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A girl’s beauty confidence starts with her mother

Parent Info has partnered with the Dove Self-Esteem Project to offer parents advice and information to help children and young people build confidence and feel good about themselves.

In this article, we look at the role of mothers in their daughters’ lives

Can you recall a time that you kept a secret from your parents? It can be difficult for a teenage girl to chat to her mum, or anyone, about sensitive issues. It's possible to encourage openness so that your daughter feels that she can come and speak to you about anything, however awkward or embarrassing. It's important to listen without judgement and try and put yourself in her shoes. Having a strong mother-daughter bond is important to help boost your daughter's self-confidence and self-esteem.

Tip: Develop a secret code for dealing with problems

Create a codeword that your daughter can use to alert you of any sensitive problem she may want to talk to you about. Clinical psychologist Dr Tara Cousineau suggests that having a shared private codeword between mother and daughter can help strengthen your relationship and help your daughter find an easy way of communicating tricky and sensitive issues with you, such as seeking advice for relationships, what to do if she arrives at a party where there are drugs or alcohol, and, in extreme cases, a way to alert you about any abuse or bullying. ‘Your mother-daughter code will build trust and encourage your teenage daughter to reach out to you when dealing with teenage problems,’ says Dr Cousineau.

Read more on a secret code for your mother-daughter relationship

‘How I feel about myself really affects how she feels about herself’

Mother: ‘Why do you like your mole then?’   Daughter: ‘Because it’s the same as yours!’

In this video, Dove asks mothers what they like and don’t like about their appearance and then poses the same question to their daughters. The film shows how daughters tend to like and dislike the same aspects of their appearance as their mother, showing how the way we talk about our body image and our own beauty confidence can influence those close to us.

Download your FREE 40-page parent guide to boosting your child's self-esteem here

This downloadable pdf contains expert advice from Dove Self-Esteem Project global experts from the fields of psychology, body image, self-esteem, eating disorders and media representation to create a resource for parents that is focused on advice and action.  

Teachers, for free, downloadable teaching resources, go to the Dove Self-Esteem Project area on

These pages are brought to you by Parent Zone and the Dove Self-Esteem Project


The advice published on Parent Info is provided by independent experts in their field and not necessarily the views of Parent Zone or NCA-CEOP.

First published: September 2017


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