There's no one with whom we'd rather discuss the joys of animal sweaters and cookie-scented perfume than Zooey Deschanel. Of course, we expect such whimsy from the New Girl actress and HelloGiggles co-founder, but the enthusiasm with which she broke down her beauty routine, not to mention the fun she's having working with legendary hairstylist Danilo at Pantene, was a pleasant surprise.
When it comes to makeup, Deschanel puts it simply: "I've been doing this for a long time." The actress got her start in local regional theater as a kid, meaning she encountered cosmetics years before the average teen. "When I was eight or nine, I had to get a Ben Nye Theatrical Makeup Kit ($68)," she says. "I learned how to shade and highlight and contour, but there wasn't any practical makeup—we never used eyeliner!"
When it comes to caring for her face, Deschanel's fuss-free. Her two-step routine starts with Laventine's Cleansing Oil (Note—this product has been discontinued; we recommend CocoKind Organic Facial Cleansing Oil, $14, as a replacement) and ends with Tarte's Pure Maracuja Oil. "I cleanse with cleansing oil and then I put oil on my face," she says. "It sounds crazy, but my skin likes it." Facials? Masks? Serums? "I did go to a facialist a couple of times and my skin was like, 'What are you doing to me?!' It doesn't want to be scrubbed, only moisturized—like a baby!"
Even when she's not on stage—or on TV—Deschanel loves makeup. Her latest must-have? BB Cream. "I love Dior's (Note—this product has been discontinued), we use it a lot on the show, and Dr. Jart's ($34). There are a lot of great Korean ones," she says. "Sometimes there are typos on the packaging—like one said BleeBee Cream instead of Blemish—and I wonder if I should be using something on my face when it's not translated correctly, but then it works so well!"
"I know what I don't like and that's eyeliner all the way around my eyes," Deschanel says. She does, however, like liquid eyeliner, specifically from Hourglass ($34). "Makeup's about experimenting and looking in the mirror and asking, 'How close or wide-set are my eyes? Where is my nose? What makes my face look the most pretty?'"
It's obvious Deschanel's own preferences, most of which have been shaped by her makeup artist Jorjee Douglas, influence her New Girl character, Jess. "We use a lot of different lipsticks," Deschanel says, referring to her days both on and off set. Among their favorites? Clinique's Almost Lipstick in Black Honey, Nars' Lipstick ($26) in Funny Face, and Tarte's Pure Performance 12-Hour Lipstick ($26) in Bold (Note—this product has been discontinued). "Any of which we usually pair with Chanel lip liners ($31)," she adds.
Deschanel might not be into layering products on her face, but she has embraced them in her hair, thanks largely to her relationship with Pantene Pro-V. "If you told me two years ago that I'd be sitting here with six or seven different products in my hair, I'd probably freak out," she admits. But with Danilo guiding the way, she's enjoying the learning curve. "I use Beautiful Lengths Shampoo ($5) and Conditioner ($5)." She's also a fan of the brand's Overnight Miracle Repair Serum (Note—this item has been discontinued, but the Damage Repair Nourishing Overnight Restoring Serum is a similar replacement) . "Given how often my hair is done, I should do things like this more often, but I hate making the time; anything that works overnight is so easy."
"My nails are so strong and grow so fast, I just can't stop biting them," Deschanel says, explaining the real reason she started experimenting with nail art. "So this became a way to think of hilarious things that should be painted on a larger scale but had to be tiny to fit on my nails." When she's not squeezing miniature filmstrips on her nails, they're usually painted with one of Julep's ($14) colorful shades.
Turns out regular showers and hair products keep Deschanel smelling sweet enough—most of the time. Though she doesn't usually wear perfume, her mom gifted her a few new custom fragrances for Christmas from Demeter, that smell of just-baked cookies and another with notes of fresh-cut grass. "I do think this new take on fragrance, smelling like the environment instead of a bunch of flowers, is very cool." So if you're looking to catch the actress' attention, try ditching your Le Labo Santal 33 ($83) for Demeter's Birthday Cake.