How to Get My Daughter to Be Girly

By Sara Ipatenco
Even tomboys might enjoy the opportunity to be girly for a day.
Even tomboys might enjoy the opportunity to be girly for a day.

You love your little girl just the way she is, but if she'd rather play in the mud, catch worms and climb trees, you might be longing for trips to the salon and the opportunity to brush her hair into the latest style. While you shouldn't try to change your daughter's personality or make your love conditional on her girliness, there's nothing wrong with showing your daughter the girly side of life. If she doesn't enjoy it, let her return to her way of life and wait until she hits her teenage years, when many tomboys become much more girly.

Let your daughter play with your makeup. Show her how to put on eyeshadow and mascara. Allow her to swipe on your lip gloss. Little girls shouldn't wear makeup to school or church because it isn't age-appropriate, but nothing's wrong with letting your daughter get glam while you're at home. If your makeup is too expensive to play with, buy your daughter some of her own.

Paint your daughter's finger and toenails. Let her choose a color from your stash of polish and treat your little girl to a manicure and pedicure. Paint your own finger and toenails to match.

Take your daughter shopping for dresses and skirts. She might be resistant if she's used to only wearing pants and shorts, but encourage her to pick out a few garments to try on. Many girls, tomboys included, enjoy the opportunity to put on something fancy and twirl in front of the mirror. If it's in your budget, allow your daughter to pick one dress or skirt to bring home so she can continue twirling in her own bedroom.

Teach your daughter how to accessorize. Let her carry one of your purses or consider letting her pick out one of her own. Encourage her to wear necklaces and bracelets if she wants, and think about letting her get her ears pierced. Many tomboys like having pierced ears even if they aren't especially girly, and picking out earrings together can be enjoyable for both of you.


Love your daughter the way she is, and stop wishing for the daughter you always imagined you would have. Once you let go of your wishes, you'll discover a talented, beautiful and incredibly special little girl that's the perfect daughter for you.


Don't focus on the elements you don't like about not having a girly girl. Letting your daughter know that you're less than happy with her lack of girliness can lead to insecurity and can damage your relationship.

About the Author

Sara Ipatenco has taught writing, health and nutrition. She started writing in 2007 and has been published in Teaching Tolerance magazine. Ipatenco holds a bachelor's degree and a master's degree in education, both from the University of Denver.