LOS ANGELES – When you ask Jennifer Lawrence for beauty secrets, she mentions something that won’t fit into a bottle. It has nothing to do with her dewy skin or new pixie cut.
“Empowerment is beautiful,” says the star of “Catching Fire.”
In an industry that’s so based in the superficial – where he pixie cut has made international headlines – she talks about a little girl who restored her faith in what beauty really means.
“I remember being on my very first movie and thinking that as an actor my job wasn’t that important to the world. Then one day on the ‘Catching Fire’ set, I met an extra, a little girl, who was covered in real life scars. She was a burn victim,” she says.
What happened next is Lawrence’s idea of a beauty secret. “The little girl told me she was too self-conscious to go to school,” she says. “Then she read ‘Hunger Games’ and ‘Catching Fire’ and went to school calling herself, ‘The Girl Who Caught on Fire.’”
“She was suddenly very proud of her scars,” she says.
Lawrence bursts into tears on a sunny morning in Los Angeles as she tells the Sun-Times that story. A small tears runs down that flawless cheek.
“I still can’t tell the story,” she says, shaking her head. “But it puts it all in perspective.”
There is something so refreshing about Lawrence, a 23-year-old star who gladly tells you that she eats pizza and doesn’t obsess about weight.
Yes, she just whacked all that hair off, and can’t believe that it has made international news. In person, her light blonde pixie is swept to one side and looks effortlessly messy. Lawrence does what few young women in Hollywood ever do at an interview.
She runs her hand through that hair and messes it up even further. In a dusky gold shirt, beige pants and a big black sweater, the Oscar winner is as playful as ever, even punching her co-star Josh Hutcherson in the arm.
Let’s get to the hair thing.
Yes, she dyed it black for “Catching Fire.” There was damage. “I love how easy it is now,” she says.
Not so easy were her “Catching Fire” stunts that required her to be in top shape. “There’s a scene where we’re hanging onto a spinning clock in the middle of a river in 40-degree water. It was hard because this wheel was going 30 miles per hour in freezing cold water.
“I had morning sickness,” she declares.
Slapping her hand to her mouth, the notoriously outspoken Lawrence realizes what she just said.
“Motion sickness!” she corrects, stifling a laugh.
“Oh my God!” Lawrence exclaims. “Now, the morning sickness rumors are what I’ll be dealing with for the rest of the month. I will say on the record that it was tough to keep the cookies down, but it wasn’t morning sickness!”
How does Lawrence stay so fit? She offers a few tips.
* Diet, schmiet. Lawrence has made it clear that she is “miserable” when she diets. “I like the way I look. I’m really sick of actresses looking like birds,” she says. “I’d rather look a little chubby on camera and look like a twig in real life.” She even recently said, “If anybody even tries to whisper the word ‘diet,’ I’m like, ‘You can go f— yourself.” Go Jen!
* Do What You Love. Part of her gorgeous figure is that she’s an outdoorsy type of girl. “The truth is I grew up riding horses and racing through the trees,” she says.
* Step It Up When You Need It. She mentions her training for “Hunger Games” films has included running, climbing, combat work and archery. “I’ve even done yoga, which is so relaxing and good for you,” she says.
*Treat Yourself. After a long day of being Katniss, how do you get rid of those Capitol aches and pains. “Hot bath,” she says.