The new VH1 docu-series, The Price of Beauty takes Jessica Simpson, her hairstylist/makeup artist, Ken Paves, and best friend, CaCee Cobb all over the world to meet every day women and discover how beauty is perceived in different cultures. To get to know more about CaCee Cobb, CaCee recently took some time out to talk to Hollywood the Write Way about this journey, beauty in Hollywood, and more.
How have your trips to Japan, India, Paris, Uganda, Morocco, Brazil, and Thailand help redefine beauty for you?
CaCee: This experience has reaffirmed to me that beauty doesn’t start and stop on a magazine cover. There is an entire world of beauty out there. I grew up in a very small town in Texas (2500 people) and I always knew that I was sheltered from so much of the world and lacked culture. But what I realized on this journey was that even though I lived in Los Angeles and wasn’t the kid in a farm town anymore, I was still sheltered! Traveling to all these different countries, meeting the people and learning the different cultures makes you understand what beauty really is or better yet, what it isn’t. Beauty is in you – not on you.
Which trip impacted you the most?
CaCee: Definitely my trip to Uganda. The beauty of Africa can’t even be put into words. I have never felt so humbled, happy and free…and completely connected to everything and everyone around me. I remember having tears in my eyes when I was saying goodbye to the women from the village I met. We didn’t even speak the same language, but we didn’t have to. I felt the connection I had made with them and I’ll never forget it. It really is something one would have to experience to understand. I’m not even doing it justice.
What have you come to value more about yourself that you may have taken for granted or were insecure about before this journey?
CaCee: By visiting these countries and experiencing all the different cultures, it made me realize how much I appreciate my freedom and the ability and opportunity to choose. By no means, when visiting all these amazing places did I feel the women were treated unfairly nor did I feel they were unhappy, it’s just different from what I know. But coming from the United States and being able to choose my life’s path is an amazing feeling. From choosing what outfit I want to wear to how much I weigh to what man I fall in love with and marry.
If you were to list the level of importance for health, weight, fashion, hair, & makeup…how would you say this list has changed from childhood to now?
CaCee: This is a good question…I would have to say that when I was younger I would spend so much time and effort into hair/makeup/fashion…weight has never been something that I dwelled on which might be the southern in me, I don’t know. And health probably wouldn’t have even made my list 10 years ago! Now, I’m completely opposite! My health is my number one priority. It’s almost annoying, but everything I do these days seems to revolve around health and taking care of myself. It’s the little things…I will literally force myself to go to sleep at a specific time so I can make sure I get my 8 hours! I’m so neurotic about it that my boyfriend now knows that if he wants anything to happen he has to go for it before the 8 hours or after – never during! I also workout religiously. When I turned 30, I made a pact with myself that fitness was going to be part of my lifestyle. And I’m proud to say that I am 32 years old and I haven’t fallen off yet! Just a lifetime more to go!
What beauty tips did you take back home from your trips?
CaCee: I don’t know if this is necessarily a “beauty tip”, but I like to think of it as one. While in Paris, I learned that a lot of the people live by the philosophy JOIE DE VIVRE which means “Joy of Living”. This can be anything! The joy of life, love, shopping, bathing, eating….anything! I love it! You really don’t realize how much more beautiful you feel when you’re happy. Take the time to enjoy yourself. You deserve it.
Do you think that there is a misunderstanding when it comes to change? To elaborate & for example, particularly in the entertainment business, when someone who is heavier than the Hollywood norm and then loses weight, it is sometimes considered selling out. What are your thoughts on this?
CaCee: I absolutely think there is a misunderstanding when it comes to change. Most people don’t like change. And there are many reasons why, one being because they don’t understand it. Take plastic surgery for instance. There are women making drastic changes to themselves and people immediately shun them or assume that they’re crazy. It’s sad. At the end of the day, these people just want to be happy and some just want to be accepted. If a new nose or bigger boobs or losing weight makes them happy or feel beautiful then who are we to judge? So no, I don’t think they’re selling out. I think we sold out by allowing there to be a stereotype of what beautiful is.
Lastly, are you involved with Operation Smile and can you tell me about your involvement in other programs you are involved with?
CaCee: I had the fortunate opportunity to go on an Operations Smile Mission to Kenya and was able to witness first hand the impact this organization has on peoples’ lives. Not only did it open my eyes, it forever changed something in me and made me want to make a difference in someone’s life. So when I found out that there are over 300 million children worldwide that don’t have shoes (and I had about 20 pair sitting in my closet that I don’t even wear) I had to do something! I started working with the charity Soles4Souls, which is an international shoe charity responsible for sourcing and distributing over 7 Million pairs of shoes to people all around the world. You don’t really think that a pair of shoes can change someone’s life, but you have no idea! It’s been estimated that over 300 million pair of shoes are thrown away every year in the US alone. Why not donate them? I wasn’t exactly sure what I could do to help, except help spread the word, which is what I’ve been doing for the past year. I’ve been reaching out to celebrities I know and shooting videos of them talking about Soles4Souls in hopes of bringing awareness and getting people to donate. My first video was with my boyfriend and Zach Braff and til this day is still my best! As little as $5 will provide a pair of shoes to TWO people! It’s really amazing. The website is 50000shoes.com.
Source: HollywoodTheWriteWay.com (thanks Melody!)