I’m about to tell you something, and you may not like me after I say it: I’ve never suffered from allergies. But from what I can tell, it does not look like a good time. Sneezing, wheezing and countless other symptoms leave me giving puppy eyes to my fellow commuters in the morning as they try to put their best face forward. But ABC’s Private Practice star Kate Walsh does have allergies, and completely understands what it feels like to be zonked out all day dealing with them. I got the chance to chat with Walsh as she teamed up with Zyrtec to get her tips to looking good inside and out in every season.
What exactly is “Allergy Face”?
Allergy Face is puffy, watery eyes, sneezing, a stuffed up nose, you name it. It’s basically all of those things that make you want to hide under the covers. Which is annoying, because springtime is the season to finally get outside and enjoy the great weather.
Have you ever woken up with Allergy Face before filming or making a public appearance where you needed to look your best?
I basically have Allergy Face every day once spring hits. In California allergies can be year-round. Between the Santa Ana winds, dry winters and then the spring season something is always blooming and blowing around. Before I was diagnosed with allergies I never wanted to admit that I had them. I just told myself I was a person who sneezed a lot!
How does your beauty routine change when your allergies are acting up?
A big thing for me is hydrating, and that’s important inside and out. When my allergies are bothering me I’ll drink water with lemon to act as a diuretic, and that helps with the puffiness. I know a lot of women who hate drinking water, especially if they are feeling bloated but it really helps to keep drinking throughout the day. I also make sure to constantly moisturize. If my allergies are really bothering me I’ll use a heavier moisturizer under my nose and pair it with a concealer with yellow pigment to reduce redness under my nose.
Allergies can also make you feel pretty blah on the inside. How do you shake that feeling?
If you have allergies you take a plethora of pills and sprays to try to feel better. What I hate even more than the meds that made me feel sluggish are the ones that leave me feeling wired and jittery. Once I started taking Zyrtec I just felt normal, and that was really big for me.
You are in your 40s and look amazing! What’s your diet and exercise routine like?
I do Pilates pretty regularly and I hike with my dogs every day in a park near LA. I try to eat what I want for the most part but make sure to practice portion control. I know a lot of people do cleanses and these extreme diets but they don’t work for me. I end up just revolting and eating a bunch of Häagen-Dazs!
We spotted on Twitter recently that you were making gluten-free pancakes. Do you follow a gluten-free diet plan?
Yes, they were so good! I treat flour as a treat; I’ll have it once a week when I’m out to dinner or with friends. Bread is harder for me to digest, so I don’t typically eat it. I was in the store one day and stumbled upon a gluten-free brownie mix. It was basically the best thing that ever happened to me. That led to the pancakes—and they are so yummy! You don’t even miss the flour.
You seem to ooze self-confidence. What’s one piece of advice you’d give someone struggling with it?
We joke about this phrase a lot, but fake it until you make it is really true. You have to act your way into the right feeling until you start to actually feel that way. Women do it all the time anyway. When we don’t feel great we put on a sexy pair of heels or paint our nails a fun color. It’s also important to remember that feelings are not facts, and you can start your day over any time. That is something I always remind myself.
Do you feel better about yourself in your 40s than you did in your 20s?
Yes! Life really does get better as you age. With age comes wisdom and perspective and you just keep exponentially growing, that is such a huge gift. When you’re in your 20s you have more wisdom than you did when you were 15, and that cycle keeps going.
P.S. If you haven’t seen Walsh’s videos for her fragrance Boyfriend do yourself a favor and check them out at yourboyfriend.com and katewalsh.com. Just make sure you don’t watch them at the office, because you will laugh out loud!