In this act of her life, Drew Barrymore is becoming a jack of all trades. She has her delightfully eager hands dipped in the world of talk shows on The Drew Barrymore Show, home appliances, beauty, hair care, film production, magazine writing with Drew Magazine, and now, eco-conscious cleaning products by way of Grove Collaborative. Just typing that résumé was exhausting, so it’s nearly impossible for me to comprehend how one person could have the bandwidth to even think about so many lines of communication and production. But it’s clear that Barrymore is far different from me — she has a frenetic, zealous energy that has a life of its own and needs a project or story to sink its teeth into. I, on the other hand, am a sleepy girl whose favorite place is anywhere that I can be horizontal.
The movie-star mogul and I shared a beautiful, wandering 15 minutes on Zoom, when I had the queen preach her gospel and she told me about her best friend (Cameron Diaz) and her least favorite chore and gave me a brief tour of her bathroom.
Hi Drew! I’m so excited to chat with you.
Oh that’s so nice of you to say. I have no objectivity or perspective. I’m just someone who beats the shit out of themselves trying to get it right.
Well, it seems like you get it right almost all of the time.
That’s so funny. I don’t feel that way at all. But I will be very grateful for you to say that, and I’ll take it into my heart and never my ego, then I’ll go back to self-flagellation. Thank you.
Okay, but we are gathered here today in the name of cleaning, chores, and all of the things I honestly hate. What are your least favorite chores?
Vacuuming is something I don’t love. I love the satisfaction of it. I have lower-back problems, and I hate constantly leaning. But I actually really do love cleaning. I moved out on my own when I was 14 and I got emancipated, and when I moved into my first apartment, I had such a daunting awakening of what domestic chores were. As much as I had grown up as an adult and worked since I was 11 months old, I always stayed at friend’s houses or in hotels or making movies. I guess there was always someone around to manage that aspect. But when you start living on your own — I’m sure a lot of college kids have this revelation or anybody who gets their first place — it’s like, Holy shit. The stuff that becomes evident that you were completely ignorant to because somebody else was managing it — it just gets very real.
I was so intimidated by all of that that the art of mastering it became a very empowering thing to me. So it’s associated with something very positive, which was conquering my fears of living alone and enjoying the rituals of going to the laundromat. I would bring my book, and I loved reading. In Los Angeles, our laundromats were attached to a mini-mall that usually had Chinese food. So it was, like, great literature, delicious cartons with chopsticks sticking out, and my list of learning how to take care of myself, my home, and my life.
In the second phase of my “domestic bliss” chapter of life, I love being eco. I made a promise to my best friend, Cameron Diaz, that I would become eco. She has been chasing me around for 25 years about it, and I needed to do something to show her how grateful I was. I was like, “It’s not going to be a present, it’s going to be a lifestyle change.” She was like, “Turn your water off when you’re brushing your teeth, shut off your pool heater, turn off your lights, get a Prius.” And I was just — sorry, is your camera on? Do you want me to turn mine on?
You don’t have to.
Fuck it. I look like shit.
You do not look like shit.
I just came from a workout, and I haven’t washed my hair in six days.
Wait, it looks so good. What’s the secret?
Oh, there’s so much, like, dry shampoo and L’Oréal Magic Root in there. Don’t even start.
Okay, so I made this promise to Cameron, then I had to really get on it. I got a composter. I changed all of my cleaning products. I became a Grove customer, because I was like, Finally, one place where I can get everything. I thought they were the most aesthetically beautiful products I’d ever seen. Then they called to see if I would want to work with them, and I got really excited, because design is my happy space. I had been studying fragrance for the last decade, because of being in beauty, so I got to create the scents. I wanted one that was more fruity and floral, because there’s always that customer, and I’m a dirty hippie who wants woody, cedar, patchouli.
It’s such a bad space to live in when you don’t have mental wellness and peace and are eating garbage and not taking care of your space. Trying to do the right thing feels positive and empowering.
I lived in both spaces, I vacillate between both, and I totally get it. I’m not cooking organic food in my kitchen for myself every night. A lot of times, I’m ordering takeout, just trying to get through the day. Then don’t get me started on the takeout plastic. I keep my house to such perfection with plastic, then I get my takeout. I’m just like, Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! I feel like I’m a plastic cuckold — this dirty, cheating, horrible person.
Even when you’re talking about cleaning products, you have such a zest for everything.
Yeah, zeal. You have this aura of happiness. What is the secret that the rest of us maybe haven’t unlocked yet?
I fail a lot. But I think the little things are just as important, and they might even be the big thing. Just knowing I’m on the right path and I’m not being a dirty bird for a minute. If you trade a bad habit for a good habit or you break a cycle or, you know, like my desk. I’m going to show you my desk right now, because it’s a shit show. [Lifts her laptop and swivels it around to show her corner desk. There are mountainous piles of books and paper.] Look at this desk.
You know what, I’ll show you my desk just for —
Yeah, no, that seems a lot more organized!
I mean, yours is more intimidating. There are piles of books, piles of paper.
I’m going to show you my — [Swiftly carries her laptop into the bathroom, where makeup supplies, brushes and products, are strewn across the sink counter.] At some point, I’m going to get out my Grove products, I’m going to clean up both of those spaces, and it’s going to bring me peace and a sense of accomplishment. Creating a little peace, for me, has become such a priority. You just have to keep at it. If you need to sit under it for a minute, great, then snap out of that and just put one foot in front of the other.
Basically, just keep going?
Keep going. That’s the only thing I know. I have some psychotic Energizer bunny in there who is just like, You cannot stay stuck.