The Untold Truth Of Phoebe Robinson

Writer, comedian, and actress Phoebe Robinson seems to be absolutely everywhere these days, doesn't she? Known for her unique ability to blend serious issues like racial and gender inequality with humor, it's easy to see why audiences love Robinson and readers practically everywhere she goes.

After beginning her career as a TV comedy writer and journalist, Robinson shot to fame thanks to her blog, Blaria. Now, she has two podcasts, an HBO series, three books, and her own publishing imprint. She has also appeared in "BoJack Horseman," "Search Party," "I Love Dick," and "Broad City." Plus, her new Hulu show, "Everything's Trash," dropped on Hulu in 2022. Is there anything this powerhouse can't do? By the looks of things, she's only just getting started.

Curious to learn more about how this star became one of the up-and-coming voices in comedy of her generation? Here is the untold truth of Phoebe Robinson.

Phoebe Robinson discovered comedy by chance

Stand-up comedy was never something that Phoebe Robinson was particularly interested in. "I really could not have cared less about stand-up," she told Harper's Bazaar during a 2021 interview. Instead, as a young woman fresh out of college, she recalled being far more interested in serious screenwriting. "I want to write serious screenplays," she thought at the time.

However, she happened upon stand-up comedy by chance when her friend convinced her to take an eight-week stand-up class with her. "I took the classes at Caroline's on Broadway, and I absolutely loved it. It was so much fun," she explained. "I was like, 'This is what I'm supposed to be doing with my life.'" When the company that she had been working at closed down, she took it as a "sign from the universe" that stand-up was the right path for her. And thank goodness she did!

Phoebe Robinson avoids a lot of the men in her industry

In the comedy industry, Phoebe Robinson deals with plenty of men who aren't exactly great to work with. "It's very male-dominated, and a lot of the guys in stand-up are just straight-up trash," she said bluntly to Entertainment Weekly. "And I'm like, 'I don't want you in my life at all.' It's a lot of just putting my head down."

Of course, even though Robinson avoids some macho men in the industry, she sometimes finds herself doubting her work. When she went on tour with fellow comedian Ilana Glazer, for instance, she suddenly realized that she had been comparing herself to male comics. "We've been doubting ourselves this whole freakin' time, and a lot of that has been informed by the fact that we have different energy than a lot of the male comics," she told NPR. "We carry ourselves different — maybe we tell our jokes in a different way or a different style — and we were beating ourselves up in allowing that patriarchal energy to affect our self-esteem. And then I was like, 'Yeah, I'm good at this job.'"

Phoebe Robinson struggled before making it big

Like many other celebrities, Phoebe Robinson didn't meet with success right away. In fact, she struggled for a few years before everything fell into place. "I've definitely come a long way, and thank God," she said to Harper's Bazaar. As she explained, when she first started out, she was "broke and hustling." "I was taking a one-hour bus to Boston, doing shows for free," she recalled. "I was flying across the country, and whatever I made from my gig basically paid for my travel."

This meant that Robinson was constantly worried about paying bills. "Not that I didn't have fun," she added, "but I was so focused on keeping my head above water." When she first started out, Robinson told A Drink With, she worked as an administrative assistant while also trying to write. She was, as she put it, "scraping together my rent every month." She would even sleep on her friends' sofas when she traveled as she couldn't afford a hotel!

Phoebe Robinson needs these things to write

Phoebe Robinson has a seriously impressive writing resume — with three books, several TV shows, and countless articles under her belt, it's hard to imagine her ever coming down with a case of writer's block. However, as it turns out, Robinson does need perfect conditions to get her creative juices flowing. Of course, her writing setup changes from project to project. "It has morphed as I've gotten older," she told Interview magazine.

These days, Robinson likes to work at her desk with "a lit candle, music, my laptop, and a second monitor that I can use solely for looking up stuff that pertains to whatever I'm working on." Music, she said, is crucial as it helps set the mood and keep her energized. She also added that she uses the Pomodoro app to make sure she takes breaks. Oh, and she likes to have a whole array of non-alcoholic drinks at her disposal.

When Robinson is on a deadline, she's even more strict with herself. As she told The Writer, her routine is "turn Wi-Fi off and put your cell phone in another room. Write for a few hours. Take a break, eat, write for another hour." Well, whatever she's doing, it's clearly working — it's hard to imagine she could be any more productive!

Phoebe Robinson is lacking a few basic skills

Phoebe Robinson may be at the top of her game when it comes to comedy and writing, but there are a few other areas where the star is a little lacking. "I'm such a workaholic, and I realized that there's so many things that I don't know how to do," she confessed to Nylon. "I can't drive. I don't know how to swim. I can't really cook all that well."

In fact, her lack of practical life skills led to her show "Doing the Most With Phoebe Robinson." As she explained, she decided to meet with a variety of guest stars and try new things with them. "It's really amazing, fun celebs, and they will get me out of my comfort zone," she said. "They'll teach me how to do something that they're pretty good at." She's already learned to horseback ride, rollerblade, and do gymnastics.

Phoebe Robinson is passionate about making space for others in the industry

While Phoebe Robinson is always hustling for her next big project, as her career has blossomed, she's also started looking for opportunities to champion other people's work, too. "I'm in a position now with a little bit of power to make sure that those around me are stepping up to the plate and putting their money where their mouth is," she told Shondaland in 2021. "It's not just about me having whatever success people perceive me to have, but it's really about making space for other people to do the work that they want to do."

One of the ways that Robinson is helping others who are from underrepresented groups find success is through her publishing imprint. "We have 11 books on the slate, including mine, and they're all debut authors, which is really important," she said.

And, as she told Red, it's also about ensuring that the book and TV industries are better at representing Black communities. "I love TV and books and always thought both industries could do more in terms of quality representation instead of tokenized representation," she said.

Phoebe Robinson follows these self-care practices

When it comes to self-care, Phoebe Robinson knows what she's doing. In fact, she has a few unbreakable rules. First of all, she always makes sure to take off her makeup before going to bed. "[Otherwise] you wake up in the morning thinking, 'I look like a mess, and my pores are clogged,'" she told Popsugar.

She's so passionate about skincare that she even shared a few products with her boyfriend. "I got him into eye cream," she said. "So now he'll do a little cream, but that's it. I think it's Kiehl's Since 1851 Midnight Recovery Eye Cream." Apparently, the pair also do face masks together. And, of course, Robinson loves to take care of her hair. "I love Shea Moisture shampoo and conditioner, that's very key," she shared.

It's pretty clear that this actor-slash-writer knows exactly how to take care of herself — and it totally shows!

Phoebe Robinson started with a blog

Long before she was a published author, Phoebe Robinson was just another aspiring writer. And like many other young writers, she started her own blog. "It's always been my dream ever since I started my blog ( four years ago to be in this position where I have a book out, and my face is all over it," she gushed to Essence.

As Robinson told StageBuddy, her blog was an attempt to look at mistakes made by the mainstream media while also combating ignorance on important topics — all while making people laugh. "[The media] could be doing so much more with their coverage, to be honest," she said. "There's a real fight over women's bodies, and by only paying attention to it when some wacky Republican says something dumb about abortion rights, you're just validating the insane statement." Her blog was so successful, she soon turned it into a live show called "Blaria Live."

As Robinson later reflected, by following her own path and her own interests, she found success. She told Tidal, "I just kind of decided I'm going to do the things I'm interested in, and I don't really care if I am not going down the 'traditional path.'" Clearly, creating Blaria was the perfect move to make.

Phoebe Robinson is a huge U2 fan

When it comes to pop culture, Phoebe Robinson knows her stuff. In fact, her love of modern pop culture runs through pretty much all of her work, from her essays to her comedy. And her favorite obsession? The band U2. "I know it's kind of dorky, but I love U2," she told Essence. "They make good music. I've seen them four times. I want to see them more." She went on to gush about their ability to write a good anthem song, their philanthropy, their collaborations and their politics. "They make me happy," she went on. "They seem like cool dudes and I hope that they will want to hang out with me one day and I'll probably cry if they do want to hang out with me."

As Robinson confessed in an interview with CN Traveler, when she goes on holiday, she's always checking to see whether U2 are playing. Her first priority is a good hotel, her second good food and her third is U2. "The third priority is, is U2 playing in town?," she said. "I've traveled the world to see them." That is some serious commitment!

Phoebe Robinson is always achieving her goals

For most people, multiple books, TV shows, and comedy gigs would be more than enough for a lifetime. But for Phoebe Robinson, it's just the beginning. As she told The Writer, she always has new ambitions.

In 2010, the interviewer asked Robinson where she'd like to be in five years. "At the end of the day, I'm 26. I'm in New York. I know what I want to do," she said. "[In five years] I'll still be living here, doing comedy full-time. If I have a day job, it will be [in comedy]," she said. Well, that all came true.

In 2018, she asked her again. The star said that she wanted to write more books. Plus, she said, "I would like to own an apartment in New York and hopefully be in a really good and solid healthy relationship. Career-wise, I'd like to have my own TV show on the air and also [be] producing other people. I want to get to a place where I can help usher in creative talent." Amazingly, all of that has come true, too! Robinson added, "Maybe, like, meet Oprah and have brunch with her." Well, it seems that Robinson has already slid into Oprah's DMs (via YouTube), so it's probably only a matter of time till she reaches this goal, too.

Phoebe Robinson worked at the Brooklyn Flea as a kid — and still loves it to this day

Before she made it big in comedy, Phoebe Robinson had a few odd jobs. In fact, as a kid, she worked at the Brooklyn Flea Market with her whole family. "So da fleas (no one calls them that) hold a special place in my heart," she told Here magazine.

She still holds a special place in her heart for the Brooklyn Flea as she thinks that you can still find one-of-a-kind items there. She even shops there as an adult! "For instance, MadGoodVintage has a shop, and I got this one-of-a-kind Lenny Kravitz letter jacket," she said. "But ya know what? Even if you don't feel like shopping, it's a great place to just walk around, people watch, and enjoy a cup of coffee." It sounds like this is one Brooklyn spot that Robinson has always loved.

Phoebe Robinson almost quit comedy

These days, Phoebe Robinson is a total queen of comedy. But there was a time when the industry wasn't very welcoming. In fact, she struggled so much to break into comedy that she almost gave up.

"I was so close to quitting [comedy] in 2014," she told A Drink With in 2016. "I couldn't book anything, and it was really hard, and I was really broke. It was tough." Luckily, her agent happened to email her with an opportunity, and she got back on her feet.

As she told PBS (via YouTube), a big part of the reason why she almost left comedy behind was the fact that she didn't fit into the male industry. "That was making me feel like maybe I'm not funny," she said. In fact, it wasn't until "2 Dope Queens" that Robinson finally found success — and if it hadn't been for that, she might have never persevered. Thank goodness she did!

Phoebe Robinson picked up a few new exercise routines during lockdown

Like many of us, Phoebe Robinson found herself with plenty of free time on her hands during the 2020 COVID lockdowns. During her time at home, the comedian decided to experiment with some new exercise routines. "I've really gotten into lifting weights on Peloton and doing this kickboxing app," she told AV Club. "So that's kind of been the things."

While she did experiment with the piano, the fitness was what really stuck. "I'm just sort of trying to do push-ups and 20-pound chest press and all that stuff," she said. "That's where I'm at." Apparently, her favorite Peloton instructors are Jess Sims, Cody Rigby, Tunde Oyeneyin, and Alex Toussaint — who is, as she put it, "super hot." "It's nice," she joked. "Look at this hot dude while he's telling me to really push it and go up this hill." No wonder Robinson got so obsessed with working out during lockdown!

Phoebe Robinson lives in a gorgeous Brooklyn apartment

In 2019, Phoebe Robinson and her boyfriend, known as #GreatBritishBaekoff, moved into an apartment in Brooklyn. As the comedian explained to Apartment Therapy, it immediately felt like home. "This is my first grown-up apartment like by a mile, and when we got the cute dining table from West Elm, with the velvet chairs from CB2, I was just like 'Oh, we can have people over and have dinner,' and it feels like how it must have been on Friends or whatever," she explained.

Robinson and her boyfriend filled the apartment with plants and new art, including a print of Sade, a photo of Bono (naturally), and posters of locations where the pair had lived. "It ended up being a lot of music-related stuff, which I wasn't really intending," she said. "But I think it really works because [#BritishBaekoff] works in music, and I love music." They also decorated with statement lighting, cozy furniture, and custom pieces. We have to say, for a first grown-up apartment, Robinson's place is stunning.