Teri Hatcher on Skin Care, Stand-Up Comedy and the Art of Reinvention

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While everyone else might be collectively throwing the turkey into the oven and planning the place settings, Teri Hatcher is having a banner of a busy week, reuniting with her Desperate Housewives’ costar James Denton on Hallmark’s A Kiss Before Christmas this past Sunday and prepping for her first-ever stand-up comedy special, Even More Funny Women of A Certain Age, premiering tonight on Showtime. “I’m excited to see it for the first time with everyone else!” the 56-year-old actress shares over the phone as she’s chopping celery and onions. “It’s kind of crazy how everything ended up airing at the same time, and this one is completely different for me. It’s an entirely different muscle. I’ve been dipping my toe into writing more comedy, but I’ve never performed it on a stage like this. I think it’s the right time.”

You’re taking a turn in comedy with your Showtime special airing tonight. What did you enjoy most about doing this project?

“I suppose the challenge. Under the umbrella of the title of the show, ‘funny women of a certain age,’ I felt like it allowed me to explore saying things about aging, dating and life that I hope help other women feel less alone. I hope they can laugh at me and with me as I admit to and shine a light on the ridiculousness of how we ourselves and our society view women aging. I adored the women I shared the stage with—being backstage with them, feeling their support, witnessing their craft and skill close-up. It was inspiring. I’ve always loved live audiences, the immediacy of that response. There is nothing better than spending days, weeks, crafting a single joke and having it land in a huge way.”

And then you had A Kiss Before Christmas air last weekend on Hallmark. What did you enjoy about that project and reunion? 

“I’m not sure what order to put these in but, one, a Desperate Housewives’ reunion of Susan and Mike with the happy ending fans may have wished for—we always felt like they kind of got cheated out of their ‘happily ever after.’ Two, a charming, warm, heartfelt classic Christmas story and, three, a little bit of comedy, a little magic and just the right amount of Christmas decorations.”

You were on the show that sparked a huge franchise with Bravo’s Real Housewives. Do you ever watch the reality-show version? 

“I do watch the Beverly Hills version—It has definitely been my guilty pleasure since it started. It’s like being at a restaurant overhearing a conversation you shouldn’t be listening to but instead of walking away, you order another glass of wine and sink a little lower in your seat.”

You’ve played so many iconic roles. Can you share anything glam-wise that really stands out from any of them? 

“With my characters I’ve always strived to make them real, not necessarily glamorous. My makeup artist on Desperate Housewives always wanted me to wear more makeup. In real life, during the day-to-day, I don’t wear much more than mascara.”

People loved when you posted a photo on social media covering your grays during the pandemic—what are some of your other go-to beauty moves and favorite products, treatments?  

“Lately I’m into this Joovv infrared light panel. I’m still on the fence about actual surgeries or fillers and such, but they say if you are consistent with this light, it can tighten skin and help produce collagen, so I’m giving that a try.

Daily, I use different brands of retinol creams; I use Strivectin Day Moisturizer With SPF 30, I use Yon-ka’s Time Resist Nuit cream, I use Orveda Healing Sap, and I’m kind of obsessed with Tatcha’s Water Cream and their Face Cleanser. For makeup, I usually throw on Charlotte Tilbury Mascara or Pixi by Petra—I love both—a little Pixi On-the-Glow Cream Blush, Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer and Clé de Peau Beauté Concealer. At a minimum, I feel like paparazzi could jump out of a bush and I wouldn’t look too bad [with those products], or I might…who cares!

In terms of quick-feel goods, I try to walk or work out in some way each day, and I do yoga and meditate in the morning; I do a thing called morning words. I also have an old vintage typewriter that I bought years ago at a yard sale and each morning the first thing I do is type a poem of thoughts, intentions and feelings that help lead me into the day with the mindfulness I need to make it a good one.”

Did you learn anything during the time spent at home? 

“I learned to be easier on myself…especially when it comes to ups and downs. I would go through periods where I would be very productive, and then I would go through periods where I would eat an entire bag of popcorn and binge on Netflix. I also live alone, so that adds another dimension. But that is what life is—be grateful that you’re here, be grateful that you’re healthy, be grateful for what you have, but also, sometimes, you just have to say, ‘Shit happens. And that’s OK. Tomorrow is a new day.’

The big thing I did during the pandemic was rescue a dog. He’s an older dog, about ten years old. When I got him, he was a very sickly, skinny dog…and when I got him all healthy, we found out he’s a full-bred Cocker Spaniel with the most amazing temperament. We went through the training process at Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles to be a dog-therapy team. And we passed! And only about seven percent of teams pass. I’m super excited about that…I love giving back in such an incredible way and seeing the effect we have on people who are in difficult times. It is really rewarding. No one pays attention to me there, the dog is so much cuter.”

What advice would you give to your younger self? 

“Man, enjoy it all more! I tell my daughter all the time that, one day, you’ll be old. One day, a guy will flirt with you at a club, and ask to sit on the bar stool next to you and buy you a drink—and the next he’ll ask you if anyone is sitting there and then he’ll pick up the chair and move it down the bar to the younger girls. You won’t see it coming! Youth will just one day be over, so enjoy it. Take care of yourself, love yourself the way you are, strive, be ambitious, but don’t get bogged down in self-doubt and criticism. And don’t beat yourself up for what you are not. Treasure what you have, while you continue to grow, instead of always feeling less than. You are enough—know that.”

What are you most excited about as the year closes out? 

“Seeing people again. Still getting tested to be safe but having vaccinated people over for cookies and cocktails for Christmas. Just seeing people, hugging, laughing eating…grateful for all of that.

I’m not going to do a new year’s resolution, because the last time I did that, a pandemic happened. I’m a big fan of one day at a time. But I do think I’m in a little bit of a period of reinventing myself, and I’d like to keep that momentum going.”

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