Hayley Williams Is Obsessed With This Banana Bread Cookie Recipe
Like most of us, Hayley Williams is feeling especially appreciative of her friends these days. “I feel so grateful for the few people that are close to me that are honestly keeping me sane right now,” she says. “I feel like our friendships and the way we’re communicating to each other is kind of all we have right now while we’re isolated.”
In fact, when we talked the Paramore singer had just released a song actually called “My Friend” from her solo album, Petals for Armor. It’s an ode to her friend, hair and makeup artist, and business partner Brian O’Connor. (The two own a hair-care and -color company, Good Dye Young, together.) “We’ve been through so much together, and a lot of really dark periods of life we’ve gone through at the same time,” she says. “We both went through divorces at the same time, and we just kind of hold all of each other’s secrets. I always tell him I would drive off a cliff with him like Thelma and Louise. He is that person to me.”
That’s just one insight into Williams that fans can expect to hear on Petals for Armor, out May 8. The album is raw and deeply personal—she describes it as a hero’s journey—and inspired by her experiences over the last few years following her divorce in 2017 from New Found Glory band member Chad Gilbert. “I’m really trying to take people on the ride that I’ve been on,” she says. “This feels like an accurate representation of my coming alive in this new period of my life. It was very dark. It still is dark. I’m not in denial of that anymore. But there’s also all this joy and wonderful freedom that has come with accepting all these different sides.”
Ahead of Petals for Armor’s release, Hayley Williams shares with us everything she’s loving these days—from the new recipe she’s obsessed with to the cozy robe she treated herself to as soon as quarantine started.
The best jeans in my closet
My favorite pair of jeans are my Re/Done 1930s or ’40s style. They’re loose-fit, but the top is very cinched. They’re my favorite and really flattering, and I’m a pretty short person. To me, the fact that I found a pair that fit me is miraculous on its own.
Re/Done ’30s Ladies High-Rise Straight-Leg Jeans
Re/Done ’40s Zoot Jeans
The dish that’s bringing me joy
I’m obsessed with this recipe I got from my friend Denai Moore, who’s a really insanely cool artist from the U.K. She’s putting out a record pretty soon, and we got to know each other over the last year or so. She happens to be a vegan chef, and she sent me the recipe for her Brown Butter Banana Bread Chocolate Chip Cookies. So good.
I made a really large batch and ran out of chocolate chips, so now I’m desperate. I’ve got to Walking Dead my way back to a grocery store eventually and get some more goods. That’s been my favorite thing to make, and the batch I made lasted so long I even gave some away. I left some on my porch for a friend to come and pick them up. It’s brought me a lot of joy, baking. We’re all just making do with our shitty brown bananas that are sitting around. We’re all trying to ration and make use of everything. It’s crazy. This is the first time in my life I’m using up every item in my fridge and my pantry before I go back to the store. I’ve never experienced that, and it makes me realize how much I took for granted before.
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Brown Butter Banana Bread Chocolate Cookies 🍪 I had this idea last night as a realised I had a few ripe bananas. Originally I wanted to make banana bread but realised I didn’t have a loaf tin! So this is where I landed! In cookie world! A good cookie is my favourite baked treat. And this definitely hit the spot! Amidst the bulk buying plain flour supermarket scandal lol I made this recipe with what I had. Which was a bit of self raising and buckwheat! This recipe is so flavoursome, lots of savoury notes, perfectly crisp edges and gooey inside. It tastes both banana bread and chocolate chip cookies at the same time! The recipe is up on my blog! Link in my bio 🌱 #veganrecipes #vegancookies #bananabreadcookies #deestable
What I’m reading at the moment
I’ve really been enjoying Trick Mirror by Jia Tolentino. It’s not the lightest read. It’s a bunch of short essays from a journalist who I think is really talented. I have to take breaks from it and go back. I always find that it really reveals something in me. It illuminates truths for me that I don’t think I would be thinking about if someone wasn’t pulling it out of me.
"Trick Mirror" by Jia Tolentino
The app that helps my cleaning routine
I feel so embarrassed by it, but my go-to app right now is the Cozi app. It’s the whitest, whitest lady thing that I’ve ever enjoyed. I like it because it has helped me keep a routine of cleaning my home. Basically, this woman on Instagram—her name is Clean Mama—has days of the week that are dedicated to certain parts of the house, and it makes me feel a sense of structure in how I take care of my home, to keep it really clean, and to make sure my counters are disinfected and my floors are mopped. She even has DIY recipes for how to create a sink scrub. I mean, literally it is the whitest shit I’ve ever enjoyed—but considering I’m translucently pale and a single woman living in my home alone, it’s given me a lot of support.
My go-to comfy clothes
Surprisingly during this quarantine, I’m not a leggings gal. I’m either very-cozy-sweatpants lady or no-pants-at-all lady. My favorite sweatpants are from Assembly and they say “Los Angeles” down the side, upside down. They’re my favorite because they look cool enough to go out and live the day in because they’re cropped, but also they’re really comfortable. I’m not going anywhere now, but I’ve worn them to the airport many times.
Champion Logo Cuff Rib Sweatpants
Spiritual Gangster Tie-Dye Sweats
A trend I can get behind
This has been around a bit, but I trend I love is colored hair, really processed hair, dip-dye, two-tone hair. A lot of it is stuff I’ve been doing with Brian for a while, but now I’m seeing so many people dive into this. Everyone’s home. Nobody’s going to whatever job they had that may have not let them dye their hair or whatever. People are trying things I think they weren’t willing to try before.
I’m seeing a lot of people dye the front part of their hair with a neon color and the rest of their hair is natural, which is what I have going on right now. That’s been one of my favorite things to come back around, seeing everyone from supermodels to, I don’t know, a mom in Nashville with something that to me evokes the early 2000s or the late ’90s.
My fave fragrance
I change up my fragrances. I use oils. The last fragrance I bought was a D.S. & Durga fragrance called Radio Bombay. That has definitely been my favorite of all the fragrances I’ve ever worn. Now I’m more into getting out of the shower, putting some sort of body oil on—usually woodsy smells like sandalwood or that kind of thing. Then I will sometimes add an essential oil, whether it’s bergamot or something a bit brighter.
D.S. & Durga Radio Bombay
Aesop Hydrating Body Oil
The TV shows at the top of my queue
I had to quit reality TV after the last Bachelor. I was like, “This is just…like, my brain cells, gone.” I’ve been diving into sitcoms more and cartoons, because they’re light. I just finished Succession season two. I wrapped it up. It blew my mind, and I so don’t relate to it. It still feels fantastical to me, even though it’s very heavy topics. Money scares the shit out of me, numbers scare the shit out of me, but Succession is my lifeblood right now.
A feel-good song I love
Lately one of my favorite feel-good songs is “Come On Let’s Go” by the band Broadcast. Sadly, their singer passed many years ago, and they’re from the U.K. They’re really, really cool, and they sort of give me the same feeling of listening to a good French pop album, with this nice lo-fi, ’90s-indie-rock thing. I like all of their songs, but “Come On Let’s Go” really reminds me of my friends and people looking out for each other and wanting the best for each other. I like to wake up and put my playlist on, and that’s the first song on my playlist.
The self-care product getting me through quarantine
Favorite self-care product today is Epsom salts, honestly. Cheap, easy to get. Oh my God, they’re so good for you. I didn’t even realize how much good I was doing for myself until I talked to my therapist about the medicinal benefits, just holistically. They’re great for hormone balancing. Magnesium is something we don’t get enough of. That’s my favorite all-encompassing self-care item.
Solimo Epsom Salt Soak
My favorite color to wear
I like to wear light denim. Wearing light-colored Levi shorts or my Re/Dones that are light is my favorite because it reminds me of summer, being younger—that’s my favorite thing to wear.
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🌺 while making Petals For Armor, @jellyquinn & i were roomies. ive never had a roommate quite as hot as Joey but he doesn’t like me like that, which is fine. we decided to perform live, stripped versions of a few songs from the album in my little makeshift studio room. there are 2 others to come but those songs have yet to be released, so won’t to spoil those yet. hope you enjoy this first one. Joery, if you’re reading this – i miss when you made coffee every morning. . . shot on iPhone by @lindseybyrnes
The last thing I bought
The last thing I bought was a robe, a linen robe from this company called OddBird. They’re a small business out of L.A., woman-owned. When I realized we were all going to be stuck inside for a very long time, I decided to treat myself to something I could wake up and throw on, go make my tea. I live in that robe. It’s a mustard yellow color. I really love it.
OddBird Fener Linen Kimono Robe
Positano Linen Robe
A surprisingly good movie snack
Those Brown Butter Banana Bread cookies are my favorite, but every time I’m done eating dinner and I put on a movie lately, I make hot tea. I’m drinking so much hot tea. I really like loose-leaf teas. I buy from two local Nashville companies. One is High Garden Tea, which is a really incredible family-owned business that actually was impacted by the tornado recently. Their entire place was just blown apart. They’re working on getting their online orders back up, and they’re a really reputable, cool company that sources great products. Then there’s another company in town called Firepot that makes beautiful loose-leaf tea blends. I go back and forth and try to make that feel very ritualistic, because it kind of centers my mind.
The beauty tip I’ll always remember
Brian comes on the road and does my hair and makeup, so we live together all the time on tour, and he always is hassling me about using more moisturizer because I grew up breaking out a lot. Just from touring and stressing over my job or whatever, I’ve always struggled with that off and on. He’s always been like, “You think your skin is oily, but it’s so dry, and you need to moisturize.”
Since I’m home all the time now, I’ve been killing the game with moisturizer and masks. Anything that’s nourishing and cozy. I splurged a while ago on this May Lindstrom product called the Blue Cocoon. It’s so fucking expensive, but it lasts a long time and feels really good. I just try to remember Brian’s voice in my head, like, “You need to moisturize your skin.”
May Lindstrom Blue Cocoon
Anna Moeslein is a senior editor at Glamour.
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