Rachel Bilson on Beauty Mistakes and a ‘Less is More’ Routine

Victoria Moorhouse
rachel bilson beauty interview

Photo: Jon Kopaloff / Getty Images

As self-proclaimed lip product hoarders and celebrity beauty enthusiasts, we more than thrilled to hear that Rachel Bilson had teamed up with ChapStick to be the brand’s new spokesperson. And whether you were a self-proclaimed super-fan of “The O.C.” or not, there are two facts about her you just can’t deny. She’s got fresh, natural-looking red carpet beauty down to a science and, as far as we’re concerned, she’s never had a bad hair day. Seriously.

What’s more, we were actually able to chat with Bilson about her new collab and her makeup and skin care must-haves. And if you’re a lover of low-maintenance beauty, believe us, this interview is a must-read.

Tell me a little bit about why the Chapstick partnership was perfect for you?
Rachel Bilson: Chapstick has always been a part of my life. I remember my dad and my grandfather carried around Chapstick in their jean pockets, so I was thrilled for the opportunity to represent the brand and also the products. I love their new Chapstick Total Hydration ($3, drugstore.com), which is 100 percent natural, which is really important being a new mom.

So walk me through your skin care routine. What’s a normal day?
Well, there’s not much to it these days, considering I don’t have the time. I always, always, always do Chapstick—making sure my lips are taken care of. That’s really important to me. But if I get the chance to wash my face, that’s a plus. Just Chapstick, a little mascara if I actually have to maybe go out in public.

Do you have a favorite mascara brand?
I love Chanel mascara.

So I actually was reading a lot about that your drawn to a natural look. Why is the natural look something that appears to you?
I’ve always been that way, even as a girl getting into makeup. I was never into the heavy coverage or anything like that. I’ve always liked a little Chapstick on your lips, maybe a bronzer, or blush and some mascara. Maybe even a little eyeliner if you’re going really crazy. I’m pretty low-maintenance in that respect. I find less is more when it comes to my face. I feel like it changes my face when there is makeup on it.

Do you have a beauty mistake or regret that you’ve made and you look back and think, ‘Oh my god. Why did I do that?’
Oh, of course. Who doesn’t?! I remember experimenting with Sun-In when I was in junior high. There was one point where I had half orange, half black hair.

I think Sun-In is something we’ve all experimented with.
Yeah, was not a good choice!

How have your past characters influenced your look. Are there certain aspects of characters’ looks that you’ve incorporated into your own now?
It’s more like the makeup artists that I’ve worked with on shows that have taught me so much and that that I’ve taken from—little tricks and things like that as opposed to a look. You wear a lot of makeup for television, obviously. So just tips on how to apply certain eyeshadow looks or doing a cat-eye.

Is there like one thing that you think you’re really good at?
Actually, I have to say, I am pretty good at painting my nails.

Do you have a go-to manicure color that you always pick?
I always like weird colors. I’m like a grey, green, blue, weird color girl. I remember right before I had my baby though I was like, ‘I need to do my nails or toenails anyway. Red, so I can feel like a mom.

Who are some of your beauty influencers?
Alexa Chung. I like how she’s always herself. I like her whole deal. It seems very low-maintenance, cool, chill, does whatever. I think she has a cool look.

Is there a health and wellness or nutrition trend you’re really into?
I wish I was all up on that, but I find that any spare time I have, it’s researching the milestones my baby should be making. Stuff like that. I think it’s important to do healthy things and things that are good for you. If I knew what the trends were, I’m sure I would like one of them.

So if you had an entire day with no responsibilities, what would you do?
I would sleep. Especially these days, I would sleep. Just to be able to lay in bed and watch TV. That would be really great.

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