Revenge’s Ashley Madekwe

We’ve loved Ashley Madekwe since she stole the show on Revenge in an array of outfits almost too good for television. She now stars on WGN’s Salem, airing through June 28th every Sunday at 10pm (looking equally as fabulous as a witch might we add). She happens to be one of those fashionable actresses (she has her own addictive fashion blog, Ring My Bell) we couldn’t resist plugging for workout tips, beauty routines and of course tidbits on her wedding….

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

I love breakfast and usually have quite a big one so that I’m not hungry mid morning. My favorite is scrambled egg whites with whole-wheat toast and avocado. I don’t drink coffee but have at least two cups of English breakfast tea in the morning. For lunch, I would have a chicken salad topped with feta cheese. Dinner would be baked salmon with Thai style pesto and broccoli. If I feel like something sweet I have a few squares of Green & Blacks mint dark chocolate.

How do you practice beauty from the inside out?

On an average day I try to eat reasonably healthy and keep away from heavily processed foods. That being said – life is short and I do love Cheetos so I indulge in them every so often. I think allowing yourself not to get hung up on what you eat is healthy. Food should be about balance and a cupcake isn’t going to kill you!

What workouts can’t you live without?

When I’m home in LA I like to do private Pilates sessions three times a week. I’ve found that I can be lazy and cheat in group classes so the one on one approach really works for me and I see results quickly. I also like to hike. If I’m traveling I do Ballet Beautiful videos.

What are your morning and nightly beauty routines?

In the morning I use ‘Ceramic Slip’ Cleanser from Sunday Riley followed by the ‘Good Genes’ serum (also from Sunday Riley). I use Clinique ‘All about Eyes’ eye cream and Verso day cream. In the evening I double cleanse. First I use an oil cleanser from Shu Uemura followed by the ‘Ceramic Slip’ cleanser. I pat a few drops of Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Oil into my skin and then finish off with Vinoperfect Night Cream from Caudalie. Every so often I mix a pump of James Read Sleep Mask Tan for the face with my nighttime moisturizer for an added glow.

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What was the most memorable moment at your wedding?

It was all pretty amazing but I will never forget the look on my husband’s face as he watched me walk down the aisle. I’ve never felt more beautiful and loved.

What elements were most important to you and why?

I’m very visually stimulated and inspired so I really wanted my wedding to look like how I pictured it. I didn’t have a wedding planner but I did have amazing friends who helped me organize everything. I live in LA and the wedding took place in London so having people helping was important. For me, the venue sets the tone. I was adamant about wanting to get married in the city and finding the perfect place was tricky. I think once we found the venue everything else fell into place. My planning went in this order: Venue, dress, flowers, food, cake! I knew I wanted peonies and I only tried on two dresses. I’m quite decisive!

What advice would you give brides planning and why?

Try not to get so caught up in the planning that you don’t enjoy the actual day. Often a wedding can end up being more enjoyable for the guests than it is for the bride and groom. We really let loose at our wedding and it ended up being a huge party with all the people we love most.

Do you like to cook with your husband? What do you cook together?

We cook separately because we get in each other’s way! My husband attended culinary school so can’t resist checking out what I’m doing when I cook. I call him “The Interferer”. I’m not the most skilled chef but I have a couple of dishes that my husband likes…Caribbean style stewed chicken with rice and peas and Thai style baked Salmon. I’ve recently learned how to make a Korean soup called Galbitang and it’s so delicious that I want to make it all the time!

Your perfect go-to quick breakfast…

Scrambled eggs and smoked salmon. So easy and so delicious.

The best and worst food and drinks for your skin…

Drinking lots of water is key. I can literally forget to drink water sometimes so have to make a concerted effort to make sure I consume enough. My weakness is Cheetos and I imagine all that salt and MSG can’t be great for my skin.

What were your best moments on Revenge and Salem and why? 

Revenge for me ended up being all about the fashion. My character never really had much to do but I made sure she looked good while doing it! I loved my costume fittings with Jill [Ohanneson], the costume designer. Even if I only had one scene in an episode we would carefully plan Ashley Davenport’s outfits around whatever devious little thing she was doing that week. In Salem, I love all the magical elements. It’s fun to bring the various spells that the writers create to life. I also really enjoy the dynamic between my character Tituba and Janet Montgomery’s character, Mary Sibley. In episode 9 this season their pent up frustrations with each other result in a long over due fight. We did our own stunts and loved smacking each other!

The apps you can’t live without…

Postmates is pretty amazing. I’m a sushi fiend and they pick up take out from my favorite sushi spot in LA and deliver it right to my door.

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

I’ve really come to love the food scene in LA. It’s so easy to eat healthy there. I like Clover for fresh organic pressed juices or smoothies and Izaka-ya on 3rd for sushi. The truffle pasta at Cecconi’s is great too. If I’m in London I always make time for brunch at The Wolseley. In New York, I love Miss Lily’s. The best meal I’ve ever eaten was at The French Laundry in Yountville, CA. I’m still dreaming about that Kobe beef!

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

Andy Warhol, Mariah Carey, Tupac, Kate Moss and my husband. We’d drink champagne and snack on oysters and truffle fries. Decadent but fun.

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*Ashley Madekwe, photographed at Miss Lily’s in New York, NY by Danielle Kosann. Ashley wears an Equipment shirt, J.Brand jeans, Coach shoes, and Shylee Rose ring. See more of Ashley’s look on her fashion blog Ring My Bell

Love Ring My Bell? Read about Leandra Medine, founder of Man Repeller. You’ll also love this interview with fashion blogger Rumi Neely.

Read these interviews with Revenge’s Karine Vanasse and Downton Abbey’s Laura Carmichael