A typical Instagram DM exchange between my friend Grace and myself is sending each other recent posts by NYC Blonde. “How is she so fabulous?” is the next part of that exchange.
I discovered NYC Blonde during my summer interning in PR in New York City in 2013, when her face was still veiled in mystery. Who was this anonymous, witty blond bombshell?! I was looking for cool NYC girls to follow, when stumbled upon her account. She was everything I wanted to embody – chic, funny, carefree. She’s a 10/10 on content on her Instagram and Twitter, thus making her a prestigious must follow. I became such a fan, that I even purchased her phone case (please see photo below for reference). Her style, humor, travels, and wit were what initially made me a fan of her’s, but her insight, honesty and attitude really solidified it for me. I’ve continued to be a loyal follower, when one day I did what any fangirl does: I slid into her DMs and asked if I could interview her for my FemFocused series.
We FaceTimed at 7:00 PM, the moment the claps and cheers for healthcare workers began in New York City. Here she was, in the flesh (well, in the FaceTime, I suppose)! It didn’t take me long to begin confessing that I had been a longtime fan of her’s.
They say don’t meet your heroes, but I’ll dispel that saying right now. Enjoy my interview with the one, the only, NYC Blonde.
PPB: Welcome! How is your quarantine going?
NYCB: I’ve gotten into the swing of it! I’ve been buying plants, please purify my oxygen. I’m trying to keep a positive attitude about it all. In New York it’s so ingrained in us to be social, and I think we’ll try to get back to that quickly when this is over. People will be hungry for that connection. And that’s why the Internet’s great, it keeps people connected.
PPB: I feel that. If I do nothing all day and I’m beating myself up over it, and I see someone else sharing that they did nothing on social media, I feel better about myself.
NYCB: I totally get that. It’s so funny, I have such a different relationship with the Internet than most people might. I have more of those feelings of comparativeness, where I see others achieving so much, whether someone started an awesome blog or just bought a house, and I feel like I compare myself more to that. But we put our good parts of our lives on the Internet, we all put it through a filter.
PPB: We absolutely do.
PPB: You’ve mastered the art of self-love. I feel like you are an online personality who is actually real and authentic about self-love online, which is what I appreciate about you. It feels like others put it out there just for the sake of social media. Would you be open to talking about your journey to self-love?
NYCB: It’s funny, I think there are certain things that happen in your life that unknowingly shape you. People have asked me before, “How did you get so confident?”.
You and I probably had similar middle school experiences – you know, Old Navy graphic-tees and watching Bring It On, all pre-social media. So I wasn’t the cutest kid, I’m very cool with that, but people started liking me because they thought I was funny, and I clung to that. I was even voted class-clown in high school. I learned that it didn’t matter what I looked like – if I could make people laugh, nobody cared. I think I used that in my early life to understand that I had to show people that I loved myself, in order for the world to say, “Ok I love you, too.”
I think people often feel like “everyone’s judging me,” or comparing us to whatever standards are out in the world that society and social media has put on us, without thinking, “If I don’t love myself and show the world that I respect and value myself, how will the world give me the same respect?”. I think I’ve always taken on an approach of treat yourself the way you want people to treat you.
Even when you’re talking to friends. My friends have told me many times, “You’re guilty of giving out good advice and uplifting people, and then not doing the same for yourself.” I think we all get stuck in ruts, but it’s so important to remember that we’re not looked under a microscope like we think we are. We’re all just trying to get through this crazy life together unscathed, and it would be great if, especially us as women, could uplift each other and support us in getting to that goddamn finish line.
PPB: I love what you said about us not being under a microscope like we think we are. I think that we think that people analyze our every move, but no one is.
NYCB: And if they are, let them drink that haterade.
Dating, relationships, and the relationship with yourself
PPB: I’m in a relationship, but when I was single and not feeling great about myself, your account was a great resource for me to feel more confident about myself, and to not put my worth into another person. How do you find confidence within yourself when it comes to love and dating? It’s so easy for so many of us to fall into that trap of seeking validation some someone else.
NYCB: Growing up being the funny person, I became a friend to the guys. I was the one they would come to for girl advice. I learned how to be independent, and I’ve always been that way since a little kid. I’ve always been really comfortable on my own, and I think this dovetails into my last answer: you have to love yourself. You’re not a half of a person waiting for the other half to complete you, you’re already a whole person. I think it’s about loving yourself and feeling enriched in your life.
My girlfriends are a huge part of my life. Even though many of them are in relationships, we make time for each other and allow each other to thrive and uplift each other. I think that’s so important. I have really incredible women in my life.
And at the same time, I give myself credit. We’ve all had our heart broken, and it’s how we choose to bounce back from that. I’ve left every relationship I’ve had like, “You know what, screw him, I can recognize maybe I didn’t do everything right, but at the same time he also didn’t recognize my worth.” I almost have to rationalize and compartmentalize with myself – I have to remember when I wonder “Why he didn’t want to be with me?”, that I didn’t want to be with him either. You didn’t think he was your husband to-be and he wasn’t your “person” , so why are you letting him have all that power over you? When you show that person how much worth you give yourself, they tend to come right back around, because they realize how much you love yourself.
PPB: Your three go-to beauty items you can’t live without?
NYCBlonde: My NuFace*. I also love the Charlotte Tilbury Multi-Miracle Glow Mask, I wear it every single night. I tried it once and bought it five more times, it makes me feel so hydrated in the morning. I’ve only tried this product once, but I’m shook about how much I loved it. It’s called Face Pilates from Peach and Lily.
*I recently purchased a NuFace per her recommendation and it is indeed amazing.
The people want more!
PPB: CAN YOU PLEASE START A PODCAST. If not, is there new content or projects we could expect to see from NYC Blonde?
NYCB: Something exciting might be on the horizon soon 😉 Stay tuned.
My biggest thing is to support the women in your life. We’re all trying to get through and achieve amazing things. And love yourself! <3
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