She studied Art at Manchester Polytechnic and London Art School, after which she worked in a variety of jobs, including assistant to Damien Hirst. She also started her own company, 'Chandeliers for the People', making exotic lampshades.
In 1999 she had two picture books published, I Want a Pet! (1999) and Clarice Bean, That's Me (1999), the latter being shortlisted for the Nestlé Smarties Book Prize. In 2000 she won a Kate Greenaway Medal for I Will Not Ever, Never Eat a Tomato (2000) and a second Nestlé Smarties Book Prize in 2002 for That Pesky Rat (2002). In the same year, she wrote her first children's novel, Utterly Me, Clarice Bean (2002). Her second book in this series, Clarice Bean Spells Trouble was shortlisted for the 2005 British Book Awards Children's Book of the Year.
Lauren Child's humorous illustrations contain many different mediums including magazine cuttings, collage, material and photography as well as traditional watercolours. As well as being author of several highly successful books, she is the illustrator of the Definitely Daisy series by Jenny Oldfield.
A television series based on her 'Charlie and Lola' books has been made into an animated series for CBBC, and she has written several books recently which are based on these tales.