So, I'm on cloud 9 because I got to speak to the nation’s biggest fashion influencer (Hi Santoshi!) last week and it was everything I had prophesied. Raw and honest with a plush dose of fitness and health advice (I’d take notes if I were you). While her picturesque social media page is literally everything, Shetty takes us through an eye opening BTS and her strict routine that helps her maintain a healthy gut, body and mind. Ahead, Santoshi Shetty reveals how she reacted to her first dislike, how trolls brew mainly out of insecurity, her morning meal, the importance of taking care of your body and alot more.
1. You instagram bio reads - 'your flying cheese, glowing & growing with you'. Tell us a little bit about what the line indicates.
Shetty: Sure. So, I have a tattoo of a slice of cheese with wings. That symbolises my love for travel and food. But at the same time it's also other things that I've learnt. Like meeting people, and growing with them through my travels. Food on the other hand has healed me. So it’s linked to a lot of different things. The glowing and growing means helps each other glow and grow together.
2. What's your secret to staying positive and happy during such difficult times, especially since there's so much focus on mental health and well being now?
Shetty: I think it’s very important to take care of your body because when you do that automatically everything just falls in place. Not just your body, but your mind and soul. I used to take care of my body before, but I saw this specific time as a blessing. Because life was fast before and one day I stopped to ask myself, ‘what about me?’. I never really had time for myself. So, this time has allowed me to get into a routine of working out, yoga and meditation. It is also about learning how to deal with a situation in a calmer manner and how to be a little detached from everything that’s happening around you. According to me Yoga can help with mental health and give you the power to take anything without breaking down instead helps understand the higher purpose. I also love dancing. It’s a great release. And most importantly, be mindful of your diet. Indulging once in a while is alright but that can’t be your lifestyle. If you wanna be positive or make really heavy decisions and you want to be clear in your mind the food has influence and sugar can make your mind clouded. What you eat today is going to show in ten years and I'm referring to the mind and mental health. I really took time to understand food and how it affects your gut and your brain.
3. Social media as we all know now, has its own advantages and disadvantages. While it helps most digital stars to connect directly with the audience, the internet can get brutal. How do you deal with trolls?
Shetty: 7 years ago when I had a dislike for this youtube video I uploaded., I ran to my dad and I said ‘Dad! I got a dislike’. It was that day i realised that if you give importance to that, you are automatically giving them the power. When I spot a troll the questions that immediately pops in my head is, ‘Bro, where are you and why are you so angry? Did someone say something to you?’. I honestly don’t get affected personally and I don't like to pay attention to it. My approach is I still concentrate and focus on the love that I’m getting. I don't like wasting my energy focusing on something that shallow. They don’t even know me. I think hate comes from a place of suffering, so I understand that but I don't entertain that because I don't have that in me.
4. What is the first thing you do when you get up?
Shetty: I consciously avoid checking my phone and my text messages. So, after I wake up I walk for an hour and listen to a podcast. I meditate and then get to my work mails, missed calls etc.
5. Three beauty products you cannot live without?
Shetty: I’m obsessed with mascara. I’ve been using They’re Real By Benefit for the past six years. A nude lipstick. The third one is a tie between a good concealer and a cheek tint. You’ll always see these products in my handbag.
6. Can you tell us a little bit about your diet and how you maintain a healthy gut
Shetty: I try to stay gluten-free and dairy for most days. Ghee is really good for your gut (I LOVE ghee), so I mostly cook my food with ghee or virgin coconut oil. I strongly stay away from sugar. I do believe in following a rainbow diet. Some colored vegetables. I’m an eggetarian so I mix my veggies with some eggs for my morning meal. I also enjoy banana egg pancakes. I love South Indian as well, so idlis. Intermittent fasting is something I follow religiously as well. In the afternoon I have a salad or even just some rice and veggies with dal. I like it light in the evening, so I have pumpkin or mushroom soup in the evening and when get a sweet craving, I turn to fruits. I do have my cheat days, but my fitness coach calls it reward days. So that helps me appreciate it more.
7. Your body is AMAZING. Tell us what your fitness regimen looks like?
Shetty: I'm a licensed zumba instructor and my mother is a power yoga trainer, so fitness was always around me. So, post that I would make sure that I maintain what I had built. However last year, I started strength and weight training and ashtanga yoga. Plus, sticking to my one hour walks in the morning has really helped. I also like to dance it out. Because I feel great when I’m consistent so I make sure I post about it so that I inspire people to feel the same and do it for themselves.
8. Would you like to convey anything to our enthusiastic fans (that love you) that are currently reading this?
Shetty: First of all, I just really want to thank Nykaa for being a part of my journey since the very beginning. My first couple of collaborations were with you’ll right when I just started. So yes, I want to thank you for giving me a platform right at the beginning of my journey and my career. Coming to all the fans, thank you for still loving me and still appreciating my work and I certainly hope everyone learns and grows together.