Ashley Benson on being your 'best self' and working alongside strong women

Ashley Benson has certainly been busy since she wrapped the seventh and final season of the beloved teen show "Pretty Little Liars." 

From collaborating on a sunglass collection with Privé Revaux to recently wrapping a new movie with an all star cast, the actress has a full plate. But a crazy schedule doesn't mean that she doesn't make time for her friends Walter and Olive -- aka her adorable dogs. We sat down with Ashley (and her pups!) and caught up on everything from dogs to girl power. Read the full conversation below!

AOL: While summer is typically a time to relax for most people, you seem to be going non-stop. What are you currently working on?

I just finished a film actually in New York and it stars Elisabeth Moss, Dan Stevens, Virginia Madsen, Cara Delevingne, Amber Heard, a bunch of really amazing females, and it's kind of a very gritty take on '90s punk bands. There are only two males in the whole cast, so it was really fun to be a part of such a strong cast of really talented females, and [Elisabeth Moss] is incredible and a good friend and it was really amazing to see her work on set. 

Ashley Benson through the years
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Ashley Benson through the years
NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 06: Ashley Benson attends L'Oreal Paris Women of Worth Celebration 2017 on December 6, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for L'Oreal)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 08: Ashley Benson attends Jeremy Scott collection during the September 2017 New York Fashion Week: The Shows on September 8, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by John Lamparski/WireImage)
THE BROOKLYN BOROUGH OF NEW YORK CITY, NY - SEPTEMBER 07: Ashley Benson attends the Refinery29 Third Annual 29Rooms: Turn It Into Art event on September 7, 2017 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for Refinery29)
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 02: (EXCLUSIVE COVERAGE) Actress Ashley Benson visits the SiriusXM Studios on August 2, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 05: (L-R) Ashley Benson, Chloe Grace Moretz and Sasha Lane during the 2017 CFDA Fashion Awards on June 5, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Gonzalo Marroquin/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 01: Actor Ashley Benson attends the Prive Eyewear Launch Party at Chateau Marmont on June 1, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images for Prive Eyewear )
CANNES, FRANCE - MAY 23: Ashley Benson attends the 70th Anniversary screening during the 70th annual Cannes Film Festival at Palais des Festivals on May 23, 2017 in Cannes, France. (Photo by George Pimentel/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 19: Ashley Benson (L) and Shay Mitchell attend the Freeform 2017 Upfront at Hudson Mercantile on April 19, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by D Dipasupil/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - OCTOBER 29: Ashley Benson attends the celebration for 'Pretty Little Liars' final season at Siren Studios on October 29, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Tibrina Hobson/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 24: Ashley Benson arrives at the 23rd Annual ELLE Women In Hollywood Awards at Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills on October 24, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)
INGLEWOOD, CA - JULY 31: Actress Ashley Benson arrives at the Teen Choice Awards 2016 at The Forum on July 31, 2016 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
INGLEWOOD, CA - JULY 31: (L-R) Actors Sasha Pieterse, Janel Parrish, Lucy Hale, Ian Harding, Tyler Blackburn, Ashley Benson, Shay Mitchell and Troian Bellisario pose with the award for Choice TV Show: Drama for 'Pretty Little Liars' in the press room during Teen Choice Awards 2016 at The Forum on July 31, 2016 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 21: Actresses Sasha Lane (L) and Ashley Benson attend Marc Jacobs celebrates Divine Decadence at on July 21, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Donato Sardella/Getty Images for Marc Jacobs)
THE TONIGHT SHOW STARRING JIMMY FALLON -- Episode 0495 -- Pictured: (l-r) Actress Ashley Benson during an interview with host Jimmy Fallon on June 23, 2016 -- (Photo by: Andrew Lipovsky/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - JUNE 19: Ashley Benson arrives at the 2016 iHeartRADIO MuchMusic Video Awards at MuchMusic HQ on June 19, 2016 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Sonia Recchia/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - JUNE 19: Shay Mitchell (L) and Ashley Benson arrive at the 2016 iHeartRADIO MuchMusic Video Awards at MuchMusic HQ on June 19th, 2016 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by George Pimentel/WireImage)
PRETTY LITTLE LIARS - 'Wanted: Dead or Alive' - As the police gain new leads in Rollins' disappearance, the Liars wonder if he really is dead while someone else meets his/her end, in 'Wanted: Dead or Alive,' an all-new episode of Freeform's hit original series 'Pretty Little Liars,' airing TUESDAY, AUGUST 2 (8:00-9:00 p.m. EDT). (Photo by Eric McCandless/Freeform via Getty Images) ASHLEY BENSON
PRETTY LITTLE LIARS - 'Hit and Run, Run, Run' - After making the biggest mistake of their lives, the girls must deal with the repercussions of what they've done in 'Hit and Run, Run, Run,' an all-new episode of Freeform's hit original series 'Pretty Little Liars,' airing TUESDAY, JULY 12 (8:00-9:00 p.m. EDT). (Photo by Byron Cohen/Freeform via Getty Images) JANEL PARRISH, ASHLEY BENSON
THERMAL, CA - APRIL 17: Actress Ashley Benson attends REVOLVE Desert House on April 17, 2016 in Thermal, California. (Photo by Ari Perilstein/Getty Images for A-OK Collective, LLC.)
***USA OUT***CANADA OK*** NEW YORK - APRIL 07: Ashley Benson seen at the 2016 Freeform Upfront held at Spring Studios on April 07, 2016 in New York City. PHOTOGRAPH BY Photo Image Press / Barcroft Media UK Office, London. T +44 845 370 2233 W USA Office, New York City. T +1 212 796 2458 W Indian Office, Delhi. T +91 11 4053 2429 W (Photo credit should read Photo Image Press / Barcroft Med / Barcroft Media via Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - FEBRUARY 25: Actress Ashley Benson attends the I Love Coco Backstage Beauty Lounge at Chateau Marmont's Bar Marmont on February 25, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Stefanie Keenan/WireImage)
NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 18: Ashley Benson seen out in Manhattan on February 18, 2016 in New York, New York. (Photo by Josiah Kamau/BuzzFoto via Getty Images)
MIAMI, FL - JANUARY 28: Ashley Benson attends the Ocean Drive Magazine Hosts 23rd Anniversary with Ashley Benson on January 28, 2016 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images)
THE VIEW - The cast of 'Pretty Little Liars' on Freeform visits 'THE VIEW,' 1/12/16 (11:00 a.m. - 12:00 noon, ET) airing on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Lorenzo Bevilaqua/ABC via Getty Images) RAVEN-SYMONE´, SHAY MITCHELL, ASHLEY BENSON, CANDACE CAMERON BURE, TROIAN BELLISARIO, LUCY HALE, SASHA PIETERSE
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 11: Ashley Benson and Shay Mitchell take a selfie at SiriusXM Studios on January 11, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Taylor Hill/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 11: Actress Ashley Benson is seen walking in Midtown on January 11, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Raymond Hall/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 11: Lucy Hale, Troian Bellisario, Sasha Pieterse, Shay Mitchell, and Ashley Benson of 'Pretty Little Liars' visit SiriusXM Studios on January 11, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Taylor Hill/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 07: Actress Ashley Benson attends the W Magazine celebration of the 'Best Performances' Portfolio and The Golden Globes with Audi and Dom Perignon at Chateau Marmont on January 7, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images for W Magazine)

Wow, that's a dream cast. What would you say is your biggest take away from working on such an empowering set?

Being able to work with all those women for four weeks, it was really inspiring and empowering to listen to their stories and where they came from and what their outlook is on the industry. And, you know, [Elisabeth] is now a powerhouse just taking on every single thing, so I’ve learned a lot from her, and she really inspires me as a female in the industry.

We were just all so supportive of each other. We all had to learn instruments that we hadn’t played before, and it was just a lot of encouraging and being there for one another and giving each other feedback. It was just total support, which was awesome.

That sounds amazing! On social media you give off a very independent and confident vibe. Looking back on when you were younger, what advice would you give to your high school self?

Just to stay true to who you are, which I hope that I’ve done. I think that's the only way you’ll succeed in anything -- just being yourself. And it's hard because comparing yourself to others is so common and with social media and everything, but if you’re truly confident in who you are, I think you’ll be your best self instead of trying to be someone else or someone that you look up to, because that's not the genuine you.

When you're working you probably travel a lot. How do you manage always being on the go with your dogs?

I mean traveling with dogs can be a little bit scary for me. I’ve now kind of got it down a little bit. Walter is pretty chill on the flight, but Olive gets a little bit of anxiety on the flight. On my first time flying with both of them, we went together on a redeye and I was super anxious, but they did pretty well. And then kind of just every time [we travel, I'm] learning the routine and what I need to calm them down and stuff like that, but it's getting easier every time.

And you recently partnered up with dog supplement brand, SmartyPaws. Why are you excited to be working with them?

I mean with health in general and making sure my dogs are okay, the fact that I can give them a little all-in-one supplement to make them healthy and clean their liver and their gut and that kind of thing, it just makes me fully aware of them being healthy. It would break my heart to ever think that they’re not being taken care of, so this is just a great, simple way to add in something to their diet and keep them healthy.

You can shop SmartyPaws below!

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