Bhabhiji Ghar Par Hai’s Saumya Tandon reveals her diet, fitness and beauty secrets
Her popularity as the ‘gori mem’ or Anita bhabhi from &TV’s popular comedy serial Bhabi Ji Ghar Par Hai! has made her one of Indian television’s biggest crowd pullers. She’s also among the few TV stars who, riding high on her small screen persona, barged her way into Bollywood as Kareena Kapoor’s sister Roop in Imtiaz Ali’s blockbuster film Jab We Met (2007), and stand her ground.
Meet Saumya Tandon, TV’s most adorable bhabi, and the lively host of some of the biggest reality shows on the small screen, including Zor Ka Jhatka: Total Wipeout with Shah Rukh Khan (2011), Dance India Dance for three seasons, and the Bournvita Quiz Contest with Derek O’Brien for three seasons.
We caught up with Saumya to know more about the person behind the charming face, her relationship with her husband Saurabh Devendra Singh (Saumya married her long-time boyfriend, a banker, in 2016), her fitness regimen and the lifestyle habits she swears by.
Saumya, tell us about your fitness and diet regimen. How difficult is it for you to stick to your routine, considering your uneven working hours in the industry.
It is a challenge to keep a disciplined fitness and diet regime while shooting for a daily show. Unfortunately, my studio is far from home: I travel close to three to four hours daily. Still, I try to work out three to four days a week.
I don’t follow any strict diet chart, but stick to a few thumb rules. I eat oil free or almost oil free food, keep a count of my protein intake, avoid long gaps in my meals and include two fruits daily in my diet. I also drink 8 to 10 glasses of water to keep my system clean.
Are you inspired by any celebrity for their fitness ethics?
I look up to Akshay Kumar for his fitness mantra. He is disciplined, consistent and his fitness levels have been the same for years. He doesn’t just modify or sculpt his body unnaturally for the screen. He is fit internally. Among female stars, I look up to Katrina. She looks fit and strong.
What is your idea of relaxation?
My idea of relaxation is to be calm in the lap of nature with my family. Whenever we get a chance, especially during festivals like Holi and Diwali, we take a break for 2-3 days and go to a health retreat or a peaceful place away from the city. Spending quality time with my family is my biggest relaxation.
Tell us how you take care of your skin. Do you have any strict do’s and don’ts as far as applying makeup is concerned?
I use cruelty free makeup: I only opt for natural or organic and vegan products. Also my makeup cleaning ritual is almost 20 minutes long, because I don’t let even a speck of makeup remain on my face before I go to sleep. I use a sunscreen everyday even if I am shooting indoors. I use a Vitamic C serum in the morning and an under eye cream every night.
Before applying makeup, I apply a hydrating primer so that the face doesn’t become dry, because makeup never looks good if the skin is dry and dehydrated. Then of course a very well known tip for good skin is drinking at least 8-10 glasses of water daily.
Any home remedies for hair care?
Honestly, I don’t get enough time these days to do elaborate home treatments for my hair. Whenever I get time, I put onion juice in the roots of my hair and keep it for an hour and then wash it off with shampoo. It’s a bit smelly but is very good for hair growth. I go for protein treatments in the parlour at least once in a month.
Another very good home remedy for shiny healthy hair is applying a paste of curd lime juice from the roots to the shaft of the hair, keep it for half hour and wash it off using a shampoo.
Do you have a daily beauty regimen that you follow?
I drink amla aloe vera juice every morning along with two glasses of water on an empty stomach. This helps me keep my system clean -- a clean stomach means good skin and a healthy body. I also drink coconut water daily as it replenishes minerals in the body and once again, it’s good for the skin and hair.
I also take supplements to help my body cope with the toil it goes through everyday. I take calcium and D3 supplement and a Vitamin B12 supplement since that I don’t drink milk and am a vegetarian so calcium and B12 support is needed.
I religiously use sunscreen lotion, an under-eye cream and a Vitamin C serum daily. I also try and exfoliate my face with lactic acid or glycolic acid face wash to cleanse clogged pores so that I don’t suffer from a breakout.
India is a nation obsessed with fair skin, and your character is also referred to as ‘gori mem’ – what are your thoughts regarding this?
I am known as ‘Gori Mem’ in my show because I am very fair. I personally think it’s just the skin colour and beauty has nothing to do with it. All complexions are beautiful. Fair, yellow, brown or black- beauty has no fixed colour. Beauty in fact is very subjective, as they say, ‘Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder’. I also believe that if you feel beautiful from within then you shall automatically look beautiful.
Traditional or western: What fashion style do you feel most comfortable in? What is fashion according to you?
I like traditional wear for festivals and weddings. For parties, dinners or cocktails I prefer western dresses. I feel the most comfortable in jeans and ganjis. Though I am known mostly for the sarees which I wear.
When is the right time to get married according to you?
There is no right age to get married. One should tie the knot when you find the right life partner, which can happen at any age. I do not recommend marrying just for the sake of it, or because of parental or peer pressure. A marriage is between two people and they are the best ones to decide whether they are ready to settle down and mature enough to handle each other’s responsibility.
You have a lot of male admirers. How does your husband handle the attention?
Saurabh was my best friend for 10 years before he became my husband. I knew him before I became an actress; he understands me and knows the profession and the things which come with it. He is mature enough to handle the male attention actresses get. Also, he is a confident man himself and trusts me so there is no insecurity at all.
You recently found out there is a fake instagram account in your name. How did you handle it? Would you agree these things are common nowadays?
It’s not just one, there are multiple fake Instagram, Facebook and Twitter accounts in my name. That is the reason why my accounts are all verified with a blue tick. So don’t follow the other ones!
How do you handle twitter trolls? Like recently there was one who had objected to your TV show and you had replied to him.
I like taking feedback and connecting with my viewers and well-wishers. I also take negative feedback positively if it’s constructive, since I am a very objective person.
Being in this profession it is very common that when you get a lot of love you will also get some hatred. Yes, if there are abusive messages and people troll you with bad intentions then I block them. I feel if their comments or messages don’t add anything positive in my life, then they are nothing but irritants which should be kept out of my world.
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