Balfe also suggests that some of these wigs offer a sneak peek into her character’s journey in upcoming episodes. “What’s great is that going forward in this season, we have some [episodes] where Claire and Jamie are not on the Ridge,” she says, referring to the Fraser family homestead in Revolutionary War-time North Carolina. “They go to more formal gatherings, and you see these much more intricate updos.” In that regard, Balfe praises Skelton once again: “She’s able to create these beautiful pieces, and I’m the lucky recipient of being able to wear them.”
Balfe keeps her off-set beauty routine low-maintenance.
Claire’s beauty looks have started to influence Balfe’s own simple yet sophisticated off-set beauty routine. “Claire wears things with confidence, which is always the best thing, right? She normally wears such minimal makeup, which is how I roll anyway,” she jokes. “Generally, if you ask what’s in my makeup bag, it’s probably a mascara and a lip balm on the best of days.”
Balfe keeps her skin-care simple, too: “I tend to take good care of skin. I think that’s the one thing you can give yourself, so I use a lot of lovely serums. I use a face wash by Sukin.” Balfe also credits her glowy skin to “lots of moisturizer, and lots of water,” adding that she’s used NYDG Formula 119 Cream “for a very long time.”
But if there is one new way Balfe has leveled up her routine recently, it’s how to build a brow, a skill she picked up in the makeup trailer on set. “I was always somebody who shied away from doing anything to my brows, like penciling them in… But when we filmed a lot of the ’60s stuff, we would fill [my brows] in quite a lot because you needed that balance with the really heavy makeup,” she explains. “I started being like, ‘Oh, that’s not actually such a bad look. Maybe I’ll be a little bit more daring when it comes to my brows.’ Now, sometimes, you’ll catch me on a good brow day.” She credits two Allure editor favorites as her new go-to’s: “There’s a Surratt Beauty pencil I’ve found that’s a really, really good one, and I’m a fan of Glossier Boy Brow.”
Healthy boundaries are key for Balfe’s self-care.
While makeup inspiration is a healthy takeaway, the emotional toll of the period drama’s heavy subject matter is understandably tough to leave on set. Balfe’s Claire is an Army medic-turned-surgeon, which means scenes that depict gory, pre-anesthesia procedures — and on a larger scale, entire episodes addressing war, loss, and sexual trauma and assault. That’s one reason Balfe has learned to set boundaries after clocking out.