Allison Williams brightens up the March 2017 cover of Allure.
For the photo shoot, the Girls actress dyes her brunette hair blonde. "I like it!" she says. "Especially this blonde—it feels like it is just a new twist on the same old me. It's just hair!"
According to Williams, it's "fun" to change up her look. "Maybe I'll become this gorgeous bombshell vixen. Or maybe I'll still just be the adult-spelling-bee spirit I've always been," she wonders. "I bet people won't recognize me, and that's gonna be a fun reveal with my friends."
Williams' new look comes courtesy of colorist Aura Friedman.
Teased for being a "traitor" to brunettes everywhere, she tells Allure's Adam Sachs, "I think if I'd used my middle name professionally—Howell Williams—I'd have a totally different career. I'd be an indie darling. I'd be fighting with Greta Gerwig for parts. I'd have gone blonde earlier." But playing Marnie Michaels on HBO's Girls for six seasons meant staying true to her dark roots.
Unsurprisingly, Williams has picked up quite a few beauty tips in recent years. "I ask nonstop questions of hair and makeup people whenever I work with them," she says. "One thing that comes to mind is something my makeup artist Gianpaolo Ceciliato told me, which is that you shouldn't curl your lashes after putting on mascara, because it can break them more easily."
Williams has also mastered the art of applying liquid liner. "Do the rest of your eye shadow prior to doing the liner. I love the Shiseido Automatic Fine Eyeliner, because you can pump a little bit of the color onto your hand and use it as an inkwell for the brush," the actress says. "Because I'm left-handed, I'm a little ambidextrous, which makes eyeliner so much easier."
Unfortunately, fixing her skin problems wasn't as easy as learning how to apply makeup. "I was breaking out with cystic acne a few years ago while filming Girls and had to go on Accutane to get it under control. Luckily, Accutane took care of it really quickly," Williams explains. "I know that Accutane can be controversial, but I loved it so much that I really didn't want to go off it."
"I still break out from time to time, but it's almost always hormonal," Williams tells the magazine. "My awkward phase was over by the time I hit ninth grade. It was fast and furious."
So, what's next for Williams after Girls ends later this spring? "I love Marnie, but I don't feel like I need to play her a million times," she says. In fact, the 28-year-old actress jokes, "I wake up every morning thinking I need to be edgier. I read very one-note. Teacher's pet, Goody Two-shoes. I'd hate to be annoying. Who wants to see movies with someone annoying in them?"
"But it's hard for me to paint myself as anything but whatever it is I come across as—which is pretty together. It's not that I'm hiding stories about being drunk on Sunset Boulevard or something. It's just genuinely how I'm wired, and it's why I was right to play Marnie—because I do want to do everything right and in the best way possible. And abandoning perfectionism was a real struggle that I had to go through when I realized it's not possible," Williams tells Allure. "But I'm a big note-writer, a big gift-giver. It's how I'm wired, and it's so boring and annoying."
Williams will get the chance "to flip the script about what I'm capable of as an actor" in the horror film Get Out. "My first thought was, 'This is going to be very loud, this movie," she says of reading the dark script, written by director Jordan Peele. "It's going to make a lot of noise."
What Williams does after the movie hits theaters Feb. 24 remains to be seen; she's not ready to announce anything just yet. But, the New York-based actress admits, "The fact that I'm working on all these other things means that I'm not spending my spare time in a spiral of anxiety. Because ten milligrams of Lexapro is not enough to keep me sane about the amount of worry that I have about all of it. It feels much better to work tirelessly on all these other things that are kind of unsolvable and thus deeply satisfying than to just sit somewhere and think, 'How do I harden myself publicly? How do I make myself seem edgier when I truly lead an un-edgy life?' I mean, then I got married, and now I have this dog who's perfect. It just gets worse and worse."
In a way, living a "boring" existence is preferable.
"I don't want to be any more interesting than I am," Williams explains. "I love the life that I get to live, which is one of real independence and privacy and autonomy."