How Gwen Stefani's Grandma Forever Changed Her Style

08/07/2012 at 09:00 AM ET

Gwen Stefani Harper's BazaarTerry Richardson for Harper’s Bazaar

Ever since No Doubt’s “Just A Girl” video debuted in 1995, Gwen Stefani‘s signature red lip has been emulated by fashionistas everywhere. But the inspiration behind the look wasn’t the star’s idea — it came from someone older and wiser: her grandmother.

Thinking back to her high school years, when her grandmother gave her a tube of crimson-red lip color, the singer tells Harper’s Bazaar, “I remember sitting in my ghetto, beat-up Honda Prelude, and putting on that lipstick in the rear-view mirror and being like, ‘Uh-huh, I like that. That’s the sh** right there.’ I never stopped after that.”

The glossy’s cover girl also dishes on the origin of her other style signature: her hair. According to the rocker, at 25 she spent eight hours at a salon in Long Beach, Calif., dyeing her hair platinum blonde — and she immediately loved the new ‘do. “It was like I’d unlocked the key,” she reveals. “I remember feeling like, ‘I have arrived. This is me. Finally.'”

Something else that was different in No Doubt’s early days? Designers weren’t begging to dress Stefani. “I did my own makeup, my own costumes; I did everything myself. I didn’t even know there were stylists,” the star admits.

Gwen Stefani Harper's BazaarTerry Richardson for Harper’s Bazaar

Almost two decades later, it’s safe to say the icon no longer has to create her own clothes. However, with fame has come some frustration with the media. “I hate talking about my body [all the time]; it’s ridiculous,” she says. “There is no secret: You just have to eat healthy, work out, and torture yourself!” And that statement is reason #124 why we love the No Doubt frontwoman: she’s refreshingly honest.

For more of Stefani’s interview, head to and pick up the September issue (the magazine’s largest in its 145-year history!), on newsstands Aug. 21. Tell us: What do you think of Stefani’s signature style?

–Jennifer Cress


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Showing 12 comments

jennysuemakeup on

Gwen can do no wrong. Simply put- she is a bad ass female and mom of two with great style and voice. What a combo!!

Noneya on

Love this woman! Although I am a little jealous of her hot hubby! LOL!

Danielle on

I’m such a fan of her style an music!! She is brilliant when it comes to both…

Claudia on

Gwen, I adore you! What a beautiful woman-love the contrast of the platinum hair and the big brown eyes. Keep on rocking Gwen, your fanbase loves you!

Kylia on

I like her style

NDFan on

Gwen is an inspiration! She’s 42, like me, and rocks!!

A on

I’ve been listening to No Doubt since back in High School… and have idolized Gwen Stefani’s bold style since then. Now she’s a mom of 2 cutie bears, wife of a total talented hottie husband(Gavin), and still rockin’ the bold looks in the fashion world.. in her early 40’s!! She can have a marriage, beautiful family, AND be a musician, designer (clothes/shoes/accessories), spokeswoman (L’oreal) and cover girl for many fashion magazines. Still, what an idol!

Blondie on

Fantastic role-model!

gagirl on

Lmao @ her comment about the lipstick in the car. So funny. I loooooove me some No Doubt and Gwen!! I hope everyone buys their cd. Oh and wth is up with her looking so good?!?! Seriously, she looks like she’s still in her 20s.

MB on

I love this girl’s style! Plus, she is sooo beautiful!

larry steininger on

Gwen Stefani is the prettiest woman in HollyWood to day. I am a libra white man,my name is larry steininger,my birthday is Oct1,1963 my phone number is 1-626-915-8635

larry steininger on

Gwen Stefani is the most prettiest woman in HollyWood to day. I am a white libra man,my name is larry steininger,my birthday is Oct1,1963 my phone number is 1-626-915-8635

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