When it comes to television, executive producer Stephanie Savage has a knack for creating provocative, highly addictive shows. After executive producing “The O.C.,” Savage went on to co-develop and executive produce The CW’s current hit “Gossip Girl,” which airs Mondays at 8/7c. Now rounding out a successful fifth season, the series continues to be a pop culture phenomenon. Despite a jam-packed schedule of travel between L.A. and New York, as well as grueling 18-hour shoot days, the busy exec took time to chat with us about the series’ success, beauty advice she’s picked up on set, and how she unwinds.
One of the fun things about “Gossip Girl,” from a creator point of view, is that I kind of live vicariously through all of these characters. I love that Serena’s hair always looks like she just sort of fell out of bed and it looks amazing. She has that effortless glamour. And then Blair is someone who’s a little bit more polished, put together. One thing that’s admirable about her is how she is always exactly right for every occasion and has a lot of diversity in terms of the looks that she does. And for Lily, I especially love her day looks. That elegance of simply just having your hair pulled off your face, clean makeup, and a beautiful day dress—that’s one of my favorite looks in the world.
Certainly the world that the show is set in is a fun, aspirational world that people love to feel like they have a backstage pass to. We create these storylines and character dynamics that people are really invested in. And then the chemistry of the cast is kind of magical. I think we have amazing actors.
I’ve picked up a few tips on set, one being Kerastase hair products. I have honestly seen girls on my shows—going back to “The O.C.”—who were able to take extensions out of their hair because their hair grew long and thick using those products.
When [lead makeup artist] Amy Tagliamonti does makeup on the guys, all she does is cover any redness or imperfection that the camera might pick up. I sort of do that myself during the day. Instead of wearing a full mask of foundation, I just put on the least amount of coverage possible. It looks a lot more youthful.
Every night I have a hot bath before I go to bed. I try and do that no matter what. No matter if I’m traveling, if I’m coming home from set at four in the morning, or if I have been out all night. And I also just love bath products. I’m a real girly girl when it comes to all that stuff.
If you need a bigger “Gossip Girl” fix, be sure to tune in for the season finale on May 14th at 8/7c on The CW — and check out the rest of our exclusive behind-the-scenes coverage with the show’s hair and makeup stylists.
—By Meredith Stebbins
Savage's product loves, plus some of our picks that we know she'd adore.
Savage’s go-to cleanser, this rich herbal-smelling balm that removes impurities and leaves skin hydrated.
Savage swears by this pint-size deep-cleaning brush and never travels without it.
We think Savage would love these Hamptons-ready polishes, which are the perfect accents to warm-weather outfits.
The latest addition to Savage’s favorite hair care line, this shampoo is especially formulated for long hair.
Jennifer Johnson, the lead hair stylist for the series, shows us how to get Serena-style waves.
Advice from Gossip Girl’s lead makeup artist on how to create memorable makeup looks.
The wands and formulas for any and every occasion.
This month’s hottest product releases—and why we need them right this very second.