If ever you need to see sheer willpower in action, get familiar with Massy Arias. According to an interview with Cosmopolitan, the Dominican beauty (formerly known as “Mankofit”) could barely do three push-ups when she jump-started a workout routine back in 2012. Today, her journey as a certified personal trainer, health coach, and author is followed by more than 2.5 million Instagram followers (including us) who look to her for the kind of fitspo that’s challenging but actually approachable. In short: She’s that friend in your head who’ll motivate you to at least go for a walk when you’re vegging out, scrolling the ‘Gram, or doing pretty much anything to avoid a workout.
And beyond her obvious expertise as a fitness expert, the wife and mother has also morphed into an all-around lifestyle star, thanks to partnerships with Target and Covergirl. Today, you’ll be hard-pressed to see Arias on the move without her adorable daughter Indi and husband Stefan Williams, which begs the question: When exactly does she take a break? In a recent conversation with her, we learned that when it’s your job to teach self-care, it’s easy to forget that you need it, too. Ahead, Arias—in her own words—gives us a small peek into all of the things that have helped her to prioritize self-care in the midst of a lifestyle that rarely affords her time to slow down.
Putting Self-Care First
As women, we tend to play all these roles for people and sometimes we can forget about ourselves, especially if you’re a mom. Self-care means being a little selfish so that you can feel the best version of yourself and you can translate that to people and to your work. To be quite honest, I go, go, go all the time. There’s not a point where I sit down. The past couple of months have been eye-opening for me because when you’re not your best, how can you be your best for others? I’ve really been taking care of myself and understanding that if I’m not relaxed—if I don’t pay attention to my skin and hair—then I’m not going to have the confidence to transmit that in everything I do. So it’s something that I’m working on and been learning.
Self-care means being a little selfish so that you can feel the best version of yourself and you can translate that to people.
As a mom and an entrepeneur, it’s hard to stop and be selfish. I have to put it into my schedule and remember things. There’s so many things that come our way every single day, that if you don’t schedule it, you won’t make the time. And my life now, from the moment I get up to the moment I go to bed, is like clockwork. Things change, but once a week, I schedule time to get my nails done, to do my conditioning on my hair, make sure that I wax. I’m not going to say I take an entire day, but I schedule these things so that I’m 100 percent my best self.
It’s a matter of how I’m feeling. If I look at my schedule, and there’s a million and one things that I’m doing, and I’m working really, really hard, I need to pamper myself. I really do feel like women—we need to feel pampered and treated. I’m not doing it every single week, but once a month, if I do feel like doing it, I do have favorite spas locally that I go to. If I have a very limited time and a tough schedule, I have a team that comes to my house.
I actually use eyebrow pencil to outline my lips, and it’s sort of become a signature look.
As parents, we try to find balance. So, as a couple, you have to spend time. And as a family, you have to spend time. And as individuals, we have to spend time. So if I need a massage, Stefan [Williams] is with the baby. If he needs to destress and go bowling, I will have the baby. We really try to respect each other as individuals.
I don’t leave the house without mascara on. My lashes are always on point because that makes me feel womanly. I really love to enhance certain features of my face. The entire line of CoverGirl is what I’m using right now. The new Flourish by Lash Blast mascara is my go-to now. It used to be the Peacock Flare Mascara. I also do this thing where I outline my lips so that they look more sultry. I actually use eyebrow pencil to outline my lips and it’s sort of become a signature look. I love my nude lips because I do feel like my body is very loud. My tattoos are very loud. So I really like to keep things simple because my skin is at a great point right now, so I don’t try to do too much. I use a lot of coconut oil on my skin. I use jojoba oil to remove my makeup and black soap. I try not to wear too much makeup, even when I work out. But there are times like if I look too tired, I put a little concealer underneath my eyes—the Vitalist Healthy Elixir Foundation. I use it as a tinted moisturizer. 755 is the color that I use.
I try to be organic with everything I do. I think food is medicine.
Now that my hair is natural, once a week, I’m like, ‘Hey, Massy, make time for your wash-and-go.’ I try to be organic with everything I do. I think food is medicine. On my wash day, I pre-poo with coconut oil and honey. I lather and wrap it overnight. Right now, I’m loving Camille Rose Naturals. They have a honey leave-in and the actual gel. It’s time-consuming, but I finger coil it, then either air-dry or diffuse it. Separate the curl,s and it can last four days. Obviously, if I sweat, it just puffs. I sleep on a silk pillowcase. Sometimes I put on a silk wrap and just revive the curls.
I love cheesecake. I love cookie dough. Cookie dough energy balls are my indulgence. It is incredible. It’s like heaven in your mouth. I also try to find ways to make things healthier, so that i can keep indulging, so it doesn’t show in my skin or make me feel sluggish.