Jenna Ortega on Hair Care, Upcoming Roles and Coming of Age

Jenna Ortega – the newest actor in the anticipated 1970s slasher film, Xas well as The consequences, a tragically empowering story told in tandem with Maddie Ziegler — is poised to be the scream queen of the horror genre. With his future main role in Wednesdaya Netflix limited series centered on the eldest sister of the Addams Family, she’s the third actor to portray the beloved character (and many are eagerly awaiting the release, which is promised to drop later this year).

And while the 19-year-old Gen Z muse and Neutrogena ambassador has her feet firmly planted in the world of film and TV, she openly admits to me that she’s still figuring it out when it’s it’s about her self-care and wellness routines. Although that being said, the California-born Latina Is have some tried-and-true hair-care tips — and her healthy, espresso-brown tresses are a sure testament to that.

Looking radiant and eyes shining (even on Zoom), I chatted with Ortega about her haircare secrets, her approach to beauty, and her current wellness routine.

When did you first become interested in beauty and hair care?

I think a big part of that was my mother, [mostly] because she always stresses the importance of self-care. I also started in [film] the industry was quite young, so I was doing photo shoots and doing makeup for the first time. I felt very feminine and [wanted] to assimilate everything as much as possible.

I have an older sister who is also very into skincare and makeup. She has only ever used Neutrogena products, which makes [being the brand’s ambassador] so full circle. I did this “little sister thing” by copying everything she did, like washing my face or using a spoolie brush to pretend I was putting on mascara.

See the women in my house before me [their beauty routines]it’s something that came naturally to me.

I’m sure your hair is constantly damaged by styling and heating tools – how do you detox and care for your hair after long days of styling?

It’s funny that you say that, because the work I was working on recently [involved] a lot of dirt, grime, [fake] blood and wigs – so my hair was going through a lot. [My hair] was dyed black, I was in Romania, so it was cold and snowing… but I just got back [home] and i did a bunch of treatments to take care of my hair, and i took out the black [dye].

Recently I used the new Neutrogena Healthy Scalp shampoo and conditioner. It’s really good for the summer and it protects against UV rays — and because I just worked seven months on it [project], it’s important that I be as kind to my hair as possible. I also try not to put heat [on my hair].

Another thing I’ve been doing lately, I try not to wash my hair as often because I’m used to washing it every day. I have naturally thin hair and it gets oily [quickly]so I try to practice a little.

What’s your favorite way to style your hair lately?

With my hair, either I leave it loose or I put on a hat or a beanie.

I [prefer] the way my hair is down, but it’s also nice to keep it out of my face – especially with those bangs that get in my eyes all the time. I wore it half up, half down in a small bun because it’s easy and quick, but my bangs are still down.

Many actors have to keep their looks pretty much the same for recurring roles or movie projects they’re in — but if you could do anything you wanted to your hair, what would it be?

I’m not too attached to my hair – they can do what they want with it [for particular roles]and I would be up for anything.

I always consider color, mostly because I miss my naturally dark hair – but doing anything else would be really damaging because I’d have to bleach it first, so that worries me a bit. But I’m a bit into going for a very short cut, almost like a boy cut. I think that would be really fun and different for me, and that would be [feel] refreshing – and then I could experience all the difficult stages in between.

During these rest days, what does your wellness routine look like?

It’s such a difficult question because I feel like I’m still establishing it in my life. I am in this delicate transition phase where [I’m] a full adult now. Something I recently took up is Pilates. It makes me feel good and I feel [the burn] the next day.

I drink a lot of juice, and if I can make my own juice, I will. I’ve recently become dangerously obsessed with ginger if possible where it needs to be at every meal and I’m taking my shots [of it] in the morning – I like the burn.

I try to go for walks and do face masks if I can. I’ve never really been a bath person, but I love a nice hot shower, and [I try to] go to bed early because I’m really distressed by my sleep.

And reading. I don’t read as much as I used to [but] I realize that I’m happiest when I actually learn something.

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