Jennifer Garner shares her philosophy on glamming it up and finding time for herself
You’re an actress, a founder of an organic-baby-food company, a part-time farmer, a mom of three— how do you find time for it all?
If you want time, you have to get it before your kids wake up, and that’s early. The older I get, the more I realize how much agency I have over my own time. If I work really hard, I can make things happen. Working out is a huge stress relief for me. I’ve trained with Valerie Waters and Body by Simone’s Simone De La Rue for years. For the [action movie] Peppermint, we amped it up and added boxing, which, it turned out, I love. But I cannot pass up string cheese and a bowl of corn chips.
Your Instagram account has really taken on a life of its own. You’re wiping fake blood off your body one day then chasing chickens on your farm the next.
It’s a peek into the dumb, silly, ridiculous inner workings of my dumb, silly, ridiculous life. It’s actually been a lot more fun than I ever imagined it would be. And it’s a lot of work because it’s all me. Nobody writes my captions or anything like that. But my assistant does the editing, all the technical stuff—i don’t know how to do that.
The video you posted demonstrating Reese Witherspoon’s hot-roller technique from her book, Whiskey in a Teacup, went viral. Was that the first time you hot-rollered your hair?
That was a lot of fun. I just got her book and was so excited and thought, “OK, I have a half hour. What am I going to do?” That’s how everything is: “Let’s make a pretend cooking show!” But no, that was not the first time I hot-rollered my hair. I grew up onstage.
So you like sitting in the hair and makeup chair?
I can’t say I’m that impressive as a partner or collaborator. I’ve worked with the same people, like my hairstylist, Adir [Abergel], forever. My main note to anyone getting me ready is, “I’m not the one. I’m not your muse.” It’s very easy for me to feel as if I’m in costume, and I just ... I just can’t do it.
What’s the wildest thing you’ve ever done in the name of beauty?
Um, I’m not someone you’re going to see getting a “vampire facial.” I understand the allure of it, and I’m sure people are seeing results, but it doesn’t make sense to me to mess with your blood and all that. I’m a little cautious in that way. But I do like a face roller; I’ll use one occasionally if I have something to go to.
So your bathroom isn’t full of high-tech gadgets, contour kits, and lipstick tubes?
You might see a lot of lipsticks, but they’re all exactly the same shade!
You played a women’s-magazine editor in your movie 13 Going on 30. If you were an editor in real life, what question would you ask Jennifer Garner?
I would want to ask questions that you’ve been told not to ask. [ laughs] That’s what I would want to do.
“I’m not someone you’re going to see getting a ‘vampire facial.’ ”
JENNIFER’S MUST-HAVES Neutrogena Moisture Smooth Color Stick in Rich Raisin, $10; cvs.com. Neutrogena Rapid Wrinkle Repair Retinol Oil, $28; neutrogena .com. Refa Carat Face, $220; refausa.com. “All my hair and makeup buddies tell me they keep these [pouches] in their bag. They’ll have a purée between jobs. It makes me laugh because I’m like, ‘Guys, this is baby food!’ ” Once upon a Farm Mama Bear Blueberry, $3; once uponafarm organics .com.