“Alcohol-free for president” - Interview with Toyah Diebel
“Alcohol is just not cool,” states Toyah Diebel bluntly. Toyah has held this belief since November 2018. At that time she was suffering from her last hangover and since then she “didn’t feel like being drunk anymore”.
Her attitude towards alcohol changed radically after her pregnancy and the resulting break from drinking. So she diligently tests her way through the wide world of alcohol-free alternatives. No more Hangover Days for Toyah. Instead of hanging over the glass, she prefers to immerse herself in one of her many projects.
Through her sometimes brutal and satirical content, she has managed to build a fan base on her Instagram channel “toyagurl”. The initiated campaign #YourChildAuchnicht against the thoughtless publication of children's pictures online has caused quite a stir.
This is not the only place where Toyah deals critically with socially relevant issues. In her book “Women - Of spelled mothers, power women and other emancipations” she also holds up a filterless mirror to herself and society through small, shamelessly told stories - feminist, clever and with a wink.
The wink is also not neglected in her cosmetics line “milf”, under which she brings out skin care for the stomach, perineum and nipples. Thanks to her, women don't have to go without high-quality, sustainable beauty products and beautiful design even during pregnancy. In doing so, she literally gives new shine to the topic of body confidence and women's sexual self-determination. You can even wear it on your chest or on your finger with the right statement jewelry.
Toyah has also gotten into the podcast game. In her own podcast “Toyah but cheap”, she chats with guests such as presenter and musician Jan Köppen, comedian Ines Anioli and journalist Visa Vi in an entertaining and honest Toyah way. An episode of her podcast “Weibers” with Leila Lowfire also appears every Monday. Between the job, self-realization and the playground, questions such as the role of misogyny in the media are addressed.
We also have a lot of questions for the jack-of-all-trades Toyah. She spoke to us about her relationship with alcohol and once again summed up her attitude in clear words. If you're not a fan of Toyah yet, you will be after this interview at the latest. Have fun with it.
Laori: You wrote to us “Alcohol-free for president”. That's why we hereby officially appoint you as President of Alcohol-Free and ask you: What would you do to change something in society when it comes to alcohol?
Toyah: The first step would be to reduce alcohol consumption in the media. to deglorify it, as has already happened with tobacco advertising. People used to smoke in films and series. That was abolished. A whole new attitude towards tobacco has emerged. It’s just not part of the “social party” anymore. It's the same with alcohol. As long as we watch beautiful people happily getting drunk on Instagram and in movies, nothing will change. We are brainwashed from an early age that drinking alcohol is normal. Good wine goes with a meal and a party definitely includes Prosecco and a schnapps - that's what we've learned. It's a long road to get that out of your head.
Laori: You definitely have our vote! How do you currently deal with alcohol?
Toyah: I can count on one hand how many glasses I've had in the last year. Intoxication is out of the question for me. I don't feel like being drunk anymore. Not even drunk. There is no interest there. I try to avoid alcohol as much as possible, but I wouldn't say that I refuse every glass of Prosecco forever. I would never drink anything during the day. And if I have an alternative, then I try to choose the alternative to alcohol.
Laori: Speaking of, where are there any good alternatives for you?
Toyah: Actually, living largely alcohol-free was always a very difficult idea for me because it meant I had to drink cola. A soft drink, and I don't like soft drinks at all. I was fascinated when the world of non-alcoholic alcohol was opened up to me because I had no idea it even existed.Sometimes you just feel like a good drink. I can understand why you don't feel like drinking a cola at a party while everyone else has a great Gin Tonic or Gin Basil Smash, which I absolutely loved. I find it difficult to do without it. But if you have the same experience without turning blue, that's great. And it's here now. I'm really excited about how many small manufacturers there are now. You always think: “Cool, then I have to drink non-alcoholic Rotkäppchen or Jever Fun”. But there is such a wide range and in Berlin Kreuzberg there is even a Späti that only offers non-alcoholic drinks - bomb.What annoys me so much is that I was brainwashed into thinking that giving up alcohol was supposedly uncool. For example, drinking non-alcoholic beer or wine - that's not it. I find it sad that people still have this attitude, including me until recently. Also that someone who doesn't drink alcohol is a party pooper, has a boring life and no sense of humor. Someone who doesn't even know how to have fun. This is actually so intense.
Laori: When you don't drink alcohol, how do you respond to classics like: “Make an exception - once is not a time” or “Really, really now – why?!”?
Toyah: I find it most disarming when people say “I don’t feel like drinking.” Free from the liver. Or “I don't handle alcohol well, so I don't drink anything.“What else can you say to that? What I want to convey to others is that you don't have to be pressured into a situation where you have to make up an excuse like "I'm taking antibiotics right now." These simple things like “You, I don’t like it” or “I don’t feel like being drunk” are not an argument for people who like to drink because they don’t want to accept that. You want to justify why you drink. Nobody would say: “I have a drinking problem and I can’t do anything else”.
Laori: Looking at it soberly: what is your newly acquired superpower?
Toyah: Clear thinking. That sounds so banal, but it's only since I stopped drinking alcohol that I realize how fundamental it actually is. Only now do I realize how unclear I was before. Not just in the moments when I was drunk, but also in the days after. You only realize that alcohol destroys your nerves when you have abstained from alcohol for a long period of time. You notice how the body and brain regenerate. Not only because you feel fitter and can get up better in the morning, it can also have major mental effects. For example, I used to struggle with depression. That's really completely gone since I stopped consuming it. That's why I can't say how valuable a clear head has become for me. Having a good memory, being fit and quick-witted was not possible before to the extent that it is now.
Laori: You're talking about a longer period of time. How long do you think you have to go without it to feel these effects?
Toyah: I think it's more than a week, So you should just try it out for two to four weeks. You can improve and see what happens to your body. I find that very fascinating.To be clear: everyone should drink alcohol if they want to. But I believe that everyone should think about why and how much they drink. And if you think about not drinking at all for a month, see what feelings come up in me. Is this fear, panic or fear of loss?
Laori: When should the alarm bells go off?
Toyah: If it's hard to give up alcohol, you should drink a little Think about it because it indicates a problem. If you can't do that, or are still tempted, then you should think about whether your own consumption might be problematic.
Laori: Do you think non-alcoholic has the potential to become the new vegan?
Toyah: Difficult. I would simply like that dealing with alcohol is no longer taken for granted and that it is no longer accepted in society to drink heavily. Everything is trivialized. See “Day Drinking When the Sun Comes. That has a positive connotation. It's just not. Drink Aperol Spritz during the day, sorry, that's pretty crazy. If it stays with one, then congratulations. It certainly never stayed that way for me. There are so many other substances, for example THC, marijuana. Why is this demonized and alcohol accepted? I do not understand that. You just have to think about it a little better.
Delicious Non-alcoholic drinks Would you like?
Are you feeling the same way as Toyah and getting thirsty for non-alcoholic drinks? Then try our Laori Lemon - the non-alcoholic cocktail with bitter lemon. It's quick to mix and impresses with its citrusy freshness. You can find the recipe here.
Photos: Delia Baum