Photo: Ben Miller
Teyonah Parris is the best friend we wish we had. If you’re not already familiar, she’s the burgeoning actress you’ve watch in Mad Men, Dear White People and Survivor’s Remorse, the Lebron James-produced Starz comedy headed for a third season.
Although many would expect Parris–who plays “Missy Vaughn”–to know the ins and outs of basketball, you’d be surprised to know it’s actually the opposite.
“It’s about what happens off the court and goes on behind the scenes…So I haven’t had to learn more about basketball, because that’s not really what it’s about,” she says in an exclusive interview with SB.
We’ll also get to see Parris flex her acting chops in Spike Lee’s highly anticipated Chiraq, a “modern retelling of the Greek comedy ‘Lysistrata,” but in the meantime, we’re getting the beauty scoop from one of Hollywood’s fiercest naturalistas. Sadly, the hair and makeup woes of black fashion models extends to the film set, where Teyonah has also found herself outside the inclusive beauty loop.
“There are not a lot of women in this industry who don’t wear their hair natural. So, hairstylists aren’t really required to learn [about] that many hair textures,” she shares.
“I have run into people who have had some not so savory reactions to my hair and I’ve either had to show them how it’s done, so they can do it later, or I just come prepared myself because I don’t want their bad energy. I pick and choose how I want to deal with certain people, but I’ve also come across some amazing stylists who have taught me new techniques and hair care tips.
She continues, “As far as makeup, that baffles me when I go on set and the makeup artists’ shades stop 7 shades lighter than me. Anytime I’m on a new set, I bring my own stuff, just to be sure. And again, I’ve also worked with amazing artists, too. It really depends on the person.”
Let’s hope the limited number of hair and makeup options for women of color is addressed with action in the future. Keep reading to see how Teyonah fared in our SB Beauty Quiz and be sure to watch Survivor’s Remorse every Saturday at 9:30pm EST on Starz!
SB Beauty Quiz
If my personality were a lipstick shade it would be called: “Feisty Sophisticate”
My luxe beauty indulgence is: Giorgio Armani Foundation ($62)
My affordable beauty indulgence is: Rimmel Scandaleyes Mascara ($7)
Glammed Up or Au Naturale? “If we’re talking everyday life, au naturale. I’m a simple girl.”
The best piece of beauty advice I’ve ever gotten is: “Take care of yourself. Not only on the outside, but making sure you eat well, take vitamins and drink water.”
Three Items I Always Keep In My Purse Are: Eye drops, lipstick and a snack.
My hair crush is: “My mom. She has a short caesar cut; it’s short, fierce and beautiful.”