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Kristen Bell On Conserving Water, Being a New Mom and Beauty on the Go

Written on October 14, 2013 at 9:00 am , by

Photo Courtesy of Neutrogena

Kristen Bell is a movie star, but during our phone chat, I was pleasantly surprised to learn she’s totally down to earth. She loves food, but won’t let it own her. She loves spending time with her new baby girl (with soon-to-be hubby Dax Shepard), but won’t let her post-baby body be a focus in the media. And though she rarely has time for a major pampering session, she loves to indulge in a manicure and some lipstick (us, too!). Most recently, the Neutrogena Naturals brand ambassador is busy spreading the word about saving water with the Every Drop Counts campaign. Keep reading for the whole scoop.

Tell us about the Every Drop Counts campaign.
“It’s a campaign throughout the month of October that’s intention is to raise awareness about domestic water issues. It’s a partnership between Neutrogena Naturals and the Nature Conservancy with the goal of saving one million gallons of water throughout the month of October. This is the third year we’ve done it and it was massively successful last year. We saved almost two million gallons. On Neutrogena’s Facebook page, you pledge to save water in a variety of ways and you are entered to win a cool trip and there’s weekly eco-giveaways so it’s a way to make it fun and show you that you don’t have to be extreme to make a big impact collectively.”

Why does the campaign mean so much to you personally?
“I’m a big fan of awareness campaigns because change always starts with an idea. When people think of water issues, it’s often considered an international problem and not a lot of people are aware that we have domestic water issues as well and that it’s important to acknowledge that water is not an endless resource while simultaneously realizing how simple it is to help out. It’s a really, really easy thing to do, just to turn off the tap while you brush your teeth. It’s not a sacrificial campaign, it’s just awareness about not wasting.”

We know you just became a new mom to baby Lincoln—congratulations! And you’ve been very vocal about not stressing over your weight post-baby. We’re all about body confidence, so how did you get to that point?
“Well, my main priority after having the baby was spending time with the baby and not losing the weight. I think often times the media creates this shameful narrative about women concentrating solely on their body size post-pregnancy as opposed to the fact that they just made magic! They just literally spit out another human life. If that’s not magic, I don’t know what is! So I made a commitment to not allow that to be my narrative and I’ve been very vocal about it for a reason because I want women to know that it doesn’t have to be theirs either. I’m not down to my pre-baby weight; I don’t know when I’ll get there. I’m eating healthy, and I’m active and I’m spending a ton of time with my kid and that’s all I really care about. I’ve looked into how to get more cardio into my routine so I could attempt to get back to my original size so I started jogging. I’ll jog two to three times a week for 10-20 minutes. Nothing intense but just something to burn a little extra and I also do Pilates which I find is really helpful for more muscle tone. Obviously everything gets real stretchy in the middle when you’re having a baby so that helps.”

That’s a very healthy and sane mind set!
“You know, if my body never goes back to the twig I was before, who cares? I’m fine with it. If this is my shape for the rest of my life, I’m fine with it. I don’t really care what everyone else thinks about it, I’m completely fine with my shape.

Confidence is key! So in terms of eating, what are some of your favorite healthy meals or snacks?
“Nuts are a big part of what I snack on. I’m really loving these bars, called This Bar Saves a Life. For every bar purchased a life-saving nutritional packet is given to a child in need. When I was pregnant, malnutrition and kids not having enough food really started resonating with me and so I love snacking on those and I keep them everywhere because they’re delicious and it also makes me feel really good to buy them because it supports a good cause. My go-to at night is a really huge salad but not a lame salad. My salad is a little more like a casserole. I start with something substantial on the bottom like I’ll put a cup of lentils or a cup of bulgar but when I make a bulgar I make it with a vegetable broth so it doesn’t taste like bulgar and then put loads of greens. Then I add every fruit and vegetable possible. I’ll add cucumbers, strawberries, blueberries, carrots, celery, walnuts and you can add or subtract depending on your taste but I say the more the merrier. Then I usually add a taste of nutritional yeast, which is really high in B vitamins and has seven grams of protein per tablespoon. Then on the top I fry some broccoli or broccolini in an olive oil spray and sprinkle in garlic salt. Throw that on the top and it’s a party. It feels like your eating. I love salad but I do not like salad when I don’t feel like I’m eating food.”

You sound like you know your foods stats, do you like to cook?
“I love it! I’m food obsessed but in a healthy way. It’s never a negative for me. I read the back of everything and know the contents of everything but I never use it in a negative way. I really believe in reading labels. I think you should be obsessed with reading labels. But be careful not to let that tiny insecure voice turn it against you.”

We know it’s nearly impossible to let beauty be on top of your list when you’re a busy mom with a busy career. So how do you find ways to fit it into your schedule and find time for yourself?
“I really like a good manicure—that’s one way that I feel beautiful. Since I use my hands a lot doing housework or dishes or whatever, I like looking down and seeing clean, beautiful nails. For my skin, I really find that less is more. It’s always been that way I think because I have sensitive skin. I think in a product-obsessed world, of which I’m a participant, do not get me wrong. I have to check myself in with what my skin actually needs not what my next-door neighbor’s skin needs. That’s why I really do like the Neutrogena Naturals line so much because it’s really effective. There’s no harsh chemicals, sulfates, parabens in it at all and it’s just enough for me. I use the Purifying Facial Cleanser ($8, neutrogena.com) and it balances my skin. I let my skin take the lead basically and I’ve found that to be really effective. And it’s not often promoted like that. Beauty routines are usually about the more the merrier.”

[To help the water conservancy cause, Neutrogena will contribute 10% of the purchase price of each Neutrogena Naturals Purifying Cleanser sold to The Nature Conservancy through October 31st.]

When you’re running out the door, is there one makeup or hair product you always like to have on?
“It’s probably lips. I use a lot of lip balm because I tend to not wear makeup in my daily life. I do love the Neutrogena MoistureSmooth Color Sticks ($7, neutrogena.com). The colors are really good. For me, if you’re running out of the house really quickly and your only goal is to not look like a corpse, one swipe of those, you don’t even have to look in the mirror; it’s easy.”

Debra Messing on Battling Allergies, Embarrassing Moments and Her Favorite Beauty Products

Written on April 4, 2013 at 4:31 pm , by

As our favorite funny girl from Will & Grace and most recently, a Broadway writer on the hit series Smash, Debra Messing has been entertaining us for years. And though she always looks flawless on screen, she’s been covering up a not-so-pretty little secret: she’s a severe allergy sufferer. Turns out, she’s one of many—96% of women suffer from allergies and the beauty woes that accompany them (watery eyes, a red nose and a puffy face). So Messing is teaming up with Zyrtec, the number one allergist recommended brand, to help fellow sufferers look and feel their best by sharing her own personal story and beauty secrets. Here, she explains just how embarrassing allergies can be and how she manages to conceal the dreaded “allergy face.”

With spring comes warm weather and pretty flowers, but it’s also the start of allergy season. Can you explain what it means to have “allergy face?” 
“I’ve been an allergy sufferer since I was really little. I grew up in New England, and anytime allergy season would come along, I would have these reactions. It would include my eyes watering constantly and my eyelids puffing up and my face getting blotchy and red, just to name a few things. So for me, that’s what allergy face means. It’s so great to be working with a company that is addressing the beauty needs of women during allergy season because in the past, it has prevented me from doing the things that I’ve really wanted to do. Like you said, taking advantage of the warm weather and going out to Central Park for a walk with my son or worrying about looking good if I have a press event outside. I partnered up with Zyrtec because it’s the first thing that actually works for me. It’s something that I can depend on and I know that if I take it in the morning I’m going to be ok. It really does prevent those reactions from happening to me.”

What’s your most embarrassing allergy attack story? 
“I was shooting a movie called The Wedding Date in England, and we were out in the British countryside. Beautiful rolling hills, flowers everywhere, grass and everyone was so excited because we were going to be shooting outside for days. I went in to have my makeup done in the trailer and they brought in a new makeup artist to help out and she was doused in perfume, an all floral essences. By the time my hair was fixed, my entire face blew up and my throat closed. My eyelids were so swollen that my eyes looked like slits. I turned and said ‘uh oh’ and everyone turned and looked and said ‘Oh my God!’ The director came in and said we couldn’t shoot. We had to shut down production and wait until my allergy attack subsided—embarrassing! Everyone was literally just sitting around looking at my puffy face and waiting for it to get better.”

That sounds terrible! You mentioned being in the makeup chair, what are your go-to beauty products to conceal allergy symptoms? 
“Because my eyes get itchy, I like to carry portable saline drops just to wash out my eyes so that any allergens in the air won’t stick around too long. In the morning, I get a bowl full of ice and add in aloe juice, which is inexpensive from the health food store, and I make the aloe juice really freezing and put in a washcloth and put it on my face for a minute or two. It takes all the puffiness out and it’s really soothing. My skin gets red and rashy so the aloe soothes that, too.”

Beside the products you use to hide your “allergy face,” do you have any other favorite beauty products?
“You know, my allergies are so severe that I really have to use fragrance-free products so there’s a makeup by Lorac called Natural Performance Foundation ($36, loraccosmetics.com) that I use everyday. It’s fragrance-free and doesn’t have anything in it that can exacerbate my sensitivity.”

So we know you’re a busy mom and working on the set of a hit TV show, so how do you find the time to stay fit? 
“You know what, it’s all about my son. He is now turning nine. When he was about four, I was so amazed by how active he was and I thought there was no way he could get more active then he is. He is like the Tasmanian devil now. He is constantly running around and he wants me to play with him. He loves sports. So when the weather is nice, we go across the street to Central Park and we’ll take the soccer ball and play soccer. He likes football and tennis, too. He just really loves sports so that’s what keeps me healthy; I wouldn’t say fit.”

What is your diet like with such a crazy schedule?
“I also have a lot of food allergies, so for me, it’s about staying away from the foods that I’m allergic to. I try to eat very clean. I try and stay away from dairy and sugar. I try and eat a lot of fish and fresh fruits and vegetables, basically all of the things that your mom tries to teach you in kindergarten.”

When you splurge, what do you splurge on?
“I love pizza and I love Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups!”

Celebs’ Oscar Shape-Up

Written on March 2, 2011 at 11:59 am , by

Beauty Director Eleanor Langston appeared on CBS’s The Insider on Friday to talk about how celebs shape up for the Oscars. Here, a quick clip of her segment: