Meet Jenna Wortham

Jenna Wortham Passerbuys
Jenna moved to New York in 2009 to work for the New York Times as a technology reporter. Before that, she lived in San Francisco and worked as a waitress and fact-checker at Wired Magazine. She is originally from Virginia, and studied biology and anthropology as an undergraduate at the University of Virginia. Having a background in science really helped her to see that she loved everything about information tech, infrastructure and thinking about how things work and evolve. Initially, Jenna felt alienated from tech culture because she didn’t present as a stereotypical “nerd” but the more she dug into it, the more she became fascinated with the way the Internet, machines and software shape our understanding of ourselves, the world, and each other, and she’s been doing that ever since.

Outfit Details: Top, Puma ; Pants & Blouse, Vintage ; Choker, ASOS

on her Morning Routine by season

In summer, I wake up naturally. I love warm weather, and I can’t wait to be outside. In winter, it’s the complete opposite. I lie in bed and negotiate until I’m on my way into the day. No matter the season, I like to alkalize as soon as I wake up, with charcoal filtered water with a squeeze of lemon, lime or blood orange, whatever is in the fridge.

on becoming a writer

I’ve been reading since I was 2, the story goes, so it feels natural that I would work in words. My family is very working class, so it took me awhile to realize I could earn a living by writing, and once that happened, there was no going back.

I love having a job that allows me to investigate the human condition, and think about life, and explore alternate ways of being and doing things.

on what she's working on now

My goal for the rest of the year is to expand my idea of myself as a creator. I am working on an art book with a friend, and teaching myself more about film and moving images. I love working with video. In five years, I hope to be as excited and invigorated as I am today to write and connect with new people.

Anything that explores the interiority of black women appeals to me and I was lucky enough to get a copy of the new Zadie Smith and I haven’t been able to put it down since.
— on writing that appeals to her

On her personal style

I mostly shop online. Trying on clothes gives me body anxiety and so many places have free online returns, so. In general, I aim for maximum comfort and bright colors, which I get from all over. I am experimenting with more masculine styles right now because that's what is in my heart. I love ASOS and I have a few friends who sell vintage and they occasionally set pieces aside for me, which is dope.

on the perfect skin mask & her skincare routine

Raw honey is a perfect skin mask. I just buy a jar of something raw and organic and spread it on my face a few minutes and then rinse it off. I do it a few times a month, in the morning or before bed . Honey is a natural antibiotic and moisturizer. It keeps my skin clear and looking dewy and moist. It’s THE BEST!

My skin is so temperamental and hyper-reactive, so I can’t use too many things at once or too much makeup, or my face has a meltdown. I just try keep it clean and moisturized to prevent break-outs. I love Orgaid sheet masks because they have probiotics and witch hazel in them, which is incredible. I’ve been using a vitamin C serum too, which is working wonders for my summer complexion.

Outfit Details: Kimono, Free People

Outfit Details: Dress, ASOS; Kimono, Free People; Rings, Pamela Love

Holistic health is very important to me! I’ve become extremely attuned to the foods that make me feel great and the ones that make me feel terrible. And now I’m learning to experiment with teas and things just for health. I bought a block of organic reishi mushrooms at the Union Square Farmer’s Market for $10! I’m going to brew it this winter as a health tonic. I just started a newsletter to document these adventures.
— on the importance of holistic health
Jenna Wortham Passerbuys

Jenna's Favorite Books

The Black Book by Middleton A. Harris, Ernest Smith, Morris Levitt, Roger Furman, & Toni Morrison

This Bridge Called My Back by Cherríe Moraga and Gloria Anzaldúa

Swing Time by Zadie Smith

Bluets by Maggie Nelson

Jenna's Favorite Places

Best Coffee: SuperCrown 

Best Paletas: Tulcingo Deli 

Best Juices at AP Cafe

Best Place for  Cool Shows: Trans-Pecos 

Best Discowoman Sets: TheLotRadio and Market Hotel

Best Acupuncture: TigerLily 

Best Spot For A Date & Sushi: Momos 

Best Place for a Movie: Syndicated

Streetstyle Details: Vintage

Streetstyle Details: Vintage