Gender-neutralising self-care and carving out a space to claim your confidence.
Although we’re hemispheres apart, there’s something inherently warm and familiar about digital skincare and makeup savant Zachary Spencer. Even over email exchange (which let’s be honest - we’re all sick of right now), his energy is palpable.
Some people leave an indelible mark on our lives. For Zachary, mixing beauty curiosity with community cultivation is his way of leaving an impact on those he’s never met. Speaking to his following and engaging in niche conversation is a mode of self-expression unrivalled by any other. It becomes less about the tangible tool or powder or potion itself and more about the ritual of self-indulging, trialing, opinion-forming, creating and storytelling.
For Zachary, self-expression can be shown through the conduit of Instagram. This is where he is a man that wears makeup and that is completely normal, just as it should be. The way he binds beauty to sense of self is supernormal.
At FIG Femme, the dialogue and meaning we can imbue with our intimacy care is where the magic can be found. Hearing feedback and seeing beauty shelves spliced with our bottles and masks is a sign that we’re building a network and story bigger than ourselves. And seeing every human (regardless of gender) explore FIG is one of our greatest missions fulfilled.
It’s exceedingly special to speak with Zachary today on the FIG Journal. Here, he’ll retrace the beginnings of a digital shrine to Kardashian beauty, where confidence comes from and the imperative normalisation of gender-neutral beauty.
What does intimacy mean to you? And can you tell us a little about was self-care looks like in your house?
To me, intimacy means comfort. A place that makes you feel zen, or a “cozy atmosphere.” My beauty room is my zen place at home. It's the place where I feel most comfortable. It makes me feel beautiful. Sometimes, I just lay down in it and feel peace of mind. In my room, you can find positive quotes, spiritual statues, and lots of candles. Being a Cancer zodiac, we feel deeply, and we like our alone time to unwind and recharge. Having a place that makes me feel calm is important.
Okay, tell us about your experience with FIG Femme. What were your initial thoughts/impressions and how do you use the products now?
My first impression was “genius”. I loved the entirety of it, from the packaging, to the background on how it started. “Skincare for down there”. Your whole body deserves skincare, not just your face. Self-care all over is important. I like to say “FIG Femme is made for her, but borrowed for him”. It really can be used for any gender. It’s gentle, yet effective. I use the products daily to stay fresh!
How important is self-expression to you? How does your Insta platform curation and content creation allow you to flaunt your most authentic self?
Self-expression is super important to me. Loving, and being true to YOU is the best thing you can ever do for yourself. It’s not something that happened overnight for me. It took time. As far as my Instagram platform, I feel like I can just be myself. It's essentially my safe place. I am better with words on paper or online rather than in person. I can take my time and show my art.
How do the self-care and makeup products you use enhance that (or empower you to embrace that)?
I am confident in my own skin, but makeup and skincare help enhance my features as well as my confidence. It helps me express myself. Some days, I enjoy being a little more masculine, and other days I like to feel pretty. My pronouns are he/him. Boys/men like to be pretty, too, sometimes. Men in makeup should be normalised.
What would you tell someone who thinks what you do is superficial?
Everyone has a passion, and mine is content creation. It’s fun, and a form of self-expression. It's therapeutic for me. I enjoy doing it. It's kind of a revolving circle. Others inspire me, and I help inspire others. I have what I like to call my “Instagram friends and family”. We all hype each other up and root for each other. There's no jealousy, and that's kind of beautiful.
Walk us through your trajectory from getting 'into' beauty and where you're at now?
My journey with getting “into beauty” started with Kim Kardashian West. I had and always will be a huge fan of all the Kar/Jenners, and when Kim launched her KKW FRAGRANCE and KKW BEAUTY line, I started buying the products and became obsessed. I was following people who would take artistic photos of her fragrances and makeup and started doing it myself. It then grew into a passion. I would order a bunch of new makeup and skincare online. I would be so excited to get home from work once it came in the mail, ripping open the package and spending all night taking photos and reviewing the products throughout the week. The love and support from everyone is what really keeps me going. People love what I have to say, and it feels good.
FIG Femme recently hit POOSH. Huge. What else do you love on the site that we all need to get around?
Congratulations on FIG Femme hitting POOSH. That is major! I love POOSH because it promotes health and wellness. There are so many goodies on the site, so you really can’t go wrong with any of them. If it's POOSH-approved, you know it's good. Now, go pick out some stuff.
5 non-negotiable beauty bits in your bathroom currently?
Only five? That's tough! My #1 favourite skincare item I can’t live without is Retinol. I’m slowly creeping into my late 20’s, so maintaining and prevention is important. I always set aside money each paycheck for skincare. Self-love is important, and treating the skin you live in is necessary. You only have one body for the rest of your life, so better learn to love it. My next four items would be: hyaluronic acid, Vitamin C, a cleanser and tweezers. Your brows FRAME your face, so it's important they’re always on FLEEK.
Forthcoming beauty trend that we might not know about?
Normalising gender-neutral beauty products is important. Everyone wants to feel included. I also think it's necessary for brands to make sure they’re being inclusive when photographing campaign photos. From gender to skin tones, let’s include EVERYONE. When I see campaign photos that include EVERYONE, it really melts my heart.