Image Source: NBC Universal
You might imagine Kristen Bell as the kind of celebrity who would gladly show you the doorless bathroom in her attic where husband Dax Shepard records his podcast — not just because she is decidedly the only celebrity living at the home with said attic and husband, but also because she actually did that, midway through our Zoom video call last week. It's one of his odd proclivities, I can now fully attest, of which she explained, "Look, it's none of my business. But there is a lot of poop talk in this house."
What very well could be her business, however (and if you don't count, you know, her actual job of acting and singing and founding a body-care brand with Lord Jones called Happy Dance. . .), is nails. Yes: the Frozen and The Good Place actor has built up quite the prowess and clientele. "I bought a gel machine eight years ago and, yeah, that keeps me busy," she quipped. "I give all my friends manicures. Monica [Padman] from the podcast calls my salon There Will Be Blood. It's not the way I cut the cuticles; she just bleeds really easily. She's a bleeder."
I don't want self-care to be special. I need it to be constant — not a one-time thing that is your monthly manicure, but an applicable mantra all throughout your day whenever you're feeling stressed.
Nails, you see, is one of Bell's many acts of self-care — a term she's redefined to fit her own terms. (Blood not exactly included.) "The semantics around how self-care is defined currently is that it is an event and it is special," she said. "I have a problem with that. I don't want self-care to be special. I need it to be constant — not a one-time thing that is your monthly manicure, but an applicable mantra all throughout your day whenever you're feeling stressed. My self-care is reminding me that I am a priority. It's also defined by my support systems, asking someone to come over for 10 minutes and get my kids out of my face before I scream to the high heavens or anything that involves daily rituals that are easy to do."
That last bit is also one of the driving forces behind her latest venture into the personal-care space, which is comprised of three CBD-spiked products: the Happy Dance Stress Away Bath Bomb ($15), Head-to-Toe Coconut Melt ($25), and All-Over Body Butter ($30). It wasn't just the price point she was adamant about, but also the messaging. Here, she shares exactly what this line means to her — plus the beauty hacks, affordable products, and CBD know-how she's picked up along the way.
On Making Self-Care Affordable Again
One of the biggest points of contention Bell brought to her meeting with Lord Jones is the element of accessibility: in short, she wanted to create products that don't cost a fortune.
"I contacted Lord Jones, which I thought had the best quality CBD out there and I said, 'Can we make something that cuts through all this noise of CBD and at a lower price point?' because it's not fair that rich people get the good stuff. It's just not," she said, adding that the urgency for affordable products is always important. "Now is a more appropriate time for things to be a lower price point because everybody's having to watch their budget with the unemployment rates. But even prior to COVID, I still want people who have to watch their budget to have access to this stuff."
Image Source: Happy Dance
This doesn't only extend to Happy Dance's body-care products, of course: "The perfume I wear is $10 a bottle," Bell said. "It's a perfume oil by Nemat and I've worn it for nine years; it's always in my purse. I'm using the White Musk right now, but I usually use the Amber. I've given the same Amber oil to all my friends and it smells different on every single person. And I love the fact that it's $10 for a little rollerball bottle, but it lasts forever because you just need a tiny dab of oil."
Just A Brilliant Hack to Waterproof-ing Your Eye Makeup
Speaking of affordability, Bell is no stranger to drugstore makeup, either — and is especially a fan of the Neutrogena Hydro Boost Plumping Waterproof Mascara ($14) (she's a spokesperson for the brand).
"I truly don't wear makeup 29 days of the month, but my eyes are so deep set that no matter what I'm doing, the bottoms are getting gooey," she said. "My kids are always like, 'You have gray eyeballs,' because they just see a swipe of mascara under my eyes by the end of the day. So when I do wear mascara, I will sometimes wear the Charlotte Tilbury on my upper lashes, which I really like, and then I apply the Neutrogena waterproof on my bottoms. It's a thin wand that you can coat, coat, coat."
On the Power of CBD
Bell's #1 reason for getting into the (admittedly saturated) CBD space was to bridge the gap between the stoner trope and the clinical framework you tend to see within the category — but also because she personally believes in its benefits.
"I don't have a lot of mirrors in my house because, please, I see myself enough, but also because beauty to me is a feeling, and CBD helps me with that. When I'm using it in any form, including beauty-wise, it makes me feel like the thermostat of my life is set to exactly the right temperature. I feel like the volume on my children is lowered. The [Happy Dance] bath bomb was really important for me to create because, for me, a bath is the only time where I can justifiably lock the door as a mom."
She laughed, "I know that sounds weird, but you can't lock the door if you're peeing or even just using the bathroom during the day because they need you. But when I'm in the bathtub, those are the 15 minutes that are totally mine. I wanted to create something that could bring that same experience of feeling light to everyone else."
See? Even if you're not sitting right there next to her, Kristen Bell finds a way to bring you into her world. What you do with the bathroom door, well, that's entirely your business.