TikTok make-up influencers spark health warnings

PARIS  -  Pressed by parents to pose in videos with make-up and skincare products, pre-teen girls dubbed “Sephora Kids” have taken TikTok by storm in a trend that some specialists brand a danger to children’s mental and physical health. American girls between the ages of eight and 12 are gaining thousands of followers on the video platform by modelling their make-up purchases. The trend focuses particularly on products from the French high-street brand Sephora, championed by reality TV star Kim Kardashian’s daughter, North West. Gushing over pots of moisturiser or begging their parents to buy them anti-wrinkle cream, they pose in front of the mirror with their hair tied back, aping popular grown-up make-up tutorials. Skin specialists warned that some of the products used in the kids’ videos contain ingredients not suited to young skin, such as retinol. “Many of the ‘skin influencers’ some­times are more trusted than real physicians,” US dermatologist Danilo Del Campo told AFP. “This has led to an increase in consultations related to skin reactions and concerns resulting from the misuse of these products,” he warned. “Most parents do not realise there are any risks.” Par­roting famous beauty influencers, the “Sephora kids” review products from high-end lines, such as moisturisers costing nearly 70 euros ($76). “How can these little girls spend like, my salary, really, in skincare?” said one Sephora salesperson in the United States, in a TikTok video. Del Campo warned young skin can be damaged by unsuitable ingredients.

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