Eugenia "Skeeter" Phelan of the acclaimed novel-turned-film, “The Help,” makes unconventional beauty truly stunning. Emma Stone may be the star of the movie, but her hair could be considered her co-star. And like many women, Skeeter doesn't love her hair.
In the film, the relationship between Skeeter and her hair symbolizes how she finds the strength to be true to herself, a journey that actress Emma Stone brings to life.
Stone, who you know from movies such as "Easy A" and "Crazy, Stupid, Love" (and who was just tapped to be a face of Revlon, joining the likes of Halle Berry and Jessica Alba), gives an exclusive interview for YouBeauty, explaining how her character develops confidence with help from strong women in her life. These women ignite Skeeter’s passion for writing, courageously sharing their stories about being housemaids for white families in 1960s Mississippi.
The road to beauty isn’t always a smooth one
Skeeter is hung up on her mother’s picture of perfection, namely smooth hair and an engagement ring—two things Skeeter lacks.
“I think at the beginning, understandably, she is deeply affected by her appearance and her mother’s disapproval of it,” Emma Stone told us of Skeeter.
Skeeter returns to Jackson an aspiring writer, thinking she has outgrown her hometown faster than her childhood clothes. (In fact, she feels awkward about her height, and tries to downplay it by wearing flat shoes.) However, she quickly feels pressure from the cookie-cutter standards of her town. Enter the “Magic Soft and Silky Shinalator," a two-hour hair straightening process involving creams, and a plastic cap attached to a hose.
Her overbearing mother attempts to control Skeeter’s frizz (and future) through the Shinalator, and Skeeter is momentarily mesmerized by its fleeting promise of a tame mane. But rather than turn to her mother as her beauty inspiration, Skeeter remembers her housemaid Constantine.
“Skeeter was lucky enough to have Constantine, who reminded her that she was beautiful and smart and could choose her life,” Stone says.
Skeeter begins following her own ambition, which—no shocker—doesn’t involve snagging a husband.
With spirit and a dash of naiveté, Skeeter opens her eyes to what housemaids such as Aibileen and Minny experience working for women like Skeeter’s mother. Skeeter starts to collect their stories for a book.
Stone believes that “Skeeter really begins to shine and feel beautiful when she is doing what she loves—writing.”
Immersed in the confidence of the brave women around her, Skeeter “realizes the true nature of her beauty—wild, free, different than the other girls—and incredibly special,” Stone says. “I can’t think of any better representation of beauty than someone who is unafraid to be herself.”
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