Actress Stephanie Szostak on Body (and Chest) Confidence
‘Satisfaction’ actress Stephanie Szostak started her career in Chanel’s beauty department. (Photo: Tina Turnbow)
Satisfaction actress Stephanie Szostak knows a lot about beauty. After all, she started her career working for Chanel’s beauty department. When she switched up her career and became an actress, she still retained her passion for all things beauty. The 44-year-old actress who has appeared in The Devil Wears Prada, Iron Man 3 and Dinner for Schmucks is a huge advocate of having a positive body image – and she’s unafraid to celebrate her small(er) chest in an industry that doesn’t always share the same sentiment. Before her show’s return to USA Network on Oct. 16th, Szostak shared her advice for teenage girls, her history of dealing with tough bosses and where she first learned about beauty.
Yahoo Beauty: You’re a big advocate of body confidence, where does your self-assurance come from?
Stephanie Szostak: I think all the body image talk we have recently is fantastic; about embracing who we are as people. There are many different body types. With that said, I have very small boobs. I’m a cup size A. There is really no talk about it out there, boob image if you will. I grew up with very small boobs. It was super uncomfortable with the guys, but also the girls. Everybody sort of made fun. I learned early to make fun of my small boobs. In Hollywood, I always wear padded bras on set. We even wear those sticky things that we add on. Eventually, as I grew older, I realized my boobs are great. They’re sexy, too. Did I ever wish to have bigger boobs? Of course. But I’m glad I didn’t.
What’s your advice for people who are looking to be more confident regarding their small chests?
For young girls now, I just want to tell them that everything you see in the movies – they’re not real. There are a lot of girls who have A-cup size and are super sexy. I wish I could speak to the young teenage girls and say, “I wanted to have a little bit bigger boobs at one point, but hang in there and embrace what you have!” Ultimately, that’s what’s sexy about anything; just to be comfortable in your own skin. That attitude is what’s beautiful.
At 44, what are your beauty secrets? How have they evolved over the years?
There are definitely beauty routines that I think help all of us. Using sunscreen and moisturizers, and cleaning your skin well. For me, over the years, I realize that feeling good is the most important thing. The aesthetic is not that important. If you feel good, then you’re going to be happy with whatever you have.
What makes you feel good?
Feeling good comes from sleeping. I try to get a minimum of 8 hours; 8 to 9 is the best for me. Also eating well, but listening to my body. If I do want to have a bowl of pasta or some ice cream or profiteroles, I’ll splurge. I also started meditating three years ago.
Have you learned any tips or tricks from the on-set glam squads?
So many! How to tame my hair by putting oil in it. It’s very coarse and frizzy. Blush on the corners of my eyelids. It gives you a pop.
What was your first introduction to beauty at a young age?
My mom’s French. My dad’s American. My mom really took care of herself and always had minimal makeup on. Not much, but always a little bit. All the women; my mom, my grandmother, made themselves up just to enhance what was already there. Nobody wore foundation or had a lot of makeup. It was a celebration of their own individuality and who they were as women – their personality, too. My first introduction to beauty was a natural approach.
Are there products you love?
Terracotta by Guerlain makeup. I love Caudalie skincare and Murad. I was introduced to the products when I worked on Satisfaction.
Speaking of your TV show Satisfaction, what, in life, keeps you satisfied?
A sense of balance, being with my family and feeling fulfilled in my personal life and my professional life. Laughing.
Your character felt underappreciated by her husband. When was the last time you felt under appreciated and how did you combat that feeling?
One of the advantages of getting older is you sort of take a step back when you have those feelings and you realize, “What does that really mean?” I’m in control of how I feel, no matter how anybody else is doing. It’s easier said than done. You can’t assume that the other person is doing it to make you feel one way or another.
You were in The Devil Wears Prada – have you ever had a demanding boss? What happened?
My first acting teacher was so mean, but she was fantastic, and I loved her. I still hear her voice sometimes when I work. The first scene I ever got in front of the class and did, she said, “Stop! Stop right now…” to my scene partner, “I certainly don’t believe a word you’re saying! Why are you smiling? Do you think this is funny? Why are you fidgeting?” It was so I understood what it was to be honest and not pretend.
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