Dianna Agron: "It's So Much Sexier to Be Pale"

Dianna Agron, aka Quinn Fabray from Glee, has aspirational skin. I saw her porcelain and poreless perfection up close when I interviewed her at an event celebrating Dr. Jart's new Dermask collection. The lineup of nine single-use face sheet masks ($9 each at Sephora) is meant to target specific areas (laugh lines, neck, cheek, and eye) as well as conditions (firmness, hydration, breakouts). And Dianna is a fan.

During our chat, she discussed her experimental side, how she keeps her skin so damn clear, and why she is excited to turn the big 3-0. Keep reading to get detailed beauty advice from Dianna!

Dianna on Skin Care

Dianna on Skin Care

POPSUGAR: So let’s talk skin first, because that’s why we are here. You have perfect porcelain skin — what SPF do you use?

Dianna Argon: You have to use like SPF 110. I know they say it doesn’t work past 50 or 70 — it doesn’t work, but the higher, the better. Always reapply, but more than that, [good skin comes from the inside out]. Eat clean foods with no preservatives.

PS: Tell me more about your diet.

DA: I don’t believe in [preservatives] for numerous reasons. It makes me sad when I think about kids living on diets of processed foods, because nobody should be raised like that.

PS: What about your skin care philosophy?

DA: Lots of water and healthy skin and hair products. Be aware of what your skin needs. Is it dry? Is it broken out? Be proactive. There’s a reason that our generation looks so much younger. Every generation is getting younger and younger looking and [living] an extended life, because we are paying more attention to our bodies, our skin care, our everything.

Dianna on Aging

Dianna on Aging

PS: So someone on our staff wrote an essay about why she’s happy to be pale as f*ck in the Summer. Do you support skipping a tan in the Summer?

DA: I personally never want to be tan for the sake of not protecting [my] skin. I agree with that [writer]. It’s also interesting because in high school, we were the girls who lay out with the butter, oil, or whatever. We were like, “we need to be tan, need to be tan.” I think it’s so much sexier to be pale and to be health conscious.

PS: Finish the sentence: "I feel most beautiful when . . ."

DA: I feel most beautiful these days, period. The older I get, the more sexy I feel and the more I know myself. Next year I’ll be 30, and I can’t wait. I just feel like I know myself more than I’ve ever known myself and that is expediently better year by year.

PS: I just turned 30 this year, it’s not terrible.

DA: It’s not terrible at all! I feel like we look so young, you know? I hate the phrase, “you look great for your age.” I hate it because there is no norm anymore. My mom will be 60 in January and she looks like a baby, young thing who is in her 40s. You take care of yourself, you’re happy and you’re beautiful [because] you love life and all these things in it. We don’t need to be defined by age so much anymore. Age is kind of a gift. You know more, you’ve traveled more, and you’ve done more things.

Dianna on Creativity

Dianna on Creativity

PS: That’s a great message. And you do travel — you go often! What are some in-flight products you always bring on the plane?

DA: Before you depart, take your makeup off and put on a mask. If you’re flying overnight, the lights are off, and nobody is looking at you. It’s fun. I don’t love flying, but I love the idea that I have this opportunity to watch great movies and really hydrate my skin. So I don’t get off the plane looking like a person who has just been out in the wilderness with no products. And if you really want to wake up looking fresh, then put your makeup on during the last hour of the plane.

PS: So I was reading on your website You, Me & Charlie that you have a vivid imagination. Does this come into play when you’re dressing up for Halloween?

DA: Halloween is my favorite. I love to dress up and that whole experience of costumes. That’s why I love my job so much. I love the departure from the normal character — the more imaginative character. I grew up in a world where fantasy, dress-up, and all those things were so deeply rooted in my sense of love and admiration; so that’s a big thing for me.

PS: Do you have a costume planned for this year?

DA: No, it’s kind of what the year brings, how I’m feeling, and what I can source at the time. A lot of times people are like, “I want to be this sexy fill in the blank . . ." I focus on the funny rather than the sexy. I’ve been Reptar from Rugrats and I’ve been . . . well, I mean Tweety Bird isn’t that funny. But I just like to go the extra mile by wearing face paint or contact lenses.

Dianna on Acting

Dianna on Acting

PS: Speaking of characters, what is one beauty tip that you’ve learned from Quinn Fabray?

DA: She was all about the lash. Loved a lash, loved an eyeliner, and mascara. Probably the most prissy character that I’ve ever played. [Now I am] playing characters who are more and more natural, more real — so nothing is as feminine.

PS: For your upcoming role in Hollow in the Land, you’re playing a “tomboyish lesbian” — how different is that look?

DA: I mean, yes and no. I lived this life that is very experiential. I love to travel, I love to talk to different people, I’ve had many different experiences in my life that I can draw from for films and roles and things like. It’s not dissimilar to my own life, but it’s not similar to my own life — its just finding a balance. And that’s the wonderful thing about acting: you can draw on experiences that you’ve had, but then at the same time you can turn it into something that is so different than anything you’ve ever experienced. I love that about being given the opportunity to do something different.

PS: In the movie Bare, you had your first onscreen nude scene. Beauty-wise, what did you have to do to prep your body for it?

DA: Nothing. I was very communicative with our director. I knew they didn’t want to film anything in a gratuitous way, everything was going to be very art house — in and out of focus. I was very comfortable with all of that.

Dianna on Red Carpet Beauty

Dianna on Red Carpet Beauty

PS: What’s one thing you wish people knew about red carpet makeup?

DA: It seems so glamorous, and it’s really just a hysterical process. It’s so unnatural — they’re like, “how do you wanna look today?” And you’re like, “I don’t know . . .” Do I wanna red lip? Whatever. Those kind of experiences are very surreal because you’re like, “you can make me look more glamour than I can ever make myself look.” I’m, like, supposed to custom order what I want, and I don’t know what I want. I’m like, “do it for me.”

Granted, I work with people who are so talented at what they do and are some of my best friends, but it still seems like a ridiculous and kind of hysterical trance. I am not the actress who wants to look how I do for films on the red carpet. I am myself in real life, which is a bit of makeup and some woken-up hair.

I feel so lucky, I love my friends, I love my family, I love my boyfriend, I love my life, and I’m just very lucky to be immersed in these glamorous situations where it’s not me. Its really not me.

PS: How many hours does it take to get ready for one red carpet?

DA: I don’t allow more than an hour.

PS: Really? For hair and makeup?

DA: Yeah, no. You gotta do it quick.

PS: Do you have any favorite beauty hacks that you do on your own?

DA: The big thing is [to drink] a lot of water and [use] hydrating products. So products like the Dermask that are hydrating. It immediately changes your skin and the way that your makeup sets on it.

Dianna on Hair Care

Dianna on Hair Care

PS: If you could offer beauty advice to anyone, who would it be?

DA: My teenage self. Step away from home dye, stop dyeing your hair.

PS: You did have hot-pink hair at one time!

DA: Pink, red, brown, black, everything. I used to do it myself and it would fade from like red to orange, and I would be like, “Whatever! I’ll do it again.” Just like chill out with the home dye, but everything else is an experiment. I’m so happy I was raised in a household very pro find yourself, find your inner passion diva — whatever.