celebrity shopping

What Tawny Cypress Can’t Live Without

Photo-Illustration: The Strategist; Photo: Getty Images

If you’re like us, you’ve probably wondered what famous people add to their carts. Not the JAR brooch and Louis XV chair but the hair spray and the electric toothbrush. We asked actress Tawny Cypress — who co-stars in Showtime’s Yellowjackets (which debuts season two Friday, March 24, on demand and Sunday, March 26, on air) — about the cheap conditioner she uses as styling lotion, slippers she refuses to throw out, and late-night television snack.

A friend of mine in New Jersey turned me on to Thrive mascara. I saw her lashes and said, “Babe, do you have falsies on? Because your eyes look amazing.” I sound like a commercial right now, but I swear to God, that’s exactly what happened. She told me about this, and I’ve used it ever since. It’s the kind of mascara that makes little poly-something tubes around your eyelashes, and it’s awesome. It doesn’t come off until I take it off. I’m 46 years old and my skin is 46 years old, so products that don’t move are a plus in my book.

I’ve been using it since I was a teenager. It’s standard. I’ve tried so many other brands along the way — from fancy to other cheap ones — and I always come back to this. Gotta go with cherry because it smells the best. You know, us brown girls need a lot of moisture on our lips, so the cherry Chapstick is always in my pocket.

Ever since I was a teenager, I’ve found that thick, cheap conditioner, like this or Pantene, works for my curls as styling lotion. My hair doesn’t want to be bothered. It’s a lot like me — we’re both lazy. So after a shower and hair towel dry, I put a shit ton of it in my hair, let my hair air dry, and she’s a happy beast. And you know, hairdressers are really gonna hate me for this one. I debated leaving it off. In my career, I work with hairdressers all the time and try everything under the sun. People are constantly trying to give me products that they say are good for curly hair, but curly hair is like fingerprints. Me and my sister don’t have the same curly hair, so what works for me won’t work for other people.

I’d rather be on my computer than my phone, so my MacBook is my right hand. Without it, I can’t function. I use it to watch television, get my news, do all of my creative stuff. It’s easy to edit my auditions on my MacBook. I also knit and make my own patterns using different apps on my computer. It’s preferable to pen and paper.

If you ever see me out in the wild, I will be sporting a pair of Adidas track pants. I’ve got ’em in every color and style they make. They’re super-comfy, good enough to go out shopping in and also sleep in. They’re pretty much PJs you can wear outside, but they look cool. I remember for a while I wouldn’t wear them because I thought they’d make me look like I had chicken legs, but no. They don’t. They look pretty good on everybody.

I mean, have you seen these slippers? They are perfect. In fact, I’m wearing mine right now. They’re so old that my husband tried to get me a new pair for Christmas, but I wouldn’t let him. They are everything a slipper is supposed to be: comfy, roomy, cute. Also, you can take out the inner sole and wash it separately, so you’re not washing an entire slipper. It’s such a cool feature. I’d rather wear them than any other pair of shoes on earth. I’ll wear them out to lunch, too. I don’t care. I’m pretty much a zhlub in public. If you ever see me out, you’d be like, Yep, she described herself well.

Benetton was the coolest brand back in the late ’80s, early ’90s. They had the best models, the best clothes. If you had a Benetton in your mall, you had the best mall. We were poor growing up, so I never got to wear any Benetton, but now I’m a grown-up and I get to wear whatever I want. Unfortunately, Benetton is no longer in the United States, so you have to go on its website to shop. (I want to single-handedly bring it back to America.) So I do, and I wear it all the time. I’m usually in Adidas on the bottom and something Benetton on top.

I have a coat of Benetton’s that I wear every year that it doesn’t make anymore. When the weather turns, I know it’s going to make me feel better. Literally every time I wear this coat, people tell me how great it is. I’ve had people stop their car as they’re driving by, roll down their window, and say, “Oh my God, what a cool coat.” Christina [Ricci] has been with me a few times because we hang out a lot. She’s like, “You can’t wear that coat without somebody commenting on it.” And I’m like, “Yep, it’s the coolest coat ever.” They have great tracksuits, too. If you wanna grab a tracksuit, I suggest either all white or all black.

That’s my Starbucks order. It’s essential for me to have that cup of coffee in the morning. I don’t say “grande” or “quad shot.” I don’t speak the language, and I don’t want to. I say, “Medium four-shot whole-milk latte.” One time, somebody thought I said oat milk, and that was an awful day. I go whole-fat foods whenever possible.

They’re so yummy and simple. I stick with classic cheddar cheese. I tried the Flavor Blasted, which is good, but I normally stick with the original. I can eat a handful or a whole bag in a night. They’re a little dangerous, but it’s like my popcorn. My husband knows this, so there’s always a bag ready. I snack on it in bed while watching television at night. I’m usually watching Frasier, The Golden Girls, Family Guy, or American Dad. Those are my going-to-bed shows.

I’m a mom, and when my son was young, I started carrying a deck of cards. He was always the best-behaved child in the restaurant because I’d just pull it out and we’d play War, Go Fish, something simple. It would be interactive with him, but it didn’t feel like work. It made restaurants, airports, and car rides smoother. It’s essential for any parent with young children for situations when you’re completely bored. I still carry them in my purse. They’ve never come out on set, but we have had some fun Trivial Pursuit nights.


There’s a lot to choose from when it comes to Stephen King, and God, I love him. He has so many books that I don’t know if I’ll ever get through all of them. I’ve always got one of them on me. Right now I’m finishing up Night Shift, which is a book of short stories. It’s so much fun. I wish we could have a show that’s like The Twilight Zone but with Stephen King stories. Nothing beats him, hands down.

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What Tawny Cypress Can’t Live Without