What do you wear for your first Emmy Awards? Nominated for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series award for her performance as a young Princess Diana in The Crown, it was all about a subversive, pastel yellow power dress for 25-year-old Emma Corrin.
“It’s an amalgamation of mine and Harry Lambert’s pretty mental imaginations,” she told me over the phone ahead of the event. “I got a phone call from him one day and he said he’d been reading a lot about the Emmys and about the colour yellow—he felt that everyone always wears yellow dresses that are very summery and floaty, with a certain vibe to them. He was like, ‘I want to do a yellow dress with structure and power, make it harsh and column-like, not frilly and floaty.’ So that’s what we’ve done.”
The result is a striking red-carpet winner, complete with a The Crucible-style bonnet, which was made in collaboration with Miu Miu, a brand Corrin works with a lot. “They’re imaginative, boundary-pushing and in recent campaigns I’ve done with them, they’ve also done a lot to honour my fluidity, which has been so much fun,” she adds. Lambert, who also works with Harry Styles on his genderless ensembles, dubs the look “a little bit minimal, a little bit camp, a little bit drag, but also powerful. We wanted to go out with a bang at the end of the promo tour for The Crown.”
Whilst the awards ceremony took place in Los Angeles, Corrin and her The Crown cast-mates—from Emerald Fennell to Olivia Colman—gathered at 180 The Strand in London, with Corrin “really excited” about being “all together in a room”. The actor took time out from filming Lady Chatterley’s Lover in Snowdonia (“I’ve been running around fields!”) for the Emmys, and confessed that the contrast of awards ceremony prep didn’t quite feel real.
Below, Corrin and her glam team talk Vogue through the inspirations for her look, her “mad” nails, and binge-watching Pixar movies before the ceremony.
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“Emma and I were having a chat about what to do for the Emmys,” says Lambert. “A lot of the looks we’ve done previously have been very dark in tone and we wanted to do something completely different. We both love pastel yellow, and I was doing some research and noticed that yellow is always used in such a summery, floaty, girly way, and we wanted to turn that on its head and do something quite structural, powerful and graphic,” he adds of the Miu Miu look.
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“We’re going for a very natural look, which is what I prefer anyway. Florrie White [the make-up artist behind the look] is a genius for doing no-make-up make-up, but I might ask for some dewy, golden eyelids to pick up the yellow and lightness of the dress,” says Corrin. White ultimately took the English Rose as her inspiration, and harnessed the power of Augustinus Bader skincare to plump and hydrate Corrin’s alabaster complexion, while the make-up look came care of Byredo Beauty. “After subtly defining Emma’s brows and tinting her lash line I had fun playing with Byredo Colour Sticks in Vienna and Solar Flare on her eyelids, as well as a magic dusting of Venus eyeshadow on the centre of lids, which shone and sparkled behind her lashes,” she says.
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Corrin has long experimented with different haircuts, from ’90s style Leonardo DiCaprio curtains to longer bobs. At the Emmys it was hidden beneath a bonnet—her hairstylist Daniel Martin used Sisley hair products to create a “strong side part with shiny hair groomed back into the bonnet, along with subtle volume at the hairline”, he explains. Key products included the brand’s Hair Rituel Precious Hair Care Oil to impart that clean, high shine finish.
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“I’m always up for something different—Harry and I had an idea about making these long, fingerless gloves to go with the dress and having mad nails—long, black, talon nails by Simmy Cummings, which I never do—along with a bonnet,” says Corrin.
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Her getting ready process
“Awards ceremonies normally happen in the evening at weekends, so today I spent the day with my flatmates—I knew I had to chill because my category is at 3am so I’ve got to be up for a while,” Corrin says. “We ended up watching back-to-back Pixar movies all day and got a takeaway, which is kind of the dream. [Then I] had a bath and did a face mask. I use an Eve Lom one, which I love, as well as the Period mask from Faace. When I’m really busy, I’m bad at picking anything that’s on my skin—it’s really annoying—and sometimes I get little red blemishes, which this mask helps with. It gets rid of redness and it’s transparent, so you can just walk around with it on.”
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“Dan, who cuts my hair, is a really good mate. So we’re always talking about what we’re going to do next. It all just comes together quite last minute—we were literally chatting about it today and figuring it out. It’s collaborative, which is nice,” explained Corrin. Martin prepped her bleached hair with Sisley’s Color Perfecting Shampoo and Restructuring Conditioner.
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“I’m such a playlist poacher,” Corrin confesses. “I worked with a great photographer called Rafael Pavarotti a while ago and he’s got some amazing playlists on Spotify. So I usually opt for a chill one of those—really mellow. I get a bit anxious before these events but it’s nice to have all my team together. They’re all my friends, and we do it together in a hotel room and have a drink and stuff.”