She acts. She sings. And she’s a pro with a brush and blush.
Yes, Bella Thorne, the pierced, outspoken, and almost disconcertingly blunt actress, singer, and social media sensation has another major talent: She does all her own makeup. For everything. All the time — more on that here.
Oh, and she dresses herself too, picking out her own clothes based on her mood. The linchpin of her New York promotional tour for her new show Famous in Love was a net body-stocking, paired one day with flared pants and a cropped black sweater.
Her look, says Thorne, “can go anywhere from super-goth to rocker-grunge to hippie. We DIY a lot of our own clothes, to be honest. It depends what I’m feeling that day.”
In this age of the hyper-sanitized celebrities who parse every word and agonize over saying anything remotely offensive or personal, Thorne is a blast of fresh air. The 19-year-old is the star of Freeform’s soapy new show, which premiered on Tuesday night, and plays Paige, who goes from college student to overnight It-girl and can’t quite process being in the spotlight. Thorne herself isn’t sure how she’d handle sudden success.
“I would have no idea. Sometimes I look at my character and think she’s so naive. And other times, I realize that if I was just thrust in this, if I didn’t learn this, maybe I would be even more naive. I have no idea, if I wasn’t raised in this,” says Thorne.
Thorne has been working for years. She got her start as a child performer, breaking out on the Disney Channel buddy comedy Shake It Up next to Zendaya, which ran for three seasons before ending in November 2013. Since then, Thorne played Adam Sandler’s daughter in 2014’s Blended, and the girlfriend in Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. Now, she’s headlining her own series, and sharing basically every aspect of her life on social media.
And what a life it is. Thorne has been outspoken about her battles with acne, her suicidal thoughts when she was younger, and her sexuality, which is fluid. She recently tweeted that she had depression, and then deleted it after the ensuing uproar.
“I took it down because maybe some people were hurt by what I said in some way. I just wanted to say, ‘You’re not alone,’” says Thorne. “The people you think have the most perfect lives, don’t.”
She wants to clarify why she shared what she did, and she understands why some people perhaps took her words the wrong way.
“I wasn’t saying that I clinically went to a doctor. I didn’t know it was a big thing. You can judge me for believing my beliefs. In my family, we never went to doctors growing up. I don’t like medication. I don’t even take birth control. I won’t even take Advil or Tylenol. I power through. I’m all natural,” she says.
Yes, the negativity gets to her. But to Thorne, the whole point is to share things no one else is willing to talk about.
“It’s so OK for you to be unhappy, or to think these things,” says Thorne. “You’re only making it more sad, the more you don’t talk about it. It’s OK for your mind to naturally wander and for you to be sad. Sometimes, you’re just sad. Your arc in life is to be a happier, better person, the more you grow. If you’re shutting yourself off, you’re never just saying it or getting help for yourself in that way.”
That said, things do get under her skin. “You could tell me I’m pretty 100 times a day, but if you tell me I’m ugly, that’s going to stick,” she says.
But she has no intention of putting walls up now. Thorne lives with her sister and some friends, whom she calls her “crew,” and says that “we like to be more on the open side. If you do start to get guarded, you’re not as happy, so why are you here? I would stop if I wasn’t having fun.”
Thorne manages all her own social media, no small feat considering she posts on Snapchat, Instagram, and Twitter. And that’s also impacted her dating life, with some would-be love interests refusing to be part of her highly-public existence and resenting how much of her life she exposes to her fans. “I’ve dated people who are like, ‘I don’t want people to know my life.’ It ended up becoming a problem,” she says, of the paparazzi that constantly follow her.
But Thorne being Thorne, she’s not losing sleep over any bad romance.
If you date her, you have to take all of her. “I Snapchat my life, and you knew who I was before you dated me. You have to accept me.”