Beauty / IN THE BAG

Peloton instructor Tunde Oyeneyin shares her personal motivations


Tunde Oyeneyin is a force to be reckoned with. But if you've ever stepped onto a Peloton you'd know this already. The cycling instructor, makeup artist, Nike ambassador and author of Speak, is known for her warmth and motivational "Tunde-isms" – and who could forget that signature red lip?

During August, Oyeneyin made her way to Australia and spoke with RUSSH. Below, the Peloton instructor talks the importance of not being boxed in, prioritising sleep, and her distinctly Texan love of Beyoncé.


What does a typical day look like for you?

There's very little consistency in my life. The things that are consistent are my attention to my physical well being, so health and wellness, which involves everything from a workout to proper night’s sleep, and of course my love for my dog Caesar.

Working for Peloton has put me in a space where I'm afforded the wildest opportunities and I've had the opportunity to interface and work with some of the largest brands in the world. As a Peloton instructor, I'm also a Nike athlete. My book Speak is a New York Times bestseller, and then I've also had the great privilege of being a keynote speaker, too. And so my day to day – there is no day to day, everything looks different.


You have an amazing way of connecting with people in their most vulnerable moments. Do you ever think about being a role model and what does that mean to you?

I don't try to focus on going in and being a role model necessarily, I try to focus on showing up as I am. And I know that however I am in that day, there's someone on the other side of the screen that needs to be met with that energy or with that frequency. It always seems to turn out that every single time that I have that level of connectivity, I go to my phone later and there's somebody in my DMs who wrote, “thank you for saying what you said in today's class, it met me at the right moment".

We're all so quick to beat ourselves up and pick ourselves apart, and sometimes when you see someone that maybe you look up to being a real human, and going through real things, it gives you space to allow yourself a little grace.


Do you have a particular class at Peloton that you love teaching?

I love being able to show up every single day, whether that's on the bike or on the studio floor, and give people access to people, for them to step into a greater version of themselves. That being said, I've been now a strength instructor for a little over a year. And there's a newfound joy and excitement in me when I'm on the strength floor. Specifically because as women, we are told to limit the amount of weights that we lift or there's so much focus on bulking up or our level of power strength. And so when I get messages or when I'm at, you know, the market or the grocery store and someone bumps into me and they say, "hey, I went for my heavies. I picked up 10 pound weights or I finally picked up my 20 pound weights" it's a different type of excitement, for me to be able to dismantle years of the societal things that are placed on women, for you to have broken through that with me, like, wow. And then you step out of the class and then you step off the mat. Then you say, "okay, where else in life do I reevaluate where I told that I shouldn't, I couldn't, and I wouldn't". And so to be able to be part of that journey for anyone, but specifically for women is really empowering.


We’ve spoken a lot about how you inspire other people’s wellness habits and how you show up for them, but what are some things you do for yourself?

That’s a really great question. Drinking water, becoming a great sleeper. At the beginning of this year, I put a really strong focus on sleep. My book came out in May 2022, and I don’t think I slept properly for the eight months prior. And then maybe 11 months after the release, I was averaging four or five hours sleep and trying to make things happen. While I wouldn't have changed anything that happened in that experience, and am so grateful for everything that happened during that time, it also required me to really take another look at my priorities. I know that when I get a proper night's sleep, like eight plus hours, I show up so much better in my energy and the amount of gratitude that I have for everything that's coming in.

And so now, before I say yes to things, I ask myself, "is this going to take away from sleep?" And if the answer is yes, it has to be really worth it. Meditation, water, and a workout are also a must, especially because I live on the road. A little plug for Peloton, but thank God for the Peloton app because while I am an instructor I always tell people, I am an instructor second to the fact that I am a member first.


We’re so excited for you to be here in Australia with Peloton – what are you most looking forward to while you’re here?

I’m so excited to get amongst the city and do the touristy things, like climbing the Harbour Bridge and doing the famous Bondi to Bronte walk. The air is so clean here, it’s unreal! And of course, getting the chance to connect with our Peloton community, which is growing at an outrageous speed here in Australia.


You’re well known for wearing a red lip when instructing and being a former makeup artist for 16 years, what does makeup mean to you?

Every single day I am unbelievably grateful for this incredible life I live. The fact that I'm able to do the things that I want to do, and do it the way that I want to do it like to be a woman and lift weights and do it with lipstick on at the same time, is surreal to me. I made a promise to myself that I wouldn’t let people put me in a box and say, “oh, because she is an athlete she can’t also be passionate about beauty, or because she’s passionate about beauty she can’t write a book". For me, the red lipstick when I wear it on the bike is a reminder to myself of that. I put that red lipstick on, and I remind myself that this is your destiny, your framework that you continue to write out.


What is the most Texan thing about you?

I say y’all a lot. I also could live off chips, queso dip and margaritas. And obviously, I love Beyonce. We’re both from Houston, Texas, and people from Houston love Beyonce in a way that you couldn’t even fathom. Don’t ever come for my queen.


Do you live by many rituals/traditions? What are they?

I sing good morning to my dog every single day without fail and then we have our cuddle sessions. I also have made the decision to either wake up in gratitude or go to sleep in gratitude. It’s a nice reminder to myself that in this moment, I might not be able to understand or see why things are the way that they are, but that I am grateful for what is to come and what has passed.


Tell us what three beauty products are a must in your everyday bag?

I cannot stop using the SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic Vitamin C drops, they are otherworldly for my skin. My Supergoop SPF 50 sunscreen and the Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Extra Strength Daily Peel pads. Actually, I'm going to throw in a fourth – lip gloss or lip balm, always, because nobody wants dry lips.


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Images: @tune2tunde