Getting Ready
kristen bell 2019 golden globes

Getting Ready with Kristen Bell for the Golden Globes Is a Lot of Fun

Her stylist, Nicole Chavez, and husband, Dax Shepard, were there, too.

By: Jodi Taylor
Photography: Tristan Kallas

The Hamilton soundtrack is playing in the background. Through the haze of hairspray, we could make out Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard stuffing hotel napkins into their necklines (Bell’s a deep blush Zuhair Murad V she was protecting from her makeup, and Shepard’s a crisp white collar). They role-played a family dinner at Red Lobster. If you couldn’t deduce it at this point, you should know we’re in a ritzy hotel room in Beverly Hills prepping for the 76th Golden Globe Awards with Bell’s glam team, including longtime stylist Nicole Chavez.

It wasn’t long before Shepard took control of the music—not before chirping his Golden Globe-nominated wife’s musical afinity—switching to rap and hip-hop while hairstylist Jenny Cho touched up the actress’s shiny S-waves and makeup artist Simone Siegel added a few final dustings of finishing powder. Bell, who was nominated for Best Actress in a TV Comedy for her leading role in The Good Place, channeled old-Hollywood glamour in a full-length pleated gown and Brian Atwood heels Chavez had custom-dyed to match the dress perfectly. There was a heavy sprinkling of Harry Winston diamonds to finish off the look. Thank goodness Chavez gave us all the details of Bell’s look (and more) below.

Nicole Chavez: “We started thinking about [the] Globes early December as an idea because I wasn’t sure if she was going to go. When we found out she was nominated the second weekend of [December], we had to hit the ground running.”

NC: “The following week I tried to get everything in [that] I could so that we could try some options before the holidays, because unfortunately, with the Globes being so early this year and everyone closing, there was really only a week and a half to prep the dresses. We had a fitting before Christmas and a big fitting yesterday morning to make our final decision.”

NC: “This one’s interesting because the look really did come from out of nowhere. I really believe in trying everything on because sometimes dresses on the hanger won’t have the same story. We tried everything on, and we were all really surprised with how much we loved this one—it kept looking more and more amazing every time she tried it on, so it became the winner.”

NC: “The dress is Zuhair Murad. We’ve worked with them many times because the designs fit her so well, as if they were made custom. The shoes are Brian Atwood, which we love because they’re always really high, and Kristen is petite. We custom-dyed a pair to match her gown.”

The go-to getting-ready snacks:

NC: “French fries are always a go-to. It’s usually that everyone is starving and eating burgers or something crazy. Kristen is super healthy, but I’m like, Get me some fries [laughs]. Some comfort food.”

NC: “The jewelry is all Harry Winston, which I love so much. Some [of the pieces] are from their archives and have never been seen on a carpet before, which is really exciting.”

Kristen Bell: “My favorite swear is 'shit.' 'Shit' is simple, concise, and can be used comically as well as in anger! On [@nbcthegoodplace], we say ' shirt.' A shirt show! The one I really loved that didn’t get past the censors was when my character yelled 'suck my deck!' It really tickled me for some reason."

Simone Siegel: “I started prepping Kristen’s skin by first using the new [Charlotte Tilbury] Goddess Cleansing Ritual. This regime helps to draw out impurities and put back in the glowing goodness for a fresh, perfectly spa-cleansed complexion. You always need a beautiful canvas for a beautiful makeup! After cleansing, I then applied the Goddess Skin Clay Mask and left [it] on for 10 minutes before rinsing [it] off. This is so moisturizing, soothing, and brings down any redness.”

SS: “To create a natural, warm, and bronzed sexy eye, I used all four shades of the [Charlotte Tilbury] Luxury Palette in Pillow Talk.”

SS: “To elongate Kristen’s eyes and create a subtle cat eye, I then drew liquid eyeliner along the lash line.”

Jenny Cho: “For this year’s Golden Globes, we wanted to give Kristen a modern take on the classic ’70s blonde bombshell look.”

JC: 1. “Start with Suave Professionals Rose Oil Infusion shampoo and conditioner to pump up the volume. On towel-dried hair, create a side part.”

2. “Apply a boosting mousse and [an] anti-frizz and shine cream to add soft body and structure to strands.”

3. “Starting at the nape, begin to bend the hair. Mist each section with hairspray, use a flat iron to create a big flat bend. Work your way up to the sides and the front, and let it cool down.”

4. “Go back to the nape and brush out the hair gently, spraying the underneath of each section again and teasing each out from the underneath to control the bend pattern.”

5. “Mist the finished look with hairspray to set it in place!”

One of Chavez’s favorite memories with Bell:

NC: “On a personal note, Kristen invited myself and Rachel to go with her to Uganda on a mission tour, and that was a life-changing experience. The three of us will always be bonded from that.”

NC: “On a professional level, we always have each other’s backs. She’s always there for me, and she’s just a great, great person and human and always pushes me to be a better person. I adore her.”

NC: “When we got ready for the Emmys last year, we put her in an all-white Solace dress. It was very white, and I refused to let anybody touch her or come anywhere near her [laughs]. I wore these Minnie Mouse white gloves, and I walked the carpet with her literally just to constantly be pulling the dress down to make sure it didn’t ride up or she didn’t touch it herself. It was pretty funny, we were laughing. It was fun to be with her on the carpet.”

NC: “We’ve been working together so long that we trust one another. We know together what works and what doesn’t. A lot of times I try to create a story with clothing, and she’ll make small edits or suggestions—giving her insight on it. For the most part, we really trust one another and try to make the process really fun and creative rather than stressful or overwhelming.”

NC: “It’s been about 15 years [that we’ve been working together], we met through another friend and client of mine, Rachel Bilson. Rachel introduced me to Kristen soon after I started working with Rachel on The O.C. We met, and it was kind of love at first sight. We’ve been together since.”

NC: “It’s usually a family affair [when we’re getting ready]. It’s pretty funny, we both have kids, and so even in fittings she’ll bring her kids over, and they’ll play with my kids. There are always kids running around. For the bigger events, we get ready at a hotel close by the venue. That becomes a bit more of an adult hang where there is a lot of chill time and we all get in our creative zones. It’s nice. There’s not usually music playing—we’re just all there laughing and telling stories, trying to keep everyone’s nerves chill.”

NC: “[After the awards,] Kristen’s going to stay in her dress. I know she has a very early call time tomorrow for Veronica Mars, so I don’t think she has grand plans to party all night. I’m going to hang back, get ready, and then head out to InStyle and all that stuff.”

NC: “We stacked a bunch of bracelets and cuffs and made it feel modern. More modern than wearing a soft, delicate bracelet—we wanted to go for some unexpected jewelry moments.”

NC: “It sounds kind of crazy, but I feel like I’m a fairy godmother in a way. I’ve known my clients for so long, and they’re my friends, so to be able to be part of such a special day and help them feel beautiful—I’m just so proud of them, and it’s such a fun experience.”

NC: “[Her gown] has a little bit of iridescence to it. It’s very subtle, you almost don’t even [notice] until the light hits it—it illuminates from within. It’s very classic, very her. This is a big moment for Kristen. I can see her standing up there and accepting an award in this dress.”

The awards show moment she'll never forget:

KB: "Last year at the People’s Choice Awards, my teleprompter went down just as I was giving a Lifetime Achievement Award to Tyler Perry. I had to think VERY quickly and improvise so as not to botch his introduction and worthy award!"

NC: “It’s really important that my clients are comfortable in something and that they can move and be free—feel like themselves. This is one of those dresses that hits all of those notes. It’s not a fussy dress. She needed to be in something that made her feel beautiful.”

What Chavez always tells her clients before they walk out the door:

NC: “It’s always sort of that mom thing, which is like, ‘Have fun!’ or ‘You look beautiful!’ I want them to have fun and enjoy the night. We do practice some poses if we have time, just so that everyone is comfortable.”

What *really* goes down in the limo on the way to the carpet:

KB: "A lot of snuggling and deep breathing, prepping to deal with a crowd."

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