Sarah Chavez, Managing Editor, 25 Magazine


"I’m from Toronto, so I’m part of the Canadian mafia—a bunch of us Canadians who have ended up here. I had been styling for the designer Jeremy Laing out of Toronto, and we were traveling so much to New York, to Paris... I was never one of those people who wanted to work like 10 jobs to live in New York and just hustle and hustle and hustle and sacrifice my quality of life, but a lot of my friends started moving to New York during that time and the energy just grabbed me. So I thought, "Let’s see what happens," and I made the move.

I was introduced to Anja Rubik pretty soon after that and I jumped on board with 25 magazine. It’s a very intimate team and we work with a very specific vision loosely based around this ‘70s publication called Viva, which was kind of like a Penthouse for women. We felt like women's magazines these days were either really prude or vulgar in terms of angle and sensuality. So there’s an erotic twist throughout 25, but it’s really just about empowering and inspiring women. I’ve been doing that for more than three years now. I also work with Marc Jacobs to coordinate his collection show every season, which is cool because it kind of breaks things up—you go in for an intense seven days and you go out.

My parents are Filipino; my mom is really fair and my dad is really tan, and I obviously take after him. I love sunbathing—it’s awful. So now, most of my routine revolves around hydrating my skin. Morning and night, I always spray myself with La Roche Posay Thermal Spring Water or the Santa Maria Novella Rose Water before I put my cleanser on. I’m using Dr. Hauschka Cleansing Cream as well as the Cleansing Milk. I have a Clarisonic, but I think it can be too aggressive sometimes, especially if I’ve been out in the sun. I really like the Bliss Pore Perfect Facial Polish as an exfoliant. My toner is from Joëlle Ciocco Lotion Lacteé. I love it. And Joëlle Ciocco Eyelisse Eye-Lip Contour Emulsion smells really nice too.

I always start moisturizing with a layer of serum because my skin is so dry. I alternate between the Chanel Hydra Beauty Sérum or GM Collin Concentrate, especially under my cream before I go to bed. The Nars Skin line is really nice for young skin that’s prepping for anti-aging without being so full-on. I use the Nars Aqua Gel Luminous Moisturizer as my daily moisturizer—it’s like drinking eight glasses of water. It’s so hydrating and super light, so it’s great for the summer. In the winter, I use the Nars Luminous Moisture Cream, and when I want more sun protection I use the Kiehl’s Powerful Wrinkle Reducing Cream SPF 30.

I like to switch up what masks I wear seasonally. When I feel clogged up, I use the Boscia Luminizing Black Mask. It’s very satisfying in a way. It’s like a Biore strip—you peel it off and see results right away—your skin feels tighter. Dr. Hauschka Hydrating Mask is very moisturizing. I’m obsessed with SK-II Signs Eye Masks, because, you know, we all get tired in New York. Definitely worth the splurge. If I don’t use those, I’ll use Kiehl’s Facial Fuel under my eyes, because it has caffeine in it. When I’m traveling, I leave the Aveda Intensive Hydrating Mask on my face the whole flight. I think it’s just a sheer layer of aloe, so you can also use as a moisturizer. And then when you get off the plane, don’t look crazy. It keeps you dewy and moisturized.

I’m not prone to breakouts, but before bed I put on the Sonya Dakar Drying Potion just in case.

I moisturize like four times a day. People say I have dolphin skin. I don’t know what dolphins feel like, but that’s what I’ve been told. I always exfoliate with Diptyque Smoothing Body Polish—I love the spongey texture of it and it smells like a dream. The Sabon Body Scrub is great too, because my skin feels baby soft afterwards. Then I'll use Aesop Geranium Body Balm or Bioderma Nourishing Balm, which I just got.

And then there’s all my Hawaiian stuff—Coconut Skin Trip, almond oil, Sun Bum Cool Down After Sun Lotion—that's the best in the summer, sometimes I even put it in the fridge. I'm obsessed with anything that smells beachy, like the Amazing Maui Babe After Browning Lotion and their tanning stuff. Last time I was in Hawaii, I got a bunch of products by Honey Girl Organics. I think they sell it at Whole Foods, too. I use their After Sun Rejuvenating Face and Body Lotion. It's like putting honey on your skin. All their products give you this glow.

I love oils—the Nars Monoï de Tahiti oil for my skin and my hair is great and I really like the Dr. Hauschka Rose Body Oil. I'm really into essential oils at the moment—I put Dr. Hauschka Foot Balm with lavender and rosemary oils on my feet before bed. It smells really weird, but works well. And then I finish up with Yardley of London English Rose Powder and go to sleep.

My hair is probably the most low-maintenance thing about me. It's always been really long. When I was a kid, it was just hair and feet. I trim it all the time to keep it healthy; I don’t really have a maximum length. In the summer in New York, I let it air dry—the only heat I use on my hair is the sun. I don’t like when girls have dripping wet hair when they're going some place, so I'll braid mine if I'm going somewhere. I try to wash it once every two to three days using the Shu Uemura Moisture Velvet Nourishing Shampoo. I also love the Oribe shampoo and conditioners. I like the hair masks from both of those brands, too.

Once it's dry, I'll put some product in and throw it up in a topknot, but it does get kind of heavy. I like the surf sprays for the summer, like Brooklyn Beach Hair Spray, which I found at Warm on Mott Street. It creates this amazing sea wave texture.

I’m not a makeup girl. Actually, I used to wear makeup until Tommy Ton was me for Halloween one year—it was the most terrifying thing I’ve ever seen. It was basically Tommy in drag, and after seeing that, I never wore makeup again. [Laughs] I’ll still use tinted moisturizer and primer like Nars Pore Refining Primer with Nars Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer in Cuba on top. It keeps up with my tan. And every now and then, I’ll use Perricone MD No Foundation Foundation. But I don’t put anything else on my face. Except maybe some Perscriptives Camouflage Cream if I get a spot.

Right now, my favorite lip color is Nars 413 BLKR. I love MAC Morange—it’s a very '90s orange. With that, I use Nars Velvet Matte Lipstick Pencil in Red Square, which is sort of orange, but it makes the color less '90s and little more red.

For my brows, I love the Anastasia pencils. Their Clear Brow Gel is really awesome too—it sets everything in place.

Patchouli is one of my favorite scents, I put it behind my ears. Santa Maria Novella makes the best Patchouli Cologne in the world. It’s one of those things that people love or hate, but I love that kind of musky, weird, strong scent. It’s like a spell. It’s very intense and distinct. Whenever I go into that store, I end up spending like $500 because everything smells so divine. But I always switch my perfumes. Dries van Noten Par Frederic Malle is a favorite right now. There is patchouli in it, but it’s not full-on like the Santa Maria ones. Diptyque Geranium Odorata smells amazing too, like a dream. I have my Comme Des Garçons Series 2 Red or Series 1: Leaves Lily that I love. And I always have candles going on.

I have so much stuff, I don’t ever buy to replace. I end up using everything together with no rhyme or reason. All I have in my apartment is beauty products, my shoes, and me."

—as told to ITG

Sarah Chavez photographed by Emily Weiss in New York on August 7, 2014.

Let’s Talk About It! JOIN IN
  • Lucia

    I'd love to know where all her gold earrings are from! Gorgeous!

    • Clare

      Me too!

    • bluesky557

      Ditto. And I'm loving her necklace!

  • Molly

    Love this, her hair is stunning. I loved the first issue of 25 and have been looking forward to the 2nd one. The 25 Magazine website is down, does anyone else know where I can find it?

  • Eliza

    Haha a girl after my own heart: "All I have in my apartment is beauty products, my shoes, and me." Also a huge fan of the Anastasia brow gel.

    And has anyone used the Perricone MD No Foundation Foundation? Love the idea of it but I think it's full of essential oils and dimethecone (i.e., my skin' sown personal hell). Does anyone know of a similar formula? So intrigued by it!

    • Monkey

      I tried it for a while but it broke me out really badly and also you need to have a medium skin tone to use turned me a bit orange because I very fair skin

    • Bee Wintour

      I have it and it works well on my acne prone skin. It's light coverage but I don't mind it since it's been helping my skin! Definitely worth the $55 price tag. Go to Sephora and ask for a sample. :)

    • katie

      Yes, and I swear by it! there are two different forumulas: one is the "no foundation foundation" and the other is "no foundation foundation serum." the latter comes in two shades rather than just one and has a more liquid texture. I personally prefer the serum, having tried both. The no foundation foundation is more matte, and I have to blend with other products to get my color. Neither breaks me out, and both look very natural. Give it a go!!

  • kt mo

    As an avid sun worshiper, i always appreciate hearing from Top Shelfers who are the same way. It's like, yes we KNOW it's bad because we are capable of reading. But the endorphins! Mmm...

  • Luna

    I love this top shelf and her house is so incredibly gorgeous. I sometimes feel though, that the empowerment happens when we don't judge things as prude or vulgar, in extreme terms, just because it is not in our taste. Of course when it comes to things like Terry Richardson's photography abundant in magazines now I totally agree it's sexist and vulgar, but I don't think things are vulgar if they are overtly sexual, or prudish on the other pole. I totally get her idea about being inspired by nudity that is about empowerment, of course, but I think when people start to pick apart what kind of nudity is not empowering or not, saying "there's no way this is about liberation, she is exploited!" instead of leaving it up to the individuals to decide, then it takes away from the point.

  • Yan

    "I have so much stuff, I don’t ever buy to replace. I end up using everything together with no rhyme or reason." This is me.

    I also like the fact that she's Filipino (a "pure" one!; you can also feel the Spanish influence by her last name, the Philippines was colonized by Spain for about 333 years). Maybe I haven't read enough ITG but I think it's my first time seeing a Southeast Asian here. Usually when people say "Asian", they think of people in East Asia (Japanese, Chinese, Koreans), who usually have porcelain skin and monolid eyes.

    • Oui Capitan

      YES! Finally, someone on ITG who looks like me!

  • JO

    I'm loving this Emily! It's about time we get more Asian exposure on ITG (y) :D Love your site even more. xoxo Long-time follower, Jo

  • Vanessa Reyes

    Love this Top Shelf! I too have an obsession with anything that smells beachy. I already have the Sun Bum Cool Down After Sun Lotion now I have to try the others she mentioned.

  • Lea

    She's great!

  • Aubrey Green

    I love the apartment.

  • starryhye

    I'd love to know what brand and color her nail polish is!

  • CherHorowitz

    Is that a microwave next to her bathroom sink???

  • Holly

    All the expensive skincare in the world can't help you if you don't use a dedicated facial sunscreen or body sunscreen at all and you like to sunbathe, unfortunately.

  • Emma Hager

    That is one of my most charming apartments I have ever seen (photographed.)

  • Ines Pedroza


  • Christina

    Fantastic read and a very cute apartment but why is the microwave in the bathroom?? Am I wrong?

  • Vanessa Reyes

    I bought the cream and I love it!!! I still have some perfume left from when Estee Lauder did the Azuree Soleil line. Bronze Goddess reminds me of that. I'm thinking I might have to get the perfume too if it's still available.

  • Lily

    Sarah is right about the hair - sometimes long hair can be really low maintenance, especially if you air dry.

  • firefirepants

    "I never wore makeup again." Here is the list of makeup I wear. Uh huh. She is amazing and I love the natural vibe, but if you wear foundation or lipstick you definitely wear makeup.

  • Serena

    So happy someone else is a patchouli lover! Why does it get such a bad rap??!

  • Lora Gahol-Fonacier

    Ecstatic to see a fellow Filipina on ITG! Lucky Sarah, though, who has beautiful caramel skin! I'm 100% Filipino but white as paper. Boo hoo.

  • Luna

    Woah that is the best compliment ever and now I am super embarrassed thank you!!


La Roche-Posay
La Roche-Posay Thermal Spring Water
Santa Maria Novella
Santa Maria Novella Rose Water
Dr.Hauschka Skin Care
Dr.Hauschka Skin Care Cleansing Cream
Dr.Hauschka Skin Care
Dr.Hauschka Skin Care Soothing Cleansing Milk
Clarisonic Aria
Bliss Pore Perfecting Facial Polish
Joelle Ciocco
Joëlle Ciocco Lotion Lacteé
Joelle Ciocco
Joëlle Ciocco Eyelisse Eye-Lip Contour Emulsion
Chanel Hydra Beauty Sérum
GM Collin
GM Collin Concentrate
Nars Skin Aqua Gel Luminous Oil-Free Moisturizer
NARS Luminous Moisture Cream
Kiehl's Since 1851
Kiehl's Since 1851 Powerful Wrinkle Reducing Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 30
Boscia Luminizing Black Mask
Dr.Hauschka Skin Care
Dr.Hauschka Skin Care Hydrating Mask
SK-II Signs Eye Mask
Kiehl's Since 1851
Kiehl's Facial Fuel Eye De-Puffer
Aveda Intensive Hydrating Masquel
Sonya Dakar
Sonya Dakar Drying Potion
diptyque Smoothing Body Polish
Sabon Body Scrub Delicate Jasmine
Aesop Geranium Leaf Body Balm
Bioderma Ultra Nourishing Emollient Balm
Skin Trip
Skin Trip Mountain Ocean Coconut Moisturizer
Sun Bum
Sun Bum Cool Down After Sun Lotion
Maui Babe
After Browning Lotion Tan Enhancer and Healer
Honey Girl
Honey Girl After Sun Rejuvenating Face and Body Lotion
Nars Monoï de Tahiti Body Glow II
Dr.Hauschka Skin Care
Dr.Hauschka Skin Care Rose Body Oil
Dr. Hauschka
Dr. Hauschka Rosemary Foot Balm
Yardley of London
Yardley of London English Rose Powder
Shu Uemura
Shu Uemura Moisture Velvet Nourishing Conditioner
Urban Outfitters
Brooklyn Beach Hair Spray
NARS Pro-Prime Oil Free Pore Refining Primer
NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer
Perricone MD
Perricone MD No Foundation Foundation SPF 30
Perscriptives Camouflage Cream
Nars 413 BLKR Semi-Matte Lipstick
MAC Lipstick
NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil
Anastasia Beverly Hills
Anastasia Beverly Hills 'Brow Wiz' Mechanical Brow Pencil Medium Ash
Anastasia Beverly Hills
Anastasia Beverly Hills Clear Brow Gel
Santa Maria Novella
Santa Maria Novella Patchouli Cologne
Santa Maria Novella
Dries Van Noten Par Frederic Malle
diptyque Geranium Odorata
Comme Des Garcons
Comme Des Garcons Series 2 Red Rose Perfume
Comme Des Garcons Fragrance
Comme des Garcons Parfums Series 1 Lily Eau de Toilette