Emilia Clarke: ‘If you look emaciated & full of self-loathing you don’t look beautiful’

Emilia Clarke has an interview with UK outlet Stylist talking about her approach to makeup, hair and fragrance. It’s a fun look into her beauty philosophy and some of the products she uses. Since reading her incredible essay detailing the two brain aneurysms and surgeries she had, I’ve been a fan. She talks a little about that ordeal, and about feeling unattractive when she was in recovery. It’s more about how much pain she was in though. This is a great read. I’m really looking forward to seeing what she does next after Game of Thrones.

Her mom told her not to pluck her eyebrows
My mum bribed me when it came to beauty. She told me, “Don’t touch your eyebrows because when you’re 17 (as a kid, you always want to be 17) I’ll get your eyebrows professionally shaped.” I was like, “Oh, I’ll hold out for that, that’s so cool!” And honestly, it never happened. I got to 17 and big eyebrows were coming back, so it was like, what’s the point? And when I wanted my ears pierced at 12 she said, “If you wait, we’ll go to Selfridges and we can put pretend diamonds in,” so that I didn’t do it. I did have magnetic earrings though.

Her mom also taught her how to do a light touch with makeup
My mum also taught me how to do ‘no make-up’ make-up. She showed me how to put on my make-up so it looks like I’m not wearing any. If all my friends were doing big eyeliner, which I so wanted to do, she was like, “Why don’t you just put it on the lash line, so it is there but it doesn’t look like it’s there?” She would gently nudge me in a classy direction, so I didn’t go too bonkers with the teenage make-up. I’m still following her today. But a red lip, which I obviously love, is always a red lip.

On feeling awful after her second surgery
“I was so full of drugs from being in the hospital that I had a lot of water retention, and one half of my face was quite swollen,” the 32-year-old recalls. “I felt so deeply unattractive. What I can see now is that I could see the pain behind my eyes. And no amount of anything can cover that.”

On how lovely she felt as Daenerys
I had the best professionals in the world doing my hair and make-up and costumes, and there is really not much I can do about it. I can’t ever get my hair to look like Daenerys’. It’s a heartbreak, but I’ve had to come to terms with that.

On her hair getting fried when she went bottle blonde
We would put the bald cap and the wig on. Everyone told me, “You look so much better as a blonde, you should think about being blonde the whole time.” So for the last season I was like, f-k it, let’s do it. I loved it, but it broke my hair. When you’re peroxide blonde, you don’t want to not be peroxide blonde. You keep thinking, ‘I can do this! My hair will get better!’ But it didn’t. So then I had to cut it all off and dye it back to brown. I feel good. Brunettes have more fun because it’s a lot less hassle.

Her definition of beauty
Beauty is laughter. It’s being inspired. If you look emaciated and tired and full of self-loathing you do not look beautiful, no matter how perfect your hair and make-up is. We should be celebrating having a giggle a bit more. Laughter is free as well, which is good.

[From Stylist.co.uk]

You can tell she’s close with her mom and got so much advice from her. My mom was not as into makeup as I grew to be/am so I had to teach myself. I’ve actually been trying to teach my mom about makeup now and I think she’s picked up a few things. I can relate to not feeling attractive when I’m sick. I went through some difficult health issues around her age and it changed my life, it humbled me and made me re-evaluate some priorities. Maybe that’s why I find her so likable. I’m still superficial about my looks though. I’ve felt like this recently, when I’ve been in pain off and on and am also mad that my face looks puffy. I know it’s no big deal but I can’t help it!

Also in the latest Gossip with Celebitchy podcast, #17 out today, we talk about Daenerys’ story arc. (That’s around 23:30. There are spoilers but only up to episode 4, not the one that aired last night.) Kaiser/Chandra has some great insight about what producers are doing with Daenerys and how it parallels another character on the show. (Around 30:30.)

Oh so she was doing this to promote her partnership with Dolce & Gabbana fragrance and that’s why she was talking about perfume. You can tell she genuinely loves fragrance though. (I cut those excerpts you can read them at Stylist.)


photos credit: Avalon.red

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22 Responses to “Emilia Clarke: ‘If you look emaciated & full of self-loathing you don’t look beautiful’”

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  1. Erinn says:

    Her dog is SO lovely. We almost got a fox terrier but ended up with a pointer. I have such a soft spot for anything Terrier even though I know they tend to be little holly terrors. But ADORABLE terrors.

    Her makeup is a shade or two too light in the red dress photos. She needs just a HINT more yellow in the foundation to really look ‘right’ I think. However, I’m kind of intrigued because I feel like it might be the right shade for me haha.

    • whatWHAT? says:

      we had a fox terrier when I was growing up and, though he was “unsnipped”, he wasn’t a holy terror…lol…he was quite sweet and gentle with all family and friends.

      the only people he DID NOT LIKE were the people who showed up to the house “in uniform”, like the gas/electric meter reader, and the guy who picked up/dropped off my dad’s shirts. he would go APESH*T and we’d have to put him downstairs until they left. strangely, he LOVED the mail carrier, who you’d think (stereotypically) that he’d go crazy about. maybe because it was the same guy every day, but he loved our mailman.

      her pupper is lovely, I agree.

  2. Originaltessa says:

    I have mixed feelings about feeling this way, but to me she DOES look so much more striking as a blonde and as Danaerys. She’s adorable and lovely as a brunette, but as Dany she’s practically the most beautiful thing in the world. Such a beauty.

    • 2lazy4username says:

      You are not alone! While I’m normally a big fan of the “Snow White” color combo, she just looks super interesting as a blonde.

    • Naddie says:

      Yes! It’s like a transformation, Daenerys is outworldly beautiful. When I first saw her out of the show I couldn’t believe they were the same.

    • DiegoInSF says:

      I agree, as a brunette she’s just blah.

  3. Neners says:

    I admire her so much. She just radiates loveliness in a very genuine way.

  4. TheHufflepuffLizLemon says:

    I love the makeup comments! She’s right about pain showing through your eyes-I have pics from a really bad illness and you can just see how dead my face looks.

    My mom loved makeup, so I picked up some stuff from her and then went even more into it-I absolutely adore makeup and spend a lot of time/money on trying everything. Lippies are my never-ending search; my favorite was discontinued a few years ago and I’ve never quite recovered.

    I love the bonding of passing down tips and techniques to the next generation. My niece came to visit a few weeks ago and basically said, “I hate my makeup, please help.” I’ve been waiting for that moment for a few years-we hit the store and shopped forever, then came home and did a makeover. She’s in her 20s, and has been battling under-eye circles and shine, and we were able to give her the look she wanted. I also convinced her to upgrade her moisturizer-so fun!

  5. elimaeby says:

    I’m exactly her age and had a massive seizure around the time she was going through her recovery from the brain aneurysms. I find her such an inspiration. She just radiates fun, kindness and generosity of spirit. I know exactly what she’s talking about in not feeling beautiful when you’re in poor health. I hope she goes on to amazing things after GoT. I can’t wait to see more of her.

  6. t says:

    Drop D&G, Emilia. They’re trash.

  7. Lucy says:

    She’s so lovely and funny! Her smile is incredible.

  8. Kate says:

    I’m 36 years old and resent always being talked out of getting pink hair and having to “keep it classy.” If you can’t experiment with bold eyeliner and makeup when you are a teenager and don’t have to go into an office every day you probably never will. I’m going to let my kids style themselves and be experimental as long as they’re not hurting themselves or doing anything that can’t be taken back (like tattoos – yes that will be a wait until you are x age).

    • Erinn says:


      I’m a big fan of colorful hair and makeup. I work in an office that isn’t customer facing. In the last two years I’ve gotten my nose pierced and gotten some blue ombre in my hair. I think as long as you’re taking care of your hair – and touching up with some color depositing conditioners and making sure it doesn’t get TOO straw like, people really should go for it. I’m under 30, but I also don’t think age should really matter when it comes to stuff like this.

      I’d rather see someone rocking something bright and fun and really owning their look than someone feeling forced to style themselves in a really boring way. One thing I am happy about though is that these things are becoming more and more common – which means people who wouldn’t normally dare do it are getting more and more into this sort of thing. And that makes me happy.

    • Alyse says:

      Age 26-28 I worked a job where rules on appearance were v relaxed (quite encouraged to look ‘cool’) so I made the most of it and dyed my hair pink whenever I got bored! (usually blonde, so easy to do on a whim)
      I’d always wanted to, and glad I made the most of it while I could!

      But I also think bright coloured hair is beautiful and as long as you’re generally well kept, it looks just as tidy/classy as any other colour.

  9. SM says:

    She is gorgeous. And she seems like such a light and fun person with perspective that it is impossible not to love her. And yes. There is something attractive about a woman being just natural, laughing and being able to imerse in the situation in opposition to this stoic facade of emotionless divas we are thought to be in order not to make men uncomfortable having to deal with all those “female emotions”. It seems to me it oftentimes is easier for men to communicate with a woman who is negative rather than positive because they are quite comfortable in a situation of hostility rather than possible partnership.

  10. ds says:

    I know exactly what she means about bleaching the hair. I went super platinum and it looked amazing; especially when your scalp is grey-white. So you always want to keep it like that. But my hair has natural curly shape and bleaching it made it look like straws. I have been going back to brunette for a year now; chopping all of the dead ends and finally, even though I have a short bob now, I feel that is only new and healthy hair. I miss being blonde: loved it. But it ain’t worth the trouble.

    • Naddie says:

      You just wrote my experience down. I’m really curly and my hair is very dark, so I had to bleach more than once to achieve the right shade of blonde, or it would look like an egg yolk. Don’t need to say I’m way happier as a ginger.

  11. Naddie says:

    I’m usually not a fan of smiling, cheerful people, but she seems just the best. I hope she lives a long and happy life.

  12. Emilia says:

    I can’t believe people were telling her to her face that she looks better as a blonde! That would definitely chip away at your self-esteem, what awful people!

  13. Liz says:

    Brunettes have more fun in my experience – blondes get exploited and objectified, due to the media image. They are also thought of as cheaper and dumber. But there’s this cache that persists of blonde being somehow more perfect, but I really don’t see that at all throughout history. I can’t wait until the whole “blonde” thing goes away. It’s very …1950′s? And I’m a born natural blonde.

  14. Nibbi says:

    I feel like she’s by far the most genuine and likeable celebrity on the scene today.