Jasmine Sanders may look untouchable on social media (where 3 million Instagram followers know her as Golden Barbie), but spend all of two minutes with the model and that Hollywood-flecked, jet-setting model veneer slips away faster than you can tag a #yachtlfe pic on Instagram.
When we sat down with Sanders at L.A.’s Figueroa Hotel to celebrate the launch of Smashbox Cover Shot Palettes Collection (for which she is the face), the model flipped what was to be a 10-minute chat into a totally unguarded 40-minute hang, in which she shared the kind of things a BFF would.
Among them, a custom highlighter recipe (which somehow, doesn’t require actual highlighter at all), favorite essential oil blends (which she’ll dig from her bag and insist you try for yourself) and how she rebels on social media. Whether it’s storying less-than-perfect shots on Instagram or delighting in a show in which people spectacularly fail, the model shows why she’s the Barbie we’ve needed all along.
Golden Barbie vs. Jasmine
Golden Barbie and me in my personal life aren’t far off. They’re pretty much the same person because I don’t like to not show you behind the scenes. I would never want to be two different people. Because what also works is being human and normal and like every other girl.
There’s no fun in being perfect online and literally being like, ‘Oh my God, I can’t go to the grocery store without putting makeup on.’ I never want to be that person. I really applaud when any of my friends post pictures without makeup, and I try to do it more. I used to do no-makeup Mondays, and it started being a thing, and I was like, ‘I like this because people don’t have to hide behind makeup.’ And I love makeup—do not get me wrong, it’s been my heartbeat for so long. But everybody can’t look like that perfect Facetuned version every day.
I try to take time to look at nature or smell the flowers for a second—just taking each moment in.
Learning to Unplug
My new journey is taking time to care for yourself—even if it’s 10 minutes to 30 minutes of trying to stay off the phone for an hour the first thing when you wake up in the morning. I know that’s what I should be doing, but then I get on Instagram, so it’s about taking that moment of not thinking you need to be connected to a device all day. Instead, I try to take time to look at nature or smell the flowers for a second—just taking each moment in. We’re all addicted to our phones and devices and YouTube, and everywhere you look someone’s documenting something. There’s never a moment someone is not on a camera. I feel like everybody needs that second to take a beat whether it’s just with your dogs or going out to look at the trees.
The other thing is if you feel like it’s a crazy weekend, and you know you can’t be off your phone the entire time, put your phone up. The hardest test is not taking it to dinner. Of course, my excuse is I need the GPS to get in the car (that’s my excuse for everything. I need my GPS—I can’t get there without it.) So take it in the car, but leave it in the glove compartment. Go in and see if you can really have that time [away from your phone].
The Upside of Rebellion
When it comes to [engaging with] social media, I know what’s the best for my page and what gets the most likes. But there are times when I look at my page and I’m like, ‘You know what? I’m tired of being cookie-cutter perfect for everyone. I want to post what I want. As crazy as that sounds, I want to post a view without me in it. As normal and as instant a photo that is, it’s not the ones that gets me the most likes on my page. But if there are 3 million people who are on my page and they want to see what I’m up to and all that stuff, I’m like, ‘Well, guess what, this is what you’re going to see, this is what I’m going to post right now.’ So I have those moments of me being in what to my eyes is rebellious against what Golden Barbie is on the Internet.
But then there are times, like recently, when I was really close to 3 million followers, and I’m like, I really want to hit it, so I start thinking, What should I be posting? I know what to post and what people want to see from like work to whatever it is. I know the types of things that keep the attention.
I don’t think there’s ever been a moment when glitter hasn’t made anything prettier or made me feel happier.
Taking in the View
I looked at my boyfriend maybe a month ago, and I was like, ‘Baby, you know we never come out on the balcony?’ I took a photo on my Insta Stories, and he was like, ‘Oh my God, that’s so gorgeous, where was that?’ I was like “IT’S ON OUR BALCONY, HONEY! That’s our sunset from our balcony!’ And he goes, ’maybe we should get little chairs to put out there to sit and relax.’
When I’m going through crazy times, I just need nature, especially water. If I get upset about something or need a beat, find me at the beach or pool. I feel like people just need their place that’s disconnected from everything. Sometimes I’m like, ‘Let’s just have a weekend of us not being on our phones. Let’s go to Laguna Beach and just not be on our phones the whole time.’ And you know what? We do it.
Makeup = Confidence Booster
I do think makeup can be used as a confidence booster. Whether you feel like you need makeup or you don’t, it makes you feel good. I don’t think there’s ever been a moment when glitter hasn’t made anything prettier or made me feel happier.
I love that there’s a ton of glitter in the Smashbox Cover Shot Palettes Collection—a lot of glitter and a lot of gold. The pigments are insane. If you’re really good at blending, you can use a touch of these shadows as highlight. One of my favorites from the set is a shade called Tarot-fy from the Prism Cover Shot Eye Palette: It appears as silver, but it has little bits in it. I just play with them. The other thing I like to do for a highlight is layering the Rising Sign shade from the Prism palette with one from the Pinks + Palms Cover Shot Eye Palette: WTFuchsia, a pinkish tone—it gives you that iridescence.
If I’m getting out of the shower, it’s kind of nice to hear a bird chirping every now and then, you know?
Self-Care at Home
As far as other ways I take care of myself, I love the sound apps that give you peaceful sounds before you go to bed. It may sound like a weird thing, but I like those just for playing in the house or in my room to relax. If I’m getting out of the shower, it’s kind of nice to hear a bird chirping every now and then, you know?
When I’m chilling, I’m watching Homeland with my boyfriend Terrence (Jenkins, actor and presenter) or Nailed It! with my best friend Philip. They’ll bring out a three-layer cake on the show and tell the contestants to make it — and when they do it’s falling apart and the most ridiculous thing you’ve ever seen.
My nightstand is covered with essential oils, crystals and candles that I love. The Diptyque Roses Scented Candle is everything, and I love the Diptyque Baies Scented Candle—I tend to go for the ones that are very calming. If we’re talking essential oils, I definitely want a lavender thing around me at some point.
There’s an essential oil blend that I put on my temples and behind my neck called Doterra doTERRA Peace Touch Blend. I also use peppermint essential oil to help me wake up and get my day started. I’m obsessed with rosewater. I love Jurlique Rosewater Balancing Mist because that scent is my god; it’s like heaven! I have a lot of anxiety and panic attacks, so it’s just about finding something that keeps me calm.
My favorite comfort food meal is pasta—if we’re getting very specific, the spaghetti with tomato and basil from the Bvlgari Hotel in Milan. Another comfort meal that makes me feel really good, and I don’t feel too fat after it is still my mom’s Southern Sunday dinner of mac and cheese, greens, and fried chicken. You’ll feel stuffed, but then you’re oddly energized later after your 20-minute nap. It’s heaven.
In our series “Operation Recharge,” we task celebrities and influencers with sharing what self-care means to them, as well as the activities, products and treatments they indulge in for downtime done right.