A constant crusader on the behalf of human rights and social justice, artist, activist, and mom Sarah Sophie Flicker has very little time for herself. When she's not organizing marches and protests, she's busy taking care of her three kids and working on her art. So self-care Sunday isn't really a thing in her world.
That doesn't mean she neglects her beauty routine, but rather she finds ways to maximize what time she does have, carving out moments dedicated to caring for herself in whatever ways she can.
We're always so inspired by Sarah and all that she accomplishes, which is why we thought now was the perfect time to profile her for this week's The Regimen. We asked Sarah to share her maximalist beauty routine in minimal time, plus her tips on how to become more active in your community about the issues that are most important to you.
Name: Sarah Sophie Flicker
Profession: Cultural organizer, artist, mom
Skin type: Does eczema count as a skin type? Ugh.
Hair type: Fine and frizzy. My whole family is obsessed with the Manta brush. Like, I need to buy many more. My kids refuse all other brushes now and it's great in the shower too.
Duration of beauty routine: As long as possible! I have three kids and they all have been conditioned to understand that my bathroom time is my ME time. They fight it, but deep down, they know. I love listening to podcasts while enjoying my multi-step skin-care routine, doing my makeup, dying my hair. I like to draw it out whenever I can.
Walk us through your daily beauty routine:
This is kind of embarrassing because it is extensive whenever I can find the time! My makeup routine has been GREATLY shortened by the genius of Josh, who did my eyebrow microblading. I profoundly overplucked them in the '90s and they never came back. Josh's microblading is the best splurge I've made in the last few years. Cut my makeup time down by a lot!
My skin care in the morning is pretty quick, however I do not step a foot outside without sunscreen (EltaMD UV Daily is great!) But, my nighttime regimen is as layered as the day is long. I wash with cleanser, then I bust out my Environ Ultrasonic Skin Scrubber and do that for around 10 minutes, then I wash again, then I do some kind of glycolic treatment, then I bury myself in eczema cream, followed by a serum — I'm into the Bynacht Hypercharged Glass Skin Serum right now. After that I use the Pai Rosehip Bioregenerate Universal Face Oil, which is great for eczema, and then a very thick night cream. Augustinus Bader The Rich Cream is pricey as hell but lasts forever and doesn't make my eczema mad. Then eye cream — I used to just use vitamin E, for decades, now I use adult eye cream, but I swear Vitamin E oil works when you're younger.
What is your philosophy on beauty?
Let your freak flag fly. My philosophy comes from my history in dance, the theater, cabaret, circus arts, and the San Francisco queer scene — especially the drag queens who taught me everything I know. Dig into what you love, what brings you joy, and what feels like the most authentic expression of yourself. Whenever I remember these things, I feel beautiful. Ignore all myths about youth and aging. Be as weird as you wanna be. Gild the lily. Be over the top.
What is your best beauty advice?
It's so hard. We are fed so many lies about beauty, be it age, race, body type, ability, class..... it's hard to wade through it all and, to be honest, it took me until I was in my 40s (so, recently) to truly feel comfortable in my own skin and love the way I look. That said, my best beauty advice is to not listen to any, and follow your joy and your passion. That's when I feel the most beautiful.
What is the best beauty advice you've ever been given?
It's not really beauty advice, but when I had my first child, someone told me to not talk about my body, not talk about my kid's bodies, and not talk about other people's bodies. Period. It seems extreme, but I really think that in the process of stopping negative body talk, I learned to love my body a lot more. And I think, I hope, that my kids have pretty healthy relationships to their bodies.
What are your 3 must-have products?
Manta hairbrush, Westman Atelier Vital Skin Foundation Stick, and Pai Rosehip Oil.
Do you have any special tips or techniques for how you apply a product to get the best results?
I love a lip and cheek stain applied right after concealer and foundation. You can layer on top of it, but it just gives your makeup a lit from within vibe.
What's the biggest beauty mistake you've ever made?
Ask Josh. Plucking the hell out of my eyebrows in the '90s. My daughter is making the same mistake now — I am calling her in publicly. Overplucking never ends well.
What do you love most about your job?
The community. I love the work, and I never tire of it, but I love the community and chosen family that comes with organizing. I think there is a misconception that organizing and movement work is all about anger or sadness or fear. Sure, that's part of it, but the part I love the most is the collective joy, the collective grief, the collective unity across differences, that comes with the work.
How did you get into activism?
I think I was sort of born into it. My parents have always been my moral compass and our families have a history in the work My personal activism was really accelerated in the '90s during the AIDS crisis. I had too many friends die when I was a teen and in my 20s. That should not ever be normalized. I was very inspired by ACT UP, where I really learned about the intersection of culture and politics and how important art is to movements.
What is your advice for people who want to take their activism beyond social media and get involved in their community?
Just show up. Show up to a Black Lives Matter protest. Show up and listen. Volunteer at campaigns locally. Knock on doors. March. Get in where you fit in. If you are an artist, volunteer to create for a cause. If you are a parent, an event planner, a dancer, great in the kitchen, a carpenter — whatever it is, you have valuable skills that the movements need. Just show up! Listen! Don't try to take over. And let the folks that are most affected by the issue lead on it. The people who are closest to the pain are always closest to the solution. Don't be a savior, just show up and ask how you can help.