Like most 1990s kids, Michelle Siman grew up watching MTV and MuchMusic. While some of us were content just lip-syncing in front of the TV, Siman actually dreamt of being on it—interviewing people and sparking conversations.
Flash forward to now, and she has started to realize that dream—not as VJ, but as the host of her own beauty and wellness podcast: Lemon Water. A girl after our own hearts, Toronto-based Siman champions women who inspire her and focuses mainly on topics surrounding health. If hearing self-starting women talk about skincare, fitness, food, natural remedies, and daily rituals sounds interesting, grab your headphones—and read our email interview with Siman below.
What inspired you to start your podcast?
There wasn’t one particular thing that inspired it, there were actually a few. Since I was little, I always dreamt of being on either MTV or MuchMusic, or hosting a radio show. I love interviewing people and having conversations. I’m also trying to find ways to separate myself from the usual. For years I was struggling with finding a way to express myself creatively—I feel like this is a way for me to speak about wellness, beauty, and my personal style in a different way.
What other podcasts are you a fan of?
As weird as this may sound, I don’t listen to podcasts for the host (sounds so bad, I know)—I listen for the people being interviewed. For example, I have listened to every single podcast that Aurora James, Emily Weiss, and Lacy Phillips have been on.
I really did like Monocycle and Oh Boy by Leandra Medine Cohen—was such a shame they stopped doing that. I adore the episode with Gloria Steinem. I used to listen to it every now and then, when I needed that inspo boost. Sometimes I try to keep up with current events, so I’ll listen to The Daily powered by The New York Times.
What do you look for in the women you interview?
Someone who has been able to inspire me intellectually and creatively—super hard to come across now these days, in my opinion.
Have you always lived in Toronto?
I actually grew up here. Well, not the “city-city,” but just the suburbs. Toronto has and will always be home. It’s rare to come across someone who doesn’t have a side hustle. That shit really inspires me and keeps me motivated. People here are working 24/7, but it differs from New York City—we tend to smile more and spike conversation with strangers…literally anywhere.
What are your go-to spots in the city for a) a healthy snack and b) a great cocktail ?
Healthy snack, that’s a tough one. I’ll sit at Impact Kitchen for hours. I’ve always been a fan of Greenhouse, The Grow Op, The Goods…wow, the list can go on. I don’t really drink that much, so that’s a tough one. I love going for dinner and having a glass of wine with friends. Top dinner spots would for sure be Piano Piano, La Palma, Jules Bistro, and Pinky’s Ca Phe. Oh wow, that’s a lot.
You’ve been featured twice on Into the Gloss. What are some of your favourite items on your top shelf?
Again, a tough one…it’s hard because I’m the type of person who is always open to trying new things when it comes to beauty. Why don’t I just name some things I cannot live without…honestly that sounds superficial…why don’t I list the things I really enjoy.
#1 Consonant Natural Foaming Face Wash – I could go on for hours about this, but listen, it takes off any and all makeup and is 100% natural.
#2 Diptyque Noisetier candle – UGH PLEASE SPONSOR ME.
#3 Dr. Jart Ceramidin Cream – I love the texture, texture is everything.
#4 Gee Beauty Prime Skin Tinted Power Primer – Please don’t ask me what I did before this, I legit don’t know.
#5 Nudestix Nudies All Over Face Color Glow and Intense Matte Lip + Cheek Pencil.
#6 Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask – I have six. Every flavour.
#7 The Ordinary Buffet – The only serum I recommend for everyone, filled with peptides and leaves you looking plump.
#8 Le Labo everything.
What does your ideal Friday night look like?
Well I work out on Saturday mornings, so a perfect Friday would be on my couch; hot water with lemon, ginger, and honey; a candle; some random show playing the background; and doing work (yes, I’m a workaholic).
What wellness trend are you totally on board with right now?
Going green—this is so important to me. Stop using plastic. It’s not only bad for your wellbeing, but also sucks for the earth.
Breathwork—this is something I’ve been doing since I was a little kid. My mom has taught me that breathwork is a great way to relieve abdominal pain and also to clear your mind.
Also “wellness” in general is just trending. Some may find it annoying that people are hopping on the train, but I’m the opposite. It makes me so happy when people want to make better changes in their life.
Your top three magazines?
Apartmento, System, The Gentlewoman.
We heard you are a big mug fan. Any ceramic brands we should know about?
Someone listened to episode one! Rachel Saunders—she’s based out of Vancouver Island. Her work and aesthetic are magic.
Who are the women who inspire you?
My mom—straight-up hardest-working human I know.
Emily Weiss, Lacy Phillips, Tonya Papanikolov, Amber Joliat, Aurora James, Sophia Roe, Sara Panton!
Any creative woman who can take her dream and turn it into a career, that’s the type of woman who inspires me.
What’s your go-to essential oil?
Anything with Bergamot, sign me up.
This interview has been edited and condensed.