Teenagers turn online for fashion and cooking hacks

Millions of teenagers go online for help on everything from hair hacks to financial planning – but when it comes to relationship advice, mum is still the first port of call.

The study of 1,000 10-17 year-olds found they will also turn to dad for health tips, homework and revising – although teachers are preferred when they need help with exams.

Cooking tips, make-up advice and baking are the most common things teens will get tips about online. While others will look for help on how to manage their finances, sports skills and puberty.

And they will turn to TikTok or Instagram for revision tips and advice on applying for jobs.

When it comes to relationships, 23 per cent will turn to their mum, but 11 per cent have tried getting help from YouTube videos.

Avoiding the ‘awkwardness’

The research also found one in three of those polled prefer seeking advice online to avoid the ‘awkwardness’ of asking someone face to face.

YouTube was deemed the most valuable online resource among youngsters, selected by 41 per cent. This was followed by Facebook (33 per cent), Instagram (30 per cent) and TikTok (27 per cent).

More than one in 10 (14 per cent) have felt worried about asking someone for advice about relationships, and 13 per cent have tried to avoid talking about money or finances.

It also emerged 56 per cent of Britain’s teens and pre-teens believe videos are the most effective way of learning through social media, while 49 per cent find it easiest to learn from someone talking directly to the screen.

In an average week, youngsters ask for advice three times, according to the OnePoll research.

And in the past 12 months, they have needed advice on finances (13 per cent), relationships (14 per cent) and peer pressure (11 per cent).

Biggest shift in money handling

The research also quizzed the teens’ parents, and found they also leaned heavily on their parents for advice.

Says Author, psychotherapist, and mother of three, Anna Mathur:

“In a world of next day delivery, instant online purchases, and tap payments without receipts, we need to be more intentional about teaching our children good money habits.

“This means making sure that they’re receiving the advice from trusted sources, whether that be online or from parents, friends, and teachers.

“Our generation have seen the biggest shift in how we use, save, and spend money – we remember cash only purchases, whereas our children may experience a future where physical cash or even plastic cards are a rarity.”

Adds Emma Abrahams, spokesperson for Lloyd’s Bank, which commissioned the research to highlight its Smart Start account:

“Although children are turning online first for advice on fashion and make-up, our research shows that parents are usually still the first port of call for financial advice.

“We also found just over a third (38 per cent) of children say they started to understand the value of money between the ages of 13 to 15.

“And 29 per cent have learnt this from having their own bank account – highlighting that it’s never too early for parents to start teaching their children good money habits.”

Top 30 things teens learn about online

  1. Cooking
  2. Make-up
  3. Baking
  4. Video game tips/shortcuts
  5. Films
  6. Dancing
  7. Speaking another language
  8. Hair hacks
  9. Ways to revise
  10. Fashion
  11. Puberty
  12. Exams
  13. Sports skills e.g. playing football
  14. Finances/ money
  15. History
  16. Spots/ acne
  17. Riding a bike
  18. Cleaning trainers/ clothes
  19. Writing
  20. Books
  21. Maths
  22. Teaching pets tricks
  23. Applying for jobs
  24. Gardening/house plants
  25. Science
  26. What career to aim towards
  27. Playing a musical instrument
  28. Washing up
  29. Driving
Chris Price