Lili Reinhart almost quit acting to become a makeup artist. Now, she’s starring on ‘Riverdale’ and in ‘Hustlers.’

  • Lili Reinhart is known for her role as Betty Cooper on The CW’s hit teen drama “Riverdale.”
  • Before becoming a popular name in young Hollywood, Reinhart considered going to makeup school if acting didn’t work out. She also appeared alongside Timothée Chalamet in a 2016 movie called “Miss Stevens.”
  • The 23-year-old stars in the new movie “Hustlers,” in theaters this Friday, and will reprise her “Riverdale” role when the show returns for season four in October.
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Lili Reinhart is known for her role as Betty Cooper on “Riverdale,” but just a few years ago, she was an unknown actor.

The 23-year-old made her debut as Betty in January 2017 on the CW show and her popularity has been increasing ever since, thanks to popularity of the teen drama series and its passionate fanbase.

Reinhart stars in the highly-anticipated movie “Hustlers,” alongside Jennifer Lopez, and returns for season four of “Riverdale” this fall.

Keep reading to find out how Reinhart became a recognizable face in young Hollywood.

Reinhart was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio.

She lived there with her parents, Daniel Reinhart and Amy Reinhart, and her two sisters, Tess Reinhart and Chloe Reinhart.

“My mom would drive me from Cleveland to New York City and use my dad’s hotel points for auditions,” the actress told W magazine in 2017. “They were the most supportive parents that I could have. Without them, I wouldn’t have gotten anywhere. My mom would take off work to take me to auditions, because they believed in me, which is a very big leap of faith.

She landed small roles on shows like “Law & Order: SVU” during her early years as an actor.

Lili Reinhart on “Law & Order: SVU.”

On “Law & Order SVU,” she played a girl named Courtney Lane who tortured and murdered a younger student at her school.

She was also in movies like “Not Waving But Drowning” and “The Kings of Summer.”

Reinhart and Timothée Chalamet starred in a movie together called “Miss Stevens” prior to becoming famous.

From left, Timothée Chalamet, Anthony Quintal, Lili Reinhart, and Lilly Rabe in “Miss Stevens.”
The Orchard

In the 2016 coming-of-age movie, Lily Rabe portrayed the titular teacher who drove her students, including Reinhart’s character, to a drama competition.

When the cast filmed the movie, Reinhart shared plenty of behind-the-scenes photos with Chalamet, then known as @liltimmytim, on Instagram.

Reinhart’s family moved to North Carolina when she was 16 years old and she finished school online so she could focus on acting.

“People thought I was b—-y because I wasn’t really trying to socialize or make too many friends or step outside my comfort zone,” Reinhart told Seventeen magazine about her time in school. “But that was because I had social anxiety, which made me uncomfortable and a little withdrawn.”

At 18, she moved out to LA to go on more auditions.

She moved at the start of 2015 and lived there for six months. In multiple interviews, Reinhart has said that her mental health suffered greatly during her time there, plus she wasn’t able to financially support herself.

In 2017, the actress told Coveteur magazine that she “was miserable” and her situation on the West Coast “made my depression skyrocket.”

“I really felt defeated,” Reinhart told W magazine in 2019. “I had dwindled through my bank account. I tried to get a job in LA at Buca di Beppo. I got a hostess job, and after I was offered that job, I threw up in the Uber because I started having a panic attack. I called my mom, hyperventilating.”

Reinhart returned to North Carolina to improve her mental health.

“When I went back home, I knew that I was going to end up going back out eventually,” Reinhart told W magazine. “I just knew that I needed to save up money and I needed to see a therapist to help me. My mental health was in such bad shape that it actually made my physical health was really poor, and I really needed to just take care of myself for six months before I went back out and tried again.”

The actress headed back to LA with money earned from her position as a sales associate at Pier One Imports back home and “stayed on my friend’s air mattress on her floor.

Reinhart decided to give LA another shot and if she didn’t succeed, she’d go to makeup school.

Lili Reinhart showed off David Bowie-inspired makeup on Instagram.
Lili Reinhart/Instagram

Many of the oldest photos on Reinhart’s Instagram show the actress wearing intricate looks inspired by Harley Quinn, David Bowie, and pop art.

“I love makeup and I love special effects makeup,” she told Imagista. “I was planning on going to makeup school because I had dabbled in it as a hobby and I always thought that I could make a career out of it. It was kind of like my backup plan. Luckily, I never had to fall back on it, but I still really do enjoy doing makeup.”

Read more: 11 things you probably didn’t know about ‘Riverdale’ star Lili Reinhart

Reinhart’s big break came when she landed the role of Betty Cooper on “Riverdale,” a month after moving back to LA.

Lili Reinhart as Betty Cooper on “Riverdale.”
Katie Yu/The CW

She submitted an audition tape for the series (which is a dark take on the beloved Archie Comics). Of that period in her life, Reinhart said,” I was rebuilding myself, and in between meds,” Reinhart told W magazine.

The audition tape was rejected, but Reinhart landed an in-person audition during her second try in LA.

“I remember leaving the final audition and calling my manager, as I was driving towards the sunset, and saying, ‘I feel proud of myself for what I’ve done. Regardless of what happens, I feel happy and really at peace,'” she told W magazine in 2017.

After getting the role, Reinhart and the cast filmed the pilot and the show got picked up by the network.

Reinhart said that she relates to the dark side of Betty.

Lili Reinhart on season three of “Riverdale.”
The CW

“What I bring to Betty is her real anxiety about things and the stress she’s under because I get easily overwhelmed and stressed out,” she told Ocean Drive in February 2018.

The actress also told Coveteur magazine that she and Betty are leaders and wear their hearts on their sleeves.

Reinhart’s relationship with costar and on-screen boyfriend Cole Sprouse has also caught the attention of fans.

Reinhart and Sprouse, who plays Jughead Jones on the show, reportedly started dating in 2017. At the onset of their relationship, the stars played coy and didn’t share too many details with fans. They also brushed off speculation during interviews, but have since been photographed kissing or holding hands in public. The stars have also shared heartfelt messages about each other on social media.

In May 2018, they made their red carpet debut as a couple at the Met Gala held in New York City. In July 2019, multiple outlets reported that Reinhart and Sprouse broke up. The stars went on to slam unnamed sources.

Reinhart low-key confirmed that she and Sprouse are still a couple in an interview with Coveteur magazine, which was published in September 2019.

Read more: Every time ‘Riverdale’ stars Lili Reinhart and Cole Sprouse have opened up about their relationship

Reinhart has used her platform to speak openly about mental health and body positivity.

Reinhart told Ocean Drive that she’s outspoken because growing up, she felt like there weren’t many celebrities who were vocal about their struggles.

“I wanted more people to stand up,” she said. “I needed more people to relate to.”

In October 2017, she shared her own Me Too experience via a Tumblr post.

Reinhart titled the essay “In light of the Harvey Weinstein allegations” and spoke about an older coworker with more power sexually assaulting her when she was a teenager.

“I’m not comfortable giving specific details about the situation because I don’t feel it’s necessary,” she wrote. “All that matters is that he tried to force himself on me when we were on a date.”

The actress went on to say that at the time, she “was so young and didn’t know how to handle the situation. I just knew how wrong it felt and that I had been violated.”

“I’m coming forward about my own experience to further express how common these assaults are in this industry and how important it is that we take action to fight against it,” Reinhart concluded.

Reinhart stars as Annabelle in the star-studded movie “Hustlers.”

Lili Reinhart in “Hustlers.”
STX Entertainment

The actress filmed the movie while also wrapping up the fourth season of “Riverdale.”

“I think you learn something from every person that you work with, big or small,” Reinhart said of “Hustlers” costar Jennifer Lopez during an interview with “E! News.” “I can respect the fact that JLo has been doing this for over two decades of her life and she still kills it.”

Reinhart doesn’t actually pole dance in the movie, but she took two classes out of curiosity.

“It was hard,” she told “Extra.” “I have a big appreciation for what strippers can do. It’s insane.”

Read more: Jennifer Lopez and Constance Wu shine as strippers-turned-con artists in ‘Hustlers’

Next, you can watch her on season four of “Riverdale.”

The new season premieres on Wednesday, October 9 at 8 p.m. ET.

Reinhart will also executive produce and star in a new movie for Amazon Studios called “Chemical Hearts,” based on a book called “Our Chemical Hearts” by Krystal Sutherland.