On The Set of Netflix’s “Bardo,” These Beauty Products Kept Actors’ Skin and Hair Hydrated in the Desert Heat

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Many hairstylists will tell you how hectic a salon can get, but Lucy Betancourt sees the salon floor busyness and raises you the chaotic hustle and bustle of a movie set – where she was tasked with keeping 100 actors from burning in the desert sun in Mexico. Temperatures there can reach 91 degrees, not exactly ideal for long shoot days. For the past few months, the Mexican-born hairstylist and makeup artist has been immersed in the world of Bardo, False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths, an upcoming Netflix film that follows journalist Silverio Gama through the lens of several trippy dreams that blur into reality as he navigates fame, criticism, and identity. Betancourt, the film’s lead hairstylist and makeup artist, says it’s the most challenging project she’s ever worked on.

The movie, set in Mexico City, gives a peek into the intimate details of life in the city, and Betancourt made sure the hairstyles played a role in bringing that narrative to life. Many of the female characters and extras had beautiful curly and wavy hair, a choice that was intentional — to reflect curl patterns that are common to Mexican people — but also completely authentic. Betancourt didn’t manipulate the actors’ natural textures too much because she “wanted everything to reflect a lot of movement and feel very natural so we could get a full expression of what every character was.” A scene towards the end of the movie features replications of indigenous haircuts and hairstyles including a blunt bowl cut, and “pays tribute to our rich culture,” Betancourt shares. “The complete movie is a Mexican expression in every way.” 

Daniel GimÈnez Cacho as Silverio (left) and Ximena Lamadrid as Camila.

Courtesy of Netflix

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