Alina Grimm: “I’ve come a long way from complete rejection of myself to loving myself and my body.

Alina Grimm: I've come a long way from complete rejection of myself to loving myself and my body. - 1 - изображение

An exclusive interview for our Internet portal was given by Alina Grimm, a former makeup artist and now a clothing line creator and famous blogger. Alina talked about “re-training the blog,”  choosing a school for her son, self-care,  training and nutrition, and – shared her views on the role of women in the family and her plans for the future.     

Alina, tell us how and why you decided to start a blog on Instagram, what is the main message of your page?

At the time of the page’s creation, I was training and developing in the direction of makeup. Reviews of luxury cosmetics, which was  not found  in Ukrainian stores, increased interest in my page.

What are your favorite topics of discussion on the web, and are there any forbidden ones? Have you ever had to deal with a hatemonger? And how important is public opinion to you in general?

Since my page has been reformatted from a beauty blog to a lifestyle blog, the field of topics for discussion has expanded considerably. I can afford, within limits, to raise issues even of a political or religious nature. It’s important for me to feel free, at least where I can do it.

However, I would not bring up  family quarrels, or details of intimate life; topics in which I am completely incompetent; I would not want open conflicts with other bloggers – it is a bad hype.

Hate is legitimate to a large audience, and increases as it increases. The social history of the hater, for the most part, represents an immature teenager,  or an adult, uneducated, “battered”, narrow-minded  person, the consequence of their aggression  is often psychological problems on the background of the difficult economic situation in the country, where people, especially outside of Kiev  have to “survive” and endure, which “inflames” their perception  of showing people life in well-being and relative freedom of action. Our life is like a soap opera to them, they are so permeated by us that they let all of our events, actions and words pass through them.  Therefore,  I can’t take into account the content of the words said by the haters, whose difficult life circumstances, surroundings and foggy prospects, force them to cultivate negativity and, like lava, spew it out at someone. In a way, I am already “armored.

As for public opinion, I am a rebel by nature and have always sought inner freedom, wanting to destroy stereotypes, prejudices, clichés, foundations, and so on. They were always the cause of my inner conflicts and thoughts that “I’m not right.

After a while, I just began to separate concepts and people into “mine/not mine,” the latter I just ignore or let go. After all, it is “mine” that creates a favorable environment for life, fills it with color, replenishes vital energy, and allows you to think  in a creative way. The opinion of only a narrow circle of people matters to me. 

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It is known that you used to be active in the beauty industry. Do you often apply this knowledge in everyday life? What kind of makeup do you prefer and can you go out “in public” without any makeup?

I’m the kind of person who gets a big makeover, an image, and even just a body weight reduction. It’s important for me to be myself, even at the event, let alone in everyday life. I always prefer a light makeup look that emphasizes strengths and hides imperfections just a little bit. My foundation (Kevin Aucoin Essensual Skin Enhacer in shades 7 and 9), should be applied (Annbeauty G2 brush),  super thin, be a neutral undertone and echo a light skin glow. I have quite expressive cheekbones, so I haven’t used sculptors in about two years. Blush (dry. HOURGLASS –  Diffused Heat, cream. NARS – Dolce Vita; Annbeauty A3 brush),   They are incredibly “refreshing” and “liven up” my face, so they are a must, even for everyday makeup.

When styling my eyebrows, I like to emphasize their thickness and expressiveness, while keeping them “airy. To fill in the gaps between the hairs and correct the shape, I use MAC liner in the Lingering shade, and over it I “straighten” and fix the hairs with Revitalash shade gel in Soft Brown.  I also love the mascara of this brand: it is very durable, easy to rinse off, chic styling lashes “fan”. For my evening makeup, I easily grew a bronze cream shadow (Tom Ford Naked Bronze, Charlotte Tilbury Bette; Tom Ford brush 11) on the mobile eyelid and with a brown pencil (Charlotte Tilbury The Classic Brown Powder Pencil), I added an arrow to make the look more expressive.

The lips should harmonize with the blush, so I prefer to repeat my natural shade, making them a little richer with lip pencils  (Kevin Aucoin – Minimal, Charlotte Tilbury – Iconic Nude), or lipstick (Charlotte Tilbury – Very Victoria).  I can powder my t-zone with a dry hyaluronic acid powder (By Terry – Hyaluronic Hydra-Powder) on a hot day or for staying power.

It’s very important to me, first of all, to be beautiful  and well-groomed for myself – even when almost no one sees it. That’s why I pay special attention to skin care, and my skin responds with gratitude. I came to the conclusion through experience that exfoliation (retinol, acids), hydration  and no stress factor are my keys  to clear and glowing skin. Today, I can go “out in public” without makeup and I do it regularly in stories (without masks and filters applied over the top). For me it is also a kind of comfort, freedom and the luxury of looking dignified at any time of day. In addition, it is important to me that a person’s words and actions be backed up by results. If this does not happen, or if he goes for tricks (“licking” each photo in the editors and constantly hiding under masks and filters) – it is a reason to doubt the usefulness of his experience, competence and honesty. Regularly falling victim to marketing, people turn to bloggers for the truth, exchanging valuable experience for mutual help and the opportunity to monetize the blog.

Have you had any striking experiments with your appearance and, perhaps, any changes in your plans?

Looking back, I catch myself thinking how good it is that the time of radical experiments  with appearance began and ended with me in my teenage years. I’ve been seen in all sorts of ways: black, white, red, purple, comb-over, short hair, lip piercings, two in my nose, eyebrows drawn with black  eyeliner. Without further ado, it’s clear why I don’t even want to look at pictures from that period. I looked older than my age, didn’t like myself at all, had a wagon and a wagonload of complexes. It took me many years to learn how to find and emphasize the strengths of my appearance. Now I am in harmony with my body and soul, happy with my appearance, striving to maintain this state and prolong my  youthfulness.

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Everyone has their own understanding of beauty. What does beauty mean to you? Do you consider yourself a beautiful girl, and do you have any standards?

 I define “beauty” as being well-groomed, which, in turn, is closely related to “health”: a well-groomed, toned body, a beautiful smile, neat manicures, healthy hair and skin, and sparkling eyes. But even a beautiful, from an aesthetic point of view, a girl can easily overshadow her beauty illiterate speech or poor taste in clothes, or – a beautiful and smart girl can be boring and uninteresting, if not season this mix with charisma. And so we have a collective image of “beauty”, which, in my opinion, consists of a cocktail: grooming, health, intelligence and charisma.

Do I consider myself beautiful? I don’t have to think about it, because I am showered with compliments every day. We do not choose the body in which we are born, but in the process of life we can both destroy it and make it work for us.  I chose the second option. As for standards of beauty, I was inclined to have one as a child, but they kept changing and over time I realized how pointless it was. Of course, there are girls, women, whose looks I like. These are Tina Karol, Lily Rose Depp, a young Claudia Schiffer, Michelle Pfeiffer, Chrissy Turlington, the ethereal beauty of young Mila Jovovich, the perfect from every angle Kendall Jenner. I must have forgotten someone else.

Were you always happy with your figure and appearance or did you have to “tweak” something?

I’ve come a long way from complete rejection of myself to loving myself and my body. The difference was determined by daily work on myself, as trite as it may sound. As a teenager, I ate five packages of croutons, ate mashed potato patties, washed it all down with sweet tea and waffles, and at night I drank beer with friends and smoked it with a cigarette. I found a convincing excuse for my far from perfect figure and skin – hormones and wide bones, which automatically relieved me of responsibility for my appearance. As I got older, puberty came to an end, and “memes” about broad bone began to appear on the Internet, I was able to trace a pattern between my lifestyle, eating habits, and appearance. Especially after the birth of my son, an inner protest woke up in me: no need to write me off, I’ll show you more. Ever since I was a child, I had been afraid of turning into an unhappy average woman-mother, dragging home, work, and children on her back, sacrificing her beauty, resigning myself to the idea that such a need is the lot of congenital beauties with wealthy husbands.

What about attention and psychological health? After all, a woman should receive from outside  love, attention, care, replenish her feminine energy,  to inspire and transmit love to loved ones and those around her. It manifests itself in the smallest details and significantly changes the quality of life. I slowly began to transform from a young, authoritarian, perpetually disgruntled, tired housewife into  a beautiful, satisfied, cheerful woman with a messy house, but a happy family again.

I started going to the gym, gradually worked on my eating habits, corrected the asymmetry of my lips with a lip filler and “revived” my breasts, which had been “killed” by breastfeeding, with mammoplasty. Of course, I still find what part of the body I should pay more attention to, but, in general, my actions today are aimed at maintaining the result that I managed to achieve through hard work.

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Alina, you are launching your own clothing line. Please tell us more about this.

The idea of launching my own clothing brand did not come to me spontaneously. Trite, but it kept looming larger and larger in my mind as my Instagram page developed. Having had my fill of beauty topics, I stepped away from it for a while. After quitting my job, first as a beauty bailer and then as a makeup artist, I began to devote more time to my family and myself. The result was not long in coming and the questions, “how to achieve a beautiful body?” superseded the questions about the perfect foundation. Sports and good nutrition are a red  thread on my profile. Every day I get messages from my subscribers about how much I inspire them by my own example to make positive changes in their appearance, including through sports. In addition, many people notice and share my taste in clothes, so, at my own risk, I  decided to launch a line of sportswear.

For several months I had been sketching crudely, and, on the whole, I couldn’t get myself together, I didn’t know where to start, since I knew practically nothing about it. Luckily, I reached out to Instagram for help almost in time, and I was written to by a girl named Nika, with whom we are now companions. Nika graduated from Institutio Marangoni in Paris and has all the skills to realize my ideas. She draws beautiful illustrations, understands modeling, fabrics, has a database of necessary contacts, and if she doesn’t have one, she will get it  from under the ground.  Besides, she’s just a very beautiful, young, ambitious girl and I really enjoy working with her.

We started working on the collection a little late – in August, when the factories go on vacation. Therefore, we plan to start sales in the second half of October. We are actively working on all the related processes while we wait for the delivery of fabrics from China and Italy. We really wanted to make decent, high-quality and stylish sportswear, so we also had to go to the trouble of finding fabrics.

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Do you follow fashion? Which of the fashion novelties do you dislike or make you laugh?

I do not lead a social life, so I do not need to follow closely the changes in fashion trends, I rarely buy trendy things and in the suite prefer durable classics. Rather than laughter, but incomprehension on my part,  can cause  purposefully aged things with a high price tag, too “freaky” or conversely mass  trends  can also stop me from making a purchase.

You’re in great shape – what does it cost you: sports, diets, procedures?

Thank you! A beautiful body is worth the discipline in diet and systematic training. At my under 28, I know for a fact that a radical approach in both nutrition and sports does not work for the long haul, and that health should remain first priority.

Through trial and error, I have determined that functional fitness training is the most effective and comfortable for me. One workout includes a set of exercises for different muscle groups, so three workouts a week is enough for me to keep my body muscles toned.

Dedicated workouts will not demonstrate the desired results if there is chaos in the diet. In order for the body to stay “dry” and acquire a beautiful relief, it is important to eat little (maintain a calorie deficit), but good quality. No nutritional exceptions. But their ratio in the portion should be in descending order: proteins, fats, complex carbohydrates.

My diet consists of 80% healthy foods and 20% deviations towards “forbidden”. Also, I have enough of one full meal a day, which, most often, happens in my lunch and a light snack  in the form of salad and fish in the evening. In the morning I limit myself to 2 cups of cappuccino with rice milk and a few macadamia nuts.

As treats (lunch/evening) I prefer: honey, fruit/dry fruit, less often ice cream/sorbets, marshmallow on honey.  My diet may not be medically correct, but I feel great: I feel comfortable in my gastrointestinal tract, my rashes have finally cleared up  The skin of my back is gone, the swelling is gone, I do not feel hunger, nausea or abdominal pain, the last tests showed that all indicators are normal and I managed to achieve the shape that I have been striving for so long, which in turn has a positive effect on my psychological health.

As for procedures and massages, I see more disadvantages in salon  procedures aimed at modeling the body contours: additional costs, money, poorly expressed efficiency, the presence of a list of contraindications, often – incompetence  clinic staff, outdated equipment.  Classical, manual massage, of course, is necessary for everyone, regardless of the type of activity.

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Do you like to cook, what are your favorite dishes?

I am a person of mood, and the latter is reflected in everything I do. It’s the same with cooking: sometimes I get high, and sometimes I have to force myself.  Although, I sincerely believe that being able to cook is an elementary survival skill and anyone should master it, regardless of gender, status, or occupation. Cooking and the basics of family life should definitely be included in the school system.

My favorite dish, of course, is borscht.  Probably every housewife likes exactly “her” borscht and considers it exemplary, and so it is with me (smiles). In general, I have difficulties only with baking, and you have to try hard to make homemade dishes for years  not tasty.

Did your earnings change during the quarantine, and how did it affect your life at all?

I stopped working a little over a year ago. As work took more and more time, but the income was not commensurate with the income my husband could bring into the family during the time he spent with his son. In addition, Kiryusha was often sick and missed kindergarten, and we never had a nanny. So it was decided that I’d better devote more time to my family and myself and think about my business.

Self-isolation was good for our family, because before that we fought a lot just because of my husband’s constant employment and his actual absence from family life. We had a great time, spent a lot of time just the three of us, as well as visiting, breaking the mode of self-isolation. A month ago my husband and I made the decision to separate. This  was not affected in any way by the quarantine, the house move, or 2020. We spent eight whole years together, and that is more than enough time to analyze such a valuable experience of a long relationship and to conclude whether we want to go on in life together.

Your son went to school this year. Were you excited beforehand, how supportive are you of your student? How did you choose a school for your child?

How distant it seemed to me until recently when my son would go to school. Six years flew by like one day, and here I am, a 27-year-old mom of a high school student. It was a very responsible, new period in Kiryusha’s life, as well as in mine and Sergei’s, because at heart we are children too, at times irresponsible, and school is definitely a new level of responsibility, primarily for parents. The knowledge acquired at school day after day is like bricks building our son’s future, shaping his outlook, goals, and communication skills. We can no longer afford to “snap” on a sudden trip or just show “pity” for him when we have to pull him from his warm bed in the morning, still asleep and smelling like a baby, to take him to school on a cold, gloomy morning.

We chose for our son a modern,  comfortable and “anti-Soviet” school, which Kiryusha goes to with pleasure. It is important to me that the child feel psychologically comfortable at school, then he or she will “open up” to knowledge and the world. You can send your child to a super-intelligent school, but being under pressure, he is unlikely to want to remember his school years with a smile.

Kiryusha is not a child prodigy at all; he understood life early and prefers traveling and restaurants to studying. Nevertheless, he is a very interesting and charismatic child. I wouldn’t want to “trample” on his personality with my desires, goals, and notions. I just walk beside him to support him at the right moment, to guide him, to help him make a choice.

How do you like to spend time with your family and where do you want to go when you have complete freedom of movement?

The most “quality” family vacation you get only on vacation or travel, where there are no home worries or acquaintances. This is an ideal opportunity to concentrate on your nearest and dearest, to give them all your attention, to live vivid emotions together. Despite the separation, Sergei and I are considering traveling together, as we try to ensure that our separation will have as little impact as possible on Kiryusha’s family memories from his childhood.

If the borders open, after the New Year we would like to fly to Bali with a large group. We were there last February and fell in love with the island forever. We were charmed by the smiling, friendly people, delicious food, low prices, stunning nature, and wonderful animals. How lucky we are to live in a time when we can get anywhere in the world!

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In your opinion, what is the role of women in the family?

Men are more superficial and practical, so the role of women in the family, in my opinion, is to provide spiritual well-being, to take care of things that men often consider secondary: health, family traditions, support for contacts with relatives, a favorable atmosphere in the home, comfort, strengthening the deep relationship between man and woman, replenishment of life resources with affection and care, the very outlet.

Life has its ups and downs, so a woman should definitely have her own source of income, so that in a difficult situation she can support her man and be able to take care of herself and her child. At one time, I made the big mistake of making the radical choice to have a family. The sense of power is very relaxing for the man and contributes to a significant regression in the development of the woman – a great breeding ground for problems in the family.

A woman’s energy resources are not infinite, and it is important for a man, in turn, to refill a woman’s vessel of love anew. First of all, not in monetary terms, but by sublimating his love with the tools that make his woman happy: return care, attention paid, demonstrating verbal/nonverbal gratitude for making him happy,  quick response to requests, initiative of romantic pastimes, help in everyday life, and so on. “The secret combination” fortunately every woman has her own, and to figure it out, the man has as much as three years. That’s why some people live happily through life, going through a series of different trials, while others simply run out of resources.

How would you like your life to be in ten years?

I would like to have a quiet family life, travel a lot, develop spiritually, maybe have another baby or adopt. I would like to have my own business, which would allow to realize itself, but at the same time not to chase after secondary things and people. Family comes first, though.

I dream of a big cozy house with lots of animals, even animals like ornamental goats and pigs. Fussing together while cooking, gathering around the big table with the whole family and old friends, growing old together and watching our children grow up, and seeing our loved ones absolutely happy. I guess that only happens in Hollywood movies. But that’s how I’d like my life to be in ten years.

Author: Tatyana Zaitseva

Photographer: Diana Kravchyshyn

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