Heidi Bivens, Stylist & Costume Designer


“I am a stylist and a costume designer, and I live in New York. I’ve been working in this industry since the late ‘90s, and I’m still having a good time of it. Beauty is an important part of what I do because when I work on a photo shoot or editorial or a film, I’m always asked for my opinion about the hair and makeup. I approach projects as more of a creative director, and it’s important for me to have opinions and be up on what people are interested in, but also to have an instinct about style when it comes to the beauty ‘look.’

I just worked on the Harmony Korine film, Spring Breakers. I didn’t know [Korine] personally, but we have a lot of mutual friends, and I really wanted to work on the project, so I tried to get a meeting with him in any way I could. And working with him was awesome; he is the ultimate collaborator. I designed all the costumes—well, ‘designing’ when you work on a film like this means taking things from different places for the wardrobe. So, for the girls [Vanessa Hudgens, Selena Gomez, Ashley Benson, and Rachel Korine], the question was: where do girls like that really buy their clothes? I shopped at mall stores, I pulled a lot from designers—everyone from American Apparel to The Elder Statesman—and designed some pieces myself. I had some bathing suits designed, too, but others were rented from a thrift store, some were Playboy, one is from Hot Topic, and some are Victoria’s Secret Pink. It was a combination of stuff. We shot over a few months in St. Petersburg, Florida during actual spring break, so it was pretty authentic.

The beauty in the movie was focused on ‘clean skin’—they didn’t do a ton of makeup. Because when you’re that age, you don’t really wear makeup. But everybody had their nails done… It’s funny, yesterday I was out buying something and I saw the cashier had that thing where all the nails are the same color except for one nail—Vanessa [Hudgens] did that in the movie, but I didn’t know it was a thing. But, I guess it is.

In terms of my own beauty regimen, there are certain things I’m obsessed with, and then I have other products I’m just experimenting with and trying out at any time. I’m obsessed with Chanel Vitalumiére Aqua #20 Beige right now. I really depend on my makeup-artist friends to give me tips because there’s so much out there, and I get overwhelmed. I used to just use a concealer, but my friend Nico Guilis, a makeup artist, was like ‘You’re too matte. You need to use some other kind of foundation.’ But I don’t really consider this foundation, it’s so light. It has SPF, and it just makes you look hydrated. Even if you don’t need a lot of coverage, you could just use this really lightly, and it gives you an even tone; it’s got a little bit of a reflective quality to it.

I actually love stuff with sparkles in it! [Laughs] But subtle ones, like the Nars Larger than Life Longwear Eyeliner pencil in 47th Street—it’s black, but it’s got a little bit of sparkle in it. I’m super into that. And for lips, because I’m kind of low-maintenance, I have a tendency to just use some kind of balm that has color in it. I like Hurraw Black Cherry Tinted Lip Balm because I used the wear Dr. Pepper Chapstick and this is sort of my updated version. If I’m doing a more serious lip, I love the Volupté Sheer Candy line from YSL. Because of my coloring, I can’t get away with wearing a whole lot of different colors, and this line is all sheer, so you only get a gloss of color—I’m more pink-and-coral in the spring/summer, and then I’ll wear shades of red in the winter. But even when I wear reds, I tend to wear pinky-red or orangey-red instead of a true, true red. It just woks for my skin tone. Otherwise, I like Dior Rosy Glow Blush in Petal or Nars Penny Lane Cream Blush for a tiny bit of a flush, and for mascara, Diorshow or a drugstore brand, like Maybelline—they make such great mascaras.

I’ve been using Bobbi Brown Pressed Powder in Warm Natural 6 for as long as she’s been making it. I don’t like being really matte, but if I need an overall finish in any area, like under my eye, because I’ve used eyeliner and I’m worried about it bleeding, then I’ll just use some of that. Or if I’m particularly shiny, I’ll use it really lightly on my forehead or nose. I also love Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder for the corners of my nose, or if I’m especially dark underneath my eyes, or even a sunspot, I’ll just touch it up, a teeny bit. Not too much—I think with brightening powder you always run into the danger of it being too reflective, you know? I don’t know if you’ve ever seen red carpet moments where makeup artists have gone too crazy with that, but I want to avoid that.

In general, I like skin to look hydrated. I think the most important thing in a beauty regimen—beyond sun care—is hydrating your skin. I juice a lot, too, and take chlorophyll. If you don’t juice, or if you don’t have time to juice, you can use liquid chlorophyll! I usually just put it in some water. Anything green, you know? I find: happy body, happy skin. I notice that when I make an effort to juice—or I’m super hydrated—my skin always looks better.

For my face, I’m really into the Natura Bissé Oxygen Complex serum. I just started using it. It’s perfect for if you have tired skin, or you just got off a flight—or you could use it every day. It gives you an even tone; I think it has a little bit of hydrogen peroxide in it, so, for me, that’s good. It says “Keep away from your eyebrows” but I actually put it over my eyebrows because I’m always trying to get them to look even to my hair color. I’m also obsessed with La Mer! I love the Radiant Serum; my skin just eats it up. Because I’m combination-skinned, I’m always changing my products depending on where I’m traveling, or the season, or how my skin is reacting. But La Mer, I always go back to, even if I take a break from it. I'm also always going back to Neutrogena. They have everything I need. And the Oil-Free Moisture with SPF 15 is amazing! There’s a reason why Allure named it the best moisturizer, I guess. It’s perfect for me because I can’t really use an oily moisturizer, plus it has sun protection. For cleanser, I got turned on to Chantecaille Rice and Geranium Foaming Cleanser, and I can’t get enough of it.

Right now, I’m letting my roots grow in, so that my hair’s more contrast-y. I love dry shampoo—the Klorane one is great, and Oribe makes a really good one, too…. I love ‘dry’ anything, I think. [Laughs] Like, the Fresh Rice Dry Oil. It’s great on your skin because you can use the dry oil, wait a few minutes, and put on your clothes, and it’s not going to come off on your clothes. Anyway, I’ve been using the Oribe Shampoo for Beautiful Color for color-treated hair for years—I’m totally sold. And then Mauricio at Ion, my colorist, turned me on to Alterna Ten Conditioner. It’s really hydrating—for me, it’s almost too hydrating. It’s almost like a masque, but it’s very good.

I use a curling iron every day. Because I have dyed blond hair, if I don’t use a curling iron, or if I don’t use heat on my hair, my hair just does what it wants. And if I don’t have a blowout, I have to use heat to make it behave…. I’m sort of a wash-and-go girl, or at least I always want to be, so when I have to actually do my hair, it doesn’t abide with my whole approach to life.”

—as told to ITG

Heidi Bivens photographed by Emily Weiss in Brooklyn, NY on January 18th, 2013. Spring Breakers opens in the U.S. on March 22nd.

Let’s Talk About It! JOIN IN
  • Lana Nasser

    This woman is absolutely stunning. Yowza!! I like her mix of posh and drugstore favorites. Although I have oily/combination skin and have never dyed my hair, I really love reading about contrasting women and their practices. It gives me such a wealth of knowledge about ALL women and not just ones like me. Plus, it helps with advice for friends! Thank you ITG, once again!

  • NeenaJ

    If I were Selena Gomez, I would draw the line at wearing a bathing suit rented from a thrift store, LOL!

  • Local & Opulent

    Love her high/low mix of products... attainable!

    A new post on ways to actually wear spring runway trends in real life is up on Local & Opulent.


  • ITGReader

    Does anybody know the brand of her blouse?

    • classntrash

      I'm curious too. All I could think of while reading the post was " I want her blouse"

      • Heather

        Tocca by Emma Fletcher

    • Mo


  • http://nomadic-d.blogspot.com/ Nomadic D.

    Nars Penny Lane is one of my all-time favorite blushes as well. Just saying.


  • Ivy

    I love her clothes! I wish that she told us which clothing, accessory, and jewelry brands she loved as well, especially since she is a costume designer.

    • Heather

      Earring is Delfina Delettrez

  • http://twitter.com/Steph_A_Taylor Stephanie Taylor

    Clean and simple makeup = perfect. I also love her shirt. Who makes it?

  • mobeta

    more likely it will be a cult classic for in the know movie nerds.

    • Liz

      Maybe. I'm a movie geek myself, but I'm not a fan of Harmony Korine at all.

  • http://Www.designerbinary.com/ Designer Binary

    Love this. I'm a wash and go person too just rather unfortunate that I don't appear to have the hair of a wash and go kinda person... So annoying.

  • SF City Editor

    I love the mix of high-low, and the various brands.

  • http://twitter.com/Alouette_Jolly Ada

    She seems really cool! Ehhh...Keep Maybelline Great lash far away from me and my eyes; I used that stuff one time in high school, and it hurt like hell when I tried to take it out! NEVER, ever again. Aside from that I love FRESH, I am a HUGE NARS girl, and my favourite NARS cream blush is Cactus Flower - great for darker skin! :)

  • Marla Vender

    Why does everyone in NYC have that bathroom sink?

  • severine

    This girl is girlfriends Justin Theroux who dupe for jennifer aniston

  • Melissa Gonzalez

    Thank the lord someone finally mentions hurrah lip balms. So cheap, vegan and amazing.

  • jenna

    She looks like a combination of Elizabeth Banks and Naomi Watts.

  • Paulina

    I like her and wonder - how old is she? :) Her skin looks veryy good! I am a beauty-junkie and love Into The Gloss!!!

    I invite you to my blog - my newest post treats about my skincare regimen and products I recommend: http://restlessblonde.blogspot.com/2013/03/perfect-skin.html


  • kchap

    Always and forever stunning ;-)


Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray
NARS Larger Than Life Long Wear Eyeliner
Dior Diorshow Mascara
Laura Mercier
Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder
Bobbi Brown
Bobbi Brown Sheer Finish Pressed Powder
Alterna TEN Conditioner
La Mer
La Mer The Radiant Serum
Natura Bisse
Natura Bisse Oxygen Complex Intensive Purifying Serum
Dior Rosy Glow Blush in Petal
Yves Saint Laurent
Yves Saint Laurent Volupté Sheer Candy
Fresh Rice Dry Oil
Chantecaille Rice and Geranium Foaming Cleanser
Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisture Lotion