At the ripe old age of 17, style-icon-in-training Hailee Steinfeld is already taking Hollywood by storm. The actress garnered an Academy Award nomination for her first film, True Grit, and conquered Shakespeare in Romeo and Juliet. This month, she dabbles in espionage opposite Kevin Costner in 3 Days To Kill. In her very little free time, the striking Los Angeles-native has also managed to charm the fashion and beauty world, scoring a Miu Miu campaign and taking plenty of risks on the red carpet. Here she dishes on her first red carpet, those famous bangs, and her love of Taylor Swift’s signature scent.
Steinfeld remembers getting her hair and makeup done for the 2010 premiere of Secretariat, one of her first red carpet events, when she was just 14. “I finally realized that there was the glamorous side to this world that everyone always talks about,” she recalls. “The makeup artist was testing products on her hands, and I remember looking at those colors, thinking I had no idea what they were going to look like. The scariest part was looking in the mirror afterwards. I was thinking: What happens if I don’t like it?”
It didn’t take the actress long to have fun with her glam squad though! At 2013’s Met Gala, Steinfeld embraced the punk theme. Makeup artist Stephen Solitto made her eyes pop with a statement-making sea foam green shadow.
Green eye shadow’s not the only risk Steinfeld’s taken. “I always think there’s a time and place for things like that,” she says, “And I love looking forward to when I can take it to the next level!” Her bright coral lip at 2013’s CFDA awards complemented her sleek straight locks—and was very on trend!
Steinfeld names a trifecta of beauty icons when asked who influences her: Elizabeth Taylor, Natalie Wood, and Audrey Hepburn. “I draw inspiration from the fact that these women are so poised,” she says. “Elizabeth Taylor was so elegant and classy. Everything about her seems so effortless. And I love that.”
The fashion world went crazy when Steinfeld cut bangs to play Megan in the indie film Barely Lethal last year: “Bangs were something I wanted to do for awhile and luckily I was doing a film where they accepted the idea.”
But even actresses can’t avoid the bangs quirky in-between period. “Now I’m at the awkward phase where they’re too long for my face, not long enough to tuck behind my ears,” she says. Her solution? Sweep them under a hat, like she did at Prabal Gurung’s F/W 14 show two weeks ago.
Famed photographer Bruce Weber shot the actress for her high fashion debut: Miu Miu’s F/W 11 campaign.
It feels like half of Hollywood’s gone short—would Steinfeld ever follow suit? “I tuck it in my shirt to see what it looks like, and I’ve pinned it up certain ways,” Steinfeld admits. “My hair has been long my whole life; I don’t know if I could pull it off.” We say, go for it!
In 2011, Steinfeld (along with fellow ingénues Elle Fanning and Chloe Moretz), scored the Issue #6 cover of LOVE magazine.
When it comes to fragrance, Steinfeld is more of a dabbler than a signature scent kind of girl. “I’ve been stealing my mom’s Prada Candy ($84) and then we use the Estee Lauder Modern Muse ($58), which I love,” she says. “Oh, and Taylor Swift’s! ($60) I use [Wonderstruck by] Taylor Swift all the time.”
Taylor’s reaction? “She’s like, ‘You smell really good.’”