At just 27, Jodie Comer is already a household name. Defining roles in Doctor Foster and Killing Eve, in which she plays impeccably-dressed assassin Villanelle, have made her one of the most sought-after actors right now. But in addition to her on-screen career, Comer has a side gig as the face of global skin-care brand Noble Panacea. The partnership makes total sense, seeing as Comer's smooth, radiant skin is one of her calling cards — and yes, it really is that good up close. We caught up with Comer over a socially distanced coffee to talk treating hormonal breakouts, makeup must-haves, and the simple skin-care routine she swears by every day.
On Her Role As A Skin-Care Ambassador
"For me, everything is about integrity, including my acting," Comer told Refinery29. "I've got to believe in something if I'm going to put my time into it, and I was blown away by Noble Panacea's ethos and attitude towards what beauty is." The brand was founded by Sir Fraser Stoddart, the 2016 Nobel Laureate for Chemistry, and champions active ingredients such as probiotics, which strengthen the skin's barrier, and acids for gentle exfoliation. "There is so much science that has gone into these products and I think that's authentic," Comer said.
The Simple Skin-Care Routine That Makes All The Difference
Since working with the brand, Comer says she's cut back on stockpiling buzzy skin-care products and now opts for a more minimal routine. "I actually feel embarrassed when I look at my cosmetic cupboard and I see all the products that I've bought because there's always something new," she said. Cleansing is the lynchpin in her morning and evening routine. "I always cleanse my skin," she added. "If I'm filming and wearing a lot of makeup, I prefer something with a creamy, thicker texture and I love using a cleansing brush."
What follows is super simple yet effective. "My skin actually gets clogged quite easily, so in the morning I just use the Radiant Resilience Moisturizer," Comer said of the blend of skin-repairing probiotics, pollution-busting minerals, and soothing plant extracts. "What the brand champions is using the products in steps, so I also love the Intense Renewal Serum when I'm working out. I hate my skin being dry but I don't want too much on my skin." Then, she explained, she always uses SPF 50 — something her facialist, Jasmina Vico, has instilled in her. "Jasmina can be naughty and nice when it comes to my skin," Comer, who treats herself to the odd facial when she's in London, said. "They can be a little bit painful but that's when I know it's doing my skin some good. I'd much rather get all the gunk out of my face."
Comer speaks highly of using the Overnight Recharge Cream in the evening. "I try not to put too much on my face at night. I really like rose or lavender water — something that will give my skin a little hydration boost," she said. "I try and keep it simple, and I find that if I change things up too much, I don’t notice a positive difference on my skin. I leave things like retinol to the experts because I feel like something could go horribly wrong."
Good Skin Starts On The Inside
"My facialist ingrained in me that it's what you're putting into your body, as well as skin care," Comer said. "It's how many hours of sleep you get, which vitamins you're getting, and how much water you're drinking" — and she drinks a lot of water. "Of course, I do live my life and indulge, though," Comer added. "But while makeup can be fun and allows for a lot of freedom, there's this idea of covering things up. I feel so much more confident if I feel better in my skin. I'd rather wear little makeup or no makeup at all and feel free in that way."
Not Even She's Immune To Bad Skin Days
Believe it or not, Comer gets the odd breakout now and again — but she knows exactly how to treat them without aggravating her skin further. "Not long ago, I had so many hormonal spots under my skin, which was more to do with the contraception I was on at the time, but my facialist told me it was also because my skin was so dry," she said. "I'd been putting something on it to dry it out more, but I needed hydration — I thought I got spots because my skin was so oily. Hormones again change everything but when it comes to skin, you just have to be easy on yourself." Comer adds that she's guilty of the bad skin habit so many of us fall victim to: "I'm also a really bad picker," she said. "I sometimes have little marks and I will pick and pick and pick until it's huge and obvious. Diluting a bit of tea tree oil helps — you have to be careful with it, but I do think it works."
Beauty Is Better When It's Mindful
"Now, I'm more mindful about what I'm actually putting on my skin and into my body, and it helps that Noble Panacea ingredients are all clean," Comer said. All of the brand's products are 100% fragrance-free, hypoallergenic, and formulated without much-maligned ingredients like mineral oil, petrolatum, alcohol, and paraffin that may have the potential to irritate sensitive skin. "This never used to be important to me but it is now," she said. "I'm obsessed with the Overnight Recharge Cream in particular. When you wake up in the morning your skin is so moisturized and glowy; it starts you off on the right foot. I love the consistency of it, too. I hate it when a cream just dissolves into your skin, but you don't want it to be too thick, either."
Comer said her approach to skin care has changed since learning more about efficacy and sustainability. "I feel like we always just slap our moisturizer on and can be quite rough with our face when washing it," she explained. "I travel a lot with work, too, so the Recharge Cream's small packages [Ed. Note: Each dose is individually wrapped to protect the product from light and air] are really useful and there's zero waste." Noble Panacea has partnered with TerraCycle to ensure its materials are 100% recyclable.
The Makeup She Can't Live Without — & The Tricks She's Learned On Set
"Whenever anyone uses an Hourglass foundation on me, I love it. Their highlighter palettes are also so good," Comer said. "I also really like the Hourglass Hidden Corrective Concealer sticks, but I like to warm the product up on my hand first and then apply it, as if you layer it, it can be quite thick."
Comer frequently works with makeup artist Alex Babsky, from whom she's learned some clever makeup hacks. "Recently, Alex was doing an eyeliner look on me that was kind of like a cat eye but so subtle and gorgeous. I always want to do a little flick but it always ends up on my forehead. I'm always trying to level it out and it always gets bigger and bigger," she said. "He gave me a top tip, though: Start it from the centre of your eye and then wing it out, starting with a pencil and then a felt-tip liquid liner."
Another genius tip Comer has picked up from the pros: "Once your lips are done, going around them with a little bit of concealer makes them seem a bit sharper and fuller," she said. "I really love a white or off-white eyeliner in my waterline to make my eyes look bigger, too — that's a really nice touch. I also don't put any mascara on my lower lashes, as it makes my eyes look smaller. But skin prep is also important. Whenever Hung Vanngo does my makeup, there is a face wash and a cleanser and two sheet masks and all of these things beforehand."
How She Keeps Her Blonde Hair Glossy
"I'm so lazy with my hair," Comer confessed, "but I love Olaplex and that's the shampoo that I use." Then it's a simple spritz of sea salt spray and she's good to go. Harry Josh colors Comer's hair when she's in the US, but when she's back in the UK, John Clark at John Frieda takes over every five weeks. "The amazing thing is you get to try these amazing styles and colors out, and it's so fun to be able to play around like that," Comer said. But there's one thing she'll never try again: bangs. "I got them on a whim one time and as soon as I walked out of the salon I thought, What have I done? Every time I had an event, I'd ask the stylists to please do something."
Her Five-Minute Daily Makeup Routine
The Simple Secret To Her Instagram-Famous Brows
"My advice is: Don't touch them! I'm lazy with my brows and used to have no eyebrows so I'm scared to do anything to them," Comer said. "Actually, I'm very lucky they grew back. I let makeup artists tidy them up as long as they don't go crazy, but I'd say leave as much as you can. I always used to draw mine on so heavy but I need to feather them slightly. Less is more with eyebrows."
She Loves Villanelle's Killing Eve Looks As Much As We Do
"My favorite was the look from season one, episode three, when [Villanelle] killed Bill," said Jodie. "Even the costume was great; the jigsaw suit and plaits. We were filming in Berlin and she had Doc Martens on. What I imagine about Villanelle is that she is busy and doesn't have the time to sit there and do her makeup — she's free and being who she is. She is stripped back. As the seasons went on and the costumes became such a big thing, we had the opportunity to experiment, but she's simple."
The Fashion Picks She's Reaching For This Fall
"You can't underestimate the power of a good quality T-shirt and jeans," Comer said. "I love Agolde jeans. Mine split on the bum but I ordered them again because they're so good. PAIGE jeans have great elasticity if you're a girl who likes your food, like me. My friend also works at New Balance and when there's a new shoe, she keeps me cool, but I'm very low-maintenance."
And if she's going to spend her money? "I love a good Joseph jumper or knit, and I'm more of a pants and jacket girl. Recently, when the BAFTAs were virtual, my stylist got me a Duro Olowu dress, which had a low V-neck. When I put that on I thought, Why don't I wear dresses more? I was obsessed. But it takes a special type of dress to sway me. I also just bought a new pair of black boots from Celine. These ones don't cut off my calves and I can wear them with jeans and a dress."
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