Let me start by saying teenagers beauty starts from within. If you encourage them and tell them that they are beautiful and handsome, they may sigh loudly and roll their eyes, but they hear you. Tell them specifics about themselves that are attractive and be genuine.
Tell them their heart, their smile, their skin, their hair, their compassion for animals, the love they have for their friends are attractive to anyone that is worthy in their lives. Tell them something every day and repeat yourself often. I have heard before that it takes 7 -10 times of hearing something positive to counteract 1 negative thing they hear. Kids are mean and you as a parent have the most influence in your child’s life. You might not think that right now during the hormones and back-talk but it’s true.
With all that being said, your teen probably has certain exterior insecurities that you can do something about, like acne for one, a big one.
In their bodies
First thing is diet. I don’t mean restricting your teen’s calories to make them lose weight. What I mean is make sure they are eating the things that will help their skin be healthy. Vegetables is a good place to start. If they eat veggies with their meals and cut their sugar intake you may be able to control some level of acne. Healthy fats are something they should be educated about. Avocados, olive oil, and fish are great for your skin.
My teen and I split an avocado every day they are in season. It helps both of our skin have a radiance that you cant get from products.
On their skin
Second thing I would look at is what they were putting on their skin. I found this great product (it’s less than $20 for members, contact me for membership) for my teen and I have actually used the toner myself when I see a breakout coming. Most every acne product has salicylic acid in it which dries the skin out, this product has that and tea tree oil which actually heals and cleans the skin on a whole other level. It’s natural which gives me confidence that my teen isn’t putting a whole bunch of poison on her skin. Make sure they are moisturizing! It’s tempting to dry out a pimple, but your skin will overcorrect for too much dryness and overproduce oil, which will create more pimples. Moisture moisture moisture! I have had oily skin my whole life and when I moisturize, I don’t see breakouts.
Stress-the acne hormone
It’s easier said than done but try to help them plan so they don’t stress a much as they normally would. My teen is a walking stress ball, but when I take certain things off her plate that she thinks she is responsible for (like her younger siblings and the entire world) and I help her create a plan for other things in her life like homework and chores, she is much less stressed and it shows in her skin AND her attitude!
Next I want to talk about clothes. We are tempted to keep our teens as children and dress them as such. I am not saying they should be dressing like adults but they should be confident in what they wear. Buy her the cute (albeit conservative) pair of jeans. Let him get the t-shirt with that artist whom you have never heard of on it. Above all things, make sure the clothes fit their bodies!
I remember when my teen wanted her first 2-piece bathing suit. She chose several she thought she would like and they just didn’t fit her properly. I didn’t discourage them but I certainly encouraged this cute little tankini that fit her much better (and was more conservative so I was happy). She ended up choosing the one that fit because I was supportive and helped her make the decision that was best for her body.
When we go shopping now, I tell her, “oh, that fits your body so nicely.” “I like the cut of that skirt, it shows off your legs very well.” Etc. She needs to hear these things from her parents because she will hear them from a boy. Would you rather her get her confidence from you or a random boy? Telling her that she has beautiful legs or her shirt shows off her hour glass figure may sound weird but when that boy tells her the exact same thing I want her reaction to be “yeah, I know, I’ve been told already” instead of falling for him because he gave her a shallow compliment.
Grooming and Hygiene
I almost never speak up about my own insecurities when it comes to my children’s outward appearance. I do, however, ask them what they are insecure about. (maybe I don’t phrase it that way). If you don’t ask they aren’t likely going to tell you and then you wont know how to fix their problem. If they are insecure about their bushy eyebrows, introduce some tweezers or an eyebrow lady to them and boom! You have a more confident teen. If they are insecure about their nose – you know how to compliment them. The point is to enhance things you are able to and build confidence with things you are unable to change.
When it comes to hair, smells, and basic hygiene speak up! They wont have many friends if they smell bad and they will not understand why. Gently remind them every day to remember deodorant. Even though they grew up washing their face, brushing their teeth, and changing their underwear every day somehow they forget these basics when they become teens…until they find someone they like…then it’s overload on the other end of the spectrum and another conversation should be had hehe!
Talk with them often. It’s important for them to understand that you aren’t going away because they yelled through the house that they hate you and you are ruining their life. It’s imperative that you don’t take things personally and you are a positive light force in their world. Text them little things so they can re-read those messages. Hug and kiss them even though they push away.
Find a support to go to and talk when you are having a rough time with it all. Comment below for encouragement.