If I could pick anyone to curate my life, it'd be Jessica Alba—not that she'd have the time, of course. While our phone call is ostensibly to chat about her latest Honest Company products and check in on some winter beauty favorites, even her asides are stuffed with intriguing tidbits: she keeps a menagerie of houseplants in her shower, she transformed a bar cart into her mobile mogul desk, and wears shimmering eyeliner inspired by her tween daughter. She appreciates the finer things, yes, but it's always tempered with the good-natured relatability that catapulted her into stardom as a child.
Alba's eye for just about everything extends from her personal life into her billion-dollar business, which she grew from a baby-based startup focused on natural, sustainable items into a leading lifestyle brand with a roster of high-rated products in multiple departments. Launched after the birth of her first child, Alba's goal was to create a line that didn't force customers to choose between ethical consumption and safe, effective products. Below, she gives the gives us the scoop on the newest Honest Co. goodies, seventh grade beauty fails, and why self-care days are even better with her kids.
Can you tell me about your new Honest Co. skincare products?
We launched our new Calm + Heal Melting Balm ($33); it's a real labor of love. We formulated this entire line in-house. It's a calming line: we have a cleanser and a resurfacing-type serum. Normally, you can't get resurfacing products for people—or I haven't seen it—that's safe for people with sensitive skin, so we thought that would be really cool to develop. And then we have an everyday moisturizer and a mist, a calming mist. Bur the real game-changing product that I think everyone would want in their makeup bag as part of their beauty routine is the Calm + Heal Balm. You can spot-treat flaky areas that can get kind of dry and rash-y, but it's also great for all over the face.
Think of the most luxurious, most expensive skincare out on the market—basically, for the past two years, I told our chemist, "We need to make a version of this that doesn't have petrochemicals in it. How can we do that?" And that's what we developed. It has allantoin, the Honest phyto-blend, and it also has mondo grass. I usually can't use those big, thick, heavy products that are conventional out there in the market, even the really expensive ones, because they make me break out. This one, I don't have a breakout ever. I'd say this is a game-changer. Especially with winter skin, if you do suffer from eczema, psoriasis, rash-y inflamed skin, it can be really frustrating. It's hard to find products that will really calm your skin's inflammation but also heal it and give you the skincare benefits you want from products like cell turnover and things like that.
Speaking of winter skin, do you switch up your personal routine in the colder months? Any winter skincare must-haves?
Oh, for sure. Normally, I probably use the Calm + Heal Balm at night but I'm using it first thing when I wake up in the morning. I'd say I don't use it before I'm going to sweat—I use the Hydrogel Cream ($20) instead—but other than that, if I'm just going to go and have meetings all day? I'll wake up, I'll do the Prime + Perfect Mask ($20) that wakes my face up in the morning, throw that on my face, brush my teeth, grab some coffee, take it off, and then I do a nice, thick layer of Calm + Heal Balm pressed into my face. It just gives my face what it needs, especially as it's so cold and raining and the weather is all over the place right now.
What are five things (can be anything at all!) that's bringing you joy right now?
I have a crystal grid, and I actually have a crystal garland above my bed from Ariana Ost. And then I have a little setup in my portable office that's in my closet [LAUGHS] and having those crystals feel really comforting. You can kind of meditate on the crystals because they all sort of represent different things and regardless of whether you really believe it or not, it just reminds me to take time to breathe. I like to hold a crystal and take some breaths—that immediately helps.
I have plants that I've gotten. There's this place called The Sill, you can order online and they have a couple locations. I think they're just great: I have plants in my shower, I have them on my kitchen table, in my portable office—it's like, I turned a bar cart into a desk and out stuff on it—so I have so many things on there. That brings me joy!
I picked up making weird things, like macrame wall hangings. I'll do that while I'm on meetings. My heating pad when it's cold also [LAUGHS]. I'll put it in bed with me or in my chair while I'm in meetings—that definitely brings me some joy. And binging shows with my kids. Right now, we're watching All American so that's fun. We can watch that together with Cash [Warren, husband].
So many of your makeup products, like the Vibeliner eyeliners, are so colorful. Do you have a makeup look (if any) that makes you feel most like yourself?
Honor [my daughter] was partially an inspo for me with the Vibeliners ($13). She's getting to the age like, "I'm in middle school, mom, when can I wear makeup?" And I'm like "Weeeell, you know...." But I told her when I was 12 in seventh grade, I wore eyeliner—and I told her I wore lipliner but it wasn't cute [LAUGHS]. She was like, "Yeah, I don't want to look like I'm doing the most!" [LAUGHS AGAIN]. And she said, "I don't really want to wear mascara because I don't want to look like I'm really wearing mascara," but she's into defining her eyes. So I was like, if you do a little shadow or a little liner on your lash line, especially the bottom, it give you a little vibe. So that was one of the things that inspired me.
We have this really cute bronzy color and a gold color, they're called Harmony and Divine, and those are nice because they give you a little bit of shimmer and glimmer but it's not too much. And I think as everyone is wearing masks, it's nice to do a five-minute face and if you don't want to put on a full face, you can just do a little under-eye, curl your lashes, and put on that little bit of Vibeliner. I put it on my lash line on the bottom and halfway through my lash line on my upper lid and buff it out. And Honor does the same thing—I'm inspired by my 12-year-old!
Say you're having a self-care day. How do you like to pamper and take care of yourself?
Well, I do it with my kids usually because everything's a family affair during COVID. I run a bath, and I actually have a mini bath for the baby and he'll go in the bath next to me. Our bath is inside of our shower so it's kind of like a wet room, so he'll have his bubbles and his toys and I'll put Peppa Pig on propped up on a footstool so he can watch Peppa. I'll put a charcoal mask on my face.
I like to make body scrubs so I'll scrub and sit in the bath and he'll sit in his little bath. He likes to put the mud mask on my face, too! [LAUGHS] Honor sometimes even jumps in. I'll put a deep conditioner on my hair and then when I get out, I do like to double-mask sometimes. I'll do the Prime + Perfect mask when I'm out and oil up my body. I'll do my nails, scrub my lips, and do like a full-body exfoliation and then hydrate everything all up.