On our latest scouting mission for the best-tressed ladies around town, we snapped one enchanting lady with serious star quality: Ms. Lauren Paez. The Wasteland hairstylist's impeccably ombré hair may have been what lured us in, but the rest of her bountiful assets were what left us wanting more — snaps and scoop.
So, we invited ourselves inside her artful Hancock Park pad and got down to (beauty) business. And Paez was more than willing to give the 411 on maintaining the perfect bangs (it involves wearing a beanie!) and nabbing an au natural glow without caking on the cosmetics. See the bewitching brunette in action, right here, and apply her get-pretty tricks for your own eye-catching moment — stat!
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Photographed by Lani Trock
What's your typical day like?
"When I'm not working on my Etsy store, ExcavationLA
, I'm typically hanging out with 'the boys,' a.k.a. my dog Marcel and my boyfriend Xavier. I always try to go on hikes and catch a friend's art show, too."
How did you score your gig at Wasteland and what's one perk of working there?
"Molly Steele, a model I worked with at American Apparel, recommended me for the position. And Wasteland employees get a pretty awesome discount! I'm a lucky girl."
Paez, on the rooftop of her Hancock Park apartment, wears a vintage dress and jewels, and American Apparel Socks.
Do you usually come to the table with tear sheets or ideas, or take direction from the team there?
"Wasteland is really great with giving me creative freedom, but there's always some sort of direction or inspo we have to work from."
What's been the coolest assignment so far?
"I really enjoy working with our model Jessica Strother. She's just so beautiful and her hair is amazing. If you saw her, you'd get it."
If there was a signature Lauren Paez hair look, what would it be?
"Messy with natural waves and bangs."
How would you describe your style in five words?
"Vintage, natural, effortless, sweet, colorful."
If you could swap your hair for anyone else's, whose would it be?
"I'd trade my long hair for Mia Farrow's Vidal Sassoon crop!"
What are some of your favorite beauty trends right now?
"Now that spring's coming, a sun-kissed face, lip tint, and BeneFit Hoola Box O Powder
What's the one hair trend that you will never try? What about makeup?
"I'm not into extensions because I try to keep my hair as natural as possible. As for makeup, I couldn't do dark and goth."A pretty spread of Paez's beauty staples oh her living room coffee table.
Tell us about the homemade oils you have in your beauty arsenal.
"I regularly make potions from scents I enjoy and spray them on my body, my pillows, even around the room as an air freshener. I have a lot of favorites, like citrus, black gardenia, jasmine, ylang ylang, lotus wood, orchid, patchouli, sandalwood, vanilla, eucalyptus, tea tree, and lavender."
The banged natural beauty rocks vintage overalls, Generic Surplus shoes, and Kodiak Starkey and Ja Lo Ves Rings.
Where do you get your beauty inspiration from?
"Effortless, menswear-inspired style — like Diane Keaton in Annie Hall."
Can you walk us step by step through your bang-cutting method?
"Before I start, I make sure the bangs are dry. Then, I twist them in the center of my face above the bridge of my nose and snip the ends at an angle. The trick of twisting them is how I get that wispy look. And, that's pretty much it! I try to remind myself that less is more. You can always take more off, but growing out hair takes a long time."
What was your worst beauty blunder?
"I think it was the time I dropped a hot iron on a model!"
What's your favorite drugstore hair product? And, what's been your biggest beauty splurge in the last six months?
"I buy Elnett Hairspray
and Tigi Session Salt Spray
at the drugstore, and that bottle of Tom Ford's Tuscan Leather
was my most recent splurge at $280."
If you could only use one beauty product for the rest of your life — what would it be?
"Dr. Brandt Flexitone BB Cream
Do you have any bad beauty habits that you're willing to admit?
"Putting my hair up at night or when it's wet — that causes major breakage."A smattering of what's inside the hairstylist's on-set arsenal!
Do you use any special tricks to combat hair problems?
"I swear by Big Sexy Hair's Powder Play Volumizing & Texturizing powder
for when my hair gets limp."
What's your sneakiest hair trick?
"Using a beanie or hat to flatten my bangs."The ideal eclectic winter outfit: a vintage bow, jacket, shirt, and brooch, all paired with leather Wasteland pants.
What do you think your beauty look will be when you're 70?
"I'll have long white hair and wear flowy outfits with big glasses and jewelry. I hope to look like the subjects on Advanced Style
— it's one of my favorite blogs."
What's the best beauty advice you've ever received?
"My abuelita always told me to drink lots of water."