The elder daughter of composer/arranger Quincy Jones and actress Peggy Lipton, Jones was born in Los Angeles, California. Jones was raised in Bel-Air with her younger sister Rashida, who is now an actress and screenwriter. Jones attended the Los Angeles Fashion Institute for Design and Merchandising and left at age 19 to work with the designer Tommy Hilfiger. She is Jewish on her mother's side, and African-American on her father's side. Lipton's parents were Harold Lipton (1911–1999), a corporate lawyer, and Rita Benson (1912–1986), an artist.