Style

My Beauty Uniform: Samin Nosrat

Samin Nosrat beauty uniform

Samin Nosrat, the San Diego-born, Iranian-American chef, is one of the biggest stars on Netflix right now. Samin has been hailed as “America’s next great cooking teacher” by Alice Waters, and her best-selling book, Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat, is now the most streamable show on television. To know her isn’t just to love her, it’s to adore her. Here, Samin gives us a peek behind the curtain, including a life-changing thigh-chafe spray and the products that transformed her curly hair…

Samin Nosrat beauty uniform

How would you describe your relationship to beauty?

I never had a relationship to beauty until recently. I felt very inept at all things ‘girly and pretty’; I didn’t own a mascara until three years ago. My first pedicure was only a few years ago — and I’m 38! Growing up, I was unsure about my looks, and my defense mechanism became to reject caring about it all together. Then I grew up and I was like, well, I’m a cook; I have to be tough and that also meant not caring about looks. It was like, ‘I get a pass; cooks don’t do makeup. Cooks pull their hair back.’

Samin Nosrat beauty uniform

How much of your childhood played into this beauty reluctance?

On one hand, our Persian family culture was all about appearance. Perfect eyebrows. Shahs of Sunset. I grew up with my mother saying, ‘I’m going to save up to fix your nose and your chin.’ That was our culture; it was actually a gesture of love when she said that. My mom’s dream would have been my saying, ‘Teach me everything about makeup.’ But I felt if I was rejecting traditional femininity, then I had to stick to my guns. When in reality, I was just too embarrassed to turn around and ask about it.

Samin Nosrat beauty uniform

How has hair, makeup, all of it changed since you’ve had your Netflix show?

I still go to Sephora and I’m like YIKES. There are entire aisles that I feel like I don’t have permission to enter. But the show changed things for sure. I had to do an audition shoot, and they hired a makeup artist. (Remember, I am a person who didn’t own mascara until three years ago.) I loved this makeup artist. She said, ‘The first thing you need to learn is to take really good care of your skin. Invest all of your energy in your skin. If you don’t have good skin, you have nothing to work with.’ Before then I, maybe, washed my face, then did some oil or moisturizer. I didn’t know how soft my skin could be with an exfoliant! So, I went down the rabbit hole. I found out about The Ordinary. My friend Greta told me to get P50 Recherche. Check. Greta said to get Manuka Honey and rub it on your face. Check. She said to get Dr. Alkaitis face oil. Check. I bought a Clarisonic brush but retired it for a Konjac sponge — this one I learned not from Greta but from listening to Forever35 beauty podcast — a sentence I never thought I’d say.

Samin Nosrat beauty uniform

Can we talk about your beautiful hair?

Yes, please! My friend Greta Caruso and I went to Cuba in 2012 on a cultural exchange. Greta, who also has curly hair, brought so many hair products. I couldn’t believe my eyes! I had always been tortured by my curly hair, and Greta was like, ‘I won’t travel without my DevaCurl.’ I was intrigued. Greta then told me about dry hair cuts, etc. It was like I was finally liberated to be a person who spends money and invests in her hair — and it has been priceless.

What everyday products do you use?

To get the most out of my curly hair, the answer is Deva everything! Since curly hair is naturally dry, I do everything I can to preserve moisture, which includes washing my hair as infrequently as possible. When I do wash, I use Deva Curl No-Poo, rinse it out and detangle as I go, then get my hair as wet as possible again and work in gobs and gobs of One Condition, which I do not rinse out. Then, while my hair is still sopping wet, I work in Ultra Defining Gel and then use an old T-shirt to very, very carefully dry my hair. Since I usually wash at night, especially when I have an early call time, I’ll then wrap my hair in an Aquis drying turban. I also do my best to extend my curls between washes by using a little spritz of water and DevaCurl Super Cream to bring things back to life.

And dry cuts?
Now that I’ve had my hair cut dry, it makes SO MUCH SENSE — of course curls do best when they are cut dry, when the stylist can see what she is cutting! I can never go back to a wet cut!

Samin Nosrat beauty uniform

It’s refreshing how open you are about everything.

Oh, that’s nothing! Let’s talk about my hairiness. In my twenties, I found a laser place to get my mustache and chin hairs removed; and it totally backfired. Maybe it was hormonal changes, who knows, but suddenly I had even more wiry hairs on my chin. I went through phases like, ‘Screw the world, I’m not going to do anything about it!’ And then getting really upset about it.

Where did you land?

When I met the esthetician Carrie Lindsey, who I live for, and she said to try laser again; that now there are machines that actually work on different skin types. So, I went to someone who works only on black women. These hairs had been plaguing my chin forever and finally they were gone. I want to tell the Cup of Jo readers: Keep looking until you find somebody who works. My go-to spot in Oakland is The Skin Studio.

Samin Nosrat beauty uniform

Your smile makes everyone else smile. It’s contagious.

Here’s how I take care of my smile: I take my antidepressants and I try to sleep. Oh wait, you mean my teeth! Before the show, I was like I gotta whiten my teeth. I got the dentist version of Crest White Strips and they changed nothing. I was like, whatever.

Samin Nosrat beauty uniform

Any other products you’ve experimented with lately?

There’s Skin Slick spray. I chafe like hell in my thigh area. I enjoy wearing a dress now — because I’m enjoying my femininity. Sometimes I’ll walk 70 blocks a day in New York. And chafe-walking is the most painful walking. I’m clearly not embarrassed talking about things most people are embarrassed about, and I told everybody about my chafing situation. A friend said professional dancers use a special silicone spray. It’s also for triathletes to get their suits on more easily. It has changed my life.

Samin Nosrat beauty uniform

Now, a food question! What ingredients do you always have in your kitchen?
Okay, here’s the deal: I have been traveling so very much that I don’t get to cook as often as I would like. So, I make sure I always have a freezer full of frozen veggies and stock, a pantry filled with cans of beans, tons of grains and pastas and canned fish, and a fridge full of Parmesan and condiments. That way, when I get home from a long trip and I don’t have it in me to go out for groceries, I can always make a simple pasta with tuna and canned tomatoes and chili flakes, or some rice and dal, or sautéed frozen broccoli with garlic and chilies, or even just a can of black beans heated up with onion powder, hot sauce and cumin, topped with grated cheese and some cilantro from the garden.

Samin Nosrat beauty uniform

At the end of the day, do you think it matters? Feeling beautiful?

For me, I think feeling pretty is just one other dimension of feeling good about myself. So much of the work I do in therapy is assigning self-worth and believing that I have value. I can’t say with complete honesty that I look at myself and say, ‘I feel beautiful.’ Hopefully one day before I die I’ll be able to do that. I guess — because of great lighting — there are some scenes in the show where I say, ‘Wow, I look really pretty.’ And that’s not a thought I have ever had about myself. I’m still a little bit shocked by those feelings. So many of my struggles have been about my own preconceived notions of who I am — and every time I break a little barrier, that feels profound.

Samin Nosrat beauty uniform

Anything else you want to add?

That I finally found a favorite mascara — it’s that Glossier one.

Thank you so much, Samin. xoxo

P.S. More beauty uniforms, including Linda Rodin and Connie Wang.

(Top photo by Pamu. Porch photos by Talia Herman. Photo grating cheese by Cole Wilson. Pink and white apron photos by Adam Rose/Netflix. All other photos courtesy of Samin Noshrat.)

  1. Bárbara Bom Angelo says...

    i love her <3
    a bunch of kisses from brazil!

  2. Shannon Staton says...

    This morning I went to work and handed my coworker your book. As I was giving it to her I said, “I know I usually say – keep the book. Free up space in my library. But. . . ” She stopped me and said, “Don’t worry I’ll get it back to you soon!”
    Thank you for your wonderful book, incredible show and the light you bring to an often dark world.
    Your words, your actions, your being has made a difference to me, a complete stranger. Thank you.

  3. Kim says...

    This is my favorite beauty uniform to date by far. Samin is so genuine and vibrant. She simply glows. This was a very refreshing post. I can’t wait to (binge) watch her show and to read her book. Thank you for introducing me to such a lovely, interesting person.

  4. Alice says...

    I love Samin! Her show is the best food show I have ever seen, and I am learning so much from her cookbook. Thank you for having her on one of my favorite blogs. It makes me so happy and she is so beautiful, inside and out!

  5. Mel says...

    Samin, if you’re reading this I want you to know how incredibly cool, smart, funny and pretty I think you are. My 8-year old son and I just finished watching your Netflix show and loved it and you so much. I wish you every success.

    • Lily says...

      Ditto! My 8-year old daughter, husband and I watched it together last Friday night. And it was a such a lovely, simple evening of salivating over food, traveling around the world on our couch, enjoying the irrepressible joy of Samin. Thanks for sharing this wonderful interview with her!

  6. Betsy says...

    Samin is the coolest!! This is my fav MBU ever. She’s got a glow. Also, my hubs and I devoured her show and were like ‘Okay, now we’re moving to Italy! Also… she speaks Italian?!’ Thanks for interviewing her :)

  7. Ashley says...

    Love her! And love the show! This was great, thank you. BUT – where are her clothes from?? Her style in the show was so classic and beautiful. I’d love to know where to find similar pieces.

  8. sarah morabito says...

    “At the end of the day, do you think it matters? Feeling beautiful?”
    I’ll tell you what, raising girls (I’ve two little ones and a boy) no matter the year or culture (or sex really) yes it is relevant (to the comment above) and sure you can opt out of the world of cosmetics and fashion,, aesthetics, etc. but we’re talking about FEELING beautiful, inside and out – to see yourself with love.
    And then she wrote this: “‘Wow, I look really pretty.’ And that’s not a thought I have ever had about myself. I’m still a little bit shocked by those feelings. ” This is the realest sentence and I loved it so much because I’ve felt it too.

    I love Samin, her show, her KNOWLEDGE I mean OMG how many languages can she speak! She is an inspiration.

  9. Kate says...

    I feel so emotional and lucky reading this! I watched the Netflix show on my way home from visiting my long distance boyfriend so I was already emotional, but watching that show and “being with” Samin made me feel like I was wrapped up in this beautiful, thoughtful hug. Her warmth and her style and her laugh and her entire persona just made me feel so drawn to her, and I appreciated so much that she included so many women (and so many people who maybe wouldn’t be highlighted on other travel/food shows.) It feels so revolutionary.

    I DIGRESS. I loved reading this–beauty is such a mix of everything–sleep and self care and yes, moisturizers–and I will definitely be looking into that anti-chafing spray! Thank you Samin for your beautiful self!!

  10. lydia says...

    What a breath of fresh air. I really really enjoyed this Beauty Uniform!

  11. Allie says...

    I really appreciate her comments about mental health. Thanks for this interview, I loved it!

  12. Adriana says...

    “Here’s how I take care of my smile: I take my antidepressants and I try to sleep.” Loved this! Self-care, especially #boringselfcare is so important. Take care of yourselves out there, ladies <3

  13. Lacy says...

    I met her at a book event on Sunday night and she is just as delightful as she seems. I was so nervous I started talking about office supplies (context: I had sticky notes popping out of my copy of her book, and referred to them as “success-ories”, which is a totally nerdy teacher phrase we use at work because post-its are trademarked). She genuinely laughed, hugged me and my friend, and told us all about her favorite pens. I’m still on cloud nine!

  14. Leigh Harlow says...

    Samin! I am OBSESSED with you–your book, your show, and now this! Your honesty is breathtaking and energizing. Beauty for women doesn’t mean one thing–nor should it! It’s so refreshing to hear you talk so open about going to therapy and taking medication. Your openness helps break down the stigma. Much love, and thanks for teaching me to (kind of start to) love cooking.

  15. t says...

    Wow her smile is indeed contagious! I haven’t seen her show but most certainly will add it to my list.

    My big question is how do people afford therapy? I so, so, so want to see a therapist on a regular basis but I don’t even know how to go about it. And when I am recommended one they don’t take insurance and cost $150/hr. That’s $600/month! Is there a magical therapy portal that I don’t know about?

    My insurance only covers 6 sessions a year (seemingly only with therapists who aren’t taking new patients).

    • Alexandria McMullen says...

      Hi T. Many therapists will offer sessions on a sliding scale to patients without insurance. It’s worth looking on a website like Psychology.com to find someone you feel you might be comfortable with, and calling their office to ask. Some therapists also charge less for video chat sessions, so I’d ask any councelor you look into about that option, too.

    • Maria says...

      Many therapist offer sliding-fee scale services. My bi-weekly sessions are only $35/hr and is a non-negotiable part of my self care.

    • K says...

      Oof, yes to this. I have had such a hard time finding a therapist that takes my insurance that I actually vibe with. In fact, how do people find therapists they vibe with????? I have had like 4 that really didn’t work out and it’s so daunting and feels like dating and makes me want to not do it.

    • Mouse says...

      You also might try someone with different letters after her/his name: I saw a LICSW—licensed social worker–years ago and she was one of the best therapists I ever had.

    • Rainbow says...

      1. It is absolutely shameful that it’s so difficult to get therapy in this country and many others. We all deserve all of the quality mental health care that we need.

      2. Sliding scale is great and also, students who need to practice so they can get their licenses can be *amazing* and are under supervision from full-fledged therapists; they’re often free or extremely cheap. Check your local universities!

    • Depending on where you are, you may want to try openpathcollective.org. It’s a therapist directory nationwide offering sliding scale therapy. Therapists can only charge between $30-$50. You’d have to use it once you’ve already used your therapy sessions with your insurance, as it’s intended for people without insurance. I’m a therapist, and list on there. It’s a great option to make therapy more accessible!

    • Counselor Shannon says...

      You can look into counseling grad programs. Many have onsite practicums where counselors in training offer free or reduced cost therapy under close supervision by an expert. Counselors and psychologists have to do an internship during their training, so you can ask practices that you contact whether you can see an intern at a lower rate.

      Finally, check out Open Path Collective. Therapists on there charge between $30-$50/session.

    • Stacy says...

      And you’d be surprised what you can cover in 6 sessions! You could try spacing them out; maybe you could have two sessions a week apart, then ask your therapist if they can assign you some “homework” for you to work on for 2-3 weeks then check back in. I’ve reaped many benefits from just 2-6 sessions at various points in my life.

  16. Kim says...

    BEST BEAUTY UNIFORM EVER! SFAH is one of my favorite cookbooks. Just watched the first episode of the series and I’m parceling out the other three to make it last a bit longer. She is just so freaking real & unapologetically into food. Adore her….and great advise. Buying the charcoal sponge things and the chafe spray….

  17. Akiko says...

    Samin is so beautiful!
    I love that she’s in therapy and working on herself. I love that she can talk about anything and everything.
    I feel that she speaks for so many women who only recently started discovering their beauty, not knowing where to start. I’m still scared of Sephora and I’m almost 50!

  18. I can identify with Samin so much! I love her! I can’t wait to binge Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat on Netflix this weekend. I need more of her in my life!

  19. N says...

    Love love love her! I loved her show and am reading her book. Like everyone here, i’ll get in line to be her friend. Her laugh (not just smile) and authenticity is amazing. Nothing curated about her at all. As another person who struggles with hairiness, I squealed when she mentioned annoying mustaches and chin hair! BRAVO.
    Also, if Samin does give feedback – In her Salt episode in Japan, she wears dark blue overalls. I have been dying and scourging the ends of the world for them with no avail! Please please please please tell me where you got those from!!!! Please COJ – be my Santa and find out where she got it from!!!

  20. Meredith says...

    NEVER CLICKED A COJ ARTICLE SO FAST IN MY LIFE

    • hahah ME TOO

  21. Maria says...

    Looks like I found my next Netflix binge. I’m almost 45 and have yet to fully embrace my curly hair. Going to add Deva Curl to my to-try list.

    p.s. Joanna, I was telling my husband about the My Beauty Uniform series on the blog a couple of weeks ago and he was like, “Why is it called a Beauty Uniform? That sounds so Orwellian.” It never occurred to me. I like the name of the series and think it perfectly captures what it’s about. Silly husband(insert shrug emoji)

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      hahaha husbands! love that. :)

  22. Amy says...

    She is Delightful! Can’t wait to start the show!

  23. This is wonderful. Thanks Samin – for being you and thereby giving us all permission to do the same. And thank you for everything you do!!!

  24. Susanna says...

    she’s spectacular, thank you for featuring her :) Everything made me smile!!

  25. Holly says...

    OMG! I was so excited to see this – Samin is such a gorgeous person. Watching her Netflix series was such self-care – she just exudes joy. I also loved that she mentioned my favorite pod Forever 35!

  26. Lindsay says...

    What a winning post!! I’ve been devouring (pun intended) her show on Netflix!!!!! Thank you!

  27. E says...

    She’s great! Favorite quote: “Here’s how I take care of my smile: I take my antidepressants and I try to sleep.”

    Her honesty was a breath of fresh air. She’s genuine. Loved this.

  28. Sara B says...

    I watched this show a couple weeks ago and it is SO GOOD! Samin is super likable; she just seems like she is filled with joy. I was sad when the show ended.

  29. Denise says...

    I’m excited to watch her Netflix show! And also, Samin is so gorgeous in that blue/white/red dress in the first pic! I’d love to copycat her look, where can I find that dress?

    • Margaret says...

      It’s the ‘Barbara’ dress from Mara Hoffman. Past season unfortunately!

  30. Kristina says...

    “Here’s how I take care of my smile: I take my antidepressants and I try to sleep. ” <–this made my breath catch. I love her honesty and humor surrounding mental health! I recently weaned off my antidepressants and it was a rocky time as my body and brain learned to adjust to some new chemistry. But man, was I glad to have those pills each morning to help face the day with more courage and positivity. Well done for featuring someone so beautiful inside and out! I love this series, and this blog, so much : )

  31. Althea says...

    I LOVE her!!!

  32. Lindsay says...

    Love love love Samin! I totally binge-watched SFAH this weekend and was so taken by her personality and also her lovely kitchen!
    But I can’t believe nobody has commented yet about MegaBabe thigh rescue!! It’s the BEST and the company is women-owned. I love all their other products too, but since we’re talking about thigh chafe :D

  33. jen says...

    thank you for this great post! Samin’s Netflix series is fantastic! Her ability to showcase fresh details about cooking in a genuine and sincere way makes me want to cook simply and often.

  34. Di says...

    I cannot tell you how excited I was to see this. I watched all of SFAH just shamelessly adoring Samin. This is marvelous, but I’m very, very envious that you lucky bastards got to interview her. Her laugh reminds me there’s good in the world, and I am generally besotted by truth-tellers. Seriously, I’m just beaming with delight over here.

  35. Ann says...

    I have adored watching her Netflix show, after loving her book, and I am just so happy to read this honest, real, and thoughtful interview. She’s a dream, except she’s totally real. What a gift! Thank you, Samin, for sharing yourself with the world and thank you, Jo, for this bit of joy today. xoxo

  36. Claire says...

    She is lovely (fabulous hair! dazzling smile!), and seems like the kind of person everyone dreams of being buddies with. I was going to ask if I could sign up to be her friend but I see from these comments that I will have to get in line.
    I am really looking forward to watching her show!

  37. Anna says...

    I actually squealed when I opened Cup of Jo today! Utterly starstruck by Samin and her easy-going, down-to-earth attitude is both refreshing and very relatable.
    Thank you, Cup of Jo!

    (And can you please now get Harry Styles to do beauty/style uniform, hehe.)

  38. I watched Salt Fat Acid Heat on a plane recently and I cried!!! Samin is absolutely pure joy to watch and learn from. She inspires me as a teacher and home cook!

  39. Kandice says...

    This was awesome! Thank you so much!

  40. J says...

    OMG LOVE HER! My sister and I are in the middle of her Netflix series and I feel like every other second we are saying how joyful she is and we just want to be her friend!!! This was wonderful.

  41. Jamie says...

    Yay! Thanks for featuring Samin, love her.

  42. Neely says...

    Yes!! Love her! I’m also Iranian-American with wavy hair and body hair issues so this was super helpful!! :)

  43. Jo says...

    I haven’t watched her show yet, but this is easily my favourite beauty uniform you’ve ever done. So many nuggets regarding those things that nobody ever talks about. Bravo!

  44. Maggie says...

    Cup of Jo – you’re just the best. What a wonderful, feel good article. Congrats Samin on all your success – you seem lovely and fun!

  45. What a fantastic surprise seeing Samin on CoJ today! I met her at Books Are Magic in Bk during her book tour last year and she was as warm, funny, and genuine irl as she is in your interview here and on her show. YAY for all that, I’m so happy for her success!

  46. natalie tarantino says...

    I just love her so much, thanks for this today!

  47. I just adore her! She has an infectious smile and we need more of that around here. :)

    Allie

  48. Noelle says...

    Shes the best! Best Beauty Uniform yet!

  49. Logan says...

    OK Cup of Jo, spill the beans: First Allison Roman, now Samin Nosrat-who’s the modern food lover booking all of my favorites?!?! Thank You:)

  50. Ashley Marie says...

    I LOVED Samin on Salt Fat Acid Heat. She was so warm and inviting and her personality definitely shines through here!

    As for the chub-rub, my friend once told me to apply deodorant on my thighs and it has changed my life! There are days when I might need to reapply, but those are few and far between. Also, I’ll usually wear biker-type shorts under my dresses because ain’t no one got time to feel uncomfortable!

    • shadowy_lady says...

      I don’t really have chub rub but I do have boob chafing due to my unfortunate gigantic cup size. I have been putting deodorant between my boobs for years. This is how I make it through the summers :(

  51. Lauren says...

    I loved the first episode of Fat Salt Acid Heat on Netflix and need to find time to watch the rest. Highly recommend. It was revelatory to watch a woman on television both celebrating and enjoying food — and not just salad. More of this please.

    Samin is also a genius. Her book is so good, and she is delightful and beautiful, both inside and out.

  52. Elspeth says...

    You go, girl!!

  53. Rachel says...

    I’m over-the-moon with happiness to read an interview with Samin! Watching her on the show was mind-blowing! She looks like me! Or at least looks more like me than any model thin, straight-hair, designer clothes lady on a food show that I have ever seen before. It was so amazing to see her wear utilitarian clothes and shoes and jackets that she was obviously comfortable in, as if she had just showed up in her clothes and started the camera without any fuss.

    • Lauren says...

      God this was exactly how I felt when I first saw her show!! What an absolutely amazing lady – I’m a little bit in love with her. She’s such a brilliant role model.

  54. Like everyone else is saying here – YAY SAMIN! Our family just watched this series for the second time. My four year old (who loves food and cooking) is totally entranced by it. It also serves as our escape from the horrors in the headlines every day.
    Samin is pure joy. Is it possible to read this post without smiling?!
    Side note: I’ve always wished I could embrace my curly hair. Getting DevaCurl!

    • Joanna Schuth says...

      DC is worth every. single. penny. If you have a salon near you that does Deva Cuts, they are 10000000% worth it. It’s transforming.

  55. Jenn J. says...

    I have loved my Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat cookbook so much! What a thrill it was to learn more about Samin. Her honesty and authenticity makes me love her that much more. Thank you, Samin, for being so forthcoming! Thank you Cup of Jo for featuring her! <3

  56. Leslie says...

    I did the following things upon seeing Samin grace the front of COJ and they were: YELL “OMG!!!! MY WORLDS!!! COLLIDING!!!”, e-mailed the link to my husband (huge fan, clearly), and then texted everyone. And then, read the post. Ha. Love her!!!

  57. Nathalie says...

    I didn’t think I could love Samin more — and then she said “Here’s how I take care of my smile: I take my antidepressants and I try to sleep.” YES. So grateful to her for speaking openly about mental health. And all my love to you, Cup of Jo team!!!! Your blog lights up my life.

  58. Kyli says...

    Such a big fan of Samin’s. Her enthusiasm is infectious and I loved her Netflix series. Thanks for posting this piece!

  59. You are a total delight, Samin. Love!

  60. Hannah says...

    I’ve been watching Salt Fat Acid Heat and my husband’s comment on the first episode was “I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone look so genuinely happy eating.” I really loved how happy Samin seemed to be and how much she was enjoying what she was eating. I appreciated the zoom in on the real facial expressions that we make when something is tasty, even if they aren’t the most “flattering” expressions.

  61. Ro says...

    I know it seems so silly, but I’m also a 38 year old Iranian American and I can’t express the feeling I have about seeing another one ANYWHERE, let alone sort of everywhere. Seriously, Samin, if I had someone who looked like me talking reasonably about laser removal for their chin hairs when I was young, my life would have significantly more pleasant. I love that you are here!

  62. Samin is amazing. I love her energy and her openness to life. Also, I’m obsessed with her docuseries on Netflix! Keep being your badass self, Samin. You’re a queen.

  63. Shayna Roosevelt says...

    I LOVE her. I watched the first few episodes on Netflix and couldn’t stop gushing about it. “She eats! She enjoys it! She doesn’t even pretend to feel guilty about eating.” What a revolution. Thanks, Samin for that and for sharing about your chin and mustache hairs and chafing thighs. It’s taken me nearly 40 years to accept that those won’t change for me either. Love your breezy attitude.

  64. Casey Kimber says...

    Yusss!! I love Samin:)))

  65. Erin says...

    I’d love to know where Samin’s coral kinda-crossover blouse is from (and if it’s available in other colours) – it’s perfect!

    • amanda says...

      OMG same – it’s so flattering!

  66. Jennifer Wilson says...

    I am thoroughly enjoying her show on Netflix! Her honesty is so refreshing. Seeing her on Cup of Jo is wonderful. Yay Samin!

  67. Sam H. says...

    Love her and love this article so much! Great work CoJ!!!

  68. I think Samin and I would be good friends. Her smile is the absolute best!

  69. sc says...

    Oh my GOD WHERE DID SHE GET THAT DRESS IN THE FIRST PIC? She looks absolutely stunning; I NEED THAT DRESS <3

  70. JA says...

    Samin, thank you SO much about discussing your therapy! I recently watched SFAH and thought you had such a confident, cool, and smart girl dispostion. I really appreciate hearing from women who I admire that are open about their mental health.

  71. Ashley says...

    Just posting to say I also love Samin! Her personality is so magnetic and her smile!! Also as someone with southern European ancestry and the nose to prove it, I love seeing other women with NOSES. I think a nose has so much character <3
    Also everything she said here makes me love her even more. I have not had a girls crush like this since Beyonce.

  72. Susan says...

    Just finished watching Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat over the weekend and just borrowed her book from the library – I love everything about her. Thanks for keeping it real, Samin (and add me to the list of people who want to be besties with you)!

  73. Jenn says...

    I read her book cover to cover and learnt so much! Now every time I cook I think about those 4 elements and how they would come together ;-) Can’t wait to watch the Netflix series!

    Samin is funny and smart and beautiful – that skin and hair is just GLOWING. May I ask where her dress in the first picture is from? <3

  74. Mandeep says...

    I LOVED this – thank you thank you for introducing me to Samin. She is a star.

  75. Emily says...

    LOVE HER – <3

  76. S says...

    I spent a few hours on planes recently, heartbroken over a break-up and crying my eyes out – much to the embarrassment of the staff. When I finally calmed down, watching SFAH was the only thing I managed to do… It gave me a tiny sense of relief and of… light. Samin is the best.

  77. logan says...

    I love Samin! And her endorsement of laser hair removal for facial hair has finally sold me on it. Does anyone have a laser recommendation in NYC???

    • maria says...

      Not NYC – but not so far away either. I HIGHLY recommend Marcelle at Medispa in New Hyde Park (Long Island). She was recommended by a friend years ago and she is FANTASTIC! I don’t have facial hair issues, but i just grew oh so tired of shaving or waxing (my skin is SO sensitive!) so i had underarms, bikini line and calves lasered. BEST. decision. EVER. I had it done back in 2005? Amazing. My skin is baby soft and fairly hairless (baby-fine blonde, micro hairs in some areas – entirely unnoticeable). She truly is incredible – reasonable, such a sweetheart, so caring, and she has been in business forever so she really knows her stuff! Cannot say enough good things about her or laser!

  78. Marika C. says...

    Devacurl! Yess! Thanks for sharing and spreading the word on devacurl products. I love that people are embracing the natural beauty (and hair texture). She is such a bright light!

  79. Cynthia says...

    I have not seen the series, but she is someone I’d love to meet. With a well-stocked pantry, you can pull a rabbit out of a hat. My stylist cuts my hair dry and it’s not curly. It works better with my hair.

  80. Meghan says...

    I don’t usually watch cooking shows (even though everyone always tells me to) but I binged this one and actually cried at the end– the final dinner party was beautiful. Now I must host a party! But first, I must ask… that bracelet, worn on the show was striking!!! I’d love to know more about it. Side note: I accidentally over salted my rice the other day because I’ve been under-salting my whole life but that’s okay. It still tasted great. Thanks for a great post.

  81. Kara says...

    “I still go to Sephora and I’m like YIKES. There are entire aisles that I feel like I don’t have permission to enter.” Ha, YES! Love this beauty uniform, and can’t wait to check out Samin’s show.

  82. Jill says...

    It really brightened my mood to read this and as I reached the end of the feature, I was thinking to myself that she seems really happy. So I looked back…and she is BEAMING in every single photo she’s in!!! That smile is infectious – thanks for sharing Samin & Cup of Jo!

  83. Kattia says...

    Watching her show was like a warm hug, all I kept thinking was how beautiful she was and how much I’d love to be friends with her!

  84. Abby says...

    This was so great! I love how open she is and love even more that she tackled the issue of thigh chafing. Even at my thinnest and healthiest weight, my thighs rub together and make it so difficult to enjoy wearing dresses and skirts when i know I’ll have to do a lot of walking. I’ve already purchased her recommended product and am excited to give it a try.

  85. alyssa says...

    I’M FREAKING OUT I’m so glad you got this interview in! I bought the cookbook maybe six months ago and binged (sorry, Samin!) the show the day it was released and since have watched it two more times. I’ve recommended the show to everyone from my girlfriend to people at work and waitresses. Thank you for making such an achingly beautiful, real cooking show, Samin. I appreciate you!

  86. I didn’t think I could love this woman more, and then I read this beauty uniform!!! 💕

  87. Aw! Love this and love her.
    Curly girls unite.
    And I can’t wait to see her show.

  88. naz says...

    I LOVE HER!!!!! I already loved Samin but now I love her even more!! Also, I had no clue she was Iranian American – me too! I was thinking to myself, I want to be as happy as she looks (it’s been a ROUGH two weeks ladies, 2 anxiety attacks, generally feeling blah about life, and I literally have everything I have ever wanted – great salary from my OWN company, amazing pup, amazing boyfriend, living in NYC and not being close to broke, great friends, just came back from a BEAUTIFUL villa in mexico with an infinity pool on the edge of a cliff…) but still THE ANXIETY AND GENERAL LACK OF FEELING. Then I read “Here’s how I take care of my smile: I take my antidepressants and I try to sleep.”

    Will be making myself an appointment to seek help with my mental health soon. Thanks Samin for being awesome and beautiful and radiant and honestly and openly talking about your method of mental hygiene (and your hairiness because that shits real) :)

    • Angela Thompson says...

      hoping you feel better soon. I was just reading that in Australia anxiety and depression are the number 1 reason people pop by to visit their doctor’s…..so you’re not alone :)

  89. Megan says...

    I want to hang out with her!

  90. marie says...

    <3 I haven't even watched the show yet. Wow! :)

  91. Katie says...

    Samin’s energy and radiating warmth is a balm to the soul during these turbulent times! Her show is a joy to watch. I felt I was learning about cooking in a refreshingly new way, seeing incredibly beautiful locations, and watching her be herself: a good, beautiful, funny, messy, complex human! I was enamored with her while watching Salt, Fat, Acid Heat, and now reading more about her here just solidifies that even more!

  92. Ally says...

    I don’t have anything more intelligent to say than I adore her! Talented, brilliant, and infectiously joyful. I sooo hope we’re going to see/read more of her!

    p.s. if you haven’t already, check out her cookbook while you’re watching her show. It is the most fun, beautiful book I have ever owned! And I’m reading it cover to cover like a novel because she has the best voice.

  93. Nicola says...

    LOVE! Thank you, Samin, for teaching my husband about cooking. I’m an enthusiastic cook, but I tend to wing it without recipes, which drives my husband nuts. He’s like, “But how do you know how much a tbsp of oil is without measuring it?!” SFAH was the first cookbook I ever saw him pick up and go, “THIS helps me understand the principles of cooking.” Samin, you are awesome and beautiful inside and out.

  94. Fernanda says...

    Thank you so much. I look forward to the Beauty Uniform posts and you blew me away with this one. I love how genuine Samin is. I’m rewatching cause it’s just soooo good!

  95. Jeanne says...

    Samin is amazing and her smile is infectious. I love that she features female chefs on her show. The high end restaurant industry has always tended to look down on female chefs. I never understood why..like women can’t cook well?? I’m thrilled to see her spotlight some of the best and bring them to the forefront. Go Samin!!!

  96. Lindsey says...

    *in Chandler Bing voice* Could she BE any more charming??

    In love with her!!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      hahahahaha

    • Tina says...

      Yes!!!! Love this.

    • Luna says...

      Dito! Love her!!

  97. Madeline says...

    Samin is awesome and inspiring to an almost absurd degree.

    COJ you are absolutely crushing it this week.

  98. Nora B says...

    As a mom of 3 who struggles w feeling like I never get out of the kitchen and often resorts to packaged applesauce and Goldfish crackers as meal items for my children, I am so grateful to sameen for rejuvenating my love for food. I bought her cookbook as a birthday gift to myself this year, and haven’t looked back! Needless to say, packaged applesauce and Goldfish crackers come out much less often. Thank you, Samin, for showing that good food isn’t complicated, that our stewardship of earth’s bounty is a sacred trust, and reminding me that salads are everything.
    Hugs and thanks for being you♡

  99. Stephanie Zercher says...

    I love Samin! I binge-watched her Netflix show mainly because her smile and her attitude are so infectious. I learned a lot, too, but I kept watching because of her personality and how it shines through. I hope we see more of her.

  100. Di says...

    oh my goodness. love so much of this- thank you Nosrat. You’re just as amazing as I pictured after watching your show. So many gems here- by being so brutally honest she seems to have come to enjoy “beauty” on her own terms, and that is refreshing!

  101. Jackie says...

    Also, love Alyssa Shelasky! Awesome writer, neighbor, mom, etc. etc. :)

  102. Allison says...

    She is such a ray of light! Her casual openness around her anti-depressants was such a beautifully subtle moment of normalizing.

  103. Great post! Love Samin!

    Not sure how to feel about the interviewers question: At the end of the day, do you think it matters? Feeling beautiful? Ugh. Really, we’re really asking that question in the 21st century, all that we’re going through right now?

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      thanks for your note! i hear your point, although i took it as “do you even think it matters?” and samin was like, yes, to me, because of feeling good about myself.

  104. Christi says...

    I’m so happy to read this! I just watched the first episode twice – once by myself and the second time with my husband. We were talking all about it last night at dinner with my Italian parents, and I’ll probably watch it a third time with them! Samin is so infectious and I think her and I would be great friends : )

  105. Jill c. says...

    Oh I just adore her show and I love that she is so relatable! Really she is just so amazing and beautiful!

  106. byeeeee says...

    IS THERE A ROBOT MAKING THESE COMMENTS? clearly they’re all written by the same person and posted at the same time. nice try, COJ

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      they’re real! CoJ readers are really that warm and responsive, especially when it comes to someone smart, brave and funny, like samin.

    • Fernanda says...

      If you watched the series you would adore her too.
      Samin is amazing.
      Thank you COJ, I needed a Samin fix!

    • Emma says...

      Yeesh!

  107. Chandra says...

    Can we be best friends?

    Love,
    Chandra

    ps: I love you! And also love that you dropped a bomb skincare rec for ingrown facials hairs because I have those annoying suckers too.

  108. Meagan says...

    This beauty uniform is amazing! Just finished the Netflix series this weekend, so much to love about it. Samin you radiate confidence on screen and seem so comfortable in your skin.

    Also can we get a house tour? That kitchen and dinning room!

  109. Liz says...

    love her and love this! i can relate to so much of what she said about experience with beauty growing up.

    real talk question for Samin: how long does laser hair removal last? why did you decide on that method rather than something like waxing? asking here because i’d love an opinion from someone other than a person trying to sell the service to me and no one I know seems open to talk about these kind of things!

    • Mara says...

      I have been getting laser hair removal on my chin and upper lip area and I am a huge fan! I bought a pack of 9 treatments and I have had 7 monthly treatments. It’s been very effective for me, but I understand that it depends on your skin and hair color/type. Prior to this I would get my face threaded monthly, but you need to let the hair grow in for that, and I really like that this is a permanent solution. My esthetician has warned me that hair growth on the face is hormonal and I will likely need a yearly touch up in the future, but this has been very cost effective and convenient for me and I have no regrets.

    • Erin says...

      YES I really want COJ to do an experiment here and help me answer these questions, b/c I’m on the fence about trying this.

  110. Gosh I had to stifle a major squeal when I saw that header image – I LOVE Samin! I can hear her saying all of this stuff (having watched and rewatched her show a few times…the fat episode is so satisfying). What a fabulous post, thank you!

  111. A Martin says...

    I straight up shouted, “Oh my gosh! Samin!” I was just talking about her to my family. Her docuseries is INCREDIBLE!! I recommend prepping appetizers (pairing it with the cuisine, country and element she focuses on) before you watch her show. She is genuinely inquisitive, respectful, deeply knowledgeable and passionate about food, family and community. She is wonderful! She is absolutely beautiful inside and out. The picture of her standing in the doorway with the Mexican traditional shirt and apron – gorgeous!!! I hope one day she sees the immense beauty she has the way we see her beauty!

  112. Gaby says...

    oh man, I BEAMED just now seeing her on this site. Then, reading her beauty uniform just made me love her more than her show already did. She is such a light.

    • Nora B says...

      Yes!!! ME TOO! such a beacon of real-ness.

  113. Carrie Smith says...

    YES! I love her! Her book has transformed the way I approach cooking and she is such a ray of sunshine on her show. This made my day.

  114. Susan Low-Symes says...

    I just discovered Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat on Netflix over the weekend. I am trying very hard to spread the episodes out and only watch ne every few days (as a reward for doing boring things like house cleaning and mowing the very wet lawn). I love this woman and her approach to cooking – so intelligent, scientific and not at all hoity toity and snobby.

    Who is the handsome man in her shopping cart????

    • Fernanda Jorquera says...

      the camera guy for the netflix series. Follow her on instagram and she tagged him on that photo :)

  115. Zoë says...

    wowwowwow, I love Samin. I love her. How refreshing, what an inspiration.

  116. Julie says...

    mortified to say that i didn’t even contemplate streaming Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat because I just assumed it was another dude chef (don’t get me wrong, i LOVED ugly delicious, but just felt pretty sated on my intake of dude chefs) and scrolled past. Did i not even look at the thumbnail?! Not sure. Anyway now i cannot freaking wait to binge like a maniac. Also love this post.

    • Mae says...

      Julie, I assumed the same. Sorry/not sorry, ubiquitous dude chefs. Super-excited to watch this series now.

  117. Elena olson says...

    She is my new…… everything?!?!? After watching her Netflix special, I am obsessed. She is absolute sunshine (her smile, that laugh!) and so passionate about food and the good things in life. This weekend I read the best article about candy tasting (it’s a thing), and just loved the writing and experience the author took you through. At the end I looked to see who wrote it: Samin!

    Can you also do a week of outfits? She clearly has her own sense of style! Thank you for having her!

    • Lola says...

      YES to the outfits. I love her style.

  118. Fridit says...

    “Growing up, I was unsure about my looks, and my defense mechanism became to reject caring about it all together.”

    SAME! Me as a late teen. Thank you Samin for being so open, it’s so brave. :)

  119. gina solon says...

    sooooo good.

    love her.

  120. Phaedra says...

    I’ve been lucky enough to take some cooking classes from Samin in SF and she is as wonderful in person as she appears on Netflix and in this interview.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      wow, that’s incredible, phaedra!

  121. Audrey says...

    I literally let out a squeal when I saw her face pop up when Cup of Jo loaded in my browser! She is so refreshing and always puts a smile on my face. I too will be keeping my eye out at Berkeley Bowl for a Samin sighting! (and I guarantee if I do actually see her… I will become mute and probably walk in the other direction!)

    • Sonja says...

      Let’s be gently awkward together! Because I would do the same. And then I would tell EVERYONE. Samin, you unicorn!

  122. Alison says...

    This was wonderful. Thank you for sharing Samin.

  123. Elise says...

    Her book changed everything about my cooking. Can’t wait to watch her show, and I know I will love it even more now that I’ve read this and seen what a beautiful spirit she possesses in addition to her killer cooking skills.

  124. Hannah says...

    What a GREAT beauty uniform. I must watch her show on Netflix :)

    I’m so surprised by her mascara choice – Glossier has been hit or miss for me. Has anyone else tried it?

    • anne says...

      yes! I don’t love all the glossier products, but I’m a big fan of the boy brow, the mascara and the skin-perfecting tint. The mascara is literally the first mascara in my life that doesn’t slide around and give me raccoon eyes by the end of the day.

    • Lindsay Marie says...

      I am really loving thier mascara and I can’t live without the boy brow. I also use the serums, always. I am highly allergic to most brands ( with any fragrance added ) so I don’t have a ton to choose from so I’m so thankful to find these glossier products.

    • Abby says...

      I LOVE this mascara! My testimonial: I only wore mascara sporadically before I tried the Glossier one. It makes me WANT to wear mascara every day.

      Since my eyelashes are short and thin to start with, I curl them first and then do the Lash Slick, and it doesn’t make my eyes look really mascara-y or anything — just makes them pop more.

    • Sarah says...

      I haven’t loved all the Glossier products I’ve tried but the mascara is THE BOMB. So is the boy brow!

  125. Sarah says...

    I love her! I would love to know where she got the beautiful bracelet she wears on the show.

  126. Elizabeth says...

    I love all the Beauty Uniform posts, but I must say I find this one the most inspirational and useful. And I am the total opposite in body type, coloring, and ethnicity from Samin. I also don’t cook. Thank you so much, Joanna, for producing these columns.

    I’m texting my hairdresser (who specializes in curly hair care) right now…

  127. Erin says...

    Loved this so much and I can’t wait to watch her show after reading this, thank you!!

  128. KM says...

    She makes you feel so good with her energy, her smile and being so quick to laugh at anything (including herself!)

    But her honesty about thigh rub, hairiness, mental health and feeling like you don’t belong on beauty stores makes me appreciate her even more. Great post -thank you.

  129. Barbara Jane says...

    I didn’t know her before, but now I’m crying and I want to watch her show. I love that she’s seeing beauty and worth in herself, after a lifetime (so far) of not seeing it. But her smile IS CONTAGIOUS, and there’s so much beauty and grace in her emotional intelligence.

  130. Hani says...

    YES YES YES YES YES!!! The whole time I was watching Samin’s show, I was like, this lady is frickin fantastic. I thought to myself multiple times how much I’d love to read her beauty uniform. Knocked it out of the park today, Cupofjo!!

  131. Eloise says...

    This is the best Beauty Uniform that ever was or ever will be. By far! Details about how she uses the honey, please?

  132. Albee says...

    Such a treat to read, love Samin’s candidness and humor!

  133. Yvonne says...

    Every time I think Cup of Jo has done their best Beauty Uniform, you feature yet another amazing woman who blows me away. Samin’s frankness about her struggles and her willingness to share her vulnerabilities in a public forum has touched me deeply. Us women are so very much in this together, in all our diversity, and it’s features like this that remind me we are all sisters.

  134. harmony says...

    Best one of all time! This is true of so many young, smart, women: “But I felt if I was rejecting traditional femininity, then I had to stick to my guns. When in reality, I was just too embarrassed to turn around and ask about it.” What a beautiful example of learning to reject all the scripts and all the shame out there and embrace your own, complicated, messy, self. Bravo!

    • Meredith says...

      This passage is exactly me all the way from middle school through college, but I could never figure out how to put that feeling into words! I had always been the “smart one” and of course assumed being smart and pretty were mutually exclusive. . . How I wish my teenage self had had access to such a high-quality “It Girl” role model!

  135. Justine says...

    Awwwwww. The best. My hubby and I were beaming watching her show the other night, because she just makes you smile. Her joy and curiosity are so infectious. We binged the series in two nights flat.

  136. Allie says...

    Oh my god I love her. I’ve been watching her show, and she is just so full of LIFE. I love that she’s talking about work done in therapy – THANK YOU! I wish those of us in therapy would talk more about it, because I think the whole world would benefit from a safe space to just talk.

  137. Theresa says...

    Wonderful woman. Wonderful interview! I JUST finished the Netflix Series and adored it.

  138. Rebecca says...

    Ahh she seems awesome! Can’t wait to watch her show.

  139. Allyson says...

    “Oh, that’s nothing! Let’s talk about my hairiness.” I’ve never loved a transition so much until “Here’s how I take care of my smile: I take my antidepressants and I try to sleep.” Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat was a total binge sitch last weekend. I love her so much. AND she shouts Forever35 ON Cup of Jo. It’s like my Christmas. <3 <3 <3

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      :) :) :) :) :) :)

  140. Teresa says...

    OMG, you are at The Bowl!! Event though it is only a “virtual” celebrity sighting, I feel just as excited! I love your show and your candid beauty tips! Now I will be looking for you every time I snag a cheese sample :)

  141. Kaye says...

    “Here’s how I take care of my smile: I take my antidepressants and I try to sleep.”

    I’d like this on a pillow please.

    • Allyson says...

      hahaha! *All of Etsy simultaneously starts making.*

  142. Sara says...

    OMG. THANK YOU.

  143. Amanda says...

    Just started watching her Netflix show last night and I was immediately enamored with her. She took actual bites of her food (not little cooking show chef bites), she laughed and hugged and smiled and is just SO GENUINE. I cannot wait to keep watching her show! And try that Glossier mascara ;)

  144. Andrea says...

    Body Glide makes a roll on antichafe that I love. It looks like a solid deodorant and helps with thigh rub, tight shoes, etc.

  145. Lisa says...

    I LOVE this woman! Watched the entire season of her show on Netflix in one go and I loved her spirit so much. I’ve actually been in a pretty bad place recently and now I think “be more like Samin” whenever I feel that I’m not good enough, pretty enough or loved enough. It helps!

    • Sarah says...

      Me as well! She’s been a light in my world.

  146. Amelia Ryan says...

    THANK YOU for talking about antidepressants publicly! I take them too and I hate the stigma around using antidepressants. My coworkers and I are trying to even make ourselves more comfortable talking about it just by having conversations. Anyway thank you for speaking about mental health openly! <3

  147. Janelle Willis says...

    “Here’s how I take care of my smile: I take my antidepressants and I try to sleep.”
    With that I fell even more in love with Samin! Self care is not just appearance but yes everything underneath, and this brief portion is so important. Thank you Samin for being so open about mental health.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      yes, i loved that so, so much.

      PS same here, samin! :)

    • Sara says...

      Just shared that and “So many of my struggles have been about my own preconceived notions of who I am — and every time I break a little barrier, that feels profound.” on FB! Soooo greatttttttt.

  148. Maura Lucking says...

    ahhh like a breath of fresh air. this is especially wonderful – “feeling pretty is just one other dimension of feeling good about myself. So much of the work I do in therapy is assigning self-worth and believing that I have value”

  149. Dee says...

    Everything about her makes me happy. Thanks for featuring her!

    • val says...

      Here here!