For Queer Eye’s Antoni Porowski, Self-Care Sometimes Means a Bowl of Cheese for Dinner

Whether you believe that Greek yogurt belongs in guacamole or not, it’s pretty clear that Antoni Porowski’s calling is bestowing his own personal brand of food and drink wisdom upon Queer Eye‘s makeover candidates. He may have a taste for the finer things in life, but Antoni is never condescending when it comes to teaching someone to whip up an elevated vinaigrette or proudly garnish a dish of their own creation— even if all they may have known how to cook before is a PB&J sandwich.

Every episode, the Fab Five teach lessons on personal grooming, wardrobe, self-affirming wisdom, home decorating, and hospitality — a 360-degree approach to confidence, and a concept that viewers can’t get enough of. Now that their show is on its fourth season (and renewed for a fifth!), Antoni and the gang are in higher demand than ever.

Despite his busy schedule, we caught up with the show’s food and drink expert to find out his self-care practices when the cameras stop rolling and he has some time to himself. Here are Antoni’s Feel Good Five.

1.A special drink in a very special mug.

After a long day, especially when it’s raining or late at night, I love to cut out segments of grapefruit and slivers of crystallized ginger and put them in this really oversized Stormtrooper mug that I have with honey and hot water. I remember it from childhood. Whenever I was sick, my parents would give that to me when I had a cold and it just immediately puts me at ease. Sometimes if the water is too hot, I’ll throw in frozen raspberries. It’s so nice. I drink a lot of caffeine during the day so that for me is usually like, Ahh, time to rest now. It gets me set up for bed. Also it has to be in that mug.

2. A calming candle ritual.

As soon as I get home I always light a candle. I have a variety of different ones — it’s like my indulgence. I like going to nice little shops and have certain brands that I like in particular. My three go-tos are Byredo, Malin + Goetz, and classic Diptyque. They make simple scents that aren’t too complicated; it’s a great gift. I switch based on the seasons. In the summer I’ll choose something floral or herbaceous, and then in the winters I’ll do sandalwood, leather, tobacco, frankincense, and myrrh, which is like the smell of church. I’m not a religious person, but I remember going to Catholic church as a kid growing up and there’s something serene about the scents.

3. A restorative snack.

I love to have a snack that makes me feel good. My favorite trio right now is Vermont sharp cheddar that my dad sends me from Cabot. It’s really salty and sweet and it crumbles really beautifully. I take the edge of a sharp paring knife and I crumble little nuggets into a bowl. And then I pair the cheese with Triscuit Wheatberry Clusters (the ones with pumpkin seeds and sweet corn). They’re the perfect size — not too big not to small. Then I get some Medjool dates. I love the ones from Rancho Meladuco. They’re big, beautiful, juicy dates. I cut out the pit and I rip them apart into small little pieces.

So you get sweet and sticky, you get a little salt and crunch, and the decadence of the cheese. Sometimes I’m too tired and I have this for dinner. It’s a bowl filled with snacks. It covers all of your bases.

4. An evening skincare regimen (inspired by JVN).

Jonathan has taught me a lot about skincare, which is something that I didn’t used to do. I have my regimen every night. I wash my face, I apply a toner, I put a night oil on, then a moisturizer and under-eye cream. Yes, skincare is important, but more importantly it gives me five minutes where I’m standing in front of the mirror and I’m doing something that’s just purely for me. It feels really nice. I’m telling myself, You’re going to be going to bed soon. I’m very sensory. I have this nighttime serum from La Prairie that’s awesome. There’s something in it that makes me think of my soft pillow and gets me ready for bed.

5. A playlist that soothes the soul.

Music is everything to me. I want something that will calm me down at the end of the day right after I light my candle. I have two go-to songs right now from this band called The National. I wear their T-shirts on Queer Eye; I’m a huge fan (Ed. note: Shirt pictured above). One song I love is called “Geese of Beverly Road.” Do me a favor and please listen to it. It’s so lovely, romantic, and poetic. The other song I love is called “Santa Clara.“

Follow Antoni around the internet on Twitter and Instagram, and watch him do his thing on Netflix’s Queer Eye.

Thanks so much for sharing, Antoni!

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