The chef and wellness guru gets real with VIOLET GREY about happiness, her beauty routine, and why she’s not interested in simply sitting at the table!
- Written By
- AMBER KALLOR
- Photography By
- CASSANDRA GREY
- Hair By
- Makeup By
- JOE STRETTELL
Name: Sophia Roe | @sophia_roe
Job Description: Chef, wellness advocate, writer
I’m happy, how are you? Those five little words are the simple-yet-loaded response you’re likely to receive from Sophia Roe—a chef, wellness guru, and self-proclaimed “food and feelings advocate”—if you happen to ask her how she’s doing these days. It’s also one of the many tattoos (located on her left arm) you’re likely to notice upon meeting the multifaceted storyteller in the flesh. Happiness isn’t something that Roe takes lightly. Despite dressing like a “Skittle” in New York City’s sea of black and cooking in full-throttle color with makeup artist Violette as part of her YouTube series, Eat The Rainbow, her days weren’t always so bright. Like any resourceful cook, however, she knows how to turn lemons into sweet and satisfying lemonade.
“I was a foster care kid. My mom is a drug addict. I haven’t been in contact with her for five years. My dad died before I could meet him. I have three siblings that I didn’t grow up with. It’s gnarly,” Roe explains of her past. “I’m also so happy and so okay. I feel like the greatest gift I was ever given was a tumultuous childhood because it prepared me to do the work that I do now, which is to tell stories and give other people space to tell their own.”
In addition to managing a very full plate, which includes creating “conscious programming for everybody” (with American Express as part of the brand’s newly established Platinum Collective), Roe is penning her first book (scheduled for release next year) that is a compilation of short-but-true stories. “It’s sort of a memoir slash ritual remedy book,” she says. “Everyone has trauma. Everybody. The idea that my trauma is worse than another person’s trauma is crazy.” Roe is hoping that her book will help others overcome the blows dealt by life, whether that means working through issues surrounding your parents or not knowing who you are. “I had to do 23andMe to find out what my breakdown was, but it turns out that a lot of people have similar narratives,” she explains.
Roe remains firmly committed to living her truth, which extends to her beauty routine. “Eight years ago, I remember going to two different salons and they would not cut my hair with bangs because they said it would look bad with my texture. So, I woke up in the middle of the night and cut them myself,” she says of her signature look inspired by Donna Summer, her beauty icon. “Now, everybody has curly bangs. I’ve never had a professional haircut in my life. I don’t trust anybody!” She’s also hellbent on keeping her many tattoos “crispy” by religiously applying her favorite Shiseido Clear Stick UV Protector. “I don’t walk out of the house without it and I reapply every hour, especially on my hands if I’m driving,” she stresses. Asked if she would ever cover up her tats for an important red carpet event such as the Academy Awards, she replied: “I want to bust open the stereotype that Oscar winners look a certain way. I’m just not interested in sitting at the table and more interested in building my own.”