Julianne Moore Says She Was Told "Try to Look Prettier" by Industry Insider

The actor had a very sensible response for her unnamed critic.

Today, Julianne Moore is one of the most celebrated actors in Hollywood, but she's faced unnecessarily criticism about her appearance, like so many other women in the profession. In a new interview with The Times of London, Moore said that someone in the film industry told her to "look prettier," and she countered with the only reasonable comeback for such a suggestion.

Read on to see what Moore told the anonymous insider and to learn what else the Oscar-winner has had to say about her looks and self-image over the years.

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Someone told Moore to "try to look prettier."

Julianne Moore at the 1998 L.A. Film Critics Assoc. Awards
Featureflash Photo Agency / Shutterstock

Moore told The Times of London (via People) that she was met with a strange request at one point in her career.

"Someone in the film industry said to me, 'You should try to look prettier,'" the 62-year-old actor said. "I was like, 'I don't know if I can.'" She continued, "Obviously, ours is a business where there is some physicality involved, but beauty and prettiness are subjective." The actor did not name the person who said this to her or hint at what their job was.

She also opened up about feeling insecure about her appearance.

Julianne Moore at Denis Leary Firefighters Foundation Benefit in 2001
Everett Collection / Shutterstock

Even before someone made such an absurd suggestion, Moore already had insecurities about her appearance that had been around since she was a child.

"My red hair made me feel like an outsider growing up," the Still Alice star said. "Redheads are 2 percent of the global population. Nobody wants to feel like they're in the minority, particularly as a young child." She continued, "Now, I feel very identified with my hair and freckles, but there's still a part of me that would rather be a tanned blonde."

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Moore faced more criticism of her appearance in her early career.

Julianne Moore at Outfest in 2022
DFree / Shutterstock

In a 2004 interview with The Early Show, Moore talked about how she was told she wasn't attractive enough when she was just starting out, but as she gained fame, people started seeing her as beautiful, even though she herself hadn't changed.

"That was stuff I dealt with early in my career, and you become more successful, and people say, 'She's really pretty,'" Moore explained. "You realize your looks haven't changed; it's the way people are perceiving you. Beauty is an interesting, subjective kind of thing, and we place much too much importance on it."

She's become less concerned with beauty as she gets older.

Julianne Moore at the 2021 Gotham Awards
Ron Adar / Shutterstock

In 2022, Moore told the U.K.'s The Sunday Times (via Prevention) that with age has come less worry about how she looks, because she focuses more on other aspects of her life.

"I think it's because you have other things that you are interested in, such as family, relationships, work, or your community. Being myopic about the way you look recedes," she said. "I don't think it goes away entirely, I don't think there is a person in the world who couldn't care less. But the degree to which you are interested in that, and the fruitlessness of that, becomes apparent as you get older."

In the same interview, she also talked about how her red hair, fair skin, and freckles made her feel othered when she was a kid.

"When I was growing up in the U.S., it felt as if no one had freckles," she said. "I just wanted to look like every other tanned American kid. I hated being the one that couldn't go to the beach or who had to wear long sleeves. I think that stayed with me a bit. I still see somebody in a backless dress with no freckles and I'm like, 'Oh! I would love that!'"

Lia Beck
Lia Beck is a writer living in Richmond, Virginia. In addition to Best Life, she has written for Refinery29, Bustle, Hello Giggles, InStyle, and more. Read more
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