This month Sarah Drew, currently starring as Dr. April Kepner on ABC’s award-winning series “Grey’s Anatomy”, is sharing her thoughts with us on skin care, makeup and much more. In addition to Sarah’s first TV role, a two-year stint on the popular WB series, “Everwood”, she had numerous guest-starring roles before joining the cast of “Grey’s Anatomy”. Sarah appeared as Kitty, Sal Romano’s wife, in four episodes of the acclaimed series “Mad Men”, along with appearances on “Medium”, “Glee”, and many more. Sarah also has a solid list of feature film credits including “Radio,” “American Pastime” and the upcoming romantic independent, “Tug”, opposite Sam Huntington and Haley Duff.
I happen to be a big fan of “Grey’s Anatomy”. Spoiler Alert: If you didn’t see the season finale of “Grey’s Anatomy” this week, Sarah’s character, Dr. Kepner, was named chief resident of Seattle Grace Hospital. If you’re a fan of the show, like me, I think we can count on next season being very interesting for Sarah’s character. I’m really looking forward to it!
Born and raised in Stony Brook, Long Island, Sarah knew that she was destined to act since the age of five when she performed in a school play. “Acting has always been a deeply rooted passion,” she explained, “and I was fortunate to have parents that supported me every step of the way.”
I recently had a chat with Sarah about skin care, makeup, “Grey’s Anatomy” and much more. Enjoy!
What are your favorite skin care products?
What I use on set (“Grey’s Anatomy”) which I really, really love and is amazing is a Dermalogica moisturizer. And Dermalogica also has a really good exfoliator that I’m in love with. We also use, on set, Clarins Beauty Flash Balm. It’s a daily moisturizer that’s really amazing for going under makeup. It ends up really kind of creating this luminescence. It’s pretty amazing. We also use Clarins Makeup Remover. So, that’s what we do on set and I love all of that stuff and think that my skin looks fabulous on the show so I’m definitely a big fan of that. What I have at home for when I take showers at night, when I do all of that stuff at night…I use this product called NaturaBisse. I’ve got neck cream, a face cream, and an eye cream. I use all of those. Every time I get out of the shower, I use those NaturaBisse products. For body I just use Jergens Body Lotion. I definitely am a big fan of lotion. I use a lot of lotion. But I just use the kind of cheap stuff for that.
So, this is now my all-time favorite base, it’s a Korean base, it’s called Koh Gen Do. I have two different shades of it that I mix with the Clarins Beauty Flash Balm. Or sometimes I use the Dermalogica moisturizer with it. I mix it all together, and that’s my base. And I’m camera ready with that base. I use MAC a lot. I like MAC blushes and I like their shadows and their pot paint. I really like their black eyeliner. My favorite pencils are Chanel. They have this smooth quality to them. It’s like putting butter on your lips. It’s amazing. And the colors last and it’s just great. The other thing is that I dress up vintage a lot. 20’s, 50’s, 60’s kind of thing. So I like to do bright red lips. And the best lips that I’ve found is L’Oreal’s Infallible Lip Color, and it’s the “Beyonce” color. I love it, it’s my favorite! And it stays on all night. It doesn’t matter what you eat, it doesn’t matter what you drink, that L’Oreal lip stain does not come off. You have to actually rub it off at the end of the night. I have a ton of vintage clothes and jewelry. I do my hair in that era all of the time. I just went to The Edison (in downtown Los Angeles) with girlfriends on Saturday night and we got completely dolled up, 1920’s. And we do that a lot. I have this one particular best friend, and the two of us have an obscene amount of vintage clothing. And we like to go to places that have an old timey feel and we just like to be the belle’s of the ball. When I went out on Saturday night, with my “Beyonce”, I also used my L’Oreal Lavender Smokes and Blackened Smokes. It’s great. It’s a little eye shadow quad that’s for smokey eyes and it has four colors of shadow in it. So there’s a Lavender one and a Blackened one, and I use both.
What’s your “must have” product?
My must have is actually lip balm, with no color. It’s called By Terry Rose Lip Balm. I think all of us use it on “Grey’s Anatomy”. We’re all completely obsessed with it. It has this insane smell. It smells like you’re rubbing rose butter on your lips. It’s so delicious. And Michelle, who does my makeup on the show, gave me a little container with a scoop of it in it. So I have that with me all the time. It’s like a little taste of luxury at any moment in the day, whether you’re wearing makeup or not.
What’s in your purse?
The By Terry Rose Lip Balm, at all times. I also keep Aveda Hand Relief in my purse. I love the Aveda Hand Relief. It is so luxurious and it doesn’t have too strong of a scent. I get really upset if I run out of it or I can’t find it. My hands get dry a lot. I use a ton of Aveda stuff. All of my hair products are from Aveda. I’m a total fan. I’m a member of their rewards program. I use their shampoo, their hairspray, and Be Curly. I love Aveda. I love their tea. I have their tea in my house right now. I love it, it’s so good. I actually am a huge Aveda fan. If this was a hair interview, it would be all about Aveda. Unless I’m at an event, I don’t have a lot of makeup in my purse. I don’t wear makeup ever unless I’m going out and getting dolled up for something specific, or I’m walking a red carpet, or I’m on set. A normal day for me…I don’t have a makeup routine/regime. I don’t wear a stitch of makeup, nothing, on any normal day of the week. My favorite hand sanitizer is Jao. It smells amazing. We have it on set and I’m always asking for it.
Do you have a favorite spa?
What’s funny is that I’ve, truly, never been to the same spa twice. I’m not really much of a spa girl. I have a guy who gives me massages if I need them. And my favorite is a deep tissue massage. I really like it when I’m getting like elbows jabbed into my back. I don’t like any of this “relaxing” and just grazing the skin. No! I don’t go to get a massage to relax, I go to get a massage to get out the kinks.
Something I just discovered…my Korean-American friend brought me to Wi Spa, which is a Korean Spa, and it was like a full on cultural experience. Totally relaxing! It’s got four floors and seven different types of sauna rooms (that part is co-ed). Then you can go to downstairs to the women’s only area, and you have to go naked, and there are different kinds of hot tubs and you can get body scrubs. They really scrub you down! That was a really, really cool experience.
Did you have a first makeup or skin care favorite when you were teenager?
I literally did not own a hair dryer or a set of makeup that wasn’t specifically for stage makeup until I got married. When I was 22 years old and starting to audition for movies, I had agents I met with that told me I needed to learn to do makeup and that I needed to get a hair dryer and learn to do my hair. I was a total tomboy growing up, and I have just become so girlie. Every day of college, I was wearing overalls and bandanas. I didn’t put on makeup or moisturizer. I didn’t even use conditioner. I just literally would take a three minute shower.
You don’t see a lot of Hollywood “beauty makeup” on “Grey’s Anatomy”. It’s more about the natural look on your show, less makeup. Must be right up your alley?
It is. But the funny thing is that I’ve worked in television and film for the last ten years, so I’ve been in a lot of makeup chairs and I’ve played a lot of roles. But I’ve never had the roles that require a lot of beauty makeup. So, to be honest, I feel more beautiful and more beautifully made up on “Grey’s” than I have on any other show I’ve ever been on. It’s totally subtle but I watch the show and see that I’ve never played a role where they’ve made me look this good.
Do you have any good skin care or makeup tips?
This one really just started while being on “Grey’s”. Michelle, my makeup artist, she’s amazing at putting in these little individual cluster eye lashes and I will say that it makes all the difference in the world. I think eye lashes just make your eyes pop in a way that they just can’t without them.
Tell me about your experience so far on “Grey’s Anatomy”.
It’s been amazing. It was all such a surprise, in a wonderful way. I came on to do two episodes and then went away and they brought me back and it’s just been good news ever since then (becoming a series regular). I’ve felt completely embraced by the community over there. I feel like part of the family, one hundred percent. I love the group of people that I get to work with and I love the story lines that they’ve been writing for me. And I’m having so much fun working with Peter McNichol. He’s such a brilliant actor and he’s so interesting and he’s surprising on set. He’s amazing. It’s exciting to have that energy on set.
How has your life changed since becoming a series regular on “Grey’s Anatomy”?
One big thing is the neurosis of being an actor has calmed down. I’m not constantly trying to get a job. So (she says with a chuckle) I will say that my anxiety has gone down since being on the show, because of that. There’s definitely a level of comfort being on a show that is as successful as “Grey’s. And it’s amazing how far-reaching the show is. For the most part, I live a pretty quiet life. I don’t go out all of the time. I have a lot of parties at my house and I love to host people. And that’s not changed. That’s been the same, before and after being on the show.
It was lovely having this chat with Sarah. I can’t wait to see what happens with her character on the next season of “Grey’s Anatomy”.