Jenny Slate, Actress


"I'm originally from Massachusetts and I moved to New York City in 2000 to go to Columbia. That’s where I met my best friend and comedy partner, Gabe Liedman, who plays Joey in our new movie, Obvious Child. I always wanted to be an actress and grew up idolizing Lily Tomlin, Carol Burnett, Rosalind Russell, Judy Garland, and Maria from Sesame Street. My parents didn’t have cable, which was such a bummer at the time. We watched a lot of old stuff rented from the library, which now I’m really grateful for and I genuinely enjoyed. But I also really wanted to watch Rugrats.

After graduating I didn’t know how to get into acting at all and I was not interested in moving to LA, so I started to do stand-up because I felt like, 'Well, I’ll just get up on stage and I’ll just start talking. Easy.' I did it with Gabe as a duo and we sort of came up in a really cool group with people like Aziz Ansari, Nick Kroll, and Chelsea Peretti. Somebody from SNL saw my show at the Upright Citizens Brigade and the next week I was auditioning for the show. I spent a year on SNL and then I made a couple of movies, I did the Kroll Show, and I was on Girls.

What's fun about playing characters like Liz on the Kroll Show is that that sort of overdone look is so unnatural to me. You see these women on reality shows with so much stuff on their faces, and their hair glued to the shape of their curling iron, and that, to me, is so funny! In real life I like a natural look. Except for if I picked at something on my face and am trying to cover it up, I don’t wear foundation. What I want out of my daily routine is to feel clean and pretty and that I’m doing something that is exciting. I like a fruity lip—raspberry. I use a liner from MAC called Magenta to fill my whole lip in and then just put some of that Rosebud Salve over it. That’s nice for day. But the first lipstick that I ever had was MAC Pervette—my grandmother bought it for me. It was a heavily frosted pink, which went with this eyeliner—I got a lesson from the MAC lady at the Bloomingdale's in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts.

For skin I love coconut oil. I take my makeup off with it and I'll put it in my hair as a mask once a week, too. And I use Laura Mercier skin products. The Face Polish and the moisturizers are really great—they’re gentle and they smell good. I take a hair, skin, and nail vitamin called Maxi Plus because I got a terrible haircut about a year ago and I’ve been trying to grow it out ever since, so the MSM and biotin help. That's why I don’t get my eyebrows done—I’ll do them myself or pluck the stray hairs, but I like the shape I've always had. My grandfather had these eyebrows, so I'd like to keep them."

—as told to ITG

Jenny Slate photographed by Emily Weiss in New York on June 19, 2014. Her new movie, Obvious Child, premieres nationwide Friday, June 27th.

Let’s Talk About It! JOIN IN
  • Molly

    Love her!!

  • Lauren

    Yeah, but how does Marcel keep his shell so shiny?

    • Eliza

      She did Marcel the Shell??? I love her on Parks and Rec but I have whole new levels of respect now haha

  • Anj

    Love Jenny. She's hilarious

  • Noelle

    She's the best. Also - Marcel the Shell with Shoes On!

  • jenn

    I love her! I had no idea she grew up in the town next to me <333

  • Peaches

    love jenny slate!

    Love the grandfather part. I don't put a lot of make up on my eyes because at the right angle, i share the same glint (?) of a relative. I hate to cover it too much.

  • Clever Girl Reviews

    I love that color!

  • Alison

    I saw Obvious Child last night- highly recommended! She is beyond brilliant.

  • ET

    Met her backstage an an art/performance festival a couple of years ago and she was so friendly and sweet, as well as adorable & lovely. So looking forward to seeing Obvious Child!

  • Jennifer Monforton

    I love that Maria from Sesame Street is among her idols ;) Great article, as always! xo

  • Sarah

    thank you for featuring the lovely and talented Jenny Slate! One of my favs!

  • Eileen

    She is adorable! I love her outlook on makeup and beauty. Plus her eyebrows are definitely making me jealous! If you are looking for some fashion inspiration like Jenny's look, check out Purely Fashion at It's my favorite site to get inspired and browse hundreds of designer collections, while saving your favorite looks in a custom lookbook. I'd be lost without it :)

  • Closet Cupcake

    Best dressed comedian, too. I'm always checkin' out her outfits whenever I see her perform at UCB in LA.

  • ITGFerber

    I believe it's their lip pencil in Magenta!

  • ITGFerber

    The judges will accept both jumper and romper. She's in Steve Alan!

  • Lisa

    She's great on House of Lies.


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