Since the inception of their podcast, Andrews and McDonald have created a loyal community and just this year, released their book of essays, titled The Space Between. As well as their work in the audio and literary space, Andrews and McDonald are avid beauty lovers and in 2019, hosted panels at Meccaland — the ultimate beauty and makeup festival created by Mecca.
When it comes to skincare and makeup, the pair say they aren’t “hugely high maintenance” but they do have a few non-negotiable products they always have in rotation, one of which is SPF. “We are fastidious about sunscreen — we always make sure we have it whenever we leave the house, whether it’s summer or winter,” Andrews and McDonald told The Latch.
As well as SPF, Andrews and McDonald also have a few haircare products which they are never without. The duo was recently announced as the new ambassadors for haircare brand Pantene and partnering with the iconic brand brought about “a wonderful mixture of nostalgia and trust; we’ve used Pantene since we were kids and as two busy young women we adore hair care that does its thing without being overpriced, confusing or pretentious,” Andrews and McDonald said.
As two self-described “ultra-fake blondes” who have dabbled in the world of both long and short hairstyles, Andrews and McDonald have their haircare down pat. We recently caught up with the podcast hosts to chat all things hair, beauty and how they have prioritised their health this year.
Alexandra McCarthy: Hi Michelle! Hi Zara! Straight into the hair chat: You’ve both rocked long and short hair and short hair can notoriously be harder to style. Any tips you employ to do so?
Michelle Andrews & Zara McDonald: TAKE CARE OF IT FOR GOODNESS SAKE! We love having shorter hair — we originally both went for bob/lob cuts because we have naturally fine hair, and shorter styles give off the impression of thickness and volume.
But! That doesn’t mean we can be complacent; our hair is still coloured semi-regularly and we often need to style it for the events we host, or Shameless live shows, so maintaining a healthy hair care regimen is an absolute must to combat styling damage.
AM: Congratulations on becoming Pantene’s newest hair care ambassadors! What made you want to partner with Pantene?
MA & ZM: Why thank you. For us, Pantene is such a wonderful mixture of nostalgia and trust; we’ve used Pantene since we were kids and as two busy young women we adore hair care that does its thing without being overpriced, confusing or pretentious.
“We adore hair care that does its thing without being overpriced, confusing or pretentious.”
AM: Is there a regime you always follow to wash and style your hair?
MA & ZM: Yes! Though it’s a relatively simple regime! As ultra-fake blondes, we are suckers for the Pantene Colour Protect Shampoo that makes sure our blonde colour doesn’t go all brassy (as is the bane of every fake blonde’s existence).
Also dyeing our hair so often means it can be particularly high maintenance to care for, so we also use Pantene Intensive Rescue Shots weekly to make sure our split ends aren’t fraying ridiculously. As for styling, we bloody love putting a wave through our relatively short hair to give it a teensy bit of bounce.
AM: What are some haircare tips or tricks you follow to keep your hair healthy, especially in summer when it might be exposed to chlorine and extensive time spent in the sun?
MA & ZM: The Pantene Intensive Rescue shots — they are an actual lifesaver to repair and protect our hair (particularly when it comes to undoing the havoc wreaked by chlorine).
AM: What are your non-negotiables when it comes to your skincare or makeup regimes?
MA & ZM: SPF ALL DAY EVERYDAY! Sorry for yelling, but it’s true. We aren’t hugely high maintenance when it comes to skin and makeup, but we are fastidious about sunscreen — we always make sure we have it whenever we leave the house, whether it’s summer or winter.
AM: What beauty product do you always have in rotation?
MA & ZM: SPF again! Also — a great, gentle cleanser (we have a sick obsession with the La Roche Posay Effaclar ones).
AM: How have you prioritised your health during this tumultuous year?
MA & ZM: The biggest way we’ve looked after our health in this stupidly strange year has actually been by going gently on ourselves. I think sometimes we assume the way to look after ourselves is to punish ourselves with restricting things we love (like “moderation foods”) but the most important thing for us right now is making sure our mind feels calm, because when we’ve nailed that, everything else follows.
“The most important thing for us right now is making sure our mind feels calm”.
AM: What’s one health or self-care practice you have picked up this year?
MA & ZM: We’re both BIG on mindfulness and meditation – whenever work is feeling too stressful we like to take a 20 minute break to find a sense of calm again.
AM: If you could permanently delete one step from your beauty routine forever, what would it be?
MA & ZM: Omg the dream! If we could never have to dye our hair again, and adopt these beautiful, beachy blonde tones as our own, we’d be very happy people.