Family Friday: Primary

I love the idea behind Primary — basically, that kids’ clothes should be colorful and fun, but not necessarily full of sequins and “cute” phrases like “DADDY’S PRINCESS!” As their tagline notes, there are no logos, no slogans, and no sequins — just awesome colors in the softest fabrics they could find, all under $25. Nice! The site also offers free shipping with no minimum purchase, and they’re offering 25% off today! This pretty picnic top for girls looks great — it’s $18, available in sizes 2-12 in 10 colors. Primary Picnic Top


  1. I love the concept behind this brand (i cringe at ‘cute like mommy’ shirts) but I definitely like patterns for toddler clothes because stains are a lot less obvious on a pineapple print romper than a basic yellow one.

    • avocado says:

      I agree that it would be nice if they at least offered some stripes, dots, and other basic patterns. And if the “awesome colors” weren’t all sold out. What is the deal with everything I would like to buy always being sold out these days? Have retailers gotten worse at predicting demand, or are they just ordering less so they sell out of popular sizes and colors faster and have less stuff left over?

    • Maddie Ross says:

      I also like the concept, but I cringe at the price. Honestly, I usually end up cruising old navy and just picking up the most basic pieces there. Day-to-day wear in my house gets worn (and stained) too fast to spend that much on it for the littles.

      • I agree. I love the idea and the styles are really cute, but I can’t deal with having my toddler having ‘precious’ clothes for daycare and daily wear. If a $4 Target tee gets a stain that I can’t remove, no big deal. If that happened to a Primary shirt or dress, I would be kicking myself for paying so much for play clothes. I feel guilty for viewing some children’s clothing as basically disposable, but with an active 2-year-old … they kind of are. I don’t have any hangups with spending decent money on shoes, however.

        • We get most toddler clothes at Goodwill but when there’s a good coupon I do get some primary– just bought a bunch of shorts because they’re actually short enough. Too expensive for us for a whole wardrobe though.

      • Totally agree! Love the 40% off sales at Old Navy!

    • In House Lobbyist says:

      I like the concept and I have bought a few of their long sleeve dresses. My daughter loved them and wore them a lot. I have a friend that does vinyl letters as her side hustle and she put a cute heart on one and her initials on the other one. That seemed to give them a little more personality. Because of the vinyl letters, I always let them air dry. Do they hold up in the dryer well? They are a little pricy for play clothes – I try to buy the $4.99 play dresses from H&M with strawberries/stripes/bunnies on them for the price difference. But I love the concept and hate all the sayings/princess tshirts that my drama queen girly 3 year old is drawn to like a moth to a flame. On another note – it makes me so mad that shorts for a 3 year old are all booty shorts that will not protect her legs when she falls down and makes her look like she’s on the prowl.

    • Anonymous says:

      I bought a few items from there, and the sizing was SO inconsistent! The same item would fit my son in grey but not white, for example. I was pretty disappointed. I went back to getting unbranded clothing from H&M instead.

  2. Their pajamas are really nice and soft. Also love the tees. I wish the shorts were adjustable waist though.

    • They are! The gym shorts have a drawstring and the chino shorts have the little elastic waistband with buttonholes. You just pull the elastic on the inside and put the button through the hole that makes the waistband the right size. Bought my 2.5 yo size 3 and pulled the waistband tight, and anticipate she’ll be able to wear them next year too.

      Agree with the person who noted tricky sizing, but returns/reorders are easy and I think the quality is worth the occasional exchange effort.

  3. Betty says:

    How do you guys deal with completely clueless coworkers, especially those who manage others and may become your boss? This coworker is senior to me but is not my boss (as of now). She is ten years older, single and no kids. She expressed shock and disapproval that anyone would need to use the internet for personal use during the workday or take care of more than the occasional personal task while at work. My response was that when I work 40-50 hours per week and those hours coincide with when everyone else works, there is no way to take care of myself and my family during my “off” time. She was also taken aback when I mentioned that I keep an eye on the NYT during the day. I would brush her off as just not getting it, but I am concerned about how out of touch she is regarding the demands of working parents given that she could become my boss.

    • avocado says:

      In my experience, the people who make these types of comments tend to engage in plenty of personal internet usage during the workday.

    • Blueberry says:

      Just ignore and carry on, unless it becomes a thing she nags you about. I have a superior who I otherwise like a lot, but who has the tendency to say things like, “we all have busy lives” etc. when somebody mentioned that it must be challenging for me having little kids and working at a place like we work. I just fume silently, complain to you guys, and ignore.

    • bluefield says:

      Stop talking about the personal errands that you do during the day with her. If she’s not standing behind you all day and you get your work done in a timely manner, I don’t see how this would become an issue unless you make it one. Wasting time during the day falls into the category of we all do it and don’t talk about it.

  4. Anonymous says:

    I’m a big fan of their leggings for my toddler. Does anyone know how the dress sizes run? She’s barely 2 and on the smaller side so I hesitate to order something labeled size 2-3.

    • My daughter is also on the smaller side, and the size 2-3 dress is still a bit too big for her (she’s 2.5 now…around 26 pounds and maybe 33 inches?). She could wear it, but it’s a little long and the arm holes come down too low. It’s great quality and super cute, so I’m looking forward to when she can wear it!

    • 2-3 long sleeve tops are still too big on my 36.5″ 33lb 2 year old, despite the size chart.

  5. Forgive the stupid question, but am I supposed to tip a baby sitter above her hourly rate? We’ve been very fortunate to have family members who love to watch our child. We’re hiring our first baby sitter, 2.5 years in, and I’m clueless!

    • I don’t think you *have* to, but I’d round up to whatever the nearest $5 or $10 increment is.

    • For a one off night? Regular care?

      If her rate isn’t a multiple of 5, round up. Eg. If you’re paying $15/hr and she’s there 3 hours, pay her $45 or $50. I go with $50 if the house looks night and/or it was last minute and/or the kids were cranky and/or I only have $50. If her rate is, say, $11/hr and you are gone 3 hours, I’d do $35.

      If this is a longer term thing where you are doing $16/hr and paying at the end of the week, do an exact amount. Also, in my area, some sitters charge as much as $23/hr. I do not round up in that case. Typically these are adults and off duty teachers/nannies, so I write a check (vs a High school sitter where I don’t do a check).

    • Walnut says:

      I like my sitters quite a bit and want them to be motivated to take future babysitting jobs from me. I usually round up and pay them a little more than their rate.

      • Anonymous says:

        Same here. Our main sitter, who is a teacher at our daycare, only asks for $15, which is on the low end in our area. She is amazing, the house is always tidy when we get home, and it is no small feat to deal with three kids under 4 alone at dinner and bedtime, so we round up significantly. If we’re out for 4 hours, we usually give her 70-80. She lets us pay her with paypal, which makes things super easy.

    • I’m inclined to say no, they set the rate, but I do tend to round up to the nearest $5 or %10 depending on what cash I have.

  6. ElisaR says:

    Question regarding bathing my 13 month old: Now that we are in sunblock season, do I need to bathe him each night? We were on a twice maybe 3x a week bath schedule and now we have to send him to daycare w/ sunblock on (and they reapply for the afternoon). I’m concerned about leaving that on him longer term. Also — I never used soap before on his face, just water. If I am bathing him daily now, do I need to WASH off the sunblock?

    • Clementine says:

      Um, I don’t. In the summer we still bathe every other night or whenever he looks grubby (which is frequent in the summer…)

      I use a washcloth with just some water for his face and I do wash his face and feet every night. Again, more of a function of him just getting dirty than anything else.

      • +1

      • This is what we do as well. If I apply sunscreen at home on the weekends it is usually because we are doing something where he is probably also going to get really sweaty or unusually dirty (being in the stroller in the heat or swimming in a lake) so he usually gets an extra bath then, but not for daily sunscreen application at daycare.

    • Spirograph says:

      Tag-on to this question, does everyone really apply sunblock to their kids in the morning? I know I should, but I don’t , because I’m usually running late enough in the morning without trying to smear messy stuff on wiggly kids without getting it on my own clothes. Last summer I’d put some on their shoulders if they were wearing tank tops, but even that wasn’t 100%. Daycare applies in the afternoon. I do send a hat for each kid, and the teachers do a pretty good job keeping hats on the babies, but I doubt my older kids keep theirs on.

      But to answer, nope, I don’t do a bath if sunblock is the only reason my kid is dirty.

      • avocado says:

        I did because they went outside in the morning, day care would only (re)apply in the afternoon, and we are the type of people who burst into flames with the slightest exposure to sunlight. For some reason I applied the sunscreen after we arrived at school instead of before leaving home, which resulted in tons of smears all over my work clothes.

        When she was a toddler I bathed her daily during the summer to get off the sunscreen, sweat, and dirt, and to check for ticks because there was grass on the playground and we live in Lyme country.

        She has been responsible for her own sunscreen since she was 6 or 7. I am not sure she really uses it consistently.

        • avocado says:

          Just remembered why I put the sunscreen on at school. If I put it on at home, I got even more smears from carrying her to the car.

      • ElisaR says:

        My son is a lovely Norwegian/Irish blend that means he’s already gotten a sunburn and we live in the Northeast and it’s only May! But if we weren’t such a pasty bunch I wouldn’t be too concerned…..

      • Blueberry says:

        I do. Following someone’s tip here, I’ve started to do it while they are locked down in their carseats, which has saved a lot of time and heartache and a lot of my work clothes. I’m sorry to my neighbors about the toddler screaming bloody murder during the process, though.

        • Spirograph says:

          This is genius. I must have missed that tip the first time around. Thank you!

          • Blueberry says:

            Only problem is it’s hard to get it on their necks and the back of their legs, but we can’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good here!

        • Momata says:

          Is your carseat covered in sunscreen?

          • Blueberry says:

            Not too much, surprisingly. I also don’t really care, and I think it may minimize the sunscreen grease that gets all over the door area of the car when they climb in.

      • I do, but only because my son is in preschool, spends a significant amount of time outside, and they don’t do it there. Our daycare had a shaded (under an awning) play area, and I didn’t bother then. I also don’t do it in the winter when they are inside more and less skin is exposed.

      • anne-on says:

        Yup, I am pretty militant about it. I also find the earlier you start making it mandatory the less they resist. Unfortunately, my now 5-yr old has a marked preference for my asian sunblock which doesn’t smell, isn’t sticky, and dries faster than the US brands. It also needs to be ordered specially on eBay or Amazon from Japan. Sigh. At least he tolerates the spray stuff for arms/legs.

      • D. Meagle says:

        I generally apply every morning because nursery school and camp require the kids come ready for outdoor play (ie swimsuit, water shoes and sunblock). My nanny is suggesting we switch to spray this year, which I am leaning toward for the body.

    • Walnut says:

      My 18 month old hates bath time, so we just do a more sponge bath on visible skin when we wash him up after dinner. If he seems particularly sticky, we put him in the shower with us a for a minute or two for a quick rinse off. He still screams, but its less of a production.

      Sunblock is left at daycare and they apply it as needed. My mileage applying sunscreen on the weekends when is not great.

    • what about swimming? Do you bathe your babies (under 1 YO) after they are in pools (chemicals, etc.)? I haven’t been but wondering if I should. Thanks.

      • ElisaR says:

        yes – we did swim classes at the Y and I definitely wanted to rinse the chlorine off him (and me!) immediately….

      • Anon in NYC says:

        My daughter takes a 1x/week swim lesson on Saturdays and we bathe her afterwards (in the evening – so hours after the fact).

        But, I don’t bathe kiddo every day, and we do use sunscreen daily.

      • Friendly reminder: chlorine can turn blonde hair green if not washed out.

        • Anonymous says:

          Yes! I have one blonde kid, and this is going to be the first summer of green hair, I think, now that her hair is long enough for it to be noticeable and she’s brave enough to consistently put her head in the water. We spend a LOT of time at the pool in the summer.

          I shower after getting out of the pool, and hold any baby in there with me to rinse us both off. My kids who can stand on their own delight in using the handicapped shower in the open shower bay — it has a handheld sprayer mounted at just their height.

      • I don’t necessarily – I consider that a bath. I was a competitive swimmer and never showered after practice unless I was freezing or something. My son also hates showers.

        • PS – my blond son did not get green hair from once a week swimming as an infant. But perhaps others would. I think you need a lot of exposure + sun for that to happen.

        • October says:

          Yah, I swam all the time as a kid and never remember rinsing off. Probably not a bad idea, but a well-balanced pool shouldn’t be dangerous. These comments are funny to me. Sunscreens have tonnnnns of chemicals. My son gets a bath pretty much every night regardless since he is messy, but especially so after greasy sunscreen hair + dirt.

          • Anonymous says:

            The pool chemicals are drying on skin vs. sunscreens which are usually moisturizing. Chlorine is a common eczema trigger in my kids so they rinse off and moisturize after the pool.

      • Yup, LO always gets a bath on days we swim. If it is just sunscreen applied at daycare, I may or may not bathe him. I’m more concerned about bug spray. If it isn’t bath night, I do take a rag to him to wipe off the bug spray.

      • Katarina says:

        We all rinse off in the shower. I tend to soap them, but my husband does not. Both my kids at least don’t mind showers.

    • I also have concerns about leaving it on but my kid has mild eczema so daily baths are not ideal. I end up continuing usual bath schedule (approx 3x week) and trying to remember to wipe sunscreen areas with wet washcloth on non bath nights. Some nights I’m too tired so it just doesn’t happen.

      Re sunscreen in morning…I typically forget. The play area is shaded in morning. Also my kid is half Indian and doesnt burn easily so I roll the dice more than I would on my own pale self. I do try to hit face and top of arms when I remember.

  7. Blueberry says:

    How/when did you all tell your coworkers you were pregnant? I’ve done it once before but it’s just so awkward. Last time, I was able to tell most of the relevant people while we were out at a social event at a partner’s house, while things were pretty relaxed, so it wasn’t like I was walking into someone’s office and closing the door like something serious had just happened. I don’t think I’ll have that opportunity this time around. I’m nearing the end of my first trimester, just got an all-normal ultrasound, and am starting to get too big for my normal clothes. I feel like people may be noticing all the flowy tops and the fact that I haven’t had a drink at the many happy hours we seem to have had lately. I kind of want to just not say anything to anyone and let them figure it out as I get bigger and bigger, but that is awkward too. Any tips?

    • I think I went around and told people, but I was in a small office. It is nice if you can share the news in a staff meeting or something. Either way, please tell people rather then making them guess – that is definitely going to get awkward. I had a supervisor who got pregnant when she was not, as far as anyone knew, dating anyone seriously, let alone married. She was a very together, professional person in her work life, so this was surprising. She dropped this bomb on us in an email with the subject line “sharing some news” in which she described the pregnancy as a surprise and a blessing. In hindsight I think it was the wisest choice – there was no easy way for her to tell everyone, and email allowed everyone to read it and be shocked privately. So you could try an email if you don’t want to have to talk to everyone.

    • I was super sick, so I told several partners early, like 9-10 weeks, so they knew why my performance s*cked, and so we could start bringing people in on my cases. (That firm tended to staff with just one partner + one associate). One senior associate figured it out because she had also been really sick during her pregnancy and noticed all the signs–she just raised her eyebrows at something (crackers + green face, maybe?) and I nodded, and we talked more in private a few days later.

    • Definitely tell people. I would tell your friends at work first, and then tell your secretary/admin. If you can do it within ear shot of other admins and include them, that’s even better. I usually said something like “I have news – I’m pregnant!” And people get really excited and happy. I also told people that it wasn’t a secret and they could feel free to share it, so it spread through the office pretty quickly.

      My bigger struggle was trying to be as upbeat as possible when sharing the news, even though I felt SO AWKWARD, especially around older male partners. But it gets easier – go tell 3-5 people and you’ll get the hang of it.

    • ~50 attorneys, BigLaw satellite office. I was fortunate to get pregnant in November and I was out of the office a lot for the holidays/family health issues in January/February. I had to tell folks in February (10/11 weeks) once I was back in the office though because I was on a deal with long meetings (in which I needed to be able to eat snacks) and the nausea was such that I couldn’t guarantee not vomiting on the conference table. Plus it’s hard to hide sea-bands (which made a difference for me and am still wearing at 27 weeks + diclegis). I told the team members I was working with first on my deal team. Then over the course of a week a went around and did the closed door thing with people I am “friends” with in the office and most of my practice group (about 1/3 of the office in total). Waited to tell the last few super gossipy (and super junior) practice group team members until about 13 weeks. Everyone else found out when I was eventually super showing and/or I confirmed it at an office happy hour at about 18 weeks (some of the assistants had guessed but refused to acknowledge until they heard it from me directly). As for closed-door meetings, everyone was super excited (and so happy I wasn’t quitting). FWIW my office is pretty family friendly (90%+ have kids) and we tend to share a lot of personal information – I know the names of people’s kids and what they are up to these days, etc.

    • I don’t get why it’s awkward? This is exciting news! I would say something, at the very least, to your immediate boss. I worked with someone who didn’t say anything to anyone and that was really awkward.

    • Blueberry says:

      Thanks, guys. I dunno why I feel so awkward — I guess in part because it’s not the most family friendly place. I don’t think I was actually seriously considering not telling people, but thanks for the reality check that that would be a very bad idea.

    • hoola hoopa says:

      I always feel awkward, too. I know I don’t need to be and never feel awkward when coworkers tell me they are pregnant, but I always feel super awkward when it’s my turn.

      I got lucky with my first. I was in an office where I only needed to tell two people and everyone else knew within a day.

      My next two were in an office without a gossip train. I sent an email to my project members with the dates of my upcoming maternity leave. Framing it around that felt less personal but not vague. Then, frankly, everyone else figured it out or heard through the eventual grape vine.

      I always tell my boss first, obviously. That’s the worst, so then it’s relatively easy after that, lol.

  8. Anon in NYC says:

    We’re hosting a morning birthday party for my daughter. Right now I’m thinking bagels, cream cheese, lox, fruit salad, coffee/tea/OJ/mimosas, and birthday cake, but I feel like it could use some more stuff – an egg dish, perhaps another sweet item, etc. Any menu suggestions?

    • Blueberry says:

      This sounds perfect. We did exactly the same for a small family breakfast after my son’s baptism (when we lived in NY like you, the land of delicious bagels…), and it was just right. If you want an egg dish, maybe get egg salad from the bagel place you buy the rest of your spread from.

    • Anonymous says:

      I’d add a quiche or two and call it a day. Sounds great and a lot like what we did for my son’s first birthday.

      • + 1 to quiche. One of my friends swears by the pre-made quiche at Whole Foods for her son’s birthday parties, and I agree that it’s really good.

      • +1 to quiche. I had a morning birthday party for my son last month. I made this quiche, and I’ve made it twice since then –

        We had a large party, with over 20 guests who all have different dietary restrictions and preferences (and some who claim to be dieting), so you may not need all this. We served quiche lorraine; 2 vegetarian frittatas; bacon; bagels with cream cheese, lox, capers, onion, tomatoes; berries, Greek yogurt, and granola; and donuts (but no birthday cake). Plus mimosas and coffee. Everyone demolished the bagels and lox and the bacon. The quiche and frittatas were mostly finished, but nobody wanted to take the last piece of anything. And nobody touched the Greek yogurt :-)

    • I think that is plenty too, but egg salad or quiche would be nice additions if you want.

    • There are also super easy breakfast bakes that include frozen hash browns, some sausage, egg, maybe some tomatoes, cheese. They bake up in a 9×13 pan in 30 minutes usually, and we’ve made them ahead and just reheated. Not an egg eater, but it might be easier than a quiche (although less fancy).

    • I think what you have is fine, but I LOVE egg muffins and pretty much think they’re a good addition to anything. I make mine with tater tots – thaw and squash three in the bottom of a muffin tin (use foil cupcake liners) and bake at 400 for 10 minutes. Top with whatever cooked meats or veggies you like, then add scrambled eggs. I use 9 eggs for a dozen muffins. Top with shredded cheese and bake at 350 for 23 minutes or so. They’re so delicious and everyone always loves them. To minimize work in the morning, I fully prep the tater tots and scramble the eggs the night before, so all I need to do is add the toppings and eggs and bake.

    • Anon in NYC says:

      Perfect. Thanks all!

  9. It's 2017 says:

    Another great quality of Primary – there is no Boy’s/Girl’s tab. Just a kids tab.

  10. I dislike the “daddy’s princess!” tees as much as the next person, but I’d like to push back on the idea that every item of kids’ clothing at mainstream stores is logo’d and screen printed to death. Solids are fine and are great to have as staples, but it really isn’t difficult to find fun prints or even basic stripes/dots. (My daughter is accumulating quite the collection of flamingos and pineapples for summer.) If I have any kids’ clothing gripe, it’s that Under Armour must be the unofficial uniform of my son’s elementary school. I wish the name-brand obsession didn’t start so early, although I suspect the parents are driving it.

    • Thank you. Wal-Mart has tables full of sold summer T-shirts for $2.97 each, and lots of plain and pattered leggings and shorts. I just bought my 7 year old daughter several comfy outfits there last night, including a horrific Trolls tunic with streams of obnoxious bright fabric hanging off the bottom.

      You’re only a 1st grader once. At her age, my favorite shirt featured a Cabbage Patch Doll with *real yarn hair pigtail braids* jutting off my chest. I thought that shirt was THE BOMB.

      +1,000 to the Name Brand obsession. Vera Bradley and Under Amour are all over the elementary schools.

      • avocado says:

        After reminding parents to label our children’s belongings, our middle school principal joked that someone named Vera Bradley seems to lose an awful lot of things at his school.

        My kid’s new brand obsession is Jansport. She seems to think this is the cool backpack brand all the big kids are carrying for middle school. I find this hilarious because those were the dorky cheap backpacks I carried all through the ’80s and the ’90s. Apparently Keds are also back in style among the tween set, although mine prefers Converse.

    • Anon in NYC says:

      My kiddo LOVES her shirts with animals on them – she asks to wear her “birdie” or “fishie” shirts. I’m dreading the day when brand names become a thing for her.

      • Luckily, my 7-year-old is still on board with his planet and rocket ship tees. He has exactly one UA tee, which I found on clearance at Marshall’s. I’m dreading the day when he becomes more brand conscious. I just want to dress him like the cute kid he is, you know? God, I’m turning into my mother.

        • Someone gave us a 24 mo under armour shirt, in that performance fabric. The only thing I can think to do with it is wear it as a rash guard for swimming– it’s not soft!!

      • Pigpen's Mama says:

        Same here — I’ve found several that we both like at Carter’s, Target and Old Navy — usually targeted towards girls, as I’m a fan of the brighter colors, but she does have a few from the boys’ section.

        She’s got a few character shirts that she loves as well (Peppa and Paw Patrol, I’m looking at you) and I’ll often pull those out on days she’s pitching a fit about getting dressed.

    • Anonymous says:

      I have a princess obsessed son, who also loves all things pink and purple and sparkly. I struggle with this too. On one hand, I really appreciate that they are walking back from the “boys or girls” label, but on the other, I’m glad that there are shirts out there with Elsa and Moana on them. I wish they didn’t say “girls” or that kids sections were divided by color, or category (T shirts, pants, etc.), but meh. I just let my kid pick a few things he likes at Target, but the majority of our clothing comes from re-sale in our Listserve. I just buy big bags of seasonally appropriate clothing, and have very few items that I care what happens to.

    • +1. My son strongly prefers clothing with pictures on it. Today he is wearing a Darth Vader shirt* from Walmart and his favorite pair of fuchsia shorts with ice cream cones all over them**.

      *his preschool teacher is obsessed with Star Wars and paraphrases the movies to amuse herself and the kids while they are having lunch. My son has never seen one of the movies – he finds certain episodes of Dora the Explorer too scary – but knows from school that Darth Vader makes a LOT of Not Okay Choices.

      ** These were clearly meant for a girl but he liked them at a rummage sale, so we got them. They were quite short last summer and are now a size too small and firmly in Daisy Duke territory. But when he tried them on earlier this month he proudly proclaimed, “they still fit!”, and I didn’t have the heart to tell him otherwise. At least his legs will be cool.

      • Pigpen's Mama says:

        I LOVE it!

        And my kid is obsessed with Star Wars thanks to “I am a Princess” and “I am a Droid” — Chewbacca is her favorite, and she gets super excited when either of us wears our Chewie shirts. Several of her daycare friends are also into Star Wars, but I bet most of them haven’t seen the movies.

        We tried to watch the original, she was very excited, BIG intake of breath when Darth Vader appeared, and then I just skipped through 2.8 movies to get the the end of Return of the Jedi and the Ewoks.

      • This is amazing. Your son sounds awesome!

    • hoola hoopa says:

      +1 That’s what always throws me, too. I’m not opposed to Primary, but it’s really not hard to find single color clothing at literally every price point and US geography: Walmart, Kohls, Lands End, Old Navy, Hanna Anderssson, mini boden, childrens place, H&M, etc.

      That said, I do like that it’s easy to get truly gender neutral stuff. I shopped at American Apparel for that reason. I liked it for my daughters because I could rely on going up one size on basics, but I really appreciate it for my son. It’s easier IMO to shop in the boys section for my daughter than shop in the girls section for my son. It’s surprisingly difficult to find basic clothing in bright colors without distinctly feminine details. They exist, but at shops like Primary I don’t have to search.

  11. Anon in NYC says:

    Another question – where do you buy costume jewelry for a 6 year old? I don’t love what I see on Amazon, but not sure where else to look!

    • Anonymous says:

      I have bought some really nice pieces from JCrew kids for my niece.

    • anne-on says:

      Uhm, hit up some friends? I’d gladly donate some of my junkier/out of style jewelry for a little girl to play with if asked.

    • Anonymous says:

      Svanha just launched some to go with their dresses. I actually bought the purple and black moon phase necklace for my son so he would leave his sister’s alone.

  12. Portable AC? says:

    Any recommendations for a portable AC unit? Effective and quiet are the highest priorities. Despite having a new, high-end central air system installed less than a year ago, our second floor bedroom positioned above the garage is HOT. Thank you very much in advance!

  13. Rainbow Hair says:

    What do you think of makeup for little kids? I mean like… two.

    Kiddo likes to hang out in the bathroom with me while I do mine, and I give her (safe-ish) stuff to play with, like a fat eyeshadow pencil thing, and she draws on her arms and has a great time. I’m careful to tell her that some things aren’t safe (“only for grownups”), and to focus on personal preference (“I like putting sparklies on my eyes!” rather than saying that I’m using it to ‘fix’ something) and I don’t want her to think that caring about or enjoying stuff like that is bad… but it also feels *absurd* that I’m thinking of buying a cheap makeup kit for a two year old. (But I am kind of sick of her wrecking my makeup.)


    • Blueberry says:

      I wouldn’t just because it is bound to get real messy in a hurry — although if it hasn’t already, maybe your kid has a lot better hand-eye coordination than mine do. I pretty much just use BB cream most days, which I tell my kids is sunscreen, which is mostly true, and they are not very interested. The couple times I let them have some to rub on their faces, it was a mess. If anything, I might buy some kind of sparkly lip balm or something for her to play with while you’re in the bathroom — the kind of thing we used to put on ourselves in middle school. I don’t even know where you buy that.

    • Anonymous says:

      tinted lip balm and lotion/sunscreen?

      stick-on ‘earrings’ (gems?)

    • mascot says:

      I gave my son a big powder brush to play with at that age. Sometimes I would apply lotion, chopstick, or even a smear of makeup if he wanted. He also liked having his toes painted, but knew that only grown ups were allowed to put on the polish. I’d keep a few really bright colors for him to pick. He also got a toy shaving kit at some point.
      Kids love to mimic adult behaviors. I’d treat this like you treat her wanting to help cook, sweep, fold clothes, whatever. Sometimes that means getting them a toy version, sometimes it means they just “help” you.

    • Would she be appeased with a ‘makeup bag’ consisting of scented lip balm (Lip Smackers still exists!), various leftover tiny bottles of hotel lotion, and a little palette of dollar store facepaint?

    • Rainbow Hair says:

      Thank you all, I love basically all of these ideas! Def going to keep in mind that it’s like wanting to sweep. That makes a ton of sense.

      I have a pretty high tolerance for mess / am blessed with a kid who thinks hand washing is SUPER fun, but I also don’t want to go too nuts. Maybe I’ll start by seeing if I can get some kind of tinted lip balms (she likes to put them on her arms) and face paint. And maybe some of those body sparkly things from middle school if I can didn’t them!

      Mascot, your kid holds still for polish to dry?! I find that hard to imagine, though my friend who managed a salon insisted that she has kids my daughters age who came in…

      • mascot says:

        He was a little older when we would do toes. We’d just do one coat, sometimes even just one toe, and I’d use seche vite or some other quick dry top coat and let him blow on his toes. He didn’t really care if there were smudges. I think fingernails would be much harder to deal with because kids never keep their hands still.

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