Allison Williams Talks GIRLS Emoji, Her Next Haircut + How She’s Giving Back
We have a confession to make: We creep on our favorite celebs’ Instagrams like it’s our job. And, to be fair… it is. Being the super sleuths that we are, we were alerted to a major Insta-announcement last night when Allison Williams posted this tasty little tidbit to her account promising a sweet treat for followers this AM. We had some theories (GIRLS Season 5 sneak peek, a brother or sister for her new pup Moxie, a shocking chop and dye a la so many celebs RN — more on the latter later), but the actual news is actually better than all of that. We emailed our GIRLS girl to be like, hey, what’s up?!?! Allison is here to give us the scoop about that mysterious Insta, what holiday we should all be celebrating today and which emoji best captures the spirit that is #girlboss Lena Dunham below.
You’re a big Instagrammer — what (or who) got you into using it? Let’s creep on your account right now and talk about the last couple things you Instagrammed, including the announcement you made today…
Allison Williams: I love Instagram (I’m @aw, by the way!). When I was cast as Peter Pan, I opened my account so I could spread the word about that experience to anyone who wanted to hear about it. I think the majority of my Instagrams are now about our puppy, Moxie. I try to pace myself. But she’s so cute I really can’t help it!
This morning, I announced that in honor of Giving Day, which is today, I’m going to give a hand-written note and a jar of my favorite candy (from Dylan’s Candy Bar!) to anyone who donates over $40 to Horizons National and sends the receipt to email@example.com. Go ahead and donate! Here’s the link!
How did you get involved with Horizons? And what exactly is it?!
AW: I’ve kind of always been involved with Horizons, but we’ve only just recently made it official. It was founded at my elementary school, New Canaan Country School (NCCS), in 1964. The headmaster at the time realized what a waste the empty campus was during the summers, so he started a program that invited students from low-income families to use the campus to continue their learning and also have enriching and fun experiences. Pretty brilliant idea, if you think about the vast numbers of private school and college campuses that are empty all summer. My grandmother taught at NCCS, my mother and her brothers went there on scholarships, and my brother and I went there. We are all involved with Horizons, because it becomes such an integral part of each of the schools that host it. My grandmother was on the board of the first Horizons program, my mother chairs the national Horizons board, my brother worked at the program for two summers, and now I’m formally engaged as well.
Why is your work with the organization important to you?
AW: As Horizons expanded, people quickly began to realize that it fixed something called the summer slide. Here’s a little video that explains summer slide and how the program works!
As I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized that Horizons helps solve many of our country’s most urgent problems. Everything boils back down to education. Not all educations are created equal, but all children who need educating are. How is that fair? We need to fix that.
Psst, summer is almost here. Are you working through it or do you have any plans that you’re looking forward to? What advice would you give someone (recent grads! High schoolers! Those of us who want to do more than just lounge on the beach!) looking to volunteer or become more active in their community this summer?
AW: For most of the summer, I’ll be in New York with the rest of the GIRLS shooting Season 5 (can you believe it?? I can’t!). On weekends, I’ll most likely escape to the New Jersey Shore, where my family has a house. On other weekends, I’ll be visiting Horizons programs on the East Coast.
I would highly recommend looking to see if there’s a Horizons program near you and reach out to see if you can visit the campus or maybe volunteer. I think they’re still staffing up and it’s about the most rewarding thing you can do with your time!! If you want to take it one step further, ask your local private schools and colleges with unused facilities if they’d be interested in opening a program. Especially in and around major cities.
Okay, let’s get girly for a bit. Whether passed down from Mom or Pinned on Pinterest, our readers love a good beauty hack. What’s your best one?
AW: This is one I’ve pulled together from my Mom, traveling, and various hair experts. Every time I do my hair and apply lots of products, heat, etc., I give my hair a mask overnight. I combine jojoba oil, coconut oil, Argan oil, and Phyto Phytonectar Pre-Shampoo, put it all in my hair, comb it in and then braid it at the nape of my neck. It’s not THAT greasy, but if you’re worried about your pillows, you can sleep on a towel. Your hair will thank you — I promise!!
When you’re *not* spending time in a makeup chair, what is your go-to 5-minute morning beauty/hair routine when you have to get out the door quickly?
AW: If I really need to be quick, I’ll skip my morning face wash, dab some Armani Maestro Eraser Dark Circle Concealer under my eyes and on any red areas, curl and mascara my lashes and dab some cream blush on the apples of my cheeks. As a finishing touch, I use some highlighter above my cheekbones, under my brows, and down the bridge of my nose. Off I go!
Okay, Allison. Really important question. Everyone in Tinseltown is chopping off their locks or dying them a cotton candy shade of something. Do you secretly dream of doing a dramatic ‘do? What will your next cut be?
AW: What girl isn’t constantly thinking about their next drastic hair change?! I’m thinking of dying it dark, dark brown and getting bangs. The best advice I got was wait two weeks before getting any haircut. Sometimes it’s a passing phase!! Some of them are so drastic that you have to really like it — otherwise you can be completely stuck with it while it grows out.
It looks like you guys have a blast on set at GIRLS — what emoji perfectly encapsulates the spirit of your fellow cast members: Lena, Zosia, Jemima, Alex and Ebon?
AW: What a great question. Lena’s emoji would have to be the green tea emoji because she’s rarely seen without some kind of tea — be it green or chamomile — and it’s so consistent that I now associate the smell of tea with Lena. Z’s emoji would be the ladybug for no particular reason other than the fact that she sometimes calls us ladybugs. She also says “duders” and “kids” and “kittens.” Jemima’s would be the mouth emoji because she has the best lips on this Earth.
Alex’s would be a basketball because he is secretly very good at basketball.
Ebon’s would be the book emoji because he reads on set all the time on his Kindle, and I’m so jealous of the fact that he can focus on a book in the midst of the chaos of a set!. To be honest, I make fun of him a lot. But I’m secretly jealous of it.
What’s the last app you downloaded?
AW: I think it was Dubsmash… and my first ever Dubsmash was the one I posted to my Instagram. While Ebon’s reading, that’s what I’m doing.
And finally, our Brit + Co must-ask: What was the last thing you made that you were really excited about?
AW: Everything I’ve made lately has been puppy-related. Moxie is 4 months old now! Ever since we got her, I’ve been making these elaborate meals for her. My godmother is a dog guru, so she sent me a box of goodies when I brought the puppy home. Each meal takes me 10 minutes to make! There’s chia. There’s coconut oil. There’s enzymes. It’s too much. So, since I don’t cook, every meal I make for Moxie is something I get excited about!
Hi, anyone else as excited about the next season of GIRLS now as we are?! Are you giving back on Giving Day? Share with us below!
(Photos via Jamie McCarthy/Getty, HBO, Featured Photo: Larry Busacca/Getty)
Welcome to Selfmade Finance School, our new money series with Block Advisors to help small business owners with their tax, bookkeeping, and payroll needs year-round. This week, we explore the tax implications of bringing family members into your business.
The question for today is this: Does hiring your family members make sense for your business? Let me be clear. This is not a piece about whether hiring your family members makes sense for your relationships with those family members. As someone who is part of a family business, I could fill up a lot more than 600 words on my opinions about that. For today's purposes, we focus on whether it makes sense from an overall "good business and tax implication" perspective. As it turns out, there is a decent amount of tax nuance when it comes to employing your family. Let's break it down based on relationship to the employee:
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Spouses Who Are In Business Together
Personally, if I had to be in business with my husband, it would not go well. However, many couples build viable, strong businesses together and I say, good for them! Depending on how you have your business entity structured, it will make a big difference on the tax treatment of you and your spouse working as partners. Because a business jointly owned and operated by a married couple is generally treated as a partnership for Federal tax purposes, the spouses must comply with filing and record keeping requirements imposed on partnerships and their partners. The election to file two Schedule C (Form 1040) forms, (one for each spouse) permits certain married co-owners to avoid filing partnership returns, provided that each spouse separately reports a share of all the businesses' items of income, gain, loss, deduction, and credit. Under the election, both spouses will be subject to self-employment tax and on net earnings from self-employment and receive credit for Social Security earnings.
One Spouse Employs Another
If you have a dynamic where your spouse is an employee of your business, then your spouse's wages are subject to income tax withholding, Social Security and Medicare taxes. If you are self-employed (not a corporation or a partnership), your spouse's pay does not have to be included in your federal unemployment tax account (FUTA) contributions and payments. However, if your business is a corporation or a partnership you must include that spouse's pay in your unemployment tax contribution calculation.
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You Employ Your Child
First, let's be clear. I work in my family business, but I am an adult, so I am treated just like a normal employee. However, if you, for example, run a family restaurant and want to hire your children under 18 to work for you, there are some tax benefits. But first, you should check with your state for rules on how many hours minors can work (in non-agricultural jobs) and reference the Fair Labor Standards Act for information on limitations on the kinds of work children can perform.
"This is an often overlooked or under-utilized strategy. Paying your children for true services they provide in your business can be a powerful tax-saving tool," says Cathi Reed, Block Advisors Regional Director. "If you are a sole-proprietorship or single member LLC, and the child is less than 18 years of age, the business is not required to withhold FICA or payroll taxes. The child can use his or her standard deduction against income you pay."
You Hire Your Parent
Oh dear. If you are brave enough to do this, know that you will need to pay Social Security and Medicare taxes on your parent's wages and make the appropriate withholdings, but you don't have to pay unemployment taxes. Now all you have to do is convince your parent that you are the boss. Have fun with that!
Is Hiring Family Members Worth It For The Tax Benefits?
"There are some positive tax advantages to hiring family members. It's important to treat a family member like any other employee. Hiring your children can result in substantial savings for businesses. Make sure your child has real, age-appropriate work to do and a reasonable pay rate, comparable to other employees. Consult with a Block Advisors small business certified tax pro to ensure that you are complying with all requirements," advises Reed. "Block Advisors, a team within H&R Block, is dedicated to meeting the tax, bookkeeping and payroll needs of small business owners year-round. To start working with the tax experts at Block Advisors, visit blockadvisors.com."
In my opinion, you should not hire a family member solely because of the tax benefits. You should always hire based on whether that person is right for the job and keep in mind how this hire could materially impact your relationship with that person and others in your family. Finally, as I mentioned, make sure you have a tax professional on your team when making these determinations. As you can see, things can get a little tricky!
*All details were sourced from IRS.gov and blockadvisors.com