You can't discuss the early 2000s without talking about Christina Milian. Many of us have grown up watching Milian's filmography, including classics like Love Don't Cost a Thing, Be Cool, and Bring It On: Fight to the Finish. Having invested two decades of her life in the entertainment industry, Milian has been fortunate to achieve many of her wildest dreams. She's been nominated for dozens of awards, traveled the world to shoot movies, and carved out an impressive music career in the process.
Now 40-years-old, Milian focuses on raising her three children and pouring positivity into the world. Among her many ventures, Milian has recently partnered with Crest and Oral-B to address oral health inequities in underserved communities. For the actress, it's a cause that hits close to home as she watched her parents struggle with a lack of access to proper dental care. Ahead, Milian discusses her advocacy work with Crest and Oral-B, the return of 2000s beauty and fashion trends, and her plans for 2022.
What made you want to partner with Crest and Oral-B?
I wanted to partner with Crest and Oral-B to help close the smile gap. There is a lack of education around dental health and access to dental care within the Black and Hispanic community. Growing up, I witnessed it with my parents. They didn't have the education or the healthcare to take care of their teeth. As they grew older, I saw them go through the pain of having to get root canals and have random shooting pains in their teeth. Because of that, they taught my sister and me about the importance of flossing and brushing. I'm now passing that messaging on to my children, and I want to help other families recognize the importance of good oral habits.
Let's talk about beauty. You've always had radiant skin. What are some of your skincare secrets?
A lot of it has to do with hydration. It's important to feed your body as much water as possible. My mom had limited access to skincare, so we just used old-school methods growing up. I wouldn't say I like to overconsume too many things for my skin. But now that I'm 40-years-old, I do a few more things. Even though we have melanin, we still need SPF. I use a lot of products that have SPF in them.
Do you have any favorite SPFs?
Beauty and fashion trends from the 2000s are having a moment again. Are there any looks you're excited to see return?
As long as thin eyebrows don't come back, I'm okay [laughs]. When I was doing those things in the early 2000s, my mom would say her generation did that in the '70s and '80s. Over time, everything repeats. I'm witnessing it now through my daughter. She'll be turning 12 soon and is discovering the things we did in the '90s and '00s. But, her generation has new names for these things. I'm so glad I saved some of my Frankie B Jeans and crop tops from the 2000s. I told myself I'd keep those things for my future daughter back then. So, I'm happy to see these trends come back around.
You've always embraced your natural curls. What does your curly hair routine consist of these days?
For my curly hair, sometimes I use Bed Head products. I'm also using a few Nioxin products, like their leave-in conditioner. After having my baby, I lost a lot of hair, and their products help with hair growth.
Who has been some of your beauty inspirations throughout your life?
I love Halle Berry, Jennifer Lopez, Diana Ross, and Tina Turner. My mom raised me watching them, and I've always admired how beautiful their skin is.
What does self-care look like for you as you juggle your career and motherhood?
I think sometimes we skip past self-care. We'll get a gift certificate to go to a spa or something, and we never go. For self-care, I like to get facials. I love when the steam is coming down, they're washing my face and massaging my head. I usually fall asleep and then wake up at the end. I also like to go to FaceGym so they can play with my face.
What makes you want to say "yes" to a movie or collaboration at this stage of your career?
For movies, the script has to be good. I like to be presented with challenges. I want to play roles that feel different from me or something I've done before. I've done a lot of romantic comedies, granted, but each one feels different because it's usually set in a unique place. I've had things that I've turned down before because I didn't connect with them. I want to connect with the project so that when I'm playing that role, hopefully, people can feel something when they see it.
You've been in the business for two decades now. When you think back on all you've done, are there any particular moments you find yourself reflecting on?
I often think about this movie I did called Be Cool. I worked with John Travolta, Uma Thurman, The Rock, Cedric the Entertainer, and Andre 3000. The film was the sequel to Get Shorty, and my character was the nucleus of the storyline. I was pinching myself because I was working with all these incredible actors at the prime time of my career. I was in such awe that I was in that position. I went from auditioning to be girl #1 to suddenly becoming Linda Moon and having John Travolta and Vince Vaughn fight over me in a movie. I'm still blown away by that opportunity, and I wish I could do it all over again.
What advice would you give to other young women looking to break into the entertainment industry?
Pay attention to your opportunities. Opportunities are everywhere. But not every opportunity is right, so make good choices. It's okay to say no to a project, and it's okay to say something doesn't fit into your plan. There's always something better waiting for you. Also, be ready to fire anybody that doesn't fit. It's also important to be a humble, good person because that leads to longevity.
What are you looking forward to in 2022?
I'm excited for the unknown. I have no idea what to expect in this coming year. I have a new show coming out on Starz Club, Step Up, that I'm excited about. I'm done having kids [laughs], so I'm excited to keep raising my family. I also have a beignet business with my best friend, and we're opening up more locations. I'm ultimately looking forward to doing more stuff as an entrepreneur and lending opportunities to other people through my businesses.