You may remember her best from her role as Indi Walker on Home & Away but Samara Weaving has come a long way since her days in Summer Bay. After relocating to L.A. to take a crack at Hollywood (in the time-honored tradition of ex-soapie stars like Margot Robbie), Weaving has snapped up some choice roles including a part in Stan's comic-drama SMILF. She's also starred in Joseph McGinty Nichol’s The Babysitter alongside Bella Thorne.
When she arrives for her Byrdie photo shoot at Sydney’s The Fashion Institute, Weaving looks exactly as you’d expect—stunning. Her hair is damp and her skin scrubbed clean; she’s fresh, fascinating (see: her Harry Potter–inspired tattoo), and funny. The perfect muse for our summer makeup shoot? We think so. Ahead, Weaving takes on five of our favorite trends this season.
Byrdie: Walk us through your skincare routine.
Samara Weaving: I like a scrub, so I’ll use a Nivea ($7) one or something a bit more natural. I like to think it helps clean out my pores, especially if I’ve got makeup on or I’ve been traveling and sleeping in different hotel rooms and flying. I’ve got really dry skin, and La Prairie’s Skin Caviar Cream ($473) really helps with keeping up hydration levels all day. I don’t ever have to reapply it. I’ve got like a little ModelCo rosehip face mist that tones and makes my skin all firm and dewy. Sunscreen-wise, I like the ones that you spray on. The mist is fine, so you don’t get greasy and gross, and they’re still very protective. At night I’ll do the La Prairie cream again and sometimes I’ll put a little dab of Lucas’ Papaw Ointment ($4) under my eyes and around my mouth so when I wake up my skin is all fresh and dewy.
B: You fly a lot—how do you keep your skin looking good with all the plane travel?
SW: I tend to take a travel-size raw coconut oil with me on the plane and dab it under my eyes and on my lips and forehead every three hours or so. Normally I stay away from oils because they make me break out, but because it’s so dry on a plane it just seems to work. I put it on the ends of my hair as well to prevent breakage.
Look #1: Charcoal Underliner
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To achieve this modern “disco fairy” vibe, makeup artist Georgia Hull etched kohl along the waterline, then smudged the liner down onto the bottom lash line to soften it. Next she dipped a small pencil-tipped brush into bronze eyeshadow and used it to blend under the eye. Hull added loads of mascara to the top lashes to balance out the liner, then painted a matte peach on the lips for a polished finish.
Bec & Bridge Gold Dust Maxi Dress.
B: How would you describe your everyday makeup look?
SW: I don’t like to wear a lot of makeup because my skin is quite sensitive. I’m prone to breakouts, so I try and stick to a BB cream like this Garnier one and the little Bobbi Brown eyebrow gel ($31). Then if I want to go from day to night I’ll wear the Lancôme Teint Miracle foundation ($41). It stays on for ages and makes you look like you’re radiating health—it’s amazing. ModelCo’s mascara ($17) with the little brush-on fibers makes my eyelashes look ridiculously long. During the day I’ll not do the fibers, but then at nighttime I’m gonna go all out and make them nice and lush. I’ll also do a liner on the inner upper waterline. Then I just use eyeshadow in browns and nudes for the eyes. I use a Benefit blush ($36), it’s a really peachy color and not sparkly, which I like. I’m really obsessed with this Burberry lipstick ($34) I have; it goes on really smoothly and it doesn’t even really look like lipstick—it’s almost in the middle of a lipstick and a gloss. It’s really good.
Look #2: Gold Everything
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This gilded makeup look doesn’t require much effort to create. Hull used a soft brown eyeshadow to contour the eyes, then pressed a pigment-rich gold shadow firmly in the center of the lids, blending softly. To take the intensity up a notch for the evening, Hull has an easy hack: “Wet your brush with water or a makeup setting spray—the pigments activate with liquid and the color pay-off is a lot stronger.”
Bec & Bridge Santal Tie Top; Dinosaur Designs Medium Resin Orchid Bangle; Brass Atelier Cuff; Orchid Bangle Medium; Small Gold Pod Bangle.
B: You’ve had hair extensions put in for The Babysitter. How have you been adjusting to those?
SW: I was surprised when they said they wanted to put a few extensions in. I was a bit hesitant because I thought you’d be able to tell but—and if I’m wrong someone tells me—I feel like they look pretty good. They’re just a bit of fun really. I’m not going around pretending they’re my own hair, I’m actually kind of pointing it out to people. My hair is dry anyway so I use the Olaplex home treatment which is amazing. I put it in once I’ve finished washing my hair, comb it through and leave it in. It really helps keep everything soft.
B: Are you a fan of DIY beauty?
SW: After a day of work where I’ve had a few different hair looks or there have been certain effects done to my hair and it’s been through a lot, I’ll do a homemade treatment. It’s just coconut oil and avocado and a bunch of other natural things—basically whatever’s in the garden. I put it on and watch T.V and hope no-one walks in one me while I’ve got weird goo in my hair.
Look #3: Shimmery Blue Liner
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This is how cool girls do glitter—it’s unexpected but understated. Hull began by perfecting the skin with moisturizer and a circulation-boosting facial massage. A satin-finish foundation was applied along the T-zone with a buffing brush and blended out, and concealer was added where needed. Transparent loose powder was loosely dusted over the top to set everything in place. Shimmery blue gel liner was applied along the top lashline with an angled brush hugging the lashline and ending in a teensy flick. Brows were filled in, brushed up and set in place with brow gel.
Oribe Volumista Spray; Oribe Anti Humidity Spray.
Ellery Roulette A-Line Dress; Petite Grand Mini Crest Earring.
B: How would you say being an actress has influenced your beauty routine over the years?
SW: I think being surrounded by professional makeup artists and hairdressers you pick up little tips and trends. I think I’d be a bit of a lost puppy if they weren’t around. I’ve learned how to contour my face which I really love. If I’m feeling a bit puffy or haven’t slept properly and I’ve got an audition or meeting, I’ll be like, “It’s okay, I’ve got this!” I use the Anastasia contour kit ($49) for that—it’s good because the powders are creamy and easy to blend.
B: What’s the best tip you’ve picked up from a makeup artist on set?
SW: Once a makeup artist put a little gold highlighter on my Cupid’s bow and it accentuated the lip color and brought the whole makeup look together. It was just a little thing but I loved it. I do it myself now but I have to double check myself. I’m like, “Is this too much?” You don’t want to be leaving home with a big glob of gold on your face.
Look #4: Tequila Sunrise-Inspired Eyes
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Weaving's baby blues were the perfect partner for this sunset-esque color palette. Hull blended hot pink eyeshadow all over the lid, building up the color until opaque. Next, she took a large fluffy brush and blended orange shadow into the eye socket, melding the two colours together. To finish, Hull added highlighter at the inner corner of the eyes, down the bridge of the nose and at the Cupid’s bow.
Oribe Gel Serum Radiance, Magic and Hold ($62).
Acler Duncan Dress.
B: How do you stay fit and healthy?
SW: I do yoga every other day or as much as I can. I tend to go to ones that are just 30 degrees or 25-30 rather than Bikram yoga which is super-hot, around 40 degrees. I would pass out in there! Yoga is great because once you know enough moves, you can literally just buy a mat and do it anywhere. You only need two meters to yourself.
B: Is there anything else you do to be well?
SW: I just try to listen to my body. I think it’s very important to be mindful of your body and actually listen to it. If I’m craving a certain kind of food I’ll have, but I notice when I’m full. It’s kind of like a logical diet. I think when people go on restrictive diets they put too much stress on themselves which might make them prone to bingeing. I think mindfulness is the way to go.
Look #5: Mahogany Red Lips
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Deep mahogany isn’t an obvious lipstick shade for summer but one look at Burberry’s S/S 16 runway demonstrates just how fresh it can look worn out of season. Hull used a brush to paint on satin lipstick then dabbed gold pigment at the Cupid’s bow to bring light to the lips. Hull blended bronze shadow on lids and under the eyes and used a small shadow brush to add a matte brown shadow at the outer corners of eyes for depth. The finishing touches? A flick of liner, and highlighter at the inner corners of the eyes.
Life With Bird Ultimate Illustrator Tunic Dress; Elke Kramer Amarita Mahogany Tassel Earrings.
B: Are there any beauty moments from film you’ve taken on board in your everyday life?
SW: A couple of years ago my friend and I were watching heaps of That 70’s Show and we were obsessed with the characters. After that, I had a lot of love for the ‘70s and that sort of indie look. I even started doing center-parted hair; It was like Almost Famous vibes. I love the flair of that era and the whole hippie feeling.
B: Is there anyone you aspire to be like in your industry?
SW: Lately, I’ve really been admiring younger female actors like Emma Stone, Jennifer Lawrence, and Jessica Chastain—they’re women who are taking on really interesting roles. They’re not being stereotyped in a certain way, and they’re giving it their all and doing really well.
B: What can you tell us about your upcoming film, The Babysitter?
SW: I don’t actually know how much I can say just yet! It was such a great shoot and it was so great to work on something of that scale.