Emmanuelle Chriqui is a contradiction in terms: She recently returned from the former Soviet Union, where she filmed a starring role in Renny Harlan’s politically charged recreation of the Russian invasion of Georgia, but Emmanuelle was most recently seen on the big screen as a pregnant porn star in the SXSW-debuted indie Electra Luxx.
Perhaps best known as Sloan on Entourage, in her personal life Emmanuelle is all about single-minded commitment to the causes that she passionately supports. She’s heavily involved in the Environmental Media Association’s Young Hollywood board, and helped launch Raise Hope For Congo with respected humanitarian John Prendergast. I spoke with her after Emmanuelle helped kick off the EMA’s School Gardens Program, which will roll out through 25 schools in urban Los Angeles to help underserved communities develop self-sustaining, organic food sources.
ES: When did you start getting involved in eco-consciousness?
EC: I’ve always been attracted to the alternative lifestyle, meaning organic and natural and alternative healing. That stuff has always been present in my life. When I was shooting Zohan I really wanted to get a new car. I had been driving the same lovely little 1988 red two-door Toyota Corolla forever. I wanted to drive a Prius, and that was a big commitment for me because it was a real statement at the time.
One of the producers put me in touch with Debbie Levin (CEO of the Environmental Media Association), who connected me with Toyota. Being involved with Debbie and the EMAs (the Environmental Media Awards show), has been a constant learning process. I’ve been getting more and more involved. And it’s really gotten a lot easier to be environmentally conscious!
ES: Yes, I was thinking about that when you talked about a so-called “alternative lifestyle” that was environmentally conscious. I can’t wait for a time when organic and natural is the norm!
EC: Exactly! And the alternative is the bizarros who are driving their giant old Broncos.
ES: So, let’s talk about the important stuff. What are your favorite green fashion labels or beauty finds?
EC: I’m still learning. I love Alexx Jae, which is awesome. I love their style, and their idea of using [upcycled fabric] from other companies. I wear Alexx Jae all the time. ￼ Emmanuelle with Alexx Levin and Bari Milken at the Alexx Jae for Milk opening. Photo courtesy of EMA. I also love anything made from bamboo—jeans, shirts, anything. I don’t understand why everybody doesn’t want to dress that way; it feels amazing—softer than the softest old t-shirt! The whole thing is an exploration. Fashion, cosmetics—I feel like every day there’s a new something that’s all natural, all organic, no parabens. I love going to Erewhon and using Jason Body Wash. Just switching out everything and replacing it with the good kind.
It’s a journey and it’s a lifestyle that’s evolving every single minute. There are better products all the time. But you can’t just use something because it’s good for the environment. It’s got to feel good. Like toilet paper. There are so many different eco brands now, you can choose which one you like.
Find out more about Emmanuelle’s eco-challenges–and eco-sins–at EcoStiletto.com.