#ModelLife!

Summer may be over, but the memories are not! We caught up with two of our jet-setting Nous girls, Tori and Grace, to speak on their recent adventures overseas. Here’s what they had to say ~


Tori Bass spotted in the Clapham district of London photographed by Shonay.

First and foremost, Where did you girls travel to?

Tori: I travelled around London and made a quick visit to Cologne (Germany).

Grace: Hong Kong with occasional visits to Guangzhou.

What brought you there?:

Tori: A mix of a vacation and work.

Grace: A few months prior, Nous spoke about sending me somewhere in Asia after I graduated from High School, but I wasn’t sure as to where at the time. Then in August, I got an email making sure that my passports were current, and to prepare to leave for Hong Kong; few days had passed when I got an email saying that I’d be leaving the next day! 24 hours later, I was on a plane to begin a new journey in my modeling career!

Grace opening the runway show for FFIXXED STUDIOS  in Hong Kong.

 

 

Where have you stayed or are staying for the majority of your trip?

Grace: I’m staying in a neighborhood on Hong Kong Island called Kennedy Town, which is an area where a lot of families live. It has only recently started to become more connected to the rest of the island because of its MTR station that was added in January. Because of this, the area is a more “hipster” part of Hong Kong, and it’s not as modernized as the more downtown areas such as Central.

Tori: I stayed in Greenwich, London. It has some of the best views of the city.

City views in Greenwich, London.

 

Did you girls get to visit any cool historical landmarks that you can now cross off your bucket list?

Tori: I went just about everywhere. Being the history nerd that I am, we visited Westminster Abbey, the Tower of London, Hever Castle in Kent, Kensington Palace, Churchill’s War Rooms, and a whole lot more! I was so happy to finally cross them off my list of places to visit.

What is the fashion like where you two visited?:

Grace: The fashion is pretty similar to that in the states, due to the western influence in Hong Kong. I’ve noticed that people tend to look ‘on-trend’ and put together, and I’ve seen more people carrying designer handbags than in Los Angeles (although maybe some of them are awesome knockoffs, who knows?).

Tori: Everyone is London seems to dress super fashionable. A sort of “elegant but comfortable” vibe.

Grace backstage for FFIXXED STUDIOS runway show in Hong Kong.

What’s something you packed that’s not absolutely essential, but you like having it?

GraceProbably a journal. It’s been a good way for me to reflect on what I’ve learned throughout this trip in Hong Kong. I’ve also been making a list of lessons in it to take away from this experience, ranging from simple ones like never leaving the apartment without a portable charger, to more personal ones!

Out of all of the foreign cities that you have visited recently, which place stuck out the most?:

Grace: Out of the two cities, definitely Hong Kong. I love how everything is super connected and easy to get to, and how it has several cool places in nature that you can go to if you want to escape the city.

Tori: Probably Cologne. I had never been to a German country before so I didn’t know what to expect! It was so beautiful and the weather was perfect!

A street view of Cologne, Germany’s sensational architecture.

How neat! That’s great that you found a easy way to get around the city. This brings me to my next question – What did you find to be the most effective form of transportation (walking, car, bus, train, etc) in the city or cities that you visited?

Grace: In HK, I usually take the subway system, called the MTR, and then walk the rest of the way. But when I’m in Guangzhou, we go to castings and jobs in taxis and vans, which makes for great book reading time.

Tori: I did a little bit of everything, but mostly stuck to the ‘Tube’ (London’s underground public rapid transit system). It makes it so easy to get practically anywhere in London.

Grace scanning her options at the Ladies Market in Hong Kong.

Thank you for your advice! Both sound like great tools to use when navigating through London and Hong Kong. Yet, while venturing through each city, did either of you guys discover any ‘hidden gems’ that most people have not heard of?

Tori: Greenwich Palace is fairly popular, but if you’re into history like me, then it’s definitely a good place to stop. It holds a lot of history that I had no idea about.

GraceThe Ladies Market in Mong Kok is great for finding cheap items, and for a bargaining, too (although my friend I went with did most of that for me haha).

Both of those places sound interesting! Now- let’s talk about people. Did either of you meet an interesting person while traveling that you felt has positively impacted your life?

Grace: Yes, just recently I had a conversation with a new friend at dinner, while I was feeling a little homesick. I asked her if she ever felt that way, and she told me that while she does miss home, she uses those feelings to motivate her to go even further in her modeling because she knows that she’ll always be supported by her loved ones. This caused me to think about homesickness in a new way, and it also motivates me to work harder as I continue to model in HK, because I want my family to be proud of me when I return.

Tori taking the summer sunshine in while working in London.

I love that you shared this with our readers, as it broadens the perspective for those that fear that modeling would disconnect them from their loved ones (by traveling so frequently). Moving forward, what time of the year do you believe would be the best time to visit the city that you traveled to?

Grace: Probably in the fall. I arrived in August, and it’s been really humid and hot here so far. In the fall, it’s supposed to cool down and become less humid, so I’m definitely looking forward to that.

Tori: Visiting London in the Summer was the best decision. Since it tends to be rainy and cold (during a large portion of the year), it was nice being able to experience the city while the weather was still beautiful! However, I’ve heard London is stunning during the Christmas time too, so I’ll have to visit again soon.

Now, I’m sure while visiting these cities you two also had some pretty spectacular meals. If someone was planning to travel to the cities that you visited, what’s the one meal they shouldn’t miss?

Tori: If you visit Cologne, you have to visit Freddy Schilling! I’ve never had a better veggie burger in my life!

Grace: If you visit Hong Kong, Dim Sum! You order a bunch of small plates and it’s especially good for a weekend brunch.

Dim Sum, a famous meal local to Hong Kong, spread out in all it’s yummy glory.

Oh my- both of these dishes sound delicious. I am sure with all tasty options near by, it can be hard to focus on health. What do you do to stay healthy/fit while you travel?

Tori: I found that finding healthier vegan options in London was a lot easier than I would have imagined. I never had a problem finding something to stay within my dietary preferences.

Grace: There’s this unsweetened Jasmine Green Tea that’s sold in almost every convenience and grocery store that has been one of my go-to drinks. I’m going to miss it when I arrive back in the states.

Tori’s passport ready to embark on her adventure with her to London and Cologne.

Thank you both for sharing. Both sound like solid ways to stay fit while abroad. Now, in a more generalized sense, I am sure our readers would love to know: what was the most exciting thing about modeling abroad?

Tori: Traveling has always been a passion of mine, so having the opportunity at all is amazing! I love having the chance to meet different people that I maybe wouldn’t cross paths with back home.

Grace: Probably having the experience of living on my own for the first time, and being nearly halfway around the world from home too! Also getting to experience the culture and lifestyle of Hong Kong has been wonderful for me.

Did either of you find any differences between modeling in the United States VS. abroad?

Grace: Yes. In the US, I would do mostly editorial style modeling. But in HK and Asia in general, modeling is much more commercial, and I had to learn to adapt to this style (I didn’t have much experience with it prior to coming to Asia). But I feel that it has only helped me grow as a model,  because I’ve learned to be more familiar with this style.

Tori Bass working her magic for ASOS in London.

Tori: Yeah definitely. It’s hard to point out any single difference between working in the U.S. and U.K., but I really did love working for ASOS. They’re a massive company so there’s lots of going on/people on staff, but they still manage to put out a very relaxed, and easy going vibe to keep everyone motivated.

Are there any social norms or practices that you’ve encountered on your travels that you wish were more common in the USA?

Grace: I’ve noticed that people who are sick tend to wear face masks. I wish that was a thing in the US, especially at schools, because I feel that fewer people would catch colds here.

Do you have any additional advice for others that wish to travel to this city?:

Tori: When it comes to traveling around London, be sure to visit as many markets as you can! I loved seeing all the different types of foods, crafts, and clothes that all of them had to offer.

Grace: Be prepared for the humidity and high temperatures! It does get cooler in late September (as I’ve been told). Also, living space is much smaller in HK than it is in the US, so don’t overpack.

 Love what you see so far? Check out this video of Grace opening FFIXXED STUDIOS‘ SS18 Runway show!:

View Grace’s portfolio and follow her on Instagram.

& also, take a peek at Tori working her magic in London during a shoot by Shonay:

View Tori’s portfolio and follow her on Instagram.

Wave goodbye to Summer, as the back-to-school season is now upon us! As students nationwide prepare for their first day, we decided that it was only fitting to sit down with a few of our girls (ChonzieEmily, Kyndall, and Lily, ), revealing what is it like to manage a blossoming model career, all while taking on the load of being a full-time student. We hope that their advice can gear prospective models in the right direction, showing them that they too can have the best of both worlds! Read below to see what the girls’ had to say in regards to juggling being a full-time student, while pursuing a modeling career:

Hi girls! Thank you so much for doing this. I know things can get a little hectic this time of the year. Let’s start with a little background info. What is your age and what year in school is this for you?

Emily: I am 18-years-old and am in college. I attend Fordham University, and I am doing their online program for the second semester, majoring in Business.

Kyndall: I am 16-years-old and am a Junior in High School.

Chonzie: I am also 16-years-old and am a Junior in High School.

Lily: I am 17-years-old and am a senior at Stanford University’s Online High School.

Emily, as the only current college attendee out of the bunch, what’s your plan for the future?

Emily: I want to graduate college and continue on to do something else! Since I model full-time in New York, I am doing online classes because I love to learn and want to continue to challenge my mind in a way that isn’t related to modeling. So, with that being said, I will continue to do this and then finish college and potentially go onto grad school. I have always wanted to be a lawyer.

Lily, shot by: Megan Taylor

Very cool! I am sure with the communication skills you are acquiring with modeling, you will be an excellent lawyer. Next question is for Lily – what is your favorite thing about finishing high school online?

Lily: In this wonderful program, students and instructors attend live classes remotely from all over the world via the webcams and microphones on our computers (it’s like a web conference, or Skype). It’s a unique and powerful way to learn. I was even able to schedule some of my classes in the evening to free up more days for work.

As for a favorite, there are so many amazing things about Stanford Online High School. I think the most rewarding part of an online education is that I get to learn with, and from, students who live elsewhere. I’ve had the opportunity to discuss politics and philosophy with kids from throughout the United States as well as Europe and Asia. Needless to say, my educational experience has broadened significantly over the past year that I’ve been attending this school. Everyone is approaching the class material in the context of their own local culture and experiences, and that has put my own assumptions and beliefs into the proper, international perspective.

How insightful! It also seems very convenient for those that are fearful that castings will get in the way attending classes, but enough about all the technical stuff! What does education mean to you on a personal level?

Emily: An education, whether it be inside or outside of the classroom, is expanding your mind so you gain a deeper knowledge of things you didn’t know about before. You are learning and just gaining a deeper understanding of different subjects.

Chonzie hanging out in class with one of her favorite teachers.

Chonzie: Education is extremely important to me. My father immigrated to the United States from Tibet. He wanted to attend an American University to obtain an education in order to have a future. Coming from a family where opportunities were limited and were just a dream for him, I am extremely grateful to have an opportunity to attend a school where education is available to everyone.

Kyndall: To me, education means everything.  Learning new things and gaining knowledge is crucial to success in whatever I do.  A person never stops being educated in some way or form throughout their whole life.  However, primary education is the most crucial, which is why I am so grateful to go to the school that I do where I have the opportunity to learn so many new things.

I love the role that education plays in all of your lives. It seems to hold many positive attributes. However, it can’t be all that easy while pursuing a modeling career. Were their any concerns you had before signing your modeling contract? Has these concerns lessened over time?

Chonzie: When I signed my modeling contract, I just finished middle school and was about to start high school. I wasn’t aware of the challenges that I would be facing when it came to missing school for modeling. Some administrators find it difficult to understand why I need to miss school for a “casting” or a “photo shoot,” which can be really frustrating. Another thing I was unaware about is when you miss school for a job, you don’t have much time to catch up on what you’re missing. You are mostly spending the entire day on a photo shoot. I generally do my school work while traveling on a plane, in order to keep up with my school work.

Well, that’s great that you have figured out a system that works for you! This brings to me my next topic. Do any of you guys have a special technique that helps you manage your time between studying and jobs that you feel would be helpful to others?

Kyndall’s go-to headphones to study with.

Kyndall:  One way that I learn is through music! For example, how did I learn my ABC’s? Through singing a song!  So my advice to others that are worried about missing a study time between castings is to listen to a song on the radio with a really good beat, and change out the words to a topic that you are learning about in school!  An example of one that I did to help me remember information from my math class was I changed the lyrics of Kesha’s lyrics from her song, “Tik Tok,” to geometric formulas.

Lily:  One of the most exciting, and sometimes challenging, aspects of this line of work is the varying and unpredictable schedule – shoots and castings may either be confirmed or canceled up until the day before they happen. Because of this, I can’t always count on having a free day during the week to complete schoolwork or study for upcoming exams. One time management technique I had to learn this past year was to stay at least a few days ahead, without fail, on all of my assignments and other school responsibilities. That way, if an unexpected work event came up and I was busy for ten hours one day, I wouldn’t have to worry about rushing to meet a deadline. This probably seems obvious but it really took discipline to get everything done ahead of time, especially after a long day in LA!  I also prepare for all shoots and castings the night before: setting up directions, choosing clothes, getting my portfolio and comp cards together, and packing lunches and snacks.

Chonzie, taken for Claire’s Spring ’16 Prom Campaign

Emily: I think that scheduling things out on paper with a pen is the best way to go about things. I always feel more confident about my day, especially if it is hectic, if I can see it written out in front of me and not written out on a screen.

All these techniques sound super helpful in terms of time management! Branching from my last question, what have you found to be absolutely essential to your success in school and/or work?

Chonzie: My earbuds are honestly so helpful for me, and play a big role when it comes to succeeding in school. I work best when I’m isolated, and my earbuds totally zone everything out and help me focus on whatever I’m doing.

Kyndall: Support is vital to success in school and work.  My family has always been behind me to support and help me in any situation, whatever the circumstance.  Whether it be not knowing the answer to a homework question and my parents sitting with me and helping me until we figure it out, or my grandpa driving with me for four and a half hours through L.A traffic to get to my casting.

Lily:  One of the most important things I’ve learned this year is that even though I have lots of varying responsibilities, it’s essential to be fully present in whatever I am currently doing. Even if I know I have a lot of studying to do after work, I stay 100% focused on the task at hand without letting any one thing impact how well I do somewhere else. It’s all about taking things one step at a time. Even more importantly, being professional is definitely essential to success, and that is another commitment of mine.

Kyndall dominating the school yard in a photo shot by: Tina Jo.

Absolutely! I can see how all of these things can strongly benefit you in the long run. Now, let’s get to the fun stuff. If we took a look at your locker or dorm, what celebrity crush would probably be posted?

Kyndall: Hmmm… that’s a good question.  I think it would most likely be Prince Harry of Wales.  I adore the royal family, and Harry is just positively charming!  I have little picture frames in my locker, so I wouldn’t be surprised if his picture found it’s way into one of them!

We all have our preferences – hot or cold lunch?!

Kyndall: 100% cold lunch!  I eat the same thing for lunch pretty much everyday: a protein bar with at least 12 grams of protein since I’m vegetarian, a piece of fruit for necessary vitamins and minerals plus fiber, and roasted chickpeas for carbohydrates to fuel me for the rest of the day.  And don’t forget lots and lots of water!

Kyndall’s favorite bars to snack on.

Lily: Cold lunch – maybe that’s just because it’s August and 80-90 degrees in LA! 🙂

Haha! I think it is safe to say that cold lunch takes the lead – which I am not mad about! Healthy is happy, after all. This brings me to my next question: is there a subject that you are always happy to learn about?

Lily sharing her bright ideas in a photo taken by: Tina Jo.

Lily: This is a difficult question to answer. I really do love them all! But, if I had to choose one, it would probably be calculus. There’s a unique beauty to mathematics in general, but when I was introduced to calculus it was like I had discovered the hidden mechanism of the universe.

Emily: I have always been a history fan. My history teacher in High School taught it really well, and I just loved to learn about all of these events that happened in history and how it shaped our current world. It is fascinating to me how one day we will be in history books for certain events.

Amazing! Is there anything that you are excited to learn about this upcoming school year that is new to you?

Lily: This year I am taking an elective history course called “Globalization and Imperial Exchange: From Alexander the Great to NATO.” The class is centered around the growth and decline of different empires throughout time. I am interested in how cultural identity is shaped by power struggles and outside influences.

Do you feel that modeling has helped your performance at school in certain areas?

Lily: Actually, yes, it really has helped, both in school and in life. I tend to be more introverted by nature and when I started modeling it required me to enter another, more extroverted dimension of my personality. I’ve noticed that since I’ve been working I’ve become more and more comfortable with this side of myself. Although I’m still the same person, my inner extrovert is now on display quite often, and I see and feel a difference in my performance in school presentations and discussions. I’m a bit more voluble and confident in expressing my thoughts and opinions than I was previously.   

Chonzie having a blast with her fellow classmates in-between classes.

Chonzie: I believe that modeling has helped me a lot when it comes to communicating with teachers. I have to communicate to my agency especially when I am living in Colorado, not California. Because of that, I’ve had to really work on expressing all my needs and making an effort to keep them updated. Therefore, modeling has really helped me when it comes to communication with others.

Kyndall: Absolutely.  If a person is failing all of their classes, it’s going to be extremely difficult to have a successful modeling career, because they will be too worried about keeping their grades up to do anything else.  So for me, modeling provides the motivation to pay attention in class, in order to excel in school and get good grades so that I can continue to do what I love: model.

One of Kyndall’s favorite outfits to wear to school, purchased from TOPSHOP.

It’s great to see how modeling has impacted all of you so positively! Now, is there a specific hobby that you like to do when your not in school, that is not modeling? 

 EmilyMy favorite thing to do is either to shoot/model, play the guitar, or spend time with my friends. I think it’s a nice balance!

Kyndall: My favorite thing to do when I’m not in school aside from modeling, is to design clothes.  I have a journal that I keep by my bed so that when inspiration hits, it’s there for me to sketch in. Lately, I’ve received a lot of inspiration from the dress Kim Kardashian wore to the Met Gala, so I have been inspired to create a collection that is entirely black and white with a futuristic twist.

Lily: I love to read a good book or play with my dog, Pansy.

She got it from her mama! Lily’s beloved dog, Pansy, modeling in the sunlight.

Chonzie, taken by: Alex Geim

Very cool – To wrap things up, do any of you gals have any other advice for aspiring models that are also enrolled in school?

Chonzie: My advice for an aspiring model who’s enrolled in school is to keep up with all your classes. The worst thing is to be leaving town when your grades are struggling. If you’re on top of everything, you won’t be as stressed when you have to leave. Also, make a serious effort to really communicate with your teachers.  For example, before I leave for a job I ask them, “I’m leaving town for ___ day(s), what am I going to be missing? And when can I make it up?” That way you can have a good relationship with your teacher, and feel better about missing school.

Emily, Shot by: Troels Jepsen

Emily: I would say just make sure you plan out your days and your schedules every week to make sure you have time to do school. I know as a model, we don’t typically get our schedule until the night before but if you know you will have a busy day, print some reading out and take it with you to read in-between castings or during down time on set. It is all about organizing and planning and you can stay on top of things.

Kyndall: Don’t be afraid to go for your dreams!  Anything is possible if you put your mind to it, so if your desire is to be a model, don’t let anything stand in your way.  Things have a way of working themselves out, and there are amazing people like the wonderful women of Nous to help you fulfill your dream.

Emily, taken by Senreve

Check out Chonzie‘s portfolio and follow her on Instagram.

Check out Emily‘s portfolio and follow her on Instagram.

Check out Kyndall‘s portfolio and follow her on Instagram.

Check out Lily‘s portfolio and follow her on Instagram.

Oh yes, Summer has finally arrived! That means it is time to purchase a tube of sun block, whip out your passport, and start globe trotting. But, before jumping into your next adventure, our Nous ladies (Megan, KJ, Camryn, and Alyena) have offered some advice that they would like to share from their recent travels.

Peep their interview below to become the jet-setting pro that you were destined to become!:


1. Hi ladies! A little birdie told me that you have recently had the opportunity to travel. Where did you travel to?

KJ in Havana, Cuba

KJ:  Hey! So after my trip to Governor’s Ball in New York with Juicy Couture, I had the impromptu decision to join my friends in Cuba, but I was only there for a total of 32 hours! I was in Havana, Cuba and we stayed at the Four Points Hotel which was a great central location for the city and beach.

Megan Martin in Bogota, Columbia

Megan: Over the past couple of years, I have been so blessed to have traveled a lot during  my modeling career.  I have been fortunate enough to book a lot of travel jobs outside of the country :).  THIS is one of my absolute favorite parts of the job.  I have been to France, Italy, Germany, Spain, Colombia, Mexico (many times), the Bahamas (many many times), & so many more.  These are just a few of my favorite & most memorable locations.

Camryn in London, England

Camryn:  I signed to Nous when I was 15, which then lead to me signing in New York City when I was 16-years-old (which I had never been) and then last year in London at (age) 17. Everything in Europe is so close, so I’ve been able to take holidays to Paris and Amsterdam. I hope to go explore more if I can.

Alyena in London, England

Alyena: Since joining Nous I have gone to London, France, Italy, Switzerland, Germany and Amsterdam! I was stoked to go to these places because it was sort of a post-High School adventure!

2. If you had to choose, which place stuck out the most?

Alyena: My favorite place so far has probably been Amsterdam because of the youth culture as well as the art scene.

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Megan: If I haaad to choose… I would probably choose the Exumas in the Bahamas.  I was there this past May & fell in love.  I am a beach girl, & the Exumas had the most remote & beautiful beaches with the most clear & blue water I have ever seen!  I was in awe. The Exumas is made up of 365 islands.  Most are all close together so it is easy to “island hop.” It is the most serene place I have ever been.

Megan Martin in the Exumas, Bahamas.

Camryn: New York City is my favorite city in the world so far. London, Paris, and Amsterdam were so beautiful but NY will always have a special place in my heart and has inspired me to keep pushing for what I want. I’m actually moving there in August!

Press play to follow Camryn’s adventures in NYC:


KJ enjoying a day at the beach in Cuba

3. What are some of your key/favorite brands that you wore around while traveling?

KJ: While i was there (Cuba), I wore an adorable two piece skirt/top set by XIX Palms, some swim and cover up pieces by Bamba swim, and the rest was my own vintage stuff.

Alyena: Local stuff. Paris had the best fashion it was incredible! There were so many boutiques with so many different types of looks the main difficulty was trying to fit everything in my suitcase.

 

Alyena in Paris, France.

 

4. What’s something you pack that’s not absolutely essential, but you like having it?

Alyena: One thing that was essential for my trip was headphones. In long train rides and on the plane I couldn’t imagine not having them.

Camryn: I (really my mother) will pack bags of Tea and Emergen-C, so as soon as I land, I’ll be able to make my go-to drink!

Megan: A sound machine.  When traveling to a new place, you never know what your surroundings are like… & you NEED that beauty sleep.  I also use it to help me sleep & deal with time changes.

5.  Speaking of beauty sleep, what’s the best way to sleep on a plane?

Camryn: I always end up watching movies on the plane because I rarely go to the movie theater and catch up on all the new movies.. so no sleep!!

6. Was there anything that came up while you were traveling that you did not expect?

Alyena: One food I plan to never have again is veal. In Germany I got tricked into eating it because they brought out the wrong meal and it was quite a shock.

KJ sitting down for a meal in Havana, Cuba

7. Oh no! I am so sorry. Well, this brings onto our next topic: Where and/or what did you eat? Any unusual secret gems that you can’t wait to bring back home?

KJ: Our favorite restaurant to eat lunch at was called El Dandy. They had meat and cheese plates, carnitas tacos (😍😍  my fav), and the best mangos I’ve ever had! Everything there is really cheap, taxi’s were 10-20 pesos to get anywhere, and every meal was around 15 pesos a person including drinks. Both nights I was there, we ate this adorable rooftop restaurant called El Cocinero. The ambiance and food was amazing.

Megan: Bogota, Colombia has the best fried Yuca. It  is similar to french fries, but better ;).

AlyenaIf you go to Italy the one thing that I practically lived on was gelato. It’s a culture where gelato is considered acceptable with every meal!

A Spread of Italian Gelato

Megan enjoying the view in Amboise, France

8. That all sounds so good! I’m sure one of you found a familiar plate while traveling. What is one food you could now never eat in your home country again because you’ve tasted the original version in its country of origin and you’ve been forever spoiled?

Megan: Fresh pasta from Italy!

9. Now, in terms of location, did you girls get to experience/discover some local secret gems? 

Camryn: If you travel to London, I’m sure you will hear of the Shoreditch House. It’s really a hip venue in a culturally rich area and they have the best roof top pool. Oh! And Brick Lane in Shoreditch has some really great thrift shops!

KJ: One night, we went to a rooftop salsa bar called Roma and it had the best vibe. I met some of the most down to earth people.On my second day in Cuba, I went to the AMAZING beach called Tarara, which is i a private beach club. It only costs 5 pesos to get in, and you feel like you’re on a deserted tropical island. Only locals really know about it so there are no people and it’s really clean. The water is super clear.

Camryn in London, England in front of the Big Ben.

10. Are there any social norms or practices you’ve encountered on your travels that you wish were more common in the USA?

Camryn: Saying English phrases like “que up” (assembling in a line) or when you are asking where bathroom is, you refer to the restroom as “the toilet.” Also, everyone says “proper” in numerous casual conversations and it is very versatile. Like, “she’s proper posh,” would be that girl is really elegant/upperclass/stylish!

11. What is the craziest/funniest thing that happened to you while traveling?

Megan: I was in Tulum shooting for a swimwear brand, and some locals approached us while shooting and proceeded to take their shirts off and get in the water & “pose” with me………..

Megan striking a pose in St. Barths wearing a swimsuit by Stone Cold Fox

12. Haha! That is hilarous. Now, has anyone done anything super creative to save money during their travels?

KJ: When traveling, always bring twice as much cash as you think you need. This is especially important in Cuba because American credit cards don’t work over there. With extra cash, if something goes wrong, you then have plenty of cushioning.

Camryn: I once took a 10 hour bus ride from Amsterdam to London because I had a job the next day and had to go home without my friends! It was actually really cool because I got to drive through Holland and Belgium.

13. Sounds like a memory for the books! So, let’s get a little personal. Do any of you ladies have an irrational fear that your travels have helped you overcome?

Megan: Traveling is such a beautiful thing. However, there is a lot of inevitable things you cannot control— like flight delays, weather, language barriers in different countries, misinterpreting cultures, & etc… You truly have to go into traveling with an open mind & ready for almost anything to happen.

KJ having some fun in the sun in Havana, Cuba

14. Love that advice! To wrap it up, does anyone have any further advice for other wanderlusters?

KJ: Knowing foreign languages is a plus, as locals may try to take advantage of you and tell you things are more money than they are. But for the most part, come with no expectations and have a great time!

Megan: Do not take traveling for granted (I sure do sometimes).  It is such a gift.  Try and be as present as possible & take any given opportunity to immerse yourself in another countries culture.

Alyena: Be a collector! One thing I try to collect in every city is a cool key chain, as well as a post card from either a museum I visited or from a street vendor.

….and that’s a wrap! Now that you’re a jet-setting pro, get inspired by checking out some more awesome photos from the girls’ past travels below:

Check out Alyena‘s portfolio and follow her on Instagram.

Check out Megan‘s portfolio and follow her on Instagram.

Check out KJ‘s portfolio and follow her on Instagram.

Check out Camryn‘s portfolio and follow her on Instagram.

 

 

 

 

Imagine that you have two weeks in Europe to spare, where would you go? What would you see? Well, our girl Alex G. has had the privilege of leaping over the big puddle that is the Atlantic Ocean, and has provided us with a little travel guide in the form of a questionnaire! She has become a true jet-setting queen this past month – take a peek below to discover more from her trip!:

Hi Alex! Welcome home! Where did you travel to?

We visited Paris, Brussels, Florence, Rome, Santorini, and London. Each place was uniquely beautiful. The way they live and eat in Europe is truly something I’ll be dreaming about forever!

Ok, we all know that Europe is known for their amazing meals! What did you eat?

Breakfast in Paris, France

Being the foodie girl that I am, I was in absolute heaven! I mean, European food is on another level! In each place, the food was a bit different than the other, yet all were insanely delicious. There’s a ridiculous overload of the yummiest croissants, cheese and baguette in Paris. 

If you are a beer lover, than Brussels Belgium beer is for you. Florence and Rome’s pizza, pasta, and pretty much any carb you can think of actually changed my life with how delicious they were (And okay we may have also had gelato every single day….way too good for words!)

Santorini had the freshest most amazing fish, because they catch everything locally around the Greek islands. And how could we not be cliché and have lots of tea and sweet treats in London?

There is something so beautiful about how the people of these places take such pride and put so much love into the food they eat. And you really can taste it.

For all the fashionistas out there, what was in your luggage?!

Alex G in Paris, France wearing All-Saints

For what I wore, it was fun to pack cute things that made me feel like I fit in with the fun European fashion! Because in Paris, Brussels, and London, the weather was colder so we had to dress a bit warmer. Brands like All-Saints, Rag & Bone, Zara, John Elliott, Paige, and Levi‘s were all perfect to stay bundled up and comfortable, while still feeling edgy/stylish while exploring.

In Santorini and Italy, the sun was shining so much that is was way easier to run around in sundresses and sandals. I wore brands like Faithful The Brand, Free People, For Love and Lemons, Ulla Johnson, Rèalisation Par, Givenchy, and Madewell. Basically anything that felt fun and flowy was perfect to wear. Each one of these places hold such a big place in my heart.

Alex G in Santorini, Greece rocking her Yasmine Eslami one piece swim suit

All of these places sound amazing, but one had to stand out among the rest. What was your favorite spot that you visited?

If I had to choose my favorite place that we visited, it would probably be Santorini. Greece is unlike anywhere I have ever been. It’s almost like a different world. To see such a beautiful island surrounded by the bluest water was insane! The blues and whites are something you can only dream of seeing. I truly felt so lucky to be able to wake up to such a magical place and experience it for a few days.

For all those out there that are looking to make the journey to Europe, do you have any advice for your fellow wanderlusters? 

Europe is a dream! If you have the opportunity to visit these places, I highly recommend that you do. Traveling offers a new view of the world and of other individuals that is truly so special. The new type of views, people, food, and culture that you will meet will and hold close to your heart forever.

I will definitely be going to visit again soon to experience such wanderlust again!

Sounds like an amazing trip, right? Scroll below to see more photos from her adventure!:

Check out Alex G‘s portfolio and follow her on Instagram.

 

When you’re healthy and fit, people can see it. Not just in your body, but in your overall vibe and energy from the inside-out. Positive lifestyle habits are totally contagious! Try adding more into your life and watch them catch fire. Before you know it, you’re smiling from ear to ear, working out effortlessly, and maybe even inspiring others to do the same. We can’t think of a person who exemplifies this kind of naturally snowballing happiness better than Allison Holton.

She loves to be active, but doesn’t take herself too seriously. She does lots of different activities regularly rather than trying to stick to one regimen on repeat, and she’s not afraid to try something new. For Allison, maintaining healthy habits is fun. She doesn’t stress about it because to her it’s not a chore; she just does what feels good. And we dare you to say it doesn’t look good on her.

Want to take Allison’s simple, well-rounded approach to a fit life? Read her advice below.

currentlypracticing

  • Ballet

    Just a typical day w @alvin_nguyen 🐚🌷🌴

    A photo posted by Allison Holton (@aholtt) on

  • Yoga
  • Aerial Yoga
  • Running
  • Pilates Reformer
  • Hiking
  • Boxing
  • Cycling
  • Swimming
  • Snowboarding
  • Biking
  • Dance (hip hop, jazz, & lyrical)

Do you belong to a gym? Have a personal trainer? 

My daily workout routine usually consists of two hours of ballet classes at night. The class starts with intense stretching, and then we spend a majority of the time learning choreography. On the weekends I get together with a group of friends (that happen to be nutritionists/personal trainers) and hike or hit up Equinox.

Are there any workouts you’re dying to try?

I’ve always wanted to get into mixed martial arts. I tried a jiujitsu class and it was really tough, but I’d like to give it another go.

You don’t believe in fad diets. Why not?

I believe eating healthy and staying positive is the best way find what people look for in diets. I don’t worry about what my body looks like. My primary concern is staying healthy and challenging myself with a good workout.

What about dietary restrictions on certain types of foods? (carbs, gluten, meat, dairy, etc.)  Why or why not?

My diet is well balanced.. I don’t like to deprive my body of anything. My meals are usually small portions of different food groups.

What’s one exercise move that every woman should know?  

My Fit Life with Allison Holton

SQUATS. I used to think they would make my legs/ butt bigger and bulkier, but that’s a common misconception. I recently got into lifting at the gym and I’ve noticed such a difference. Try it girls, trust me.

What’s your best-kept secret beauty trick?

My skin is really important to me, so I use a couple different products to keep it hydrated. I use Sephora’s First Aid Beauty cleanser and repair cream. Once a week I chill with an Origins charcoal mask on my face, and a Moroccan oil mask on my hair.

What’s the first thing you do to prepare for a job?

If my job starts early in the morning, I throw on an eye mask to reduce puffiness and redness.

How about preparing for a work out?

I take C4 (preworkout) before my workouts. And a mineral water mix during them.

What are some of your favorite songs to work out to? 

I love the Weeknd and Ellie Goulding. I usually just Spotify between the two.

You seem like you’re happy all or most of the time, what’s your secret!?

I’m super lucky to be surrounded by my amazing friends. We are always adventuring. Surfing at the beach, snowboarding in Big Bear, and walking around Disneyland is my favorite! I’m always looking to find something new to try out

What’s your go-to fitness look?

Yoga has the cutest outfits, but I think running clothes/shoes are my go-to. When I put on my running gear, I can’t help but feel pumped.

3 Healthy Habits that you absolutely swear by:

Eat every two hours, get lots of sleep, drink lots of water and keep active!

Words of advice for anyone who wants to look and feel good:

Make small, achievable goals each day and tell yourself you can!

What is the best fitness tip you have ever received?

SQUATS!

   Check out Allison’s portfolio and follow her on Instagram.

daniellemyfitlifecover

…Aaand we’re back with more Fit Life interviews! Today we’re featuring Danielle Herrington, whose super-fit and amazingly toned bod (seriously, have you seen her!?) has us all wanting to know what her secret is. Turns out, there’s really not much of a secret! Sometimes having a fit lifestyle is no more than what it sounds like, working hard, eating clean, and staying hydrated- no extra bells or whistles. It’s all about balance and Danielle knows exactly how to shape up without overdoing it.

 

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Why is fitness important to you?

It’s important to me because it makes me feel good. Over all I feel more positive about things. Also the boost of energy you get. As well as all just being healthy.

Did you play sports in school?

I played Volleyball.

What’s your favorite part of working out? And your least favorite?

Favorite part of working out is the feeling you get when you start to see results. Also feeling accomplished after a tough workout. Least favorite is when I try a new workout I get sore after. That never really feels to good.

How often do you do Cardio?

I try to do it 3-4 times a week.

Which do you prefer, and why…steady state cardio or HIIT (high intensity interval training)?

I prefer HIIT running on a treadmill. Honestly I just don’t like long work outs. I tend to get bored a slack off if it’s too long. I’d much rather do a short and intense workout that keeps me on my toes.

What about strength training?

I do Pilates for lengthening and body weight exercises for strengthening.  My favorites are push ups, donkey kicks, sumo squats, side planks, mountain climbers and burpees. I know most people dread them, but I love burpees!

Are there any workouts you’re dying to try?

I’ve seen a lot of people taking up boxing. That’s definitely something I would try!

Screenshot 2015-11-09 11.13.02Do you see a difference in your mood when you don’t get to the gym?

Definitely! When I don’t workout I’m fatigued easily and overall I’m just not in the best mood so I stay active as regularly as possible.

Do you believe in diets?

No, they never last and eventually you’ll gain the weight back!

Say you’re at the grocery store picking out your eats for the week. What are your thoughts when choosing what to buy?
I go for organic, high protein, low fat , and low carb. No dairy, I’m not allergic or anything I’m just not a big fan of it.

What’s the first thing you do to prepare for a job?

It’s pretty simple. I work out, drink a lot of water to stay hydrated, and I try to get plenty of rest.

You mentioned that you do Burpees. What are the body benefits?

Burpees are my absolute favorite thing to do. Especially if I don’t want to go to the gym, I do them at home. Actually, you can do them pretty much anywhere and it works out your arms, legs, butt, and abs, all in one move.

What’s your go-to fitness look?

Sports bra, t-shirt & shorts. Ya know, super fancy 😉

What’s your favorite music to listen to for motivation?

Pretty much anything upbeat and fast-paced. I like it all.

What do you do to relax?

I go to the spa and get a massage. If I don’t have time, even getting may nails doing is super relaxing to me.

What would you say to someone who was looking to get fit but didn’t know where to start?
I would tell them to start of with small changes, like adding more veggies to their meals everyday or doing light workouts like power walking for 30 minutes. You have to start somewhere! Over time you can keep progressing. The key is longevity, so you don’t want to jump to super strict meals and tough workouts that would be too difficult to maintain.  Oh, and I would tell them that the work is totally worth it.

Take a look at Danielle’s portfolio and follow her on Instagram.

 

myfitlifelaurencover

Lauren Johnson is kiiiind of the ideal athlete-turned-model. This former high school track and field star radiates fit and healthy living from every beautiful freckle on her face! From representing some of the most in-demand fitness brands to her down time training for half marathons with her hunky personal trainer (a.k.a boyfriend) Kyle, Lauren clearly knows a thing or two about great lifestyle habits. Naturally, we thought you’d appreciate a little inspirational insight into how she stays looking and feeling so happy and healthy. Get a pen and paper ready ladies, you’re definitely going to want to take some of this down!

currentlypracticing

  • Pilates
  • Yoga
  • Running
  • Hiking
  • Surfing
  • Kayaking
  • Weight Lifting
  • Rock Climbing
  • Kickball
  • Cycling
  • Boxing
  • Dance

 

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It’s time

A photo posted by Lauren Johnson (@lcj271) on

 Why is fitness important to you?

Aside from the obvious health benefits of being active on a regular basis, it is a stress reliever, and extreme mood booster.  It’s been a way to connect to other individuals through the love of living an active, healthy lifestyle.  You feel productive while you are bonding with others.

Did you play sports in school?

I played basketball, track and field (hurdles, 4×100, 100m dash and 200m dash), and after high school, was on a kickball team for a little bit.

What’s the secret to your amazing body?

Of course keeping up with an active weekly plan is important, as well as eating lots of veggies and fruits, but I honestly believe that having a good balance of what society considers “ no to treats and sweets” is important as well.  This may be a stretch for some people, but for me being happy is the first step to having an amazing body and mind.

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Are there any workouts you’re dying to try?

I haven’t tried the barre classes that everyone is in love with, and I have definitely been curious to try!

Do you see a difference in your mood when you don’t get to the gym?

Yes! Not just the gym, but any outdoor activity.  I don’t need to workout everyday, nor do I think it is the best for your body, but when I don’t keep up with my typical activity level, I feel sluggish.

You don’t believe in diets. Why not?

I think there needs to be balance, but I feel that diets are usually short term, and lifestyle eating is well, for life 🙂 I lifestyle eat, not diet. Ya feel me?

 

What’s in your fridge right now?

Tons of berries, pomegranate seeds, apples, almond milk, chocolate cashew milk, spinach, red/green peppers, broccoli, carrots, hummus, salsa, greek yogurt, chia seeds, quinoa chocolate bars, homemade bread, homemade chocolate raspberry mousse, hamburger buns, nut butters of all kinds, and basically every condiment!

 

What’s one fitness move should every woman know?

Sumo squat with weights –  I love it because it can zip up your booty, abs, inner thighs, and hamstrings.  Other variations can also tone your calves, and arms.  Also, the happy baby stretch! I know its not a “fitness” move, but it is a great hip opener and feels great after a run!

What’s your best confidence-boosting trick?

I take my lipstick and write on the mirror loving quotes or words.  My mom does this at home, and it is such a sweet reminder that lipstick is used mainly to enhance beauty, but using it to enhance inner beauty is so much cooler to me.

What songs are on your iPod?

I actually trained myself not to listen to music when I workout.  I use my inner thoughts and dialogue to keep me going, plus I’ve learned to do some critical thinking. Outside of workouts, I love anything old school, Al Green, James Brown, funky town music!

 

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Take a look at Lauren’s portfolio and follow her in Instagram.

fitlifejessicacover

Summer may be over, but that’s certainly no reason not to keep our fitness routines going all the way through the colder months (especially if you live someplace that’s warm year round, like us).  Enter: Jessica Serfaty. Fashion model, comedienne, musician, dancer, and most importantly, your new never-ending source of serious #fitlife inspo. In the hopes of keeping you on your fitness A-game (we’ve got your back), we got up close and personal with Jessica to get to know exactly how she does it all.  To stay up to date on Jessica’s adventures, join her army of fans by following @JessicaSerfaty on Instagram, Vine and Snapchat.

currentlypracticing

Screenshot 2015-09-29 10.24.30

  • Yoga
  • Hip Hop
  • Surfing
  • Bouldering
  • Racket Ball
  • Long Boarding
  • Mountain Biking
  • Snowboarding

 

q&a

Do you describe yourself as a morning person?

Truthfully, diet and exercise is a leading factor as to if I wake up at 6 or wake up at 9. When I am in a healthy routine, mornings come with ease and pleasure. I require no coffee to become sentient. I spring out of bed and I’m ready to interact with other humans.

What do you do to prepare for a job?

It differs from job to job. For fitness and swim shoots, the day before my diet will be strict and I’ll do a bit more cardio than usual. Fish, fruits and greens.

How about preparing for a work out?

I take a pre-work out powder to get pumped before some hearty gym time. Keeps me fueled.

Best Breakfast:

I have my favorite gluten free toast and I use a little coconut oil in a skillet to crisp the edges of my bread. I fry up an egg with fresh garlic and Himalayan sea salt. Sauté some baby spinach. Add a little pesto and avocado to top it all off. Vavoom. You have yourself a hearty meal that will keep your energy levels up but won’t make you feel bloated.

Favorite Recovery Food:

100% Protein shake. Preferably with peanut butter and a banana, thank you. More protein and the banana helps to not cramp after your workout and stretches.

You mentioned that you do dance workouts. What are the body benefits?

I love dancing. I dance at home, on set, even at the grocery store. I have only been taking classes for about 2 years and I can say it’s by far my favorite way to burn calories. It’s such a great cardio and it targets most muscles. My abs, legs and arms are sore the next day.

What’s your go-to fitness look?

Tight shorts and a old cut up rock t-shirt. That’s if I’m planning on going pretty hard. For a lighter workout I’ll wear some cute pattern yoga pants and a fun sports bra. I’m sweet and sour so I have to get both sides out.

What’s your favorite music to listen to for motivation?

Anything heavy, whether it be rock or old school rap. I like to run to songs that lyrically line up with what I’m doing. So if it’s a song that makes that person feel like they are a “boss” or a song that refers to strength I find that it genuinely helps push me. I’ll stretch to a comedy podcast by Tosh.0 or an audio book.

Have a kick ass #Sunday

A photo posted by Jessica Serfaty (@jessicaserfaty) on

3 Healthy Habits that you absolutely swear by:

Limu Seaweed – Its a liquid nutrition powered by a super-nutrient called Fucoidan. It helps with your immunity, joints, energy level, softer smoother skin and allergy relief.

The power of water. It is real. I drink AT LEAST half a gallon a day. On a good day I’ll get my whole gallon in. The trick to accomplishing this is to always drink out of a 1.5 liter bottle and don’t leave it in the fridge. It’s too hard to keep going back for small glasses or bottles. Not to mention keeping up with how many you have had. When you do a 1.5 liter you know It’s 2 bottles plus some. Done.

Power of mind. It’s incredible how mentally strong we can be when we put it into practice. Choosing to be happy and positive is a real thing people. When you start to feel tired or unmotivated RECOGNIZE that as a decision you made, and test out the waters of mind over matter.

What do you do to relax?

Breathing techniques. Release tension in your jaw. Take a 20 min power nap. Be in nature. Journal.

Words of advice for anyone who wants to get fit:

Make it easy for yourself. Preparation is the key to success. Know the importance of sleep, water, pre-work out powders, protein after workouts, eating healthy and most of all, consistency.

Screenshot 2015-09-28 15.43.52

 Take a look at Jessica’s portfolio and follow her on Instagram.

bridgetforpopularcover

This feature was originally posted on Populartv.com.

See Nous Models’ Bridget live the SoCal dream.

Have you ever been star struck?
For my 12th birthday, I went to my first concert fourth row center stage for Jesse McCartney. Katy Perry opened for him and it was one of the best nights for me as a little girl! I had the biggest crush on him! Plus, the security let me move to the first row and we made eye contact.

What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever had to wear for a shoot?
So far I haven’t had to shoot with something too crazy, but the weirdest thing I’ve ever had to wear at a shoot was probably fern fronds around my neck.

What’s the band you’re dying to join?
The band I thought would be fun to be a part of is A Tribe Called Quest. I listen to a lot of solo artists but if I had to chose a group they’d be my favorite. They have an original rap sound that draws me to their music.

See the rest of the editorial below.

Photography – Isa Wipfli

Take a look at Bridget’s portfolio and follow her on Instagram.

gracehairazzicover

This feature originally posted on Hairazzi.com.

How did your career as a model begin? Were you scouted or attend an open call?

I was actually scouted at a One Direction concert in Pasadena last year.

How do you maintain that gorgeous mane? Do you do conditioning treatments or use special products for curly hair?

I use conditioner in my hair everyday in the shower, and then I put on Leave In Conditioner from Neutrogena right before I go to bed.

Do you ever flat iron your hair? Do you prefer your hair curly or straight?

If I have time, I sometimes flat iron my hair. I do prefer it straight because it is easier to brush out, which makes a HUGE difference with long hair. I do like how my wavy hair looks when it’s brushed out though.

 

What are your top 5 must have skincare/makeup products?

My top 5 skincare/makeup products are my Actifirm face wash, moisturizer, Z-Peel, my Sephora Collection liquid eyeliner, and clear mascara for keeping my eyebrows in place.

How do you stay fit? Do you follow a specific diet?

I’ve been dancing for over 11 years, and I dance five days a week after school. I’ve never felt the need to follow a specific diet since I love food. I tend to eat more during dinner after dancing, so that I don’t dance on a full stomach.

Who are some of your favorite fashion designers?

Some of my favorite designers are Marc Jacobs and Louis Vuitton because I like how they have a classic, yet modern vibe to their pieces.

What has been your most memorable experience so far in your career?

My most memorable experience in my career was when I did a shoot at the LINE Hotel in LA with another girl from Nous named Lyzy. The hotel was a really fun place to shoot at because it had a modern, yet urban look to it, which I loved since I like traditional modern architecture.

Who are some photographers you are dying to work with?

I actually don’t have any photographers in particular in mind, because each photographer I’ve worked with has their own unique style. However, some of my favorite photographers I’ve worked with so far are Eddie Chacon, David Lim, Farhad Samari, Ed McGowan, and David Choi.

Describe your personal style. Do you like to dress up or down?

For the most part my style is usually casual, yet put together, and has a classic vibe to it. Some of my favorite pieces to wear are some of my matching sets and high wasted pieces.

What advice do you have for someone interested in pursuing a modeling career?

This might sound cheesy but never give up on your dreams! You will get rejected a lot, but it will pay off in the end if you work hard and keep an open mind. In addition, be sure to advocate for yourself.

Read more Hairazzi here.

Take a look at Grace’s portfolio and follow her on Instagram.