I Tried the Jennifer Aniston Diet, and the Results Were Chilling

She might be outsmarting us all

Jennifer Aniston Diet Harling May 2017 Man Repeller-7773

I’m about to be the first writer in the history of magazine journalism to refer to Jennifer Aniston as “an enigma,” but, well… JENNIFER ANISTON IS AN ENIGMA.

When I volunteered to attempt a Jennifer Aniston Diet, which, in Man Repeller-speak, refers to the practice of living, eating, sleeping and breathing like Jennifer Aniston for an allotted period of time, I went into it feeling pretty cocky. This isn’t my first time at the celebrity diet rodeo, after all. I’ve done Amy, Ellen, Anna, Hillary and Gwyneth. Adopting the lifestyle of yet another A-lister with nice highlights would be easier than riding a bike with training wheels, a memory-foam butt cushion and a basket filled with organic fruit snacks, right? Wrong.

I innocently kicked off the process the same way I always do, by purchasing my subject’s favorite foods and beverages. In Jen’s case, this meant Ezekiel bread, avocados, chicken burgers, oatmeal (which she sometimes cooks with an egg white for “extra protein” — a trick relayed to her by none other than husband/protein aficionado Justin Theroux) and Smartwater. Lots and lots of Smartwater.

Jen is an ambassador for Smartwater, meaning Smartwater pays her a likely exorbitant sum to star in all its ad campaigns and make statements like, “I drink three to four 23-ounce bottles of Smartwater a day.” I am an ambassador for Smartwater in the sense that I often pay what is definitively an exorbitant price for one 23-ounce bottle that I promptly guzzle and then keep at my desk to refill with plebeian tap from the sink. In other news, apparently margaritas and guacamole are Jen’s so-called indulgences, which is great because my roommate’s birthday dinner took place at a Mexican restaurant in the midst of this exercise, and I made sure to indulge accordingly.

In addition to Smartwater, Jen is also ambassador for the beauty company Aveeno, so I picked up a bottle of its Nourishing Coconut Skin Relief Body Wash at my local teen hangout, also popularly known as Duane Reade. After soaping up in the shower, I sniffed my armpit and contemplated whether I was smelling what Justin Theroux smells when he climbs into bed and nuzzles his gelled locks against Jen’s perfect left nipple.

Now is the point in this article where I discuss Jennifer Aniston’s nipples — because they are indeed perfect and worthy of their own chapter. You may skip this section if you choose, especially if you’re my dad, in which case you most definitely should.

I think I’ve waited my whole life to wax poetic about Jennifer Aniston’s nipples. Okay, that’s an exaggeration: I’ve waited 10 years, which is the amount of time since I first watched Friends and became acquainted with their iconic protrusion. Jen’s nipples were the real star of that popular sitcom, if you ask me. At the very least, I would have preferred Monica to marry them instead of Chandler, but that’s a diatribe for another time.

The nipples make many an appearance throughout the show — in tank tops, slip dresses, you name it. They were and continue to be phenomenon — with actual Facebook pages, Twitter accounts and YouTube montages devoted to them — so I couldn’t, in good conscience, complete a Jennifer Aniston Diet without paying proper homage.

Conveniently, I happen to work alongside a bonafide fake-nipple expert. No, not Samantha Jones, silly goose — Amelia Christina Diamond. She’s taken a plastic pair around the block more than a few times in her day and very generously agreed to loan me some for my own journalistic research.

I donned the fake nipples underneath a white, ribbed tank top — a Jennifer wardrobe staple (don’t worry, I will fully unpack her outfit proclivities in a minute, but right now it’s Nipple Time). I’ve got to admit, they looked pretty good. They certainly felt good — like my own set of lighthouses guiding ships upon the horizon. I took them for an outing to my local coffee shop, where I dared myself to say, “It’s kind of nippy out, isn’t it? I think I’ll do a hot coffee instead of iced.” Don’t worry, dad, I chickened out.

I was very excited to tackle Jennifer’s signature style because it is markedly different from my own. While my inner style monologue frequently seems to be an echo chamber of, Can I add three necklaces to that? And maybe some popsicle-red shoes?, Jen’s is a toast to laid-back, California cool. It is the definition of “easy dressing”: stick-straight hair, blue jeans, plain James Perse T-shirts and tank tops, aviator sunglasses and little black dresses galore.

Jennifer Aniston Diet Harling May 2017 Man Repeller-7793

When I put on a white tank top and jeans and nothing else besides my vigorously straightened blonde locks, I felt more naked than when I’m at the doctor’s office. I snuck on a pair of “un-Jen” yellow slippers as a compromise. Such a Phoebe move.

The naked feeling only intensified that night, when I donned a stretchy, form-fitting, one-shoulder LBD from American Apparel in an attempt to channel Jen’s look from the recent Leftovers premiere. I bought the dress at the beginning of my freshman year of college after deciding I needed more “going out” clothes, as one does. It hasn’t seen daylight (or night light) in half a decade and frankly I’m shocked it is still in my possession because holy Hollywood did it feel weird upon my 25-year-old self. It was just so…adhesive? On the flipside, I felt extremely comfortable repping Jen’s Friends-era style in a recently acquired pair of baggy overalls.

At this point I was nipples-deep in my research, and a weird sensation began to creep over me. I usually feel a deep kinship with my chosen subject — a bond forged by shared experiences and the kind of intimacy only an egg-white-laced bowl of oatmeal can engender. With Jennifer, though, the deeper I dug, the more puzzled I felt. As I read interviews, watched late-night talk-show clips, took Buzzfeed personality quizzes and perused Getty archives, she certainly seemed easy to understand. Funny! Blonde! Loves avocados! America’s sweetheart! But…well…take a look at some quotes I flagged from a few of her interviews (Warning: Material intended for mature audiences. Viewer discretion advised)…

“I wouldn’t change my childhood, I wouldn’t change my heartaches, I wouldn’t change my successes. I wouldn’t change any of it, because I really love who I am, and am continuing to become.” — Vanity Fair, 2005

“I don’t know if I ever really get mad in real life.” — Vogue, 2008

Laughter is one of the great keys to staying youthful.” — Harper’s Bazaar, 2016

“The most challenging thing right now is trying to find what it is that makes my heart sing” — Marie Claire, 2016

DO YOU HAVE CHILLS? I’m getting them all over again just typing this. Her answers are epically perfect — the real-life manifestation of an inspirational quote board on Pinterest — and you don’t even realize it until you read them boom boom boom right after the other and your hands start to get kind of clammy. I was ultimately forced to ask myself a troubling question, a question that made my blood run cold and my Ryan Seacrest-shaped tattoo throb like Harry Potter’s lightning bolt: Do we have any idea who Jennifer Aniston really is??

Just listen to what she says about her exes:

“I have nothing but absolute admiration for [Brad Pitt], and…I’m proud of him! I think he’s really done some amazing things.” — Vogue, 2008

“There was no malicious intent. I deeply, deeply care about [John Mayer]; we talk, we adore one another. And that’s where it is.” — Vogue, 2008

I mean…????? Jen is either the Messiah or she’s playing us all like a grand piano.

I’m a little terrified, but I’m also in awe. Jennifer Aniston is an enigma — an onion, if you will — and I have only just begun to peel away the top layer. I should probably stop until I find a better knife.

In the meantime, if Smartwater is reading this:


If you liked this escapade, you’ll probably like the Amy Schumer Diet, Hillary Clinton Diet and Gwyneth Paltrow Diet. If celebrity stalking isn’t your cup of tea or cappuccino, how about an iced coffee?

Photos by Edith Young; iPhone photos via Harling Ross. 

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  • Suddenly you make me search for “jennifer aniston nipples” on google… 😂

    • Harling Ross

      you’re welcome!!!!

  • Cristina

    For what it’s worth, you look super cute as the girl next door!!

  • Adrianna

    One of those Jennifer Aniston commercials got me to try Aveeno, and I generally don’t follow those kind of endorsements. Love it, only soap I use now

    • Meg S

      Seconding aveeno. I love it and if aveeno makes it, I’ll probably buy it.

  • Erica


    definitely going to start using that phrase more often. can’t wait to see people’s reactions 😉

    also, i love your stories Harling! they make me perkier than Rachel’s nips any given Friends episode

    • Harling Ross

      greatest of compliments

  • BarbieBush

    omg cyborg

  • I read this with a 10-times refilled smart water in front of me!

    • Harling Ross

      should we start a club?

  • When I read your writing and see your photos, my hands get clammy so I know how you feel about Jennifer Aniston!

    • Harling Ross

      i’d be happy to towel them off for you with my eyelashes

  • Shayna Fitzpatrick

    Love the writers voice! The quirky phrasing made it all the more interesting. Fun article. 👍🏻

  • Meg S

    I feel like my extra large lidded water glass is passé. Maybe I need to trade it in for a smart water bottle.

  • Chloe

    I love this post 🙂 You’ve put so much time and effort into writing it, it was such an enjoyable read!

    Chloe @ https://girllgonerogue.blogspot.co.uk/

  • KB

    Where are those awesome high waisted jeans from the first pic from?

    • Harling Ross


  • Jackie

    “Nipples deep in research”, I love how much this post made me laugh. Love your pieces!

  • DThompson

    To me, the most revealing thing she said was: The most challenging thing right now is trying to find what it is that makes my heart sing. If all of the other quotes are true, and that effortless perfect life she portrays in the way she dresses/eats/allows paparazzi to photograph her, why, oh, why doesn’t her heart already sing?

  • Sarah Wexler

    I want to be nipples deep in those overalls

  • Julie

    Haha, I love that other people felt like her nips were an extra character in that show too! I felt the same about Teri Hatcher in Desperate Housewives. Really enjoy your writing, Harling – and I think you meant to write “in good conscience” 🙂

    • Harling Ross

      I DID INDEED fixing now. Thank you thank you thank youu

      • Julie

        I didn’t want to be the annoying typo-pointer-outer, phew! Also, such great dungarees!

        • Harling Ross

          they’re great right? trying to resist wearing them every day

    • Harling Ross

      also lol to teri hatcher so true

  • Anne Dyer

    I love your writing and I’m so happy to see more of it. Applause. Applause. Applause. (Errant Pretty in Pink reference because it’s Friday)

    • Harling Ross

      love me an errant PnP ref

  • Willa Konefał Davis

    You are my favorite. I agree, we know nothing of the real Jennifer Aniston…

  • Teri Murphy

    First time that I Really enjoyed an article so much! Love your Style! There isn’t anyone like you! Your Name is Perfect
    Much Love

  • kat

    Can’t stand her!!

  • Noushin Kananian

    All the best Jen.

  • Rebecca Lake

    where is the link for the aforementioned “fake nipples”?

  • jillygirl

    We know nothing of the ‘real’ JA because she bridges the the era of The Right to a Private Life and the new Full Disclosure At All Times era. Simple. Her answers reflect the platonic ideal of what people want to hear and probably want she strives for personally but without divulging messy details she’d prefer to keep PRIVATE. The newest generations will need to re-learn why privacy is one of the most powerful rights and hopefully legislate protection …

    • Harling Ross

      oh this is such a fascinating thought

  • Brent

    Speaking from a guys perspective;
    great wiring, excellent comparisons and fun to read. Thank you.

  • Cliff Miller

    Must be the fact that I’m near the top of the hill, but I’m not catching the man repeller, for your anything but. Nipples, real far better than fake anyday, Nipples tough challenged…. seek a pair of twist suckers from Amazon…. you’ll be a proud owner shortly. As far as the diet…. no before/after to compare, but again, you be looking fine to these ol eyes.
    Buzz ~

  • Bree

    Wait, you have a Ryan Seacrest tattoo???

    • Harling Ross

      I WISH

  • I don’t know why but I’ve always felt like she’s a huge bitch irl. Maybe it’s because she’s been playing bitches in all her latest movies.

  • pamb

    Um, where’s the diet?

  • Bee

    You look so cute!

  • Lacey Bergevin

    i also have to google the nipples 😉 but i gotta add that Smart Water is acidic, there are a lot better waters out there to drink that have an elevated pH.

  • Riley W

    This is truly the favorite diet y’all have ever completed. I feel a deep love for Jen radiating through me (and allowing me to call her Jen, obviously).

  • Fun Bun

    Excuse me, overall perfection. Where from?

  • Vanessa C

    But did you use Living Proof to blow out and straighten your locks?!?!?! 😉

  • ValiantlyVarnished

    Am I the only one who simply does not get the Jennifer Aniston thing?? I just don’t see anything particularly interesting about her at all. She reminds me of cardboard. Bland. I have always thought of her as the perfect average. Nothing special nothing extraordinary. Just…average.

    • Laura

      I couldn’t agree more with your statement. Her fame is an enigma to me. She grates on my last nerve. I cannot figure out what the big deal is. I’ve tried with her. I’ve even found two movies I genuinely liked her in. But, the “Rachel” character is just a bridge too far. I’ve sporadically taken a Jennifer Anniston popularity poll, and still, to this day, when I ask people, I cannot find anyone who is truly crazy about her. I figure someone in Hollywood must have really liked her to propel her so far. I know, I know…

  • Natalie Redman

    Haha I love this! Great post.


  • Mayette de Guzman

    Jen has inspired me in a lot of ways since I watched her in Friends. Luv her!

  • Harling, may I ask where those yellow slippers are from?

  • Ddd

    You shouldn’t idolise these people you know nothing about him a lot of them are transgender and have been placed in hollywood to decieve the masses do some research

  • Ddd

    Seriously you have been lied to your entire lives I bet your parents even told you christmas was real and you celebrate even though you don’t believe in God whose son was not born in so what are you taking part in. Life is not what it seems writing a whole article on a celebrity diet and her nipples surely should make you think what am I doing life is too short I need to understand why I’m here wake up people I’m here as I was looking at these transgenders from hollywood and all the industries that brainwash the masses and I stumbled across this piece so I thought I would pass on some info free speech about the truth is being censored on all social media platforms but when it’s really damaging they push it and it becomes a trend society is being dumbed down so the new generations will know nothing about living as we should without relying heavily on the government who I think we could do without or should be made up of people from all walks of life other than satanism do you know they are pushing transgenderism in children from birth now I have lots more information for anyone who would like to talk God bless you all

    • Sheila

      Typing without punctuation is passive aggressive. Unless it’s poetry.

  • This: “After soaping up in the shower, I sniffed my armpit and contemplated
    whether I was smelling what Justin Theroux smells when he climbs into
    bed and nuzzles his gelled locks against Jen’s perfect left nipple.”
    …is romance novella/telenova good. GOOOOOOOD.

  • kendisqus

    Even as a male J.A. fan I can’t say I recall noticing her nipples. Should I question my sexuality?

  • Niaomi

    Has anyone ever told you that you look like Sabrina Carpenter? The resemblance is soooo uncanny! 😍☺