Most of us are guilty of snapping a pic of a meal, perhaps to memorialize the experience, or perhaps to make our social media followers a bit envious. But dreams of becoming a social media influencer are beyond the reach of most. One Delawarean has reached the upper echelons of food bloggers.
Skyler Bouchard is a Wilmington native and Archmere graduate who has leveraged her NYU education in journalism and media into a career as a full-time foodie. In addition to blogging, she’s an entrepreneur and host, with an Instagram following of nearly 170,000 on her @diningwithskyler account and ongoing partnerships with GrubHub and Kettle brand potato chips.
She says that her work with the Food Network, “Speaks to [her] soul.” In the coming months, her latest digital series, Treat Yourself, will debut, so naturally, it is what she is most excited about. Starting in 2015, Skyler began working with the network as a Snapchat recipe developer. Eventually, she moved onto on-camera hosting, including Snapchat segments and recipes for dorm room cooking. In 2016, her cocktail series, Sipping with Skyler, took flight.
Treat Yourself merges two of her passions: food and beauty. Skyler will be taking a look at the beauty benefits of various foods and making beauty products at home.
“It’s great to know what’s in the products you’re using, and it’s also not expensive.”
Skyler has found herself dabbling in the world of cosmetics and skin care, using her personal Instagram account, @skylerbouchard, to demonstrate products she loves, show off her fashion sense and highlight her travels, separately from her food life. She has been quoted as saying she bought her first night cream at age 14.
She concurrently launched WithSkyler.com, “So I can cover any topic I want, without being pigeonholed.”
The site includes her perspectives on health topics. Having recently had a benign breast tumor removed, she says she’s been feeling great since then.
With all the eating and cooking, a food blogger has to consider her metabolic health. Skyler says she goes to the gym as much as she can, but is not a firm believer that one has to work out so that one can enjoy eating. She believes primarily in having a balanced lifestyle, and keeping her body moving. While she used to do a ton of cardio to burn off things she’d consumed for the sake of her food career, now she will walk for an hour on a treadmill, often while working, as well as lifting weights on various machines. She listens to her body, how she’s eating and how she feels. She eats only until she is full, and utilizes a tasting strategy. She’s recently begun utilizing an app called Fitbod, which is a digital personal trainer.
But her career is still very much about food. Her food stylist work does not land exclusively on her own web-based platforms; she’s a consultant for restaurants, which need great-looking shots for their social media and marketing. While there are tricks of the food styling trade, she eschews artificial implements to make the food look good. She works with what the restaurant already has: real food.
Her favorite food to style? “Anything cheesy is always fun to do.”
Skyler says the hardest thing to photograph is anything that is flat, and without much texture or dimension. Some black and white macaroons that “looked like Pokemon balls” posed a recent challenge, as did a piece of pork that was covered in sauce.
“It looked like a blob.”
What else is new on Skyler’s horizon? While she’s engaged interns every semester for several years to help with photos and videos and more, she hired a woman in September that has made an impression. Hayley will be her first long-term hire.
Fashion has also forced its way into her life. She finds that with all the different channels she now appears on, she’s had to increase her consumption of clothing. Her secret is buying from Goodwill every two weeks, and, in turn, she donates a lot of clothing.
To that end, Skyler is mindful of consumerism.
She’s judging Winterthur’s Point-to-Point tailgate competition on May 6th, and she says the biggest no-no for a tailgate is, “An excessive amount of waste: using too much plastic when you don’t need to.” And it almost goes without saying: no littering.