May 06, 1996 12:00 PM

WHO’S THE FAIREST OF them all? In her grandmother’s opinion, clearly Mira. “She’d always say, ‘You’re the most beautiful girl in the room. All the rest are cabbages!’ ” reports the sparkling star of Mighty Aphrodite and HBO’s forthcoming Norma Jean & Marilyn. “She had a lot of zingers. She used to tell my father [actor Paul] that ‘every hoptoad is beautiful to its mother.’ ” That’s one maxim that never applied to Mira. Accepting her Best Supporting Actress Oscar in a silver Armani ball gown, “she truly looked like a princess,” says her mother, Lorraine, who first noticed Mira’s flair for drama when “she was 2½ and saw this very stylish lady on the street and struck the exact same pose.” The 5’9″ Mira has been posing ever since—first as a model, then as an actress. But the 28-year-old Harvard grad prefers the do-it-yourself school of cosmetics. “If a makeup artist draws my top lip wider for photo shoots, I end up looking like I have a big clown mouth,” she says. “And if they put liner under my eyes, I look like a sad basset hound. I’ve lived with this face, and I know what looks best on it.” That would be Maybelline powder and MAC lip pencil. When it comes to hair color, though, Mira likes experimenting. “I might be coming to the end of my blonde phase,” says the natural brunette, “but it has been great, like wearing a fun new thing on my head.”

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