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What's the beauty of a mum and daughter makeover?

Facials, spray tans, eyebrow threading and waxing have become staples in the lives of young women here. Stephanie Bell talks to mothers and their girls who say you can't beat a day at the beauty salon.

Girls as young as 12 are being introduced to the world of professional beauty pampering in a growing trend that is turning out a whole new generation of immaculately groomed young women in Northern Ireland.

A trip to the local salon has become routine for many mums and daughters who have discovered the beauty of bonding over their local nail and eyebrow bar.

While treatments don't come cheap, many working mums feel it is money well spent as they get to spend quality time with their daughters while also helping to boost their confidence.

It is a craze usually only associated with A-listers, but not anymore as teen girls in ordinary streets here are growing up to regard professional beauty treatments as a necessity rather than a luxury.

Gwyneth Paltrow recently hit the headlines for splashing out £140 a time on facials for her 11-year-old daughter Apple.

The 43-year-old star has enrolled her eldest child for treatments with Hollywood guru Sonya Dakar.

As Mother's Day approaches we talk to three local mums and their teenage daughters who have also found that regular trips to the beauty salon are a great way to spend quality time together.

'It's a very good stress reliever from school, if you look good then you feel good inside'

Linda Rice (46) from Ballynahinch has been taking daughter Emily (15) to her local beauty salon Manor House of Beauty in Saintfield since she was 12 years old. Linda, who is an insurance company manager, is married to Leo (45), a self-employed electrician, and they also have a son Adam (18). Linda says:

Emily and I do go regularly to the beauticians - although probably not as often as she would like. We get nails, eyebrows, the occasional spray tan and facials.

I have my eyebrows tinted while Emily gets hers threaded. We would also do a lot of mini facials at home with our own pamper nights.

I started taking her when she was 12 when her eyebrows were a bit out of control.

I think 12 is a bit young for a facial unless they have skin problems and need a special treatment.

I always liked getting professional beauty treatments myself and while I don't overdo it I think it is good to be well groomed.

And it's lovely being able to go together as mother and daughter - it is a way of spending quality time together as I hate shopping for clothes.

We visit the beauty salon together every three weeks for some preening.

The eyebrow treatments we have cost about £10-£15.

Meanwhile, Emily goes for a nail polish and file while I get gel nails which are about £20 each and in the spring we would get our toenails done too.

When we go for a facial it is usually a deep mask facial which costs £17.50 which we get once every six weeks."

Emily (15), a pupil of Down High School, has recently started to model part-time and hopes to go to university to study criminology. She says:

I remember the first time my mum brought me to the beauty salon when I was 12 and it was quite a big deal.

Now I go and get something done about every four weeks and mum and I would book it together.

We usually go on a Saturday morning and maybe have coffee afterwards. It is also a good stress reliever from school. I think if you look good then you feel good inside as well.

I wouldn't leave the house without my make-up on. I just couldn't imagine going out bare-faced.

I've done a bit of modelling recently so I know I need to look my best.

While I don't go in for false nails I would always tidy them up and polish them and make sure they look good. It is just normal to me."

‘We often have wee pamper nights with face masks on’

Lorna Smyth (46) from Ballynahinch is a self-employed advisor for the beauty and well-being company Forever Living. She is married to Mark (43) a self-employed consultant and they have three girls Courtney (18), Anna (16) and Molly (12). Lorna says:

Courtney now works part-time while studying so she pays for many of her own beauty treatments and Molly is still too young to go to a salon.

Anna and I would go together to our local salon Manor House of Beauty in Saintfield.

I started taking her for professional treatments when she was 14. She likes to get her eyebrows tinted and threaded and would have a spray tan for a special occasion.

Her school formal is coming up and she is booked in to get gel nails, her make-up done and a spray tan.

In my day you didn't get your make-up professionally done but these things are now considered necessities rather than luxuries.

We don't really go for facials, because of my job, I have all the good products at home and we tend to do our own at home.

I don't think you can be too young to start looking after your skin and I do teach the girls to do so. I think it is important to put up a line of defence at a young age as prevention is better than having to fix something later.

I love going to our local salon with Anna - it is a perk of having a daughter.

It isn't cheap but beauty treatments have become the norm now with teenage girls.

I have gel nails applied every three weeks which costs £20, and we both get our eyebrows tidied up every six weeks which is around £15.

Her spray tans are around £15. It isn't something I encourage but she wants it. It is all about how they look when they are young now and I do give in."

Anna (16), is a pupil at Down High School. She says:

I love going to the beauty salon with my mum and we would also do little treatments together at home.

We do go regularly and probably not as often as I would like. I think it is important to take pride in your appearance and take care of yourself and I would always make sure my nails, hair and eyebrows look good. My friends are all the same.

It is nice to go to a salon and have my nails and eyebrows professionally done."

'Life can be so busy that I think you need to take time out' of fresh air'

Claire Cassidy (35), a childminder from Dundonald, enjoys regular beauty treatments with her 16-year-old daughter Liberty. Claire, who is married to Jonathan (35) an architect, also has a 19-month-old son, Eden. Claire says :

I first took Liberty to the beauty salon when she was 11. I think it is the age when a negative self image can start to affect girls, and I felt it was a good way for her to feel better about herself.

We usually go once a month and Liberty gets one treatment. We have no specific salon and go to a few.

It is also a great way for us to have mother and daughter time.

I get regular waxing which costs around £30 but Liberty would only get waxed if she is going on holiday. We go to the salon as a treat and usually have a facial which is around £35.

Liberty also gets her hair coloured every month which costs £40."

Going to the salon is an important opportunity for some me-time.

The way I look at it is that I think you have to kind to yourself before you can be kind to others. Life is so busy that I think you need to take time out and have a treat."

Liberty (16), a pupil of Grosvenor Grammar, says:

My mum first took me to a beauty salon when I was 11. We were going to a wedding and I got my legs, armpits and eyebrows waxed. It has been a regular treat ever since and it's nice that me and mum can do it together.

It does make you feel better about yourself especially going on holiday when I would get more compliments than usual. I do take time at home to do my nails and make-up as it's important to be well presented."

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