Ashley Tisdale brought minimalist style to the stage — with a contemporary twist — for the 2023 “Teen Vogue” Summit.
To celebrate Teen Vogue’s 20th anniversary, Ashley Tisdale made her way to NYA Studios in the heart of Hollywood to join Teen Vogue’s executive editor, Danielle Kwateng, in an intimate chat where she discussed going from becoming a household name with her roles of Sharpay Evans in the wildly popular DCOM franchise High School Musical to entering the wellness and beauty space with her community site and brand Frenshe.
“I would say that Frenshe came at a time where I was going through a lot of difficult times. I realized I suffered from anxiety and depression,” Tisdale told the audience about the genesis of Frenshe as a platform to connect with her community.
“I wanted to start openly talking about [these things], because a lot of people weren’t talking about it at the time. This was like probably six years ago. I just wanted to make anybody feel not alone in their journey, and so that was really where Frenshe came from. I wanted somewhere where could share [the experiences that] I’ve been through, both amazing and not so amazing. Everything from my mental health to plastic surgery to just everything l’ve learned so far and I had no idea that was going to be something that would catapult me into doing products and creating a really successful line.”
The community she’s built with Frenshe has replaced the void that acting filled before, and though Tisdale doesn’t feel an anger to get back to the acting world she doesn’t fully rule it out. For now, the focus is on Frenshe, and she hopes “people don’t think this is another celebrity brand.”
Tisdale also opened up about a mental health tipping point when she closed off her previous beauty line, Illuminate, and how. “It really took a minute to realize it was something I wasn’t supposed to be doing,” she said. “Even though I know everybody fails at something at some point in their life. [When I shut down Illuminate, I realized I failed at something personally, and I
really shut down but it taught me so much.”
After she came to terms with that failure, she was inspired by Frenshe but it didn’t come with some reservations. “When I was thinking about doing the product line I was so scared because with Illuminate the one thing I wanted it to was to be a Target line so l literally felt like that dream was crushed,” she said. “When I went into Target and saw the [Frenshe] line, I cried and because to me, that was the success.”
Another success has been her clearly been her Y2K fashion. When asked to pick her most iconic look, Tisdale did not hesitate to stand by all her choices. “I remember seeing Kelly Wearstler wear a dress over jeans recently and I was like, ‘Excuse me, I was made fun of for that.’ But it looks still good,” she said.
“It’s so funny because l honestly have just like marched to my own drum,” Tisdale continues. “A lot of people want to be like, ‘Oh my God, what do you think?’ thinking they might embarrass me or something and I’m like, ‘No, honestly, that girl was so free. She was such a free spirit. She didn’t care what other people thought. Like it’s been obviously being in the business for so long and being the spotlight, you now think about what you look like and what you wear, but like, I was like, ‘This looks epic. I’m so excited to wear this outfit and wear this boa at this red carpet-event. So I felt really good about myself and I think that’s a beautiful thing, you know, like innocent in a way. l loved being a celebrity then.”