Care and Feeding

My 20-Year-Old Has a Ridiculous New Look

Can I say something?

A woman with false eyelashes.
Photo illustration by Slate. Photo by Getty Images Plus.

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Dear Care and Feeding,

I have a 20-year-old daughter who is away at college. She came home to visit, and she has been wearing those fake extra-long eyelashes as an everyday fashion accessory. They look cartoonish to me; they make her look like she’s not a serious person. Also I fear that the glue that keeps them on may damage her real eyelashes, not to mention her potential sight.

She doesn’t like it when I try to get her to not wear them (I am as subtle as I can be about it, but it still makes her mad). She goes everywhere with them on! Not just to parties but to the store—even to visit me at work to see my coworkers. I just think they are ridiculous. How can I get her to stop wearing them?

—Concerned in Fort Lauderdale

Dear Concerned,

She’s 20. You can’t. I’m sorry—I know this a hard pill to swallow. And while it’s true that eyelash glue can sometimes cause problems, especially if too much is applied or it’s used carelessly, I’m pretty sure you cannot convince her of that. If you want to try, one more time, give her this to read—it’s a little scary. (If she’s never considered the possibility that she might be harming herself, it might make her switch to multiple coats of super-powered, lengthening mascara.) But you have probably already blown it with her by emphasizing how “ridiculous” and “cartoonish” she looks. You no longer get a vote about how she looks, much less veto power. What she does to adorn her body is nobody’s business but hers now. You might as well get used to it.

—Michelle

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