Paige DeSorbo’s Favorite Mental Health Moments Take Place in the Shower

Getty / Craig Barritt

Paige DeSorbo is my best friend – she just technically doesn’t know it. She’s the friend I turn to (via social media) for outfit inspo, beauty tips, and whenever I need a good laugh. Her “Giggly Squad” podcast, which she hosts with her (actual) bestie, comedian Hannah Berner, got me through hundreds of miles of marathon training last year, and I watched her entire five-season stint on “Summer House” over the course of a week when I had COVID. In a weird and somewhat surprising way, her work has become an important part of my mental healthcare routine. Listening to her and Berner talk about life makes my #hotgirlwalks feel that much more restorative, and knowing that an actual celebrity is dealing with a whole lot of the same shit I am makes me feel less alone.

A quick scroll through DeSorbo’s internet presence confirms I’m not the only one she’s had this effect on. Her inherent best friend qualities have made her the sort of It girl who feels genuinely authentic, and her particular brand of relatable comedy (coupled with her affordable shopping tips) has earned her more than two million followers across TikTok and Instagram. On her podcast, she’s opened up about her experience with depression, the pressures associated with being in a very public relationship (with “Southern Charm” star Craig Conover, who she’s been dating since 2021), and how impossibly hard adulting can be to navigate with humor and very few holds barred. But though she may laugh her way through it all alongside her audience, that doesn’t mean it’s always easy – which is why taking time for herself is a top priority.

“From a very young age, I was girly in that I was passionate about pampering,” DeSorbo tells PS. “I loved skin care and getting my hair done and painting my nails.” But now, “Beauty has become so much more of a mental health moment for me than it is something vain.”

While getting professionally glammed has become a fairly regular fixture in DeSorbo’s life (“I feel like Kourtney Kardashian – I literally can’t get glam anymore,” she says), it’s the solo moments she spends on her beauty routine that really make a difference in her well-being. “For me, a Sunday-night shower is a whole therapy session,” she says. “I love hair oiling my hair once a week, so I do that on Sundays, and I do my exfoliating and a full shave of my legs because [to me] that’s self-love. It’s such a great way to reset because you’re by yourself and not speaking to anyone and doing things to your own body, so you can really be in your own head and get very in touch with your body and mind.”

She’s onto something here: studies have shown that showering can positively impact your mood, stress, and fatigue, and spending time mindfully caring for your skin can double as a meditative practice. “You can literally go stand in the shower for an hour and basically do nothing and still get a mental boost,” DeSorbo says.

For her, setting the scene is critical to making the most out of these mental health moments. “Instead of listening to music, I’ll put on the Calm app and listen to a guided meditation while I’m showering, or I’ll go on Spotify and play spa sounds that make me feel like I’m in an actual spa,” she says. “And when I’m in the shower, I prefer to use fragrance-free products – like the Nécessaire Body Wash – so that whatever I’m putting on when I get out is the more prominent smell.”

Speaking of smell, DeSorbo doesn’t mess around in that arena. “One summer, I was all about detoxing my armpits – every single night I would put this detox stuff on and try to use a deodorant that wouldn’t make me smell, but after a few weeks, Hannah [Berner] was like, ‘This is enough, you have to go back to real deodorant,'” she says. Thankfully, her quest to find a healthier product that actually works is now over thanks to the launch of the Dove VitaminCare+ Deodorant Stick ($13).

She and Berner have partnered with Dove to destigmatize sweating and BO – two things that everyone, even internet It girls, deal with. “Sweat has always been a part of our friendship – within the first few weeks of meeting each other, Hannah had a tight shirt on and there was a ring of sweat around her belly button, and we laughed so hard that the moment is burned into my brain because it was really when our relationship started to blossom,” DeSorbo says. “And I was constantly trying to use a natural deodorant, but I still smelled.” Recently, she’s been layering the VitaminCare+ after her reset showers (she loves all six of the scents, but Cucumber & Melon is her favorite), and she confirms the aluminum-free deodorant holds up against even the stinkiest stress sweat.

In the few glorious minutes I spent living out my BFF dreams with DeSorbo, my biggest takeaway was how seriously – and unapologetically – she takes her well-being. Her dedication to prioritizing herself, even in the midst of her endless hustle, is something we can all learn from. “It’s not like I’m just putting all of these expensive creams on my face or just making sure I look good,” she says. “I take [my beauty routine] as such a time of self-reflection.”

As Desorbo has shown us, self-care isn’t selfish, it’s critical.

Zoë Weiner is a freelance beauty and wellness writer. Her work has appeared in Bustle, Byrdie, Cosmopolitan, POPSUGAR, GQ, Glamour, Marie Claire, Allure, Self, Brides, and Teen Vogue, among others, and she was the senior beauty editor at Well+Good.

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