She shot to stardom six years ago when the hit TV show Desperate Housewives — in which she plays the hilariously vain and materialistic Gabrielle Solis — first premiered, and Eva Longoria Parker hasn’t looked back since.
Aside from acting, Longoria Parker has ventured into producing and directing, serves as the international spokesperson for L’Oreal Paris and is actively involved in numerous charities.
Her most recent endeavor, a year in the making, is the creation of her signature fragrance Eva by Eva Longoria.
While in Toronto recently to launch her eponymous perfume, the 35-year-old beauty sat down with Metro to chat about how the scent came about, what the future holds for her and the importance of giving back.
Why did you create this fragrance?
I was always allergic to perfume and could never wear it.
I always felt they were too overpowering and I just wanted something that was easy to wear — something light and fresh and clean.
I wanted to create a scent for myself. Then I found out that a lot of women felt that way.
What do you hope to offer women with your perfume?
I hope that they wear it and they feel sexy and confident. I find if you smell good, you carry yourself in a different way. Scent is an intense emotional connection.
What do you find most gratifying about your role on Desperate Housewives?
I love that it was a groundbreaking show with four female leads — three over 40 — dealing with universal themes of the modern woman: Marriage, divorce, dating, children.
What haven’t you tackled yet professionally that would still love to?
Oh god, everything. I feel like I haven’t even tapped into the success I’m supposed to have. I think the best is yet to come, whether it’s producing or directing or acting, I just think my best project has yet to be discovered.
You are involved in a lot of charities. Was being charitably active something that was instilled in your by your parents?
Yes, I have a special needs sister. That’s why I created Eva’s Heroes (in San Antonia, Texas). Early on I was introduced to volunteerism from my mom and aunts.
That was a big thing in my family, to always give back. I thought that was the way everybody was.
I didn’t realize that was an anomaly.