Natasha Lyonne and Yael Stone play besties with benefits Nicky and Lorna on the Netflix hit Orange Is the New Black, which has led them to forge a real-life bond—and they can be just as unguarded as their on-screen pairing. As we prepare to waste a weekend binge-watching when all 13 of the Season 2 episodes are available to stream on Friday, we listened in one of their recent conversations in which they revealed their behind-the-scenes secrets exclusively to InStyle. Here are six highlights.
1. They Met During the Season 1 Shower Stall Scene
Natasha Lyonne: The first time we met, I was on my knees in a shower stall with you above me. [Laughs.] It was probably at that point that I sort of decided subconsciously that our on-set friendship would consist of me being in character and sort of terrorizing you.
Yael Stone: Oh yeah! And now, when you’re not busy, you’re constantly touching my breasts.
NL: The bottom line is, they’re asking for it, so it’s not like I’m touching them, they’re like jumping into my fists constantly. I’m just trying to be a method actress and doing my job as best as I can.
2. Natasha’s Dog Is a Pal to the Cast (Well, Most of Them)
NL: I bring my dog, Root Beer, to set. So there’s a lot of playing with the dog. I do it against Kate Mulgrew’s (Red’s) will. The dog and Kate are lifelong arch-nemeses. But when she invited the cast to her house for Thanksgiving, I did not bring Root Beer there. I know the purpose of this interview is not to tell you how great I am or anything, but I was very respectful in not bringing Root Beer to Kate’s house.
3. They Do Their Own Makeup
NL: Behind the scenes getting ready is still down-to-earth. I do my own mascara. I put on coats for 30 minutes, then add more.
YS: Your eyes would not open if you put on any more mascara! For my face, it takes about half an hour. The makeup team has it down well. They the lip liner first and don’t fill it in, so I sort of look like Carole Lombard but also like a crazy person.
4. … and Hair
NL: My hair is such a statement that it’s like a neon sign asking for trouble.
YS: To get the right look, they get the dog to play on Natasha’s head. She just lies down on the ground and then the dog just shuffles around in the hair.
NL: That is essentially my natural hair. It really made me an outcast and was a real point of ridicule and why boys would think I was un-dateable, and so I will say that the upshot of the success of the show is that now even when I’m like walking around, I still can get in places and stuff. Cause it’s like, “Oh yeah, it’s the girl from the show, no problem!”
YS: My hair is done like it’s done in prison—with wet hair and a little grease.
NL: Yes, she’s got her hair in little pin curls with little clips hanging out in rehearsal, and it’s literally like seeing a movie star from the ’20s from a women’s correctional facility. It’s pretty adorable.
YS: Lorna is a lot more glamorous than me, in real life. So, I keep the makeup on for a little while afterwards, because I feel pretty. I do notice that the accent hangs around a little while after we finish shooting. It could be two hours later and I’m still talking like her. People make fun of me for that.
5. Neither Orange Nor Khaki Are Favorite Colors
NL: I wear mostly black. I wore mostly black before the show, mostly black after the show, mostly black to work in the morning.
YS: I can’t even think if I ever wore khaki before. I’ve got a problem with color. Right now, I have pink pants on and a white and red striped shirt on. I have a color issue so I would never wear khaki. I just wouldn’t do it.
6. They Want You to Know the Show Has a Feeling of Empowerment
NL: There is a real takeaway from this show’s style, in terms of the clothes. As a woman, I’ve learned that having a uniform of your staples or setting your look and saying what distinguishes you—like red lips or hair or whatever—leaves so much time for the rest of the day. Like you don’t have to fuss, and just get to focus on the work. I’ve taken that into my personal life. Once you have your look, it leaves so much time for creativity, thinking, and relationships.
YS: I agree. It’s great to represent all these different women of all different backgrounds who are thrown into this context where it’s really hard to define yourself with clothing or with money. So it’s little things, like lipstick and hair and that stuff that makes you who you are. But what I enjoy most is the concept of stripping all that crap away to see who we really are. That’s cool. That’s what I like.
Not enough orange for you? Find out how to pull off the orange lip trend in our gallery!