How Sasha Colby Takes the Edge Off

Welcome to Take the Edge Off, a series that breaks down the beauty and self-care routines of influencers, CEOs, experts, and celebrities. Find out how they unwind and decompress, while taking a closer look at the holy-grail essentials they’re currently raving about.

You could argue that RuPaul’s Drag Race star Sasha Colby was born for the stage: The performer and actor is a favorite of superfans and fellow entertainers alike. And not only is Colby the season 15 winner of the hit TV show, she also counts herself as a crown holder of the celebrated Miss Continental pageant.

These days, Colby has been literally taking her show on the road with Stripped, a show she is performing on a 22-city North American tour. Stripped explores her sometimes challenging route to self-discovery, from her early days growing up in her native Hawaii to ultimately cementing her place as a through-and-through drag legend and advocate for transgender rights. “It’s been really fun to share the journey into my crazy brain and wild imagination,” Colby tells Bazaar. “And I get to tell these stories of human connection.”

We caught up with the star ahead of her sold-out show at New York City’s TownHall for a behind-the-scenes look at her go-to beauty and wellness routines. Read on for a short list of tried-and-true essentials that help Colby feel grounded, from a thorough nighttime skincare rotation to wearing thigh-high compression boots.

What are you reading or listening to these days?

Let’s see—I love Hawaiian music, so I’ve been into different Hawaiian artists, and reliving my teen years and listening to a lot of reggae and Bob Marley. In the state of the world, I feel like there’s so much resonance right now with his music.

What are some of your go-to bath or shower products?

I’m obsessed with Amika’s whole hydration line for my hair. I went blonde and it just broke all off, so I’ve been on a journey the last few years to transition to an easier color, so we can grow some hair back, you know what I’m saying? I also love Innisfree, and I love me some Aēsop—anything with a rose scent. But my favorite go-to that I always have is Dr. Bronner’s. It’s antibacterial, it’s clean, so that’s my first line of cleansing defense. For face, I love La Mer’s the Revitalizing Mist and Origins’ Mega-Mushroom Relief and Resilience Soothing Treatment Lotion. It smells so good and just kind of calms your face down after wearing a lot of makeup. I’m also really into Sunday Riley’s Good Genes and Be Nice serums—some sort of hyaluronic acid at night is great, because my skin is very dehydrated, especially on planes.

Hydro Rush Hydration Heroes Hair Value Set
Amika Hydro Rush Hydration Heroes Hair Value Set
Credit: Sephora
Pure-Castile Liquid Soap in Rose
Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castile Liquid Soap in Rose

Now 49% Off

Credit: Walmart
The Revitalizing Mist
La Mer The Revitalizing Mist
Credit: Neiman Marcus
Mega-Mushroom Relief & Resilience Soothing Treatment Lotion
Origins Mega-Mushroom Relief & Resilience Soothing Treatment Lotion
Credit: Origins
Good Genes All-in-One Lactic Acid Treatment
Sunday Riley Good Genes All-in-One Lactic Acid Treatment
Credit: Amazon
B3 Nice 10% Niacinamide Serum
Sunday Riley B3 Nice 10% Niacinamide Serum

What beauty or self-care products do you use on a regular basis to help combat Zoom fatigue?

I always have cold feet, so I love anything warming. And actually, I just bought these heated compression socks from Amazon, and they’re like boots all the way up to my thigh. I slide them on and Velcro them, and they literally squeeze your legs while heating them up. And for me always being in heels, it always helps, and no one ever notices I’m wearing them on Zoom!

Quinear Air Compression Recovery System

Air Compression Recovery System

Quinear Air Compression Recovery System

Credit: Amazon

Do you have a favorite hand sanitizer, soap, or cream right now?

I love the shape of Touchland’s Power Mist—it’s the perfect size to fit in your purse, genius packaging for the gal on the go. And as far as hand cream, I like to use this nongreasy formula from Hawthorne. I need my hands moisturized, but I hate a greasy phone, so I’m on constant alert for a product that keeps them soft without having, like, chicken grease all over my screen.

Touchland Power Mist Hydrating Hand Sanitizer

Power Mist Hydrating Hand Sanitizer

Touchland Power Mist Hydrating Hand Sanitizer

Credit: Sephora

Hawthorne Ultra-Rich Eucalyptus Hand Cream

Ultra-Rich Eucalyptus Hand Cream

Hawthorne Ultra-Rich Eucalyptus Hand Cream

Credit: Hawthorne

Do you ever light a candle or stick of incense to decompress? If so, what are some of your favorites?

So, the incense that I love burning is from this place in San Francisco—it’s a witch shop. I forget the actual name of the place, but it’s on this little itty-bitty cobblestone side street and is well known in the city. My two favorites are named Spider-Woman and Lilith; and in the Bible, Lilith is the opposite of Eve, so kind of a little dark feminine energy.

What was the last beauty product you put on today?

Probably my Glow Oil from Sunday Riley, since I’m having a self-care day.

Sunday Riley C.E.O. Glow Vitamin C + Turmeric Face Oil

C.E.O. Glow Vitamin C + Turmeric Face Oil

Sunday Riley C.E.O. Glow Vitamin C + Turmeric Face Oil

Credit: Amazon

Are you into bold makeup, no makeup, or no-makeup makeup right now, and why?

Okay, so obviously for drag, it’s bold; but on a regular day, I’m really like a no-makeup person when not painted for work. I recently found the perfect combination of products for my no makeup-makeup look, which has a lot to do with the concealers from R.E.M. Beauty. They’re good. They’re almost like a little pomade or balm and apply nicely on top of skincare—they keep my skin looking like skin. I use different shades: one for concealer (medium 4N), one for contour (10C), and one for my skin (10N). Those, a little setting spray, some translucent powder in the T-zone, liquid blush—I’m a fan of Nars’s Orgasm—and a little lash with the L’Oréal Paris Voluminous Mascara. I’ve also been loving Youthforia’s face oils that come in all different colors to bring some life to my skin and lips. I love the coral-y orange shade Turn Up the Sunshine.

Sweetner Concealer
R.E.M. Beauty Sweetner Concealer
Credit: Ulta
Afterglow Liquid Blush in Orgasm
Nars Afterglow Liquid Blush in Orgasm
Credit: Ulta
BYO Blush in Turn Up the Sunshine
Youthforia BYO Blush in Turn Up the Sunshine
Credit: Amazon
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Voluminous Original Volume Building Mascara

L’Oréal Paris Voluminous Original Volume Building Mascara

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Credit: Amazon

What’s the last fitness class you streamed or attended in person?

I do hot yoga most often, but I guess you could also count my dance rehearsals. But hot yoga helps keep my muscles more limber and relaxes me, especially with the tour, traveling on the road, and all these airports. You just realize how much tension you carry. And I carry a lot of my shoulders, and then I’m a hair whipper onstage—I need a lot of a lot of stretching out.

What’s one piece of self-care advice you’d give our readers?

Oh my gosh: water, water, water, water, water, water. Water is the most amazing cure-all. To keep you hydrated, to keep you healthy, to keep your brain agile, water is just amazing. Also: sleep! Sleep if you can find it. I’m trying to take my own advice on that: making sleep a priority. I think it’s important to find ways to make yourself feel more relaxed—that’s a big part of self-care. And surround yourself with the right people. I get to create and travel around the country right now with some of my favorite people ever, which is also amazing self-care, making the show happen.


Tiffany Dodson is currently the associate beauty commerce editor at Harper’s Bazaar, where she specializes in trend forecasting, building relationships with major and emerging brands, and crafting shopping stories—from holiday gift guides to product road tests. Tiffany’s work has previously been featured in outlets like SELF, Bustle, and Teen Vogue, and she’s been quoted as a commerce and beauty expert in publications and platforms like The Business of Fashion and NPR’s Life Kit podcast.