DEAR HARRIETTE: My daughter is 9, and she wants to have a beauty party birthday party. Her idea is to have nails and makeup so that she and her girlfriends can dress up like princesses. I thought it was a cute idea, and I sent out an invitation to her friends. One of the moms called me to say she was concerned because she doesn't want her young child to be exposed to toxic chemicals. I hadn't thought about that. I don't want to expose the children to toxins, but I do want them to enjoy this party. How can I get around this challenge? -- Beauty Safety, Detroit
DEAR BEAUTY SAFETY: You are in luck. There are many beauty products designed for children to use. Nail polish, in particular, exists without harmful chemical additives. The color does not stay on as long, but so what? It's all about the fun party. Some options to consider are ella+mila (ellamila.com), a vegan line at The Body Shop (thebodyshop.com) and water-based nail polishes (prettypaintednails.com/nail-polish-for-kids/).
Similarly, you can look for nontoxic makeup and natural hair products that the girls can use to play with and have a great time without threat of health concerns.
Complete the party with tiaras and boas and other fun fashion items. You may also want to take photos of the girls as they get glammed up so that they can remember this day with fondness!
Be sure to double back to the concerned mom to let her know that you have worked out the party details so that everyone will be fine. Welcome her to stop by to observe, if she would like. Most important, create a memorable event for your child using your creativity and caution as your guides.