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Less is more when you are a preteen experimenting with makeup for the first time. The key is to accentuate what you already have and make sure you look appropriate for your age.

Skin Care

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Before you start wearing makeup, you must learn how to take care of your skin. It's pretty simple--wash your face in the morning and at night and use a moisturizer with SPF. During the day also wear sunscreen on your face and body because moisturizers with SPF do not provide enough protection. It is important to wear sunscreen when you are young, to avoid skin damage when you are older.

If you have pimples, do not pop them, as that will cause scarring. Do not wear makeup on your face if you have acne. Makeup will clog your pores and it will be more difficult for your skin to get healthy again. Also, all the makeup you buy should be oil-free.

Eyes

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The objective is to look natural. Eyeshadow in natural colors may be appropriate, but some elementary schools have banned students from wearing any makeup. If you are allowed to wear eyeshadow, try light purple, pink or brown colors for a softer look. The goal is to show a hint of color and not to overwhelm with bright, bold colors.

Lips

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Lipstick, no. Lipgloss, yes. An eleven-year-old can add color to her pout; it will hydrate the skin and prevent chapping. Use lipgloss with an SPF. These glosses come in a variety of colors so you can buy a couple and alternate.

Nails

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Paint your nails. There are so many colors to choose from that your nails will never be boring and it's a way to express your personality through beauty. It's best to stay away from dark polish and anything flashy--the objective is not to attract negative attention. Go for clear, cream, pink, red and pastel colors.

Perfume

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There are several designer scents that are geared toward tweens. There are also perfumes made from natural ingredients like water lily, lavender and jasmine. You can also buy perfumes that smell like your favorite scents, like fresh laundry, baby powder or sugar cookies.

Hair

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Some parents believe it is appropriate for tweens to get highlights at the salon, but other parents do not. If you do end up coloring your hair, be subtle. Make sure your hair looks natural, as if the sun lightened it.

If your hair is straight and you want it to be wavy, braid hair while it's wet before you go to sleep and you will wake up with wavy hair. For special occasions, ask an adult to curl your hair with a curling iron.

Don't forget that a simple pony-tail is beautiful on anyone.

About the Author

Marissa Grey

Marissa Grey was born in Los Angeles, but moved to the East Coast when she was 15. She did her undergraduate education in Connecticut, studying anthropology, film and spanish. After studying abroad in Spain, Grey knew that writing was her passion. She has a Master of Arts from Emerson College in multimedia journalism and lives in New York City.