Sporty & Rich, the Instagram account turned massively popular lifestyle brand, is branching into beauty. This week, founder Emily Oberg introduced a curated collection of five nourishing products: a silky body oil, a gentle milky cleanser, a lavender scented hand cream, a lip balm, and a vitamin-enriched face mist. On the heels of the launch, Oberg spoke to W from the just-opened Sporty & Rich flagship in New York about her minimalist skincare routine, the breath work tracks that put her to sleep, and the best places to get lymphatic drainage massage from Los Angeles to Paris.
The Sporty & Rich brand has grown and evolved a lot this year. Why did skincare feel like a natural extension of the world you’ve been building?
We’re still pretty small, but we’ve grown to where we can make products like this and feel confident they will work. Having the store helps as well, because people can come in and try them. Skincare is a very hard thing to sell just digitally. And it just felt like a good next step—I wanted to work on something other than apparel, so it was a fun project for me.
As you were developing the line, what aspects did you prioritize?
It’s really important to me that there are no harmful chemicals in the products that I use. I’m a purist about it, so I wanted this line to reflect that. The formulas are simple, and they contain natural but special ingredients, like papaya extract, Mediterranean seaweed, vitamin E, and aloe vera. It’s not an actives line—it’s more about basics and essentials that can be used with different skin types. Anyone who buys it will also get a PDF of a skin-gut reset guide that I developed with my naturopath—it’s a 14-day protocol for how to heal your gut that will make a big difference in your skin.
How would you describe your own skincare philosophy?
I am a big believer that good skin is not about the products you use. It really is about what you’re putting in your body, the kind of foods you’re eating, how much water you’re drinking, and whether you’re sleeping well and getting enough rest. With this line, it’s less about, “This product’s going to change your life,” and more, “These products will support healthy skin if you do all of these other things.”
What’s your morning routine like?
First, I brush my teeth and scrape my tongue. I’ll have some room temperature water—I’ll try to drink a liter within the first hour of being up. Then, depending on where I am, I’ll spend some time in the sun to get some vitamin D: no sunglasses, no sunscreen, just getting some good morning sun. In terms of skincare, it’s very simple: I wash my face, use one serum (right now I like this one made with stem cells from Osmosis), and an Elemis collagen cream with SPF. And I love using face mist throughout the day. I just feel like moisturizer wears off and it’s nice to feel hydrated.
Are you a big makeup person?
I honestly don’t know how to do makeup, so I don’t even try. When I do wear makeup, I just wear mascara. I love the one from Thrive Causemetics.
How do you wind down at night?
I try not to have my phone around, and I don’t watch TV before bed. I just think it really disrupts your sleep. I’ll read and do a face massage, either with my hands or a gua sha tool. And if I’m stressed or anxious, I do breath work, which usually puts me to sleep within a minute or two. There are some guided meditations on Spotify by a breath work coach called David Elliott, and they’re easy to follow and accessible.
What would be your ideal spa day and where?
I want to create a Sporty & Rich Country Club, because there isn’t anywhere that has all of my favorite treatments in one place. I would love to do blood work, IV treatments, maybe some vitamin injections, an infrared sauna, a cold plunge, and a heated workout. And probably a lymphatic massage and a lymphatic face massage.
Where do you go for lymphatic drainage massage?
We have them at our store in SoHo! In Paris, there’s a place called Aesthetic Club—she’s amazing. And in L.A., there’s a woman who runs a place called WOW Body Sculpting. She’s from Ukraine, and she does a different technique from the Brazilian tradition. It’s more intense and it goes deeper. I love it.
What are some of your go-to workouts?
When I’m in Los Angeles, I do mat pilates at Heated Room. In New York, I usually just go to a gym and do my own routine there—a combination of pilates, some light weights and a little bit of cardio. When I’m in New York or in Paris, I walk as much as I can. And sometimes I’ll go to Barry’s.
What has been your biggest beauty splurge to date and was it worth it?
I did a weeklong retreat at this health resort called Lanserhof. You meet with doctors, they give you a specific diet to followm and then it’s treatments all day long. I wouldn’t say it was totally worth it, because I just didn’t feel like the quality of the practitioners and treatments was up to my standards. But it was interesting, for sure. I definitely want to try more places like that.
What’s your signature scent?
I’ve used Chance by Chanel since I was in junior high, and I have never found anything I love as much.
Are there any beauty trends you participated in over the years that make you cringe today?
In my high school, it was a big trend for girls to wear a lot of foundation, but I never knew how to do it and it definitely didn’t look good. I’ve never worn it since.
What is the one beauty product you can’t live without?
The BHA exfoliant from Paula’s Choice. It’s the best exfoliant I’ve ever tried. It just makes your skin look so good.
Who is your beauty icon?
Audrey Hepburn. Her look was so natural—just big brows and lashes, and that was it.