Writer and musician Michelle Zauner, also known as the indie rock sensation Japanese Breakfast, is strength. Even on Brooklyn’s phone, his energy is noticeable, and his new memory, H crying on Mars, is as fascinating as it is. (I swallowed it one weekend.) Here, she shares her feelings about her favorite YouTube workouts, a lovely self-care ritual, and writing a very personal book …
I have to start asking a big part about your relationship with your mother who died of cancer at the age of 25: What did your mother teach you about beauty?
Beauty is something in my life, similar to food, that always reminds me. She had great beauty: she ate well and took care of her clothes, skin, hair. My mother tried at a very young age to get into the skin care regimen, but I didn’t want anything to do with it. When I was growing up a young feminist, the way to rebel was to ignore beauty. Beauty practices seemed to hinder the path to be taken seriously. Now, the conversations about beauty and feminism are more nuanced. It’s impossible, but it’s important to have a balance.
How did the growth between the two cultures affect the view of beauty?
I grew up in Eugene, Oregon and spent all the other summers with my Korean family. Skin care is a huge part of Korean culture, but despite showing that, I didn’t have a habit of skin care until recently! I’ve done photo shoots in two places, and it really shows how different the beauties of Korea and America are. If you do Korean makeup, 75% of what they do is skin care. Most of the time is spent putting on layers of skin products before applying subtle makeup. In the US, it’s based on real makeup: color, highlighting, and ingesting. Recently, I’ve noticed a lot more Americans starting to borrow things from the Korean way of doing things.
Now that you have it, what is your daily skin care habit?
I have dry, sensitive skin. My friend Jason Kim, a Korean writer with awful skin, sent me to his dermatologist, Dr. Dan Belkin. Now I clean it up Cetaphil, continued SkinBetter Science Alto Defense Serum, then a moisturizer. It’s the last and most important part of my daily routine MDSolarSciences Mineral Cream, With SPF 50. I carry it all the time, even if it’s near the window. I love; I feel very sophisticated every time I put it on.
How about tonight?
At night, I remove my makeup BioDerma Ur Micellarthen wipe my face Cetaphil. I use the following SkinBetter Science Alpharet night cream, which contains retinoids, because my dermatologist said I should use active ones. My mother would be so impressed. My skin definitely feels better!
Are there any body care rituals?
Before the pandemic, I would regularly go to a Korean spa where a bath lady would clean it and remove any dead skin from your body. There is a place Chung Dam SpaIn Cheltenham, outside of Philly, I used it frequently. When it is safe, I will go there and have my skin removed. It’s lively, but since I grew up going to Korean spas, I’m used to it. I love when they wash their hair – it’s like a holy experience.
I’m afraid of your tattoos. Which was your first?
My first tattoo was a very bad stick and poke of a girl and a spoon on the back of my leg. A friend gave it to me as a gift, and it wasn’t a good experience. There may have been three safety pins sterilized with a Bic lighter and it was very painful.
But you kept going! How many do you have now?
After getting my first real one, it was definitely easier. I don’t know how many I have, because my arm is a continuous thing. At least 10? Maybe 20. They all have a story behind them. He is a favorite Kewpie mayonnaise type in my arm. I love it, because my mom always made this scallop sashimi with mayonnaise and roe deer, and I think about it when I see it. I also really love Kewpie mayonnaise! I always stay home.
When you’re not doing performances, do you usually put on makeup?
When it comes to everyday makeup, the main thing is to do my eyebrows. I have Asian eyebrows, with very long hair, but separated, not dense. So I always meet them Anastasia Brow Wiz in dark brown. It’s very accurate, which I love. The second thing I always wear is mascara. Right now L’Oreal Miss Manga.
How does your makeup change when you’re on stage?
For a show, I have loud palettes of eye shadows. The situation is more. When I put an eye shadow on it, I feel like I’ve done a lot, in a good way. I feel safe. I like it This Urban Decay palette, and Pat McGrath Palettes they are also amazing. I look like a teenager in Hot Topic, but that’s what I know.
Do you have self-care rituals to help you feel your best?
Every morning my husband and I make coffee for the French press, we like it ReAnimatorOutside of Philly – then drink in bed and have a slow climb. My other ritual is to take a shower and then lie naked in bed for 10 minutes. I feel like a little saucepan; it’s a relaxing thing. I had a bad attitude about self-care for a long time, until I saw an episode of the day Queer eyes in which Jonathan said brushing his teeth is also a matter of self-care. It was a real moment for me. I finally got that you don’t have to run around with a full bath bomb to enjoy yourself; it can be in small things.
I know you like to exercise. How do you incorporate movement into your life?
During the pandemic, the season kept me on the ground. I like it Chloe Ting program; Move with Nicholas, that is, Pilates; and Madfit, which I think looks so good Anna Konkler’s character in Pen15 if you grow up and have a fitness show. Last year, I became obsessed with trying to get a six pack, which didn’t happen. It’s very hard! But doing more than anything improves my mental health.
Your book it is very beautiful. What was it like to write something so personal, twisted, and honest?
It was serious and gratifying. I wanted to start with what was good, to recapture my childhood and remember all those special moments. I also felt an urgent feeling to share what I had suffered, to expose all the wounds. I got into my mother’s cancer and death ill-prepared, and I felt a lot of anger because they didn’t warn me in some way. I felt the importance of wanting to express that. There was a lot of crying on my computer, and I took breaks and went back to it. It was a four-year process – I started writing by chance in 2016, I did the most concentrated writing from 2018 to 2020, and I gave my final review in July 2020.
What is your personal philosophy of beauty?
Everyone should do what they want! That is my philosophy. Also, even if it’s only three or four minutes a day, every time I use a nice product or take a moment for myself, I think about my mother.
Thank you, Michelle.