Interviewed by Nick Axelrod
December 20, 2018

The New York Times Magazine and Vogue writer on treating her body like a baby, $30 massages, and working out while lying down.


What do you love to do?

Sleep, walk, talk, watch, and read.

What do you do for a living?

I write for The New York Times Magazine, Vogue, and some other places.

How do you practice self-care on a daily basis?

I sleep eight hours. I make sure to have at least one home-cooked meal a day. I stare out the window a lot to remember how little everything matters.

Describe how you take care of your body.

I try to pay attention. If my body needs moisture, rest, movement, juice, red meat, coffee, love, or sleep, I feed it. I think of my body like a whiny two-year-old and my job is to give in.

What is your dream "me time" scenario?

Spending a montha year?in one of those European sanatorium-like spas where all I do is sit in five different kinds of saunas, pad around in slippers, get daily massages and talk therapy, and am fed various elixirs and on-demand healthy meals by a woman named Helga.

What is your real "me time" scenario?

Going to a fancy market, buying food like money is no object, and watching When Harry Met Sally or any Paul Mazursky movie in stolen hotel robes consuming said food. Sometimes I throw in a $30 Thai massage.

What is the best 'life hack' you've discovered?

They’re all too simultaneously effective and shameful to share in public.

What is your biggest weekly indulgence?

Pilates and therapy.

What is your biggest weekly sacrifice?

The two hours I spend in LA traffic to see my shrink in Brentwood.

What does 'balance' look like for you? How do you find balance?

I don’t answer emails after 6pm.

What is absolutely necessary to you?


Best self-care tip:

Do nice things for people you love.

Best nutrition tip:

Eat what your body tells you.

Best fitness tip:

Pilates. You get to work out laying down!

Best beauty tip:

There’s almost no aesthetic/functional reason for brushing hair.

Find Irina on Instagram @irina_aleks.

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