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The Wake Up

Alessandra Olanow

Brooklyn, NY

If you follow Alessandra’s instagram feed you get the feeling that she lives in a state of introspection fueled by Joy Division, scented candles and good coffee. As an illustrator she uses the medium to share her work. Her posts are clever and quiet featuring line drawings of a casual/cool woman and often her small daughter. The woman is drinking coffee or laying on the floor or reading a book (one of them is titled “Everything Is Going To Be OK. And Other Lies I Tell Myself”). The little girl is wrapped around her mother’s ankle while her mom applies lipstick or she’s peeling her mother’s eyelids open at 5:26am on a Saturday. The two of them seem to live this beautiful, sweet, symbiotic and quietly-hummed life without the intrusions of a farting dad or karate-kicking brother. Which, when you translate that to the bathroom, means no pee all over the seat and beard trimming on the floor… So without further delay…let’s check out Alessandra & Coco’s lovely Brooklyn bathroom…

How does your bathroom make you feel? And is there anything you would change about it?
I love my bathroom - it’s so light and spacious, it’s really a relaxing space for me. I would LOVE to have a clawfoot tub, but the fact that I can stretch-out in the one I’ve got is not bad.

Tell me what yours & Coco's morning bathroom routine is like? And what’s it like to share a bathroom with your four-year-old daughter?
Coco wakes up earlier than me and does her business before I’m even up! As a four-year-old her bathroom needs don’t really stretch beyond potty, teeth-brushing and bath, so I have plenty of time and space to myself in there. So far, so good in terms of sharing, but I doubt time is on my side.

You teach yoga and offer lovely illustrations to your instagram followers about self-love and forgiveness. Is there anything you do in terms of wellness that is nourishing and replenishing?
Where to begin? As I have gotten older I have become a huge advocate of slowing down. I've applied that sentiment to so many aspects of my life that fall into the nourish and replenish category. Taking time to make thoughtful meals and slowing down how quickly I eat them, meditation, less technology to give my brain a rest, long baths, long runs and long bike rides are a few. My body is my home, I want to take care of it.

Can we get real about body brushes? Do you use them? And if so, tell me why I need to get into them.
I do use my body brush. I have naturally dry skin, particularly in the winter. Brushing is a great way to get rid of some of the dead skin cells and wake up my skin. I either brush before I shower on dry skin, or sometimes I’ll brush post-shower with a little bit of body oil on my skin. So energizing!

Your medicine cabinet got me really excited. What was your favorite and most recent discovery?
Chanel Baume Essential This is a new addition, but I love it so much. It’s an illuminating balm that I use on my face giving my skin a natural glow. Instant gratification.

I love your plant! What kind is that? And do you have any care tips?
It’s a fig tree. It gets so much natural light which I know is crucial. I water it once a week, but I mist it like a maniac. And, I talk to my plant - can’t hurt, right?

What are your favorite go-to products?
I use the Kevyn Aucoin concealer and mix it with Elta MD Sunscreen on my hand to make a very light tinted moisturizer (a trick my makeup artist friend Talia taught me). It's such an easy way to even out my skin while getting sun protection at the same time, and offers me plenty of control. The AER deodorant is the only natural one I’ve personally found that actually works, plus I love the smell. My hair is wild - its not curly, it's not straight, and often has a mind of its own, this Sachajuan styling cream helps me keep it tame.

TMI Lightning Round:

deodorant: do you use? what kind? natural? heavy-duty?
Yes - Natural AER Palo Santo Blood Orange
toilet paper: eco or the plush stuff?
Plush stuff, some corners I can’t cut :(
Favorite toothbrush?
I switch it up, I don’t have a favorite one.
Favorite toothpaste?
toilet entertainment: phone, book, deep thoughts?
Deep thoughts
Candles, incencse, fabreze, light a match?
Palo Santo
what’s your shower view?
A window or a tile wall
bath or shower?
Both.
Anything from Canada that you can’t find here in the states?
Not of the bathroom but I love Coffee Crisps.
Towel preference: terry? turkish?
Aesthetically, Turkish. In reality, Terry.
Favorite hand soap?
Soap vehicle? loofah? wash cloth? our old friend the pouf?
what do people use these days? I use my hands, is that weird?
when you travel, what do you decant into 3 oz bottles and what do you just wing-ding while you’re away?
I never think to decant! I either have products that are small enough to bring or I bring a sample.
Favorite bathroom of all time?
Anything stand out from a hotel, friend’s house, movie etc…? I can’t think of a specific bathroom, but there is nothing like an outdoor shower in the summer. Yes, please!
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