The actress also reveals she was never allowed to wear makeup as a teen

By Alexandra Zaslow
Updated February 10, 2015 02:40 PM
Credit: Courtesy Lucky Magazine

Lupita Nyong’o likes being famous – that is, until she has to use the bathroom at Starbucks.

“The not-so-fun part of all this is that when I don’t feel like being famous, I still am,” Nyong’o tells Lucky for its March cover story.

“When you’re in the middle of Manhattan and you have to pop into Starbucks to use the restroom and everyone recognizes you when you’re waiting in line, it’s awkward,” she adds.

Being a celebrity and feeling the need to constantly get all done up is sometimes difficult for the Oscar-winning actress, who admitted that her mom didn’t allow her to wear makeup as a teenager.

She also says that her mother never wore a drop of makeup – not even to a wedding.

My mother didn’t think makeup was necessary, and I don’t think it’s necessary, she says. It’s an accessory. It’s as necessary as a pair of earrings, if you know what I mean. It’s something I do to adorn myself. I don’t do it to hide myself.

The actress also says she looks to other women for inspiration: Nina Simone for embracing her strong African features, Grace Jones for her experimental style and Elizabeth Taylor for being “feminine, regal and passionate.”

“Honestly, my mother’s outlook was hard for me to take when I was a teenager and wanted to experiment, but in the end I appreciated it because today I can look in a mirror with no makeup on and love myself,” Nyong’o says.

She also addressed her attitude toward social media, explaining she’s careful to post things that people care about.

“I’m governed by things that made me smile, laugh and think,” she says. “If they do that to me, then I ask myself, ‘Would anybody else care to see this?’ If I can think of one person, I post it.”

Nyong’o will surely get noticed on social media when she presents at the Oscars on Feb. 22, hosted by Neil Patrick Harris.