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Botox For 8-Year-Olds? WTF?

Lissa Rankin's picture

botox for 8 year olds

My blood is boiling because I just heard that 8-year-old beauty queen Britney Campbell got Botox. She didn’t just get Botox. Her mother gave it to her. Why? Because Britney complained that she had wrinkles, and now, post-Botox, she feels like she "looks way better, like, beautiful, pretty, like, all those kinds of nice words."


Britney and her mother Kerry were on Good Morning America, talking about her extreme beauty regimen, which includes waxing and Botox. And according to Stylist.com, they showed “a slew of photos depicting Britney with bruises, puffy cheeks and ice packs.”

What is happening to us? How can this be true?

According to the Huffington Post, Britney’s mom is unapologetic about her decision to give her daughter Botox. I’m all about being unapologetically YOU, but seriously -- this crosses my line. Shame on you, Mama. This is just not cool. As far as I’m concerned, this is child abuse and should be illegal. Someone should call Child Protective Services.

No wonder our daughters grow up and have eating disorders, get 20 plastic surgeries on extreme makeover reality TV shows, and wind up suicidal when they lose their looks. Poor Britney. I wish I could get my hands on that girl and teach her what I teach my gorgeous 5-year-old daughter -- that true beauty lies within, and the sooner you learn to accept that a rich, fulfilling life is filled with pimples, bad hair days, wrinkles, sagging breasts, muffin tops, varicose veins, blotchy patches, and turkey necks, the sooner you’ll find inner peace with the body you’re blessed to live in.

To Kerry, Britney’s Mama, let me say this:

Please, my dear, it’s not too late to turn this around. Admit that you made a mistake. Pull your daughter out of the beauty pageant world -- at least for a while -- so she can get a reality check and enjoy being a child. Tell her every day how beautiful she is -- inside and out -- just the way she is, without makeup or fancy princess hairdos or Botox. Demonstrate to her a healthy attitude towards beauty and aging and skip the Botox yourself so Britney can learn to love your wrinkles -- and you can too. Step fully into what really matters -- your Inner Pilot Light, that always sparkly, 100% authentic, perpetually beautiful part of your core that never has to worry about wrinkles because they’re irrelevant.

Let your daughter know now, before it’s too late, that she is a perfect creation of the Divine, and anyone created in the image of the Divine is beautiful -- no matter what. And know that this is true for you too. You are beautiful. She is beautiful. Just the way you are.

Kerry, my love, do you have any idea how much damage you do to your daughter when you raise her to believe that she’ll never be good enough? I had a GREAT mother, and I’ll never forget when she looked over my shoulder as I was getting ready for my senior prom and she said, “Lissa, you’d be so beautiful if it weren’t for your nose.”

Ouch. Kids don’t ever forget things like that. So don’t say things like that. And for the love of God, don’t give your kid Botox.

So please, stop the madness. Please world, stop pressuring women and even young girls to live up to some unnatural image of beauty. Wrinkles in an 8-year-old? Who ever heard of such a thing? But if they were there, who cares?

Perspective, people. Let’s get it. NOW.

What do you think about this? What would you do if your daughter asked to get Botox or waxing? Does this make your blood boil? Where do you draw the line? Will you let your 8-year-old experiment with makeup? Shave her legs? Wear high heels (mmhmm…yes, we’re talking to you, Katie, Tom, and Suri)? Get her ears pierced? Tell me what you think!

Done ranting,


Lissa Rankin, MD: Founder of OwningPink.com, Pink Medicine Woman coach, motivational speaker, and author of What’s Up Down There? Questions You’d Only Ask Your Gynecologist If She Was Your Best Friend and Encaustic Art: The Complete Guide To Creating Fine Art With Wax.



Vinita Jayant's picture


Ouch! What the heck! This is CHILD ABUSE! Children's skin is way thinner and delicate compared to adults! It cannot withstand hot wax and tugging that takes place when you wax!

What does this lady want a daughter or a pet doll??


Do read my latest blog post

Rachel A's picture

Pretty much at a loss for words...

I think you've said it all... SO sad to me. I feel sad for mama & Brittney alike.

And agreed re "comments sticking" for years... I've told my boys multiple times that they are NEVER to comment on a girl's facial hair, even in a matter-of-fact, observational tone. In 5th grade, a classmate said, "Did you know you have a mustache?" And he was not trying to tease or be mean, just pointing out what he'd noticed. :-P
But 25+ years later, I remember that moment clearly! And now it brings a smile to my face... the two of us ended up having a nice little 1-week summer fling when we were in our early 20s where his compliments & actions more than made up for the mustache comment. LOL.

But back to Botox for 8 yr olds... Just shaking my head in sad disbelief. I'm even sad about my friends in their 30s getting injected. I can relate to the desire for sure, because my little frown lines between my eyebrows are showing themselves on a more regular basis these days. Oh well, I'm just trying to remind myself to frown less & not squint at my computer screen so much at work! ;-)

I hope Brittney's mama will have an epiphany sometime soon... Until then, I'll send some unconditional love out to jr beauty queens everywhere.. Because You're Amazing... Just the Way You Are..!! (Love that Bruno Mars song!)

Tori S. M.'s picture

This stuff is not new, nor unique to American culture

This story is awful. But let's not forget all the things, throughout the ages, that have been forced upon young people in hopes of making them more "attractive." I am thinking of female (and male!) genital circumcision, foot binding, corsets, all-over body waxing and plucking (done to both bride and groom in Afghanistan prior to a wedding), tattooing, branding, shaving/bleaching/waxing/electrolysis/threading away body hair. This list is only limited by my own lack of further knowledge of such practices. People are reaching for Botox, fillers and plastic surgery for their children because those are the modern day tools in our beauty toolbox. Our lack of self-acceptance is not new, only the ways in which we express it. I don't agree with any of it, though I do some of it to myself. Beauty is artifice, and artifice is painful.

ADH's picture

My apologies to Brittney, but I'm gonna be mean here

I've seen the pics of this poor kid. JonBenet Ramsey she is not! Even with all the crap her mother puts her through, she does not look like a beauty queen. Botox can't fix plain.

Now, granted, I'm going solely on pics, here. I've seen some "plain" and "ugly" kids who are transformed into positively angelic when they smile at you. Spend time around them in person, you start to see the beauty that a picture can't show. But just based on a pic, Brittney isn't anything special.

Now, MY 8yo daughter, on the other had, just blows people away (and, no... she's never been in a pageant)!!! I was raised in a hyper-critical family, so while I love my children unconditionally, I'm not the sort to automatically believe they are perfect in every way. I see their flaws, often more so than anyone else -- I just try not to focus and harp on them as my relatives did to me. So, I'm often amazed at the comments my daughter gets on a daily basis: Gorgeous, angelic, fairy princess, wow -- and the expressions on the commenters faces is pure awe! Geez, people! Haventcha ever seen a pretty girl, before?

I see the lovely little girl I adore, with fly-away hair, a chipped front tooth, turned-in toes and slightly bowed-legs. I think she's amazing just 'cuz she is. Yet, even with her flaws, even when she's covered in dirt and her hair hasn't been brushed and there's chocolate milk on her upper lip and she's dressed in an oversized t-shirt and jeans that are too short, she's FAR more beautiful than little Brittney. I tell her how beautiful, smart, wonderful she is, how proud she makes me, as often as I can. I can't wait to find out who she's gonna be when she grows up and I only hope I can encourage her in every way and NOT hold her back or make her live out MY unfulfilled dreams.

B's mom needs to encourage her daughter to be MORE than a pretty face -- 'cuz frankly, she ain't got it.

Tracy's picture

I saw this on TV last night

I saw this on TV last night and couldn't believe my eyes or my ears!

In my not so humble opinion there are far better things to involve our daughters in than pageants. One such group is 4H. Both my kids are in 4H which involves all ages and genders in one group - no segregation or competition.

I hope the awareness of this kind of thing can start the healing process and change how we view beauty and worth as a society.

Shaking head in disbelief,


Monica Wilcox's picture

Please don't forget.....

freckles, double chins, knobby knees, and flabby triceps. I've got them all and I love it all, even if society looks down on these features.

WTF???? That covers it pretty well Lissa.

Carz's picture

What are we teaching our children?

This horrifies me. I can't imagine doing anything like this to a child and agree it can only be called abusive. Making children look perfect is so damaging. When I was a kid I had to wear shoes with wedges on the bottom (no inner-shoe orthotics in the 70s for me) and sleep in a splint that went from hip to ankle on both legs, all because I was pigeon toed and knock-kneed. These things weren't going to change the underlying hip deformity but they would make my feet point out, like everybody elses did. It has taken me a long time to see the scars that left but I always felt them.

I also worry about the boy children in these beauty pageant families. What are we teaching them about girls' appearances? And are we teaching them that they have less worth, are less attractive, just because they are boys? I just wish all children could have the opportunity to enjoy being kids.

mohrle's picture


honey, i have several friends who have their daughters enrolled into this beauty show or that one. honestly, these mothers freak me totally out. they seem to want to live their lives over again in the shoes of their children. i am really sad for the girls though. they learn to hate each other and plot against each other in an early age, and only because of what???? beauty!!!???? these beauty shows don't teach anything worthwhile to these girls. they teach them to dislike their own bodies, to grow up into one of there depressed, never happy with themselves human beings.
oh dear, don't say anything negative to these women and their daughters. don't try to make them see their folly. you will never hear the end of it and even loose friends over it. i have given up to make my friends see the truth. i am just so sorry and sad that these wonderful, beautiful girls are not being taught that they are a part of the divine and therefore they are beautiful just as they are. and i am sad that they are being robed of their childhood by their 'insane' mothers.

Emsxiety's picture

So sad..

I can't imagine injecting something in to my child for beauties sake. She can see wrinkles? Really? At 8? What have you done to your child? An 8 year old waxing is bad enough, but Botox? I am horrified.
Personally I think she should lose custody of her child until such time as she can make rational decisions for her child and if she can't, then maybe someone can show that child what real love is about.

Patrice's picture


This is so heart-breaking. I hope Child Services does get involved. And Kerry better hope none of us is on her jury.

Lissa Rankin's picture


Yeah, I was pretty much speechless too Tammy, when I heard about this. It's just crazy.

And Anonymous with Aunt Edith, I feel you sister! What about fathers? Of course they deeply influence how we feel about our bodies and ourselves and those comments cause so much damage that many must undo as we grow older and become more sovereign in our lives.

May you know- deep down- that you are perfect and beautiful just the way you are. That doesn't mean some of couldn't benefit from losing a few pounds and being more healthy. But it does mean that the part of you that really matters- your Inner Pilot Light that never goes out- doesn't need to lose weight, get a nose job, or get Botox.

May you know that deep down and may it undo any damage done in your childhood.

Seeing the beauty in you all

Tammy's picture

Lissa, I have never before

Lissa, I have never before been left speechless in the Owning Pink circles! This one did it. I just sat on the couch and was stunned. I can not comprehend doing that to my daughter-No more than I would ever consider injecting my young son or daughter with steroids to play sports. I thought the pagent world was a bit out of touch with reality to start with,but this.... Just twisted and abusive! Ironic yesterday Dr.Oz had a show on the issues associated with adults getting botox and the dangers!

Anonymous's picture

You made me think of something else...

It's amazing what we retain in terms of comments (even if they may be well meaning) about our appearance. I remember getting my braces off, and at a family dinner, my father wanted to celebrate that my braces were finally off. My dad's elder sister, "aunt edith" turned to me, gave me the once over, and loudly remarked "George,now that her teeth are done, what are your plans for her nose...she really should get her nose fixed." Luckily, my dad shot his sister a dirty look, and he must have kicked her under the table, because I remember her saying "ouch, that hurt." Mind you, I never had a problem with my nose before aunt edith's decree, but talk about an emotional vampire, she sure knew how to bring a black cloud over my celebrating the end of many years of ortho treatment. My dad wasn't into plastic surgery makeovers, but he could get on me about my weight--and his comments felt controlling and intrusive at times--and I continue to struggle with food issues, even though he has been gone for more than a decade. I would be interested in reading your thoughts about fathers and how they can help/hinder with our becoming unapologetically ourselves.

Anonymous's picture

Child Protective Services-Absolutely. Completely Agree

I completely agree with you. Those adult procedures should be illegal....and I like your idea about getting child protective services involved. This abusive practice is out of control. In case you haven't seen another example of parental mismanagement, you might consider checking out
"toddlers and tiaras" TV series. I think it is on the TLC network, and also available on amazon instant video (for about two dollars per series). Some serious activism is desperately needed in this area, and I am happy to see that you are tackling this topic in the way that you are.

yliharma's picture

...seriously....WTF!!!!! Rece

Recently here in Italy the government has banned UVA lamps and a lot of other stuff used in beauty salons for people under 18 years old...maybe it's a little bit overprotecting, but if it can help prevent such behaviours...then be it!

Lissa Rankin's picture


Yeah, I totally agree. Pageants are nothing more than a way to reinforce the competition that already exists between way too many girls and women, and I would NEVER let my daughter participate in one. Poor girls. They should be allowed to just be children. It's heartbreaking, really.

BYU Women's Services's picture

OH my goodness I can't

OH my goodness I can't believe it! It's just so discouraging because it seems like one mom's decision can undo all the good others are doing to prevent body image issues and eating disorders.

And don't even get me started on pageants.

Melissa's picture

This is just another example

This is just another example of how twisted our society has become. I would never enter my daughter in a "beauty" pageant because I feel like it is a competition designed to make girls feel bad about themselves disguised as a girl-power movement. As parents, it is our obligation to teach our children to love themselves for who they are, and encourage them to be who they want to be. Pageant girls are often stripped of their innocence and treated like puppets by their own parents, and it makes me sick to my stomach. Kerry Campbell is clearly trying to live vicariously through her daughter, but she's taking it to a dangerous level. I also feel that she's not at all mature enough for parenthood; listen to how she explains that it's not a big deal because everyone else is doing it. I mean, how old is she? She sounds like a teenager who was just caught doing pot in her parent's garage. Kerry needs a serious parental intervention.

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