Hermione Granger is undoubtedly one of the most beloved characters of the Harry Potter series. She is a perfect example of a beautiful, confident babe. And while she may not necessarily be a style icon, after pondering what Hermione Granger's style and beauty routine might have looked like, I've come to the conclusion that I have a lot of respect for it.
While spending a very lovely girls' day out cruising our favorite used bookstore (and eating copious amounts of food, yum), my fellow witchy/nerdy girl friend and I got to discussing Hermione, one of our favorite fictional characters and role models. We naturally agreed on all the (obvious) things we love when it comes to Miss Granger: Her intelligence and ingenuity, her love of studying, her independence, her loyalty, her bravery, her fierceness, and the fact that she is such a strong, passionate individual and a wonderful role model for any girl, young or old.
One thing led to another, and I found myself obsessed with conjuring up images of Hermione's style and beauty routine. My friend believed that as a gal whose main focus was always studying and being on the go, Hermione would make sure to spend the very minimal amount of time possible getting ready. This is a completely foreign concept to me, but I happen to really love Hermione's fresh-faced, natural look, and decided then that I was going to try out her (imaginary) beauty and style routine for myself for an entire week. Here's how I did it.
The Hair And Face
In the early books, when Hermione is younger and new Hogwarts, she is described as having "lots of bushy brown hair." It eventually becomes more "sleek" and tamed as she grows older (the same way that her teeth shrink, thanks to Madam Pomfrey). Since Hermione is a no-fuss kind of girl, her hair care routine would likely be limited to simply running a brush through naturally wavy locks, and she'd wear it naturally down or casually pulled back.
In order to imitate this process and look, I had to first curl and add a wave to my naturally pin-straight mane (definitely not "no-fuss," but I considered this "prep work" that didn't count). That way, all I had to do was run a brush through it the next day to give it that Hermione look while maintaining her get-up-and-go routine.
When it comes to makeup and skincare, Hermione was always seen fresh-faced, natural, and never covered in much makeup at all (if ever). No smoky eyes or pouty-red lips for her. Instead, this witch prefers a natural look. After washing her face, the young wizard would most likely apply a dab of tinted moisturizer, a little lip balm, and a light coat of mascara, and then be out the door.
So when it came to going for the natural look myself, I tried to follow this simple routine as best as I could. I first applied a moisturizer to my face, mixed with a little foundation. I then applied a light coat of mascara, kept my lips bare (resisting the lipstick temptation), and darkened my eyebrows just a little. I have naturally fair brows, and since Hermione's eyebrows are always dark, thick, and (naturally) perfect in all the films, I felt it was fairly acceptable to thicken them up a little to achieve a more Hermione-esque look (if she can shrink her teeth, I can fill in my brows). All in all, it took me less than five minutes to do. I believe that to be a Hermione-approved amount of time, right?
With my wavy hair brushed and tamed and my face looking fresh and natural, I was ready to throw on some Hermione-inspired clothing. Miss Granger isn't particularly "girly" when it comes to how she dresses. She's not one to be concerned with fashion at all. She's practical and casual, yet she still manages to maintain a simple, cute sense of style.
Most of the time, Hermione is shown wearing cords or jeans in the films — something casual and comfortable in which to run around Hogwarts while hunting for horcruxes and fighting dark lords. She wears simple layers of shirts and thin cardigans, hoodies, or jackets, as well as tons of snazzy scarves and warm jumpers (you know, British for sweaters). For my own Hermione outfits, I pulled items from my closet that I felt fit her look (and things I felt that she would wear). As my style differs quite drastically from her's, I had to get a little creative.
The first day that I tried Hermione's style and beauty routine, I was amazed by how quickly I was able to get ready. My everyday makeup routine, which usually takes me 15 minutes to do, now took less than five. After washing my face and moisturizing, I applied some foundation, quickly filled in my brows a little, put on some mascara, and was done.
My hair already had a little "Hermione volume" in it from being previously curled, so all I had to do was run a brush through it and I was good to go. I pulled on a sweater (since Hermione loves her cute sweaters) and that was it. It felt a little strange "being ready" for the day so quickly; almost as if I had forgotten something.
I repeated the same routine in under five minutes, going for a more "natural" look, just like Hermione. It was only the second day, but I'll admit I was already starting to feel a little "naked" without my usual classic winged eyeliner on.
That being said, it was amazing how much time I saved by not having to do it, and I was definitely loving that. Again, I opted for wearing a pair of jeans and a cute, warm, cozy-fuzzy jumper to complete the full Hermione look.
By this time, I was craving my eyeliner something fierce. It took most of my willpower to resist, but I once again did my makeup to look "natural," and left my eyes alone. A light coat of mascara was all they were getting. To change things up a little, I pulled my hair up with a pin on one side (since Hermione tends to sometimes casually pin up her hair in a simple way).
Hermione also likes to layer her clothing sometimes, so I opted for a V-neck argyle sweater with a white collared shirt layered beneath it. I felt casual, yet cute and "studious," just like Hermione. I also began to notice that people on my Instagram were really loving my natural, brainy look, leaving comments such as, "Love that sweater," and "OMG, my favorite kind of look — gorgeous!"
By now, I had gotten used to not wearing any eyeliner, but I was starting to miss wearing lipstick. I don't usually wear lipstick every day, but I do use it often. It's something I love, as it tends to give a little glamorous "punch" to a look. Again, I had to resist the urge, since Hermione would never wear lipstick (she didn't even wear it for the Yule Ball), so I opted for a little clear lip gloss instead.
I found myself looking forward to wearing my hair loose and wild with another cute jumper (which I borrowed from my boyfriend's closet), as the comfortable, cute, cozy look was seriously starting to grow on me (and on my Instagram followers, too). "These outfits are so gorgeous I love them. Harry Potter is my fave. You're gorgeous," and "This is my favorite face of yours.... That sounds weird. You look beautiful with more natural makeup," were amongst the comments I received.
By now, I was starting to fully embrace the whole Hermione beauty and style routine. Getting ready in the morning didn't seem like such a chore anymore. Before, I would gear up and motivate myself to go through my usual makeup routine, knowing it took a good 15 minutes. However, considering the Hermione "natural" look took me less than five, I found myself actually looking forward to the simplicity.
I also started to truly embrace the Hermione style, playing with simple, casual layers once again (this time, jeans and a striped tee with a gray cardigan thrown over). The whole "cute and brainy" look was incredibly comforting. Although this was a lot more plain than my usual outfits and makeup, I was really enjoying letting my natural beauty shine for once. In fact, my own inner bookish self was delighting in it. However, not everyone felt the same way on Instagram: "I prefer the Courtney look. #hermionegranger is not you!"
Under all that bravery, intelligence, and fierce loyalty, Hermione is still a teenage girl. And like most teenage girls (or humans of any age, really), there are times she presumably wanted to spend her whole day at home in her pajamas, lazing around and relishing books (or Netflix and chill).
Hermione always dresses casually and comfortably, so I decided that an oversized cotton nightshirt (with simple cotton PJ bottoms) would be something she would sport at home while sipping tea and reading a good book. The nightshirt's print of a brainy-looking owl in glasses along with my big and wavy hair and my plain and natural face made me feel like I suited Hermione's #HarryPotter style perfectly.
By the last day, I had completely embraced the Hermione beauty and style routine. Doing my natural makeup was an absolute breeze (and each day took me less and less time), and I found myself reveling in the casual, studious looks she's known for. I felt as though it brought my own inner bookworm to the surface, and while I love to wear and play with makeup, I was enjoying letting my more "natural" beauty shine.
I really had fun with my last look in particular. I decided to pull my big, wavy hair half back (as Hermione sometimes wears hers). I opted for a cute jumper, finished off by throwing a scarf around my neck, and aparecium! My look was now complete.
Would I Go Hermione Again?
As someone who usually puts a good amount of effort into her beauty routine and style choices most days, I have to say that there is a ton of appeal in Hermione's beauty routine for me. It's simple, easy, quick, and casual, yet still put-together and rather charming. I love how confident I felt rocking a more natural, fresh-faced look, and I was extremely comfortable in the laidback outfits, too. Although I wasn't used to sporting plain, simple, casual styles (I tend to dress bolder and flashier), I found myself really loving the look by the end. So much, in fact, that I have now adopted aspects of it into my own personal style. This is definitely a look I would want for spending days at school, reading, doing magic, and chasing wizards.
Most of us think of Hermione as intelligent and brave — characteristics we likely love to see both in her and in ourselves. Sometimes we can put on our makeup and dress up in our stylish clothing because these things make us feel strong and brave, ready to face the day and anything that happens to come our way. Yet in taking a note from Hermione's book for beauty routines, I remembered where strength and bravery actually comes from: the heart and mind. Our strength and confidence (our magic, if you will) comes from within, so we should always remember to have fun with our own sense of style, and to do what feels right for ourselves.
You don't always have to be flashy to stand out, feel confident, or feel strong. Hermione's teachings remind us all that the natural you is beautiful (and enough), which I find to be a really wise lesson. After all, we can take on anything. Now we just have to try not to get killed — or worse, expelled.
Images: Courtney Mina; Giphy (3)