ten vs. ten

Dove's New Ad Campaign Takes On Sephora Tweens

“When did 10-year-olds start worrying about wrinkles and getting older?"

A new Dove campaign takes on Sephora Tweens.
Dove / YouTube

By now, you’ve probably heard of Sephora Tweens. There’s the kids begging their parents for hundreds of dollars worth of Drunk Elephant skincare and Rare Beauty makeup. These are products meant for adults, and yet, the popular beauty product retailer Sephora is now crawling with 10, 11, and 12-year-old girls.

Many believe kids this age don’t need any kind of skincare or makeup. Yet, don’t you remember being that age, wanting to feel older? Now, I know none of us were actually out there buying $50 makeup palettes or Drunk Elephant skincare, but in today’s world, there’s not much out there for tweens to do. There is a lack of third spaces. So, off to the Sephora they go.

Personal care brand Dove has launched a new campaign aimed at parents of those very tweens, urging them to skip the trip to Sephora and opt for something more gentle. The ad hones in on the idea that kids should be kids and instead of making “Get Ready With Me” TikTok videos, they should be outside on the monkey bars or playing hopscotch.

The ad cycles through footage of ten-year-old girls playing outside, being goofy, dancing, and jumping to pools, then the tone switches, flipping to mock videos of ten-year-old girls applying face creams, serums, and cleansers.

“When did 10 stop looking like 10?” text overlay reads on the ad. “Girls as young as 10 are being influenced by adult skincare content.”

There is some validity to this. Popular TikTokers like Alix Earle have large followings of tweens who look up to her, aiming to purchase the same products she uses, creating pressure for them to adopt unnecessary anti-aging skincare regimens.

Firdaous El Honsali, Global Vice President at Dove, said, "When did 10-year-olds start worrying about wrinkles and getting older? It is time to highlight the absurdity and protect their self-esteem.”

"At Dove, we believe beauty should be a source of happiness, not anxiety. For two decades, we have taken action to build confidence and self-esteem for millions of girls. Today, our girls are anti-aging before they’ve even started to grow up and need us more than ever."

As a part of their #TheFaceof10 campaign, Dove has created a free resource on how to talk to young people about anti-aging and beauty anxiety.

Created in partnership with research psychologist Dr. Phillippa Diedrichs and dermatologist Dr. Marisa Garshick, the 'Gen A Anti-Ageing Talk' supports the idea that a 10-year-old’s face should be a canvas for fun, not anti-aging products.

There has to be a happy medium somewhere, right? A place where tween girls can still have fun, feel beautiful, and practice self-care without using retinol and hyaluronic acid.

Dr. Brooke Jeffy, who is also the founder of Gen-Alpha and Tween/Teen skincare brand, BTWN, which specifically targets this tween age demographic, has previously expressed her concern over this skincare trend in children.

“Tween skin deserves gentle care, not a pricey, extensive skincare routine! As a mom and derm, I’m here to spill the tea: harsh chemicals aren’t meant for those in-between years. Drunk Elephant products may be fine adult skin but for kiddos, it is definitely not! This skincare line is packed with potent ingredients meant for adults, not young skin,” she wrote.

For parents of tweens who do not want to give up their skincare, there are products that tweens can use like gentle cleansers, moisturizers, and fun face masks.