Q and A with Adepero Oduye


Adepero in ‘Pariah’

Post by Thandie.

Anyone who saw Adepero’s breakout performance in Dee Rees’s ‘Pariah‘ will be delighted to see that she is stunning us again with her performance in Steve McQueen’s ’12 Years a Slave’. She plays Eliza, a mother and slave who is separated from her children when they are sold to different owners. The film is deeply disturbing, as it can only be, based on the real life experiences of Soloman Northrup (played with awesome power by Chiwetel Ejiofor), a free man who is kidnapped and sold into slavery where he survives for 12 hideous years. The film is based on Northrup’s published testimony, written after he managed to win the brutal struggle for his freedom. Equally disturbing is the raw agony created by Adepero in her portrayal of Eliza, as I wrote to her, “those babies were birthed from your body, plain and simple”. ThandieKay is proud to celebrate Adepero’s exciting work, and honor an artist who is going to take us on many important journeys of discovery. Ready or not, here she comes…


1. What is your earliest make-up memory?Adepero Oduye Featured Image

My earliest make-up memory was sneaking in the bathroom to try on my mother’s nail polish as a young child. A huge no-no in my house!


2. I feel most beautiful when…

I truly feel like myself…when I feel like I’m wearing the clothes instead of them wearing me….when who I am and my personal style shines through my clothes, hair and makeup…when I am free in my spirit to laugh as loud as I want to.


3. When you were a child, what was your Mother’s beauty routine?

My mother is effortlessly chic. She always wore lipstick, a range from black to a frosty pink, and big earrings.

Screen Shot 2013-11-12 at 09.27.50

Close-Up from a Vanity Fair Gatefold cover


4. Did your father refer to your Mother’s beauty, and how?

He always remarked on how beautiful my mom was in her short natural ‘do’ and loved when she wore her large earrings. As children (and teens and adults as a matter of fact!) my sisters and I could not leave the house without quality earrings on.


5. What’s been your worst beauty mishap?

 Haha there have been many! Oh! as a pre-teen, I used gel and hairspray on my kinky hair to create bangs *sigh*


6. If you could give one beauty gift what would it be?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThat every single woman, especially young girls, would know that who they are inherently and intrinsically is beautiful and worthy of the very best this life has to offer.


7. Where’s the craziest place you’ve done your make-up?

 In a moving car, rushing to an event after my flight got in later than expected.


8. What would you like to see more of in the beauty industry?

 A more integrated diversity of faces, hair textures, skin tones, ethnicities and shapes represented. It is a huge beautiful world…there is not just one set standard of beauty.


9. When was the last time your mascara ran, and why?

Last spring I was asked what keeps me going in life and I said my mother.  There are not enough words to honor all of what that amazing woman has done and continues to do for me and my six siblings. 


2 thoughts on “Q and A with Adepero Oduye

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  1. Sarah Spitz

    What a beautiful, smart woman….thanks for the inspiration!

    Love from Germany:


    November 12, 2013 at 12:15 pm
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  3. Aida

    She’s gorgeous, flawless skin!

    November 22, 2013 at 1:02 am

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