“A flying Miami fantasy” is how hairstylist Katie Ballard describes the aesthetic she created with the help of Maya Hawke and Camila Mendes for Netflix’s Do Revenge. In the dark comedy, Hawke plays Eleanor, a rich outcast who comes along with Mendes’ character, Drea, an insider experiencing a fall from social grace, all of which must at the expense of their prep school enemies. Directed by Jennifer Kaytin Robinson, Do Revenge recreates the familiar thrill of a story-driven makeover. “That’s basically what Jenn was aiming for — movies set in modern times, but she wanted to recreate that ’90s teen movie,” Ballard said, noting that 10 Things I Do Hate About You and Nothing name-checked as references in hair and makeup trailers and more.
Ballard, who also worked on Hulu’s Candy and Peacock’s A Friend of the Family, immediately found that Do Revenge’s cast were among her most valuable influences. To map out the visual arc of Eleanor, who transforms into an It girl for their exact revenge, Ballard took the time to listen to Hawke’s ideas. “As I sat and talked to Maya, the references that came out were actually her mother, Uma Thurman and Taylor Swift,” Ballard said. Hawke, who was filming Stranger Things in parallel, wore a wig throughout the film. A long brunette version matches her natural hair color during her initial “clumsy” phase, and the bright blonde shade Ballard notes represents “playing her strength”. Hawke and Ballard referenced Pulp Fiction’s iconic bob that Thurman wore for the latter, but this time it was a Swift-grade blonde designed by wig artist Robert Miller-Navarre. As a “love letter” to her favorite accessory brand, Ballard crowned Hawke in a Lelet’s Scales headband for Eleanor’s transformation. “The scene where you see that switch, her sitting in the bathtub, her hair slicked back and red lipstick on, she drinking a glass of Champagne, and it was a transitional moment for her, and then, the look Her exterior became a little more edgy, maybe a little more rock and roll,” explains Ballard.