He may be the Fab Five’s resident culinary expert on “Queer Eye,” but Antoni Porowski could certainly fill in for co-star Tan France when it comes to fashion.
The Netflix star has noticeably upped his style game since the reality show premiered last year and, during a recent press event for his partnership with Olly Nutrition, Antoni told AOL’s Gibson Johns that he’s completely changed his approach to his personal style, despite a promise that he made to himself early when “Queer Eye” premiered.
“Prior to the show, I probably owned five pairs of jeans, 15 white t-shirts, some sweaters and the only thing that I’ve always been obsessed with is outerwear. As a Canadian, I’ve always had 15 winter coats,” he explained to AOL. “When the show came out, I said I was going to still keep things really simple, but I have not kept things simple. I have way too many sneakers now.”
Instead of the classic jeans and a t-shirt look that used to be Antoni’s de facto daily uniform, the food expert is more likely now to be seen wearing a colorful cropped jacket, unusual men’s pants, a cross-body bag and some sort of cool footwear. He’s clearly taking more risks and having more fun with what he wears.
“Fashion’s fun! It’s such a way of expressing yourself,” he said. “I used to think it was so vain, but if it makes you feel good to wear a bright-ass color or hat or whatever the hell it is, then why not?”
Antoni went on to explain that, though he still doesn’t love shopping, because he gets sent so many free clothes — one of the many perks of being a public figure now! — he only really buys himself things that he knows he’ll truly cherish.
“It’s a weird thing, though, because I try not to be wasteful: I’m not a shopper, and I don’t like going to stores to just buy a bunch of clothes, because there are other ways I want to spend my time whenever I have it. We get a lot of gifts and stuff, though. It’s tricky, because you get something nice and you wear it once, then it’s like, ‘Oh, I can’t be photographed in that again,'” he explained. “My mind works differently when I’m shopping now and, in a way, I’m actually buying less. But I’m definitely treating myself to some nicer things. I discovered The Row. The way everything is perfectly tailored, so simple and you can wake up feeling like human garbage and put on one of their garments and feel like a king or queen.”
During the “Queer Eye” cast’s recent trip to Japan, where they filmed several special episodes that will premiere on Netflix later this year, Antoni and Tan in particular used the trip as an excuse to take even more risks when it came to their fashion — resulting in some stellar Instagram content.
“Tan and I went a little sh– crazy, as you’ll see,” he laughed. “There’s this one post we put up in Harajuku where I had on Jill Sander oversized men’s shorts that have a full-on A-line cut with panda slippers, as one does. You have to go all out! It would be disrespectful if we didn’t.”
In addition to altering his fashions, Antoni has also made another change to his daily life: He’s making sure to take more time for self-care, the importance of which hasn’t been lost on him since his “life has gone from zero to 100,” as he told AOL.
“Hitting my late 20s, I suddenly had a shift and realized that I’m not a superhero,” he told us. “With work now, I really notice how precious everything is. Whether it’s the time I have with myself, the time I have with loved ones and how I take care of my body, I’m somebody who tends to lean on the side of excess with everything I do. So, whenever I can implement really easy ways to make myself feel better or where I’m just practicing self-care, like with the Olly gummies, it actually psychologically affects me, because I know it’s a moment that I’m taking for myself and letting myself know that I’m taking care of myself.”
JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE! – “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” airs every weeknight at 11:35 p.m. EDT and features a diverse lineup of guests that include celebrities, athletes, musical acts, comedians and human interest subjects, along with comedy bits and a house band. The guests for Monday, March 18, included Mandy Moore (“This Is Us”), Antoni Porowski, Jonathan Van Ness, Karamo Brown Tan France (“Queer Eye”), and musical guest Dean Lewis. (Randy Holmes via Getty Images)
KARAMO BROWN, ANTONI POROWSKI, TAN FRANCE, JONATHAN VAN NESS