Kourtney Kardashian on Changing Her Lifestyle to Be More Healthy: From Vampire Facials to Giving Up Calorie Counting

The reality star and clean-beauty advocate talks about her commitment to healthy living and dealing with anxiety—and addresses whether she's actually leaving Keeping Up with the Kardashians.

There's no way around it: Kourtney Kardashian has a lot going on. She's a mother of three; one of the stars of television's preeminent reality shows; and runs Poosh, her site dedicated to helping women live a healthier lifestyle. But today, as she sits comfortably in her impeccably decorated home in Calabasas, California, Kourtney is the picture of tranquility—candid and reflective as she opens up about where her life is now.

Recently, the 40-year-old made the decision to take a small step back from Keeping Up with the Kardashians so that she can focus on her kids and on growing Poosh. "I'm really trying to put my energy into things that are fulfilling and enjoyable," she explains.

Kourtney says her social consciousness started to grow after the birth of son Mason, who is now 10. Since then, she has welcomed two more kids (Penelope, 7, and Reign, 5) with ex Scott Disick and has become an outspoken advocate for clean living. She regularly encourages viewers of the show and fans of her site to be more aware of what they put in and on their body and makes a point to highlight eco-friendly options. "It's my lifestyle," she says. "But I've also learned so much from Poosh."

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Greg Swales

Clad in sleek patent leather Tibi pants and Yeezy boots, Kourtney sips on a matcha latte (her favorite pick-me-up) and gets personal about motherhood, self-love, and her impressive bucket list. Spoiler alert: Skydiving is involved!

It's been a year since you launched Poosh. What was your goal in creating that space?

I felt like there wasn't really [a resource] for a woman who is healthy and into wellness but also sexy and cool. There is this image out there of the woman who cares about eating organic and feeding her kids that way that is somehow uncool. That's not the case, and I wanted to make something that embodied my passions and interests.

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Greg Swales

On the show, we've seen you encourage your family to get on board with elements of your lifestyle—has that been hard to do?

I still search their refrigerators! I say, "OK, guys, what's it going to take for everyone to stop using plastic water bottles?" I've pretty much gotten everyone switched over to boxed water or glass. But when I go to my family's houses and I see nonorganic milk or fruit or vegetables, it really bothers me—like, "Why do you not think [organic] is better?" It really irks me.

How do you approach your diet?

It's interesting. I grew up in that super-skinny era. "Fat-free" and calorie counting was the thing. I don't even think about those things anymore. No one cared about carbs; it was just [about] no fat. I didn't know what was healthy or not healthy growing up.

How do you eat now?

In my house, we are gluten- and dairy-free; my skin is very sensitive, and if I eat dairy, it affects it. I love doing a keto diet, though I'm not doing it now. I noticed my body change for the better. I [also] love intermittent fasting. I try to do that all the time. Sometimes if I've had a normal day of eating and I'm pretty full, instead of having dinner, I'll have some bone broth, especially if I'm not feeling well or starting to get sick.

Anything you would never eat?

I would never open a can of soda. That's just not where I would cheat. My mom has a good pantry in Palm Springs filled with Cheetos and Oreos and lots of junk foods. I definitely treat myself. And [recently] Kim and I did a road trip, and we stopped at a gas station and raided it—Funyuns, mini doughnuts, Chex Mix. With our kids, I try not to force it. I teach them healthy stuff, and everything in moderation. When we go to Disneyland, we eat whatever; we're not bringing our own snacks!

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Not long ago, you posted a photo that showed off your stretch marks. Were you surprised by the positive reaction?

I was surprised by that. I've had stretch marks since eighth or ninth grade on the side of my booty. I never cared about them—I like them!

What's your workout routine like?

[Post-kids,] with my body, it's become more about maintenance. As far as my workouts, I feel really good. I notice better results when I mix it up between trainers or do boxing, so I don't get burned-out or bored. I've also made an effort to get into skin care. I put on a serum every day right out of the shower, under my lotion.

You've been a vocal supporter of transparency in the beauty industry, even going to Washington to lobby on behalf of cosmetics safety legislation with the Environmental Working Group. Why?

We're trying to get this law passed with Congress because it shouldn't really be up to us to have to do the research and know that our products are safe, especially kids' products.

What would you say to people struggling to find clean-beauty lines?

Once you familiarize yourself with brands that are dedicated to nontoxic, clean ingredients, it gets easier. At Poosh, we are constantly trying new stuff. There's a myth that [clean beauty] is way more expensive. We have found so many great inexpensive brands. I love Peach & Lily. They have the most amazing face wash and other skin products. I use a lot of them on Mason—and they're affordable. Once you find those brands, just stick to them.

What are your favorite beauty trends?

I love platelet-rich plasma [treatments]. They take your blood and spin it, and then take the plasma and microneedle it [into your face]. They call it the Vampire Facial. It's usually a day of downtime, but it's something I like to do as often as I can. I do saunas. And Khloé and I did cryotherapy together. We felt so good afterward. We were like, "Let's do this every morning!"

You've been open about struggling with anxiety. How do you deal with it?

For the past three years I've been going to therapy. Once a week I go to a double session. I look forward to it every week! Having that awareness, I find that I can almost catch things before they become a bigger deal. When those harder moments do happen, I think, "What's the lesson that I'm supposed to be learning?" My workouts are key, too. And I go to church once a week, if I can. I go with friends, and we go to dinner afterward. I'm such a homebody; it's important for me to force myself to do something social!

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What is most important to you when it comes to parenting?

I [believe] in being honest and giving my kids choices, but also teaching them respect and boundaries. I want them to feel like they can always talk to me. I try not to make them feel bad if they tell me something honest. Teaching them about God is also important to me. Every morning on the way to school we listen to a positive playlist. Lately it's been Kanye's Sunday Service album.

You seem pretty even-keeled as a parent. Is there anything that sets you off?

I have my moments! When no one is listening to me, that causes a moment. Especially if you're on a time crunch and trying to get out the door. I don't always have as much patience as I'd like. But I try to remember, "It's not that big of a deal, it's fine; we're going to get there." It's about letting go of the plan—it doesn't always work out!

What's your relationship with social media?

I try to set boundaries because I notice how much better I feel when I'm not on it as much. I put my phone in the bathroom at nighttime. My kids don't have phones, but I make sure that all the devices in the house—iPads and computers— have the Night Shift [it reduces blue light] on 24 hours a day. And we definitely have time limits [on devices].

Are you the type of person who sets goals or has a bucket list?

I have a list on my phone. I started taking piano lessons, and I want to do salsa dancing. Skydiving is also on my list—and I want to [learn how to] do the splits! I would like to go on a trip by myself. Switzerland is at the top right now. Traveling lights me up.

It seems like you're really living life on your own terms—is that fair to say?

Totally. I've been taking less time with filming and, in general, with work. My sisters don't like when I say "setting boundaries," but it's more about a schedule. I try to make myself available to my kids to really be a mom. And I want to be in charge of my time and schedule in order to do the things that are bringing me happiness.

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