San Andreas’ Carla Gugino

We like to think we’ve been obsessed with Carla Gugino before anyone else was (Troop Beverly Hills anyone?). With the release of her new movie San Andreas Friday, her FOX show Wayward Pines, and her HBO show The Brink where she stars alongside Jack Black premiering mid-June, Gugino is continuing to prove she’s a force to be reckoned with. We hate to use the phrase ‘girl crush,’ but today seems like a fitting time for it…


From start to finish, what would be your ideal food day? 

For breakfast, a fresh-pressed organic green juice – I usually make my own but Nourish on Greenwich Street in New York City has a great one with a dash of jalapeño – and a Hemp Cappuccino from Birch Coffee, or organic espresso at home with my homemade almond milk. For lunch, a dosa from Hampton Chutney Co. and then a chocolate chip cookie from Paradis (just might be the best in the city). For dinner, Kombocha Squash toast, salmon with roasted carrots, a glass of Gruner Veltliner, and a cake pop at ABC Kitchen. But really, pretty much anything from ABC Kitchen.

What are your morning and nightly beauty routines?


I wash with Biologique Recherché Lait U, followed by Tracie Martyn Firming SerumBiologique Recherché MSR-H Cream, and Suntegrity 5 in 1 (my new favorite organic tinted sunscreen). Then I slather myself with Burt’s Bees Nourishing Body Lotion, which is actually for babies.


Thuyen Charcoal Cleanser followed by BR MSR-H cream (same as morning). If my skin is feeling dry, I’ll add a couple drops of high-quality oil like Shiva Rose’s Rose Face Oil. My dear friend Thuyen Nguyen (who gives the most amazing natural “face lift” massage) recently made me a combo of Argan and Rosehip oils. I’m in love with it.

How do you practice beauty from the inside out?

I’ve been doing yoga since I was thirteen. How often I do it depends on my schedule; it’s definitely a staple for me. I also love Pilates, and SoulCycle puts me in a good mood while I’m getting a good sweat!

I eat everything. I gravitate mostly toward healthy food. I am a believer in “Everything in moderation – including moderation!” In the right moments, indulgence is important. And I do think a cleanse can be helpful from time to time. I recently did Dr. Junger’s Clean Cleanse, which I found to be very doable and I felt fantastic afterwards.

What was the best part about working with The Rock [Dwayne Johnson] on San Andreas

This is our third time working together, so the best part was getting to cover new terrain with someone you know well. Our characters have a relationship with a lot of history that had to be conveyed quickly on screen. We were creative partners in crime from day one. The fact that we had built-in trust allowed us to take risks and dig deep right off the bat. We had a blast all around. Plus, well, he is The Rock.


Most controversial thing that happened on set…

There wasn’t a lot of controversy on this set but one day we were shooting on the boat and there were these huge water and wind machines aimed straight at us. I was like a drenched cat, could barely see anything, and I looked over at Dwayne and he was practically bone dry. I’m like “What’s happening over there?” And he said, “Well, I’m dodging. Aren’t you?” That was controversial for me. I ducked on the next take and the water got him good!

What are your go-to recipes for healthy weeknights? 

I must admit I eat out too much, but I do love to make soups in my Vitamix (my best friend). I usually start with a base of coconut milk or chicken stock and purée some vegetables and maybe sweet potato. I’ll also add avocado for garnish. Brown rice sushi is a favorite as well. Also, you can’t beat a homemade omelet with Gruyere and fine herbs and a green salad. Don’t forget the mustard vinaigrette!

What’s always in your bag?

Fresh Berry and Cherry lip balmTea Tree toothpicksEO Hand SanitizerYoung Living essential oil called Joy, and dark chocolate.

What are five things your coveting right now?

I am always pining for something at Isabel Marant. And I’m definitely coveting the Celine trio purse in every color (I have the black). It’s the absolute best purse for New York City.

In truth, I realize as time goes on that it’s experiences I covet most…a beach trip to Bora Bora, a safari in Africa, doing panchakarma in India, or sitting front row at a fashion show in Paris. I think I’ve become hooked on experiences.

The food you can’t live without, and the food you hate…

[I can’t live without] dark chocolate. I don’t really hate any food but I’m not a fan of oysters. It’s a texture thing.

What’s your idea of the perfect first date? 

Well, since I think most great things happen – or at least start – over a good meal, I’d say that is at the center of a great first date for me. It’s also nice to go to the theater or hear some music, as it gives you both a shared experience to talk about. And then just seeing what happens organically! Over-planning can put too much pressure on a first date and kill what might’ve been a perfectly lovely night.

Advice you’d give your younger self…

Live your truth. The upside far outweighs anything else.

Advice you’d give women waking up, looking in the mirror and getting dressed…

Look at yourself as you would a friend or child you love. Be generous. And don’t stay there too long – nothing good ever comes from that! When you’re getting dressed, put on whatever makes you feel fantastic. I find that changes day to day!

What are your favorite cities for food? What restaurants do you go to in each?

New York City: ABC Kitchen, Da Umberto, Gato, Toro, Buvette, Via Carota (obviously), I Sodi, Indochine, Morandi, Momoya, Caracas for arepas, and Taim for their delicious Sabiche pita sandwich. I could go on…

Los Angeles: Osteria Angelini, Petty Cash, Mozza (both the Pizzeria and Osteria), Tower Bar (I love the Maître D Dimitri and the gorgeous view so much), Baco Mercat, and Odys and Penelope. Urth Caffé makes my favorite salads for lunch. Hands down.

Vancouver: MarketBao BeiLa Quercia, and Via Tevere.

Paris: Bar FrenchieSpringLe ComptoirRose Bakery, and Nanashi.

If you could host a dinner party with any five people living or dead, who would be there? What would you cook? 

Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Federico Fellini, Audrey Hepburn, Desmond Tutu, and the Dalai Lama. For that group, I think I’d have to get it catered!

*Carla Gugino, photographed at Via Carota in New York, NY by Danielle Kosann. Carla wears a Victoria Beckham dress

Read an interview with San Andreas’ other star, Alexandra Daddario, here.

Want to know about Via Carota? Read this interview with Chef/Owner Jody Williams.