Jackie Cruz has every reason to be full of herself. Let’s just put that out there. The Domincan-American beauty, who plays the goth and often unaware Flaca Gonzalez on Netflix’s #1 series Orange Is the New Black, is a talented actress, (real-life) singer and songwriter who
you would I expected to be sitting in a VIP corner when she recently hosted Überliss‘ braid bar at the Paramount Hotel in NYC. What I found instead was a disarmingly funny and down-to-earth interview that felt a lot more like talking to a bestie I was trading makeup and boy secrets with the first ten minutes (true story, although the latter is off-the-record). She was down to dish all with no pretense. Read on for her favorite new hair brand she recently partnered with, beauty secrets from her grandma (apparently vapor rub is the new Windex solution for everything), and yes, her infamous kiss with a certain Kardashian.
Beauty and the Feast: Tell me a little about why you decided to partner with Überliss.
Jackie Cruz: I have crazy curly hair that I’m always using straightening treatments on, so that’s really how it started. Überliss has a lot of products that’s really helping with my dry hair. Their Rituoil is my favorite. My hair gets really frizzy in the summertimes so this keeps it nice and smooth.
BATF: What are your must-have beauty products?
Cruz: I’ve perfected the cat eye with Chantecaille’s eyeliner. I love it, it’s perfect. M.A.C.’s Ruby Woo lipstick is a must. I really can’t live without a luminizer. I love the one by RMS. When I wear it, I’m just glowing. I use it everyday, not just on the red carpet.
BATF: Do you have any beauty secrets that were passed on to you from your mom?
Cruz: I’m Dominican and we have curly coarse hair. I’m big on avocado treatments and egg whites to keep my hair shiny. You just apply it and shampoo wash it off and it makes your hair really glossy. My grandma puts vapor rub on everything. Dominicans mix it with baby oil and apply it on a zit. I also have a problem with bags under my eyes, so I just put a cold spoon on freezer and place it under my eyes for a few minutes to minimize them.
BATF: What’s one of your favorite story lines from OITNB?
Cruz: I love Lorna. In the first season, she was sweet but you don’t know why she’s in prison or her obsession with Christopher. [Yael Stone] is such a great actress and amazing person. We read lines to each other. She’s a great person to work with and a great friend. Just very talented.
BATF: How did you prepare for your role as Flaca?
Cruz: I have a friend who’s Flaca. She’s the real life Flaca from back in the day. We used to waitress together. I told her, you’re going to own a Black Card one day. She’s like, ‘Aww that’s the nicest thing anyone’s ever told me!’ That’s Flaca right there. She used to do crazy things and I told her one day I’m going to play you on TV. For two years I’ve been imitating her. So thanks to her, I’m Flaca. I don’t mention her name, because she wouldn’t want me to. But only me and her need to know about that. She’s always representing that, she posts my things and supports me unconditionally. Now she’s in college and a motivational speaker – Flaca! She’s Flaca’s future.
BATF: Let’s talk about the other half of my blog — food! Do you cook at all? What are your favorite things to make?
Cruz: I was also raised Italian. My Italian family taught me how to cook. I can make a mean lasagna and spicy meatballs. I can’t cook Dominican food sadly– I like to go to my aunts house in the DR and have the real thing. I was so spoiled.
BATF: Let’s do a speed round. Finish the sentence with the first thing that comes to your head. One of my worst habits is…
Cruz: Salt and vinegar chips
BATF: I don’t understand people who don’t like…
Cruz: Mexican food
BATF: My style is…
Cruz: Edgy, different.
BATF: My style role models are…
Cruz: Sophia Loren, Cher.
BATF: I get inspired by…
Cruz: French magazines.
BATF: My favorite place in the whole world is…
Cruz: My home. It can be anywhere. I’m a gypsy. That’s why my album’s called Hollywood Gypsy.
BATF: My celebrity crush is…
Cruz: He not alive though — does that matter? Elvis Presley.
BATF: Last question. I looked up your character on a site, and all it said in your bio was, “once kissed Kourtney Kardashian.” Any comment?
Cruz: (laughs) We need to change that! It was something that happened five years ago. I was just a girl having fun. I’m sure you’ve kissed a girl in your life…
BATF: I can’t say that I have…
Cruz: Wow, you must be one in a million! I used to practice. It’s just something you do randomly in the moment. I’m focused on my career now. Now I have a name for myself, people bring that up but I say let it go.
Thanks to Jackie Cruz and Uberliss for a fun interview!