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Exclusive: Haylie Duff credits Hollywood start on Lizzie McGuire with sister Hilary for helping her to raise daughters

Haylie Duff, 38, is mom to eight-year-old Ryan and five-year-old Lulu

Haylie Duff takes a selfie with daughters
Rebecca Lewis
Rebecca Lewis - Los Angeles
Los Angeles correspondentLos Angeles
10 January 2024
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Haylie Duff is mom to two young girls, eight-year-old Ryan and five-year-old Lulu, but she's raising them as strong young women – and credits her own years in Hollywood for being able to teach them confidence and resilience. "Working in this business really inspired my creativity, but also made me very resilient. Having that confidence to take chances and be brave is something I’m really proud of and something I’m hoping will inspire my daughters as they grow up," Haylie – the sister of Lizzie McGuire star Hilary Duff - tells HELLO! 

It's an important lesson as confidence drops by up to 30% in young girls by the age of 14. "That is so striking to me, and I think it’s largely up to us parents to build self-love and self-expression in our daughters for a healthy childhood and into 'teendom,'" Haylie adds. 

"My New Year’s Resolution is to find unique ways to connect with my girls and to instill confidence in my daughters and really let them shine." 

Haylie Duff takes a selfie with husband Matt and two daughters, Lulu and Ryan in a golf cart© Instagram
Haylie takes a selfie with husband Matt and two daugthers, Lulu and Ryan

The 38-year-old found fame on 7th Heaven and later alongside her sister on Lizzie McGuire, and has now teamed up with Rainbow High, a fashion doll franchise, revealing that they are one of the tools she uses for her girls to find "a connection with me, connection with each other, and connection with their inner voice". 

"My goal as a mom is to encourage them to have the confidence to celebrate being entirely themselves. Luckily, my girls love to be creative and express themselves! And I think that’s why they love Rainbow High." 

Haylie Duff at home with her two girls, Ryan and Lulu (left)
Haylie at home with her two girls, Ryan and Lulu (left)

But Haylie is also aware that as a mom, there is only so much she can do to instill confidence in her girls, with peers and the world around them all also impacting the ways they see themselves. She is raising her girls in Austin, Texas, with husband Matt Rosenberg; they moved there during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

"Kids their age can help build them up and break them down, so the biggest challenge has been making sure they have reliable, kind friends and the skills to navigate unkind comments," she candidly reveals, suggesting that keeping your children engaged and interested in their own hobbies helps to "build their sense of self", with both of her young girls talking part in dance classes, basketball and tumbling. 

"Especially with girls, I think it’s important to make the space for THEM to shine. Realizing they aren’t you and will do things in their own way is important too." 

Haylie Duff attends the 30th Annual Movieguide Awards at Avalon Hollywood & Bardot on February 10, 2023 in Los Angeles, California© Alberto E. Rodriguez
Haylie says talking to her children "about their feelings is important to us

And it's not just on the moms to help their daughters; Haylie's husband Matt is involved with their sporting achievements, and she says as parents they "talk a lot about making sure we pay close attention to their lives". 

"Staying involved with them and talking to them about their feelings is important to us, and spending quality time together as a family is so key." 

Haylie Duff with husband Matt Rosenberg in the stands at a football stadium © Instagram
Haylie Duff with husband Matt Rosenberg

For many parents, the topic of social media is also one that can be scary to not only navigate but tough to know which decisions are right for your children. Haylie says she has already talked with both of her girls about safe online practices, but that neither girl will be allowed their own account "for a long time," adding: "It’s hard enough to navigate these young years. Social media adds a whole other level that I don’t believe they can handle yet." 

But although they both "love" being featured on Haylie's Instagram page, which reaches over 1 million followers, he is careful not to share anything too personal – and admits that "if they expressed to us that they didn’t want to be photographed anymore, I would respect that". 

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As for her number one tip for parents whose girls are about to hit those all-important tween years? 

"Put away your devices and spend time with your children,' says Haylie. "We can help them navigate through so much, like reimagining what beauty means, especially for young girls. Beauty is on the outside AND the inside!"

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