Getting Dressed With Bella Heathcote
GETTING DRESSED WITH BELLA HEATHCOTE
The Violet Files visits the Aussie actress as she prepares for a night out in Los Angeles.
- Styled By
- PENNY LOVELL
- Photography By
- ANTHONY GOBLÉ
- Written By
- JACK SUNNUCKS
- Makeup By
- MOLLY R. STERN
- Hair By
- JOHN D
Actress Bella Heathcote is about to have her moment with Fifty Shades Darker, the sequel to 2015’s noir-ish BDSM blockbuster. Not that her experience was very glamorous—the wardrobe for her role as Christian Grey’s stalkerish ex involved bedraggled brown locks and an oversize parka. “They put in extensions and dyed my hair, so I had that hair for weeks. It was a lot,” she says. “And they put dark circles under my eyes!”
Heathcote has just returned from shooting Professor Marston & the Wonder Women, a film chronicling the life of the man who invented both the lie detector test and Wonder Woman, in Massachusetts with Luke Evans and Rebecca Hall. She notes that “New England in the fall is beautiful; crisp days, the autumn foliage,” offering a counterpoint to LA, where she has a home in Laurel Canyon. Next she’s off to London to see family and shoot another season of The Man in the High Castle, the dystopian alternative-history series. It’s a grueling schedule, but after her early years in LA feeling like “I was in a waiting room,” her enthusiasm eclipses any fatigue.
SUBJECT: Bella Heathcote
OCCASION: The Ralph Lauren flagship store opening on Rodeo Drive
TEAM: Molly R. Stern, makeup; John D, hair; Penny Lovell, stylist
GETTING-READY SOUNDTRACK: “Everything from the fifties to now, excluding country. I can dance to anything with a good beat—dirty eighties music, fun electronica, hip-hop.”
PRE-GAME BEVERAGE: “Tequila. It’s a game changer.”
HEELS OR FLATS: Heels
IDEAL DINNER DATE: “My newborn nephew.”
This week, the industrious Heathcote invited The Violet Files to her vanity as she prepared to celebrate the opening of the new Ralph Lauren flagship store on Rodeo Drive. “I’ve got some sort of military blazer and a beaded skirt,” she says of her attire for the occasion, which she displays on her phone (stylist Penny Lovell judiciously selected the look). “And shoes. I’m wearing shoes.” Indeed, her outfit does feature a particularly eye-catching pair of beaded heels. “I’m really into what I’m wearing, but I’m terrible at describing it,” she demurs.
Heathcote is funny in a particularly unpretentious Australian way. Sitting curled up on a sofa, she laughs as she lists tequila as her pre-event drink. “It picks me up—I’m all over it, mate! Champagne picks you up and dumps you too quickly.” She is similarly relaxed about her beauty look. “I tend to work with makeup artists I know and like, so I just sit for two hours and have a chat, and let them do their thing. I have fun with it.” In her daily life, she says she can do the no-makeup makeup look, but that’s about it. “Concealer, blush, mascara, all from Tarte. I don’t find an afternoon in Sephora fun.”
Happily, she has the expert attention of makeup artist Molly R. Stern and hairstylist John D to make tonight’s experience pleasurable. “We opted for a style that was sleek and chic, given that the collar of her jacket is high,” says D. “I decided on a deep side parting, tucked behind the ears, shiny and straight.” To achieve this, he prepped Heathcote’s freshly washed hair with Tresemme Tres Two Extra Firm Control Mousse to create some grip. He then blow-dried the parted mane, using a large round brush and a Mason Pearson bristle brush to direct and smooth at the root. “I like to secure hair with matte bobby pins because they have more grip and conceal nicely,” he says. “If the ends need additional taming, you can use a flat iron to help smooth the cuticle and add shine.” To finish, he spritzed Tresemme Tres Two Extra Hold Non-Aerosol Hair Spray, concentrating on the smoothed tresses ear to ear—leaving the ends untouched allows for movement. And, he adds, “You can use a small toothbrush to help calm any unruly flyaways.”
Stern too took her cue from the coat, specifically the crimson shade of the collar. “I was heavily collaborating with Penny, who had such a strong vision–we wanted to match that jacket!” she laughs. Stern started by prepping Heathcote’s already luminous skin with Jurlique Rose Water Spray and Natura Bisse c + c serum and moisturizer, then applying Chantecaille Future Skin Foundation in porcelain. For the eyes, “I used a NARS eyeshadow called Tan Lines which I’m utterly obsessed with. I layered the color—I did a sheer veil of it over the whole lid, then pounded in a more pigmented layer over the top, and in the outside creases of the eye.” To finish, she drew a soft, smudgy shadow in the same hue under the lash line. For the centerpiece, the brilliantly rouged lips, Stern used a combination of YSL Vinyl Cream Lip Stain in Burgundy Vibes and Rhythm Red—a bespoke shade for Heathcote’s Los Angeles evening.