need to be made up to be so.

And let's face it, more and more men are beginning to fall on the being done up bandwagon. They may not wear make-up but it's becoming far more common for them to be using products on their hair, worry about wearing the "right" clothes,  and plucking/waxing/shaving beyond just their chins! Not nearly as common as with women but the segment of men that worries about their appearance is growing and the segment of women that expects them to is as well.

I don't see the trend of women being made up reversing, so much as turning toward, "If we have to work this hard so do you."

Offline Serephino

Re: School Policy and Makeup
« Reply #8 on: November 30, 2011, 05:02:39 PM »
I saw this trend in high school.  One of my classmates made the comment that in each new Freshman class the girls got a little 'sluttier'.  Some of the girls in my class didn't wear make up at all.  My Senior year, some of the Freshman girls looked like they put it on with a putty knife. 

I didn't notice anything like this in earlier grades, so maybe it wasn't a problem yet.