In Chill Chat, Bustle sits down with stars to chat about all things wellness, from their favorite skin care products to their hacks for getting a good night’s sleep. Here, Lance Bass shares the workout that’s changed his life, tips for a transcendent bubble bath, and the simple wellness advice he values most.
When I log on to Zoom with the Lance Bass, I blurt out that it's the first time I've interviewed someone whose poster I had in my childhood bedroom. He laughs and asks if it's still there, to which I say yes — it ain't no lie.
After graduating from the most popular boy band of the ’90s, *NSYNC, the 43-year-old singer is in the midst of a renaissance. Though he has his hands a little extra full these days — he and his husband, actor Michael Turchin, welcomed twins in October 2021 — he still makes time to prioritize his wellness routine.
“I’ve figured out the self-care habits that work for me, and I always make time for them,” Bass tells Bustle. “I just don’t feel as good if I skip a green juice or workout.”
Feeling good is important to the pop star. After dealing with chronic pain from what he thought was years of dancing, in 2017 he was diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis, a disease that causes joint inflammation and skin irritation. With lifestyle changes and medication, the Dancing With the Stars alum, who recently partnered with biotech company Amgen to lead its DoubleTake campaign for psoriatic arthritis awareness, is enjoying a second, pain-free wind.
Here, Bass tells Bustle about his daily breakfast order, the ’90s song he can’t not dance to, and the meditation tip he scored from a fellow ex-boy bander.
How do you start your day?
I'm up at 6 to 6:30 a.m. when the kids wake up. I'm not a morning person, but now I have to be. I order avocado toast, eggs, and coffee every single morning. Then, I feed and change the babies. I have quality time with them for the next few hours. I always play Mandarin language classes for kids on YouTube — my gift to them will be learning a language that [feels] so impossible to grasp as an adult.
What got cut from your wellness routine when you became a dad? What do you try to make time for?
One thing that I didn't want to get rid of was cardio. My husband and I were very into walking around the neighborhood and meeting our neighbors over the last few years. We live in the [Hollywood] Hills, so it's a very hard walk. When we’d get back home, we’d be sweaty, heart rates going — it was awesome. But we can’t really get the same workout with the kids in tow.
Sleep is something I always make time for, even though there’s very little time for it. With twins, one is always up, so I can’t nap when they nap. Thankfully my husband and I will trade off to let the other sleep.
Is there anything in your self-care routine specifically for your psoriatic arthritis?
When I didn’t know what was causing the pain in my shoulder and knees, I stopped working out. I thought I had dancer injuries and was scared to push it. But when I found out exactly what it was and found the right medication, I returned to exercising. I strengthened my chest and legs and that really helped.
Now that you feel that you have it under control, what's your favorite way to work out?
I just got a Tonal machine, and it completely changed my life. Even if I only have 10 minutes, I can go to my bedroom and lift a little and I feel better. Plus, it comes with virtual trainers, so I can get workouts tailored to my shoulder and knee injuries.
What music pumps you up for a session?
I love the group Silverchair. I don't know if anyone's heard of them since the ’90s, but I listen to them and Aerosmith — “Love in an Elevator” is always a good pump up song.
Is there a song you can’t listen to without grooving?
I mean TLC’s “Scrubs.” I'm obsessed with that song. I even made up a dance for it.
Post-workout: ice bath or sauna for recovery?
I want to be one of those people that can get in an ice bath, but it hurts too much. So I'm more of a sauna guy.
What do you do to turn off your brain at the end of the day?
My husband and I will sit in an Epsom salt bubble bath with lavender oil and listen to music for an hour. I go in and out of meditation because my brain is just all over the place, and it's so hard for me to be able to focus, but I've found certain meditations that really work for me.
Do you have any mediation tricks?
One of the guys in Matchbox Twenty told me this years ago, and it really changed the way that I approach meditation. He said, “When you go to a place in your mind, create a world.” My world just happens to be all made of snow and ice, and for years, I go to the exact same place that's already built and add something new to it. It makes you focus and get your mind off everything else. It's the only thing that doesn't get my brain firing in different directions.
Any other destress rituals?
A massage is my favorite thing in the world, especially a head massage. My husband gives me the best head massages, and it's probably the thing that relaxes me the most. Just scratch my head, and I'm good. Even when I go into spas and I get a massage, I’m like, "Can you just concentrate on my head?"
What is the best wellness advice you've ever received?
Surround yourself with as many positive people as possible, and try to cut all the negativity out of your life. I got rid of my social media platforms that were having negative effects on my mental health — I’m strictly a TikToker these days because as of now, it's just been very positive and fun. And taking deep breaths completely just changes your mood.
This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.