Q & A: The Roles of Godparents & Applying Make-up in Public

By: Maralee McKee, Manners Mentor

Hello and welcome to Q&A Day!

This week there’s a special question about the role of godparents as the baby grows up and a tip on when and whether it’s appropriate to apply makeup in public.

This is a short-answer day. Let’s get right to our two questions!

The Roles of Godparents 


Dear Maralee,

Love your blog! Thank you for all you do!

A family member of mine is trying to have a baby, and the couple has insisted I’m going to be the godmother. They didn’t even ask me; they just implied that I would fit the bill perfectly.

I never had godparents. I really don’t know what that means or what I’m supposed to do throughout the child’s life. All I know is that godparents end up paying for a lot of stuff!

Here is The Role Godparents Usually Have in The Lives of  Their Godchildren

Being asked to be a godparent is a great honor. Congratulations! The obligations and expectations of godparents vary from culture to culture and from family to family. You could play anything from an honorary role to an integral part of the child’s spiritual upbringing. In general, a godparent’s role is to stay connected with the child in some manner throughout life.

You will be at the baby’s christening and perhaps take part in the ceremony. Most importantly, you’ll serve as a mentor and take the symbolic place of the child’s parent of your gender if that parent passes away. (The child won’t necessarily come to live with you; a godparent is different from a legal guardian named in a will.)

If there should be a death, you would step in and create experiences the missing parent would have wanted the child to have. Fishing with a boy and teaching him to tie a tie, going with a young lady to pick out her prom dress, and walking a bride down the aisle in the place of her late father are some of the “heart gifts” you’d give to your godchild.

Presents are part of the equation, but they don’t have to be expensive or given at every occasion. You should send a Christmas and birthday card yearly, each with a handwritten note or letter. If your budget allows, you can also send gifts.

Once the parents are expecting, your best bet is to explain to them that you consider being a godparent a big responsibility. Tell them, before saying yes, that you want to know their expectations of you in that role. You might be pleasantly surprised that they don’t want anything more than for you to have the honor of the title.

If it appears they expect more than you’re able to give, explain that the duties of godparent are too much for you. It’s better to disappoint the parents-to-be before the baby arrives than to disappoint them for the first 21 years or more of the child’s life.

I wrote more about being a godparent in this post: Five Ways to Be a Fantastic Godmother. While the title implies that the article is for godmothers only, everything in it applies equally to godfathers. Please read it for a more detailed look at the role and responsibilites of being a godparent!


What is The Etiquette of Applying Lipstick or Makeup in Public


Hi Maralee,

In public, especially when eating out, is it OK to reapply some of my makeup (powder, blush, mascara) or lipstick at the table? 

Answer: The Modern Etiquette of Applying Lipstick or Any Makeup in Public

The whole reason we use makeup is to look our best for ourselves and for others. Because of that, applying makeup, including lipstick, is what we do in preparation for being seen, not while being seen.

The best way to handle grooming needs if you’re with others is to say, “Excuse me for a moment, please,” and take care of everything behind the privacy of the bathroom door.

In addition, when at a dining table, only two things should occur — dining and conversation. Because of that, the only items that go on the table are food, beverages, and the things we need to eat or drink them with. Pulling out lipstick, mascara, powder, blush, or anything else, even if everyone has finished eating, is still using the dining table for something it’s not meant to be used for — a makeup table.

What’s Next?

See you on Monday for our regular post! As always, thank you for stopping by and sharing a few minutes of your internet time with me!!!

If you’re visiting for the first time, welcome! Why not join the Manners Mentor Family by adding your email address in the box below this post. You’ll receive my one or two posts each week directly in your inbox, and you’ll never miss out on knowing what our subscribers know!

As a welcome to the Manners Mentor Family, you’ll receive my FREE, illustrated dining guide Impressive Dining Skills for Every Meal.

You deserve a seat at every table. With this guide, perfect for family, business, and social dining, you’ll replace any questions or self-consciousness you’ve ever had with self-confidence and dine with savvy, graciousness, and ease at every meal!


Q & A Day: The Role of Godparents & Applying Makeup in Public

Maralee McKee

About Maralee McKee

Maralee McKee is the founder of Manners Mentor. With her best-friend style, sense of humor, and knack for updating etiquette to meet our modern sensibilities, she has been referred to as "Sandra Bullock meets Emily Post!" Maralee shows you how to become the best version of yourself. No fluff. No pretense. Just you at your authentic best! The person you were always meant to be! To learn more about Maralee click on the "Meet Maralee" or "New? Start Here" links at the top of this page.

Glove Etiquette: The Top 7 Things To Know

By: Maralee McKee Let's talk about glove etiquette, including dress gloves, winter gloves, and wearing gloves dur...

What is the proper etiquette for sitting and standing? Discover the manners for when to stand and why.

When to Stand and Why

  By: Maralee McKee With the changing roles of women in the workplace, and workplace etiquette becoming m...


The 5 Manners of Valentine’s Day Everyone Should Know

By: Maralee McKee Valentine's Day: the most romantic, lovey-dovey, glorious day of affection, gifts, and expression...

Buy Manners that Matter for Moms now!