Daily meditation with Oprah and Deepak Chopra

Oh Hello loves,

Join me in this free daily audio guided meditation by Oprah and Deepak Chopra! It started yesterday (Monday, April 10th) but you can also start today.

It is 21-Day Meditation Experience called “Hope in Uncertain Times.”

This is a great way to start your day off with a clear mind and a positive, focused mindset. I am new to meditation (as the closest I’ve gotten is savasna at the end of yoga class) but I have to say so far I love it. We all need to be present and take a break from our daily cluttered chaotic lives. The daily audio will be available for you to listen to it up to 5 days after each day and it will not let you move forward until into the next day (so you can’t read them all at once).

Here is a short description:

Renew a sense of trust and optimism about your life and the world around you. Connect with your personal power in a way that lets you embrace uncertainty as an opportunity to grow and evolve. Harness strength and centeredness, to move beyond conflict and judgment towards more love, peace, and acceptance.

Your journey starts today! Here is the link to access it. It’s time to connect with yourself so you are able to connect better with the outside world.

Breathe in, Breathe out.
Namaste. ūüôŹūüŹĹ

Natalie

Mykonos, Greece

Tantris by Russell Simmons – Hottest new yoga studio in Los Angeles

I have been doing yoga for several years now. My favorite studio was Steve Ross’ Maha Yoga in the Brentwood area of Los Angeles. It was a nice warm flow to hip hop beats. I loved waking up on Saturday mornings and starting it off by getting a good sweat. I was really sad to hear that they closed down. I was happy to hear that entrepreneur, producer and author Russell Simmons opened up a new studio in West Hollywood and was eager to check it out. He also used to attend Maha yoga and take Steve’s class. They have been friends for quite some time.

Natalie Wilson and Russell Simmons

Russell’s studio is called Tantris Center for yogic science. When you walk in, you will notice sign that says “coexist” which is a theme throughout the studio (check out the window coverings, they are covered in¬†tiny little religion symbols). The indian inspired modern decor is absolutely beautiful.¬†There are lots of options for yoga classes with some great experienced teachers. You will also catch Russell here a lot, as he attends the classes regularly. My old teacher Steve from Maha yoga now teaches at his studio so I was excited about that and he still has Hip Hop yoga! You can catch him there Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7:30pm and Sundays at 5:30pm (although this week he is on vacation). My friends are obsessed.

The two level studio is a big new space on Sunset Blvd. complete with an energy bar where you can sit down and enjoy a snack with a great selection of juices, bars, kombucha and free coffee, a retail section with their own brand of yoga clothing, a blow dry bar, an upstairs lounge to hang out and showers and lockers to rinse afterwards (you might want to do this because class is pretty hot and you will be pretty soaked). I got the cutest yoga pants and long jacket vest! Very high quality materials and the fit is amazing. They also sell¬†skincare and hair products, jewelry and books. There is also a really nice backyard area which I’m sure will be nice in the summer time for events.

Although they have been open for several months already, they had an opening class last weekend followed by a lecture by Russell and Steve. Afterwards was a complimentary vegan picnic. The class was packed and Russell and Steve talked about their experiences of being yogis and their long practice of studying yoga and meditation. They talked about the importance of being present and that the ego is the sense of separate existence. That sense has to go for you to be fully happy. They explained that suffering is wanting things to be different from what they are. Accepting things the way they are gets rid of that suffering. They also talked about many other things including their dear friend Eckhart Tolle and his book The Power of Now.

I’ve been to Tantris a few times this week and have really enjoyed it. Last night I actually received a copy of one of Russell’s books:¬†“Success through Stillness”¬†which¬†he signed and I’m excited to read it. He is very into meditation, which I need to do more of, so I do want to learn more about it. Steve also has a book as well called “Happy Yoga: 7 Reasons why theres nothing to worry about.” Both books are also available at the studio.

If you would like to check out the studio, there is another opening (FREE) yoga class this weekend (Sunday, March 5th) at 12pm followed by another lecture with Russell at 1:15pm. Sign up now before it is booked up. No need to bring mats and towels to this one since they are provided (but you can to future classes if you do not want to rent). Afterwards will be a free vegan soul lunch downstairs (and maybe you can take a pic with Russell)! You can get a free week to the studio if you want to check out more classes. The location is right next to Boa restaurant and valet is on Sunset which is $4 for the first hour, $8 after 3 hours. Otherwise you can find street parking on adjacent streets, just be sure to read the signs.

Read here to learn about Russell’s viewpoint on yoga and why he opened Tantris.

Hope to see you there!

Namaste,

Natalie

Yoga with Steve Ross

Steve Ross

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Activated Charcoal Benefits & Usage

So what is the deal with this trendy activated charcoal? Fitness fanatics and health enthusiasts seem to be gulping this stuff down and it seems every juice place around now has some type of activated charcoal drink or lemonade on its shelves. I researched this stuff and this is what I found.
Activated charcoal powder

A lot of people have been consuming activated charcoal to help with digestion. It¬†cleans out your intestines and colon which helps with belly bloat and gas. Its alkaline properties pull toxins from the body and it is a strong detoxifier. It lowers cholesterol,¬†makes you more clear headed and helps you have more energy (but isn’t as strong as caffeine). It helps to remove toxins from the liver and bloodstream after drinking alcohol. Because of its toxin pulling properties, it is good for people who have allergies and can also help reduce joint pain.

It is commonly used in the emergency room and has been for years for people that have food poisoning. The charcoal has tons of tiny sponge-like pores that bind to toxins and they get flushed out of your system. For this reason, it is not good to drink it within 2 hours of eating or taking any type of supplements or vitamins. The charcoal cannot differentiate between nutrients and toxins so it is not beneficial to take it at the same time if you do want to absorb (and not flush out) those nutrients.

It has also been recommended by Doctors to chemotherapy or long-term dialysis patients to reduce their side affects as well as pregnant women to reduce bile flow during pregnancy. Charcoal (capsules) have been recommended to athletes who get diarrhea when running marathons and also to people that have been exposed to mold since studies show it binds to mycotoxins (toxins in mold).

Activated charcoal drink

The pics above are from one of my favorite health food spots / juice bars, Kreation in Los Angeles. They have several locations including Beverly Hills, Santa Monica and my favorite location on 3rd street (West Hollywood/LA area). They offer to sprinkle a little bit in your water for free. They also offer a charcoalade there that contains activated charcoal, ginger which is great for nausea, coconut water for electrolytes, coconut sugar (antioxidant), lemon for energy and cayenne for your metabolism. Pressed Juicery (nationwide) also has a similar charcoal lemonade with lemon, activated charcoal, lavender and honey.

When buying activated charcoal, look for ones made from coconut shells or identified wood species that have ultra-fine grains, not ones in powdered form which end to have artificial sweeteners and chemicals. You can sweeten it naturally or with fresh juice.

While it is still fairly new and there have not been long term studies yet on its use, I wouldn’t go overboard on this stuff. Too much can cause constipation. Be careful, it can stain clothing and grout.

Activated charcoal has many alternative uses. Use charcoal to brush your teeth. It changes the pH balance in your mouth and helps prevent cavities, bad breath and gum disease. Just be careful if you have crowns, caps or porcelain veneers as it will stain them. If you try this, be sure to rinse until your spit is clear.

To treat acne, mix one capsule of activated charcoal with two teaspoons aloe vera gel and put on your face. Let it dry, then rinse. It binds with environmental toxins and dirt that cause acne. It’s also good for spot treatments.

Last, you can also treat spider and snake bites with activated charcoal. Just mix coconut oil and charcoal and wrap it around the bite and change every few hours. It will extract the poison.

There seems to be¬†a lot of uses. So go get your charcoal on. That’s all I have for now!

XO,

Natalie

Sources: Dr. Josh Axe / Lauren Minchen MPH, RDN, CDN, Registered nutritionist & Dietician / Judy Fulop, Naturopathic Physician

How to get 6 pack abs

We always envy people with abs. It makes us want to get in shape. It makes us think to ourselves, why can’t I have abs like that? Well… you can!

natalieWilson-howtoget6packabs

[Photography by Jennifer Ona]

I always get compliments on my abs and friends or people at the gym ask me how I get them so I decided to do a post about it.

The first step in¬†obtaining defined abs is lowering your body fat percentage. You must lower that first before being able to see your abs poke through otherwise the below tips are pointless. Once you get in a regular work out routine and cut out fried foods, processed foods, fast food and lower your sugar/dairy intake you will be on the right track (Start looking at labels and how much sugar is inside, ideally 5% or less is low). Instead enjoy protein, veggies and carbs. When I say carbs I mean healthy carbs such as potatoes, sweet potatoes, avocados, whole fruits and whole grains (oats, brown rice and quinoa) not bad carbs such as white bread, fries and potato chips. You will definitely see results in 1-2 months depending on how much you stick to this until you notice a difference (then we can talk about cheat days).¬†If you drink a lot, that’s another story, lets address that first! There is TONS of sugar in alcohol. Cut that out first if you really want this or limit yourself until you see results.

Now for the exercise part. In the gym, here is my go to for when I head over to the mats for my floor exercises. This was recommended to me by the trainer of many professional models: David Hicks of LifestylecoachLA :

You definitely feel the burn on this one!! Just power through it. Try it 3-5 times a week in addition to your work out routine. It will get easier. You can do it! I may be a weirdo but I now enjoy the burn.

The other main work out I do in which I definitely found great results with is sprinting! When I go over to the park to jog or run around the track to warm up, I head over to the grassy area afterwards for sprinting, lunges and ab exercises. This is when my abs really started to show! I would do this several times a week. Sprinting increases your metabolism and  the calories continue to burn off long after your sprinting is done! It burns off the stomach fat and tones the muscles underneath. Make sure you engage your core while sprinting. It is the most explosive training you can do. You will build your glutes, quads and hamstrings and will also strengthen your core. You engage all of those muscles at the same time. 90% of athletes include sprint training in their workout routine. Try sprinting about 110 yards ten times 3-4 times per week.

IN SUMMARY:

  1. Lower your body fat percentage by exercising regularly.
  2. Lower your body fat percentage by eating healthy protein rich foods, lowering your sugar and dairy intake and by cutting out processed foods, fried foods, fast food (and cut off alcohol or at least limit your drinks to a couple drinks per week for now).
  3. Do the above 6 Minute 6 Pack ab routine 3-5 times a week.
  4. Sprint 10×110! ¬†110 yards 10 times 3-4 times a week.

Try these workouts and let me know what you think!

XO,

Natalie

 

Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic.. A yearly tradition

This past weekend I joined my friends for our yearly tradition of attending the Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic match at Will Rogers State Park in LA (actual location is the Pacific Palisades). This event happens in New York and LA but the one in New York happens earlier in the summer around June.

veuve clicquot lifesize frame

vc polo classic

veuve clicquot polo players

This is one of my most favorite events because everyone gets all dressed up in their fanciest attire and hats to attend. The men come in short suits, pant suits, ties and bow ties. I love watching the fashion from year to year and I always have my favorites each time. This year my fave would have to be fashion blogger Julie Sarinana of Sincerely Jules:

sincerely jules

[photo source: unknown]

While drinking champagne, mingling and waiting for the polo match to start, you can take pictures in the photo booth or other props they set up (do this early before long lines and while you still look good). There are a few fun games you can play too, a couple that come to mind are life size Jenga or checkers.

vc polo classic photobooth

There is general admission where tickets start at $75 or a fast pass option in order to avoid the lines for $135. If you want the intimate Rosé Garden experience on the other side of the field you can mingle with models, fashion bloggers and celebs such as Mandy Moore, Isla Fisher, Vanessa Hudgens and Rachel Zoe for $400 per person. It includes one bottle of rosé , a Wolfgang Puck lunchbox and access to purchase additional champagne. It is a little more fancy on that side. The shuttle buses are separate from general admission buses. How cute is this photo of Rachel Zoe and her son Kaius?

rachel zoe

[photo source: unknown]

vc polo classic champagne pour

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The champagne options are¬†Veuve Clicquot yellow label¬†or ros√© by the bottle or by the glass. They also have the super large “La Grande Dame” bottle.

Natalie Wilson veuve clicquot

This year they had something new they were offering, the Veuve Clicquot “Rich” which they served with thinly sliced cucumbers and the Veuve Clicquot Ros√© served with lime swirls inside. The cucumber one was so fresh and delish!

veuve clicquot rich

In the middle of the match a fun part is to walk out onto the field and stomp the divots (holes of grass and dirt torn up by horse hooves). You can walk up to the middle of the field and socialize with people on either side (but the people holding the rope in the middle prevents you from crossing. LOL)

mike vangorkom

Tips if you plan to join this fun event next year:

1. Buy early before prices go up, American Express actually offers pre-sale tickets in advance. Otherwise, you can go to the Veuve Clicquot website. Tickets sell out and they are not for purchase at the event.

2. If you bought GA, come early to claim your space. Grab a picnic table and your spot on the hill (below the tables) with a blanket before all of the space is gone (it fills up quickly).

veuve clicquot picnic

vc polo classic

3. Leave at 4pm or wait in a super long line of hundreds of intoxicated people pushing and shoving to get to a shuttle bus (if you have fast pass you can skip the line). Unfortunately taking the shuttle is the only way to leave and it takes you to the location it picks everyone up from (no ubers, drop offs or pick ups allowed at the park, there is no getting around this).

veuve clicquot shuttle line

4. Feel free to bring food and snacks and unsealed water bottles and if you don’t want to carry all of that, no worries you can eat at one of the many food trucks. We had lobster rolls and shrimp tacos ūüôā

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That’s it! Hope to see you all next year! Check out some of the #Clicquotstyle:

Natalie Wilson cliquotstyle

Veuve Clicquot couple style

Natalie Wilson and Priscilla Ebedseir

veuve clicquot suited up

vc polo classic style

vc polo classic couple envyvc polo match style

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veuve clicquot mens style

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rose all day


What I wore:

I wore ūüćä to match the theme ‚ėļÔłŹ

Dress: 4Si3nna

Bag: Forever21 or similar 1 | 2

Sandals: Steve madden tie up suede sandals

natalie wilson veuve clicquot

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Comfy Jeans

There are lots of jean brand faves I have at the moment. But I wanted to share these ones with you. I’ve been wearing this brand for quite some time.

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The stiletto Jean by Current Elliott. It is quite flattering on the figure and they are very comfortable. I like that they don’t go down all the way to the bottom of the ankle so you can have more emphasis on the shoe.

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Although this color isn’t available anymore they come in a wide range of colors¬†like this beautiful¬†mulberry¬†color and also this rich¬†army green¬†color for fall. Click on the desired color you want to see the price, as they vary. I’m also in love with the “light grey destroy¬†and the ‘army green destroy” I have also found a few other colors that are a little less costly¬†and some that are on sale (listed below)

Photography by Tommy Cuellar

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What I wore:

Jeans: Current Elliott,  Options in: white, white with holes, distressed jean, midday destroy, doubledutch

Top: similar

Shoes: My fave adidas

Sunglasses: Le Spec

XO,

Natali

10 amazing places to enjoy a cocktail & watch the sunset in Southern California

There are many beautiful places in Southern California to have a cocktail and watch the sunset. Here I have listed 10 for you to try when visiting any of these beach cities.

VENICE BEACH

My fave place to watch the sunset in Venice Beach is the¬†High Rooftop Lounge at Hotel Erwin, the only place with¬†360 degree views of Venice, Santa Monica and the ocean. You want to make a reservation for a table in advance and¬†before sunset. You can enjoy drinks and apps in a comfy booth but bring layers since it can get chilly at night (or ask for a¬†blanket). Order a few appetizers like the hummus, crab dip, guacamole & chips and lamb sliders <– these are WOW.. sooo good. If you don’t have a res, no worries, you can go to the bar, ask for a delicious moscow mule or spicy margarita, walk to the end of the roof and¬†drink your cocktail while gazing into the ocean. You can come casual or dressed up to this place.

Hotel Erwin High Rooftop Lounge Santa Monica

High Rooftop Lounge view Santa Monica

SANTA MONICA

If you plan to stroll over to Santa Monica, Onyx, the rooftop bar at the Shangri-La is another hotel with good drink and apps and you can see the ocean and Santa Monica pier from the top. The rooftop is pretty small. Although there are fire pits, the wind funnels through there closer to the evening so I definitely recommend a jacket. There is also a cool inside portion of the bar (no views there). This is also a beach vibe you can come casual or dressy. People tend to do both. I recommend the fish tacos, they are in a crispy shell, not soft (and spicy). DELISH.

 

View from Shangri La Santa Monica

Shangri La Santa Monica
Photo source: Joey N.

If you want a sunset view but want to be warm inside, I recommend The Huntley Hotel. They also have a beautiful view as it sits high up on the 18th floor. You’ll want to dress up to this place though, it’s more of an upscale vibe and not at all beachy. You can have dinner and enjoy the upscale decor or cocktails at the bar or in a separate sitting area with comfy seating. On the weekends they have a DJ and dancing starting Thursdays at 9pm.

Huntley Hotel Santa Monica
Huntley Hotel Bar Santa Monica

A spot closer to the ground that I enjoy is Loews hotel. Have a drink in comfy seats outside directly facing the ocean.

Loews Santa Monica

This place is beautiful and open and outside near the pool area. They also have an inside bar with a view. When my aunt visits from Northern California, she likes to stay here because the rooms are reasonable for this ocean front property. Prices are in the mid 300’s vs. the other beachfront hotels in Santa Monica that are $500+. Aside from the fact that it is a beautiful hotel.¬†

Loews Santa Monica

MALIBU

Blue Lounge at Moonshadows in Malibu has a super cool swanky vibe and it sits on the water. There are pretty lights lit up everywhere at night and this place has cool energy. You will want to come dressed up to this trendy place. On the weekends they feature International DJs and hand picked music Thursdays 7-midnight, Fridays and Saturdays 7pm-1am and Sundays 3-9pm. You can also come during the day to view the gorgeous views and eat some seafood.

Moonshadows Malibu

Moonshadows Malibu at night
Photo source: Julie D.

Nobu Malibu is another very popular place and people from all over the world come here while in Malibu. This place is very upscale. Enjoy some amazing Japanese food and nicely crafted drinks. They have tables and also comfy outside seating right in front of the ocean. Great for people watching. Reservations are encouraged, especially in the busy summer months as far in advance as possible. My faves on the menu are the lobster ceviche on limestone lettuce, oysters, tiradito, king crab tempura with amazu, yellowtail sashimi with jalepeno, shishito peppers, crispy okra with garlic ponzu, Kaya toast (if you come earlier for brunch.. it’s amaziiing!) and mini lobster, wagyu or tuna tacos. The cod is very very popular there but I am not a fan of cod fish.

Nobu Malibu
Nobu Malibu dining

Carbon Beach Club at Malibu Beach Inn is my most favorite beach side hotel in all of SoCal. This is a very small and intimate hotel and if you stay here, every room has an ocean view. The rooms are very expensive in the summer. I could just sit out on the balcony of my room all day here. They have a nice restaurant called Carbon Beach Club directly over the ocean so you are much closer to the ocean and sand. They have tasty food and the best ingredients which are locally sourced for their land and sea menus. They have an exceptional wine list from around the world. You can come any time of day for breakfast or lunch but for dinner and a drink you want to come not too late. This is more of a relaxed vibe, not a scene. This place closes at 10pm. I just had to post this on the list because it is my favorite place to get away. Look at the website for more amazing pictures.

Malibu Beach Inn

NEWPORT BEACH

Javier’s is my favorite place for dinner and drinks in Newport Beach. The restaurant¬†is upscale with impeccable decor. People dress to impress. If you are into cars you will see a Lamborghini, Bentley or even a Rolls-Royce parked in front of the restaurant. This is one of Newport’s most popular night spots. Make a reservation a week or 2 in advance to get a good time for dinner and ask to sit on the side patio and mention you want an ocean view. If not, ask to sit near the front of the restaurant so you are in the ambiance of it all or in the front enclosed patio with comfy seating. Come early to enjoy the bar and people watch. You can come with no res but you will wait a while.

Unlike other high end Mexican restaurants, the food and drinks here are authentic with very high quality ingredients and seafood. You can always tell a lot about a Mexican restaurant by just tasting their chips and salsa. It is very good here (latinos will approve) and spiiicy.¬†The drink menu is amazing with plenty of tequilas and margaritas to choose from. I love the tamarindo margarita. To eat, recommend the seafood enchiladas and the fajitas. They are the best I’ve had! The fajita meat is so tender and flavorful it is almost like having filet mignon! My mouth is watering just thinking about it. LOL

Javiers Newport Beach

Javiers Newport Beach

Javiers Newport Beach

Natalie Wilson & Friends at Javiers Newport Beach
Above: Friends & I sitting on the front patio.

LAGUNA BEACH

The view here tops all views.. it is AMAZING. The Montage Laguna Beach is one of the finest hotels in all of California. When you walk in you can see the pool and ocean down below and when you walk outside you can see the cliff and ocean view off in the distance. It looks as if you are in a different country (Europe). This place is so pretty. Enjoy a specialty cocktail and watch the sunset in the Lobby lounge which has inside and outside seating with panoramic views. If you would like to also come for dinner, eat at The Loft for creative American cuisine or Studio which is 5-star and more high end with modern fine French food with California Influences. It is in a bungalow style building at the edge of a 50 foot bluff over looking the ocean. They also have a great wine selection.

The chef also does tasting menus and private dinners at the Chef’s Table. Fresh herbs and vegetables are picked outside Studio’s doors in a private garden and are used throughout the restaurant. Both of these restaurants also have ocean views and both inside and outside seating to watch the sunset. If you come earlier in the day I suggest you visit Mosaic Bar & Grille for casual beach fare and views of the Pacific. The seating is first come, first serve. This includes seating by the pool (or you can reserve a cabana) up until 4:30pm.

Montage Laguna Beach

Montage Laguna Beach View

Montage Laguna Beach water

LA JOLLA 

Ocean Terrace¬†at George’s at the Cove restaurant is a must when in La Jolla! Park at the bottom in front of the ocean so you can walk along¬†there first and look down at the ocean and seals¬†then walk your way up to the restaurant. La Jolla is about 2 hours¬†south of the Santa Monica Beaches, close to San Diego. My boyfriend took me here and I’m very thankful he showed me this place. I came in the summer and walked up to the ocean terrace to enjoy a¬†beautiful view. There is a very nice vibe at the bar; you feel like your on vacation (maybe since a lot of people that go here are on vacation LOL). It is open and airy. Come for lunch or dinner for fine cuisine at a fair price. It is an upscale vibe but you can come here dressy or casual.

The food is scrumdidlyumptious and you MUST try the soup (George’s famous soup). The soup is so flavorful, one of the best if not the best I’ve had. My boyfriend had me try it even though I wasn’t in the mood for soup and once I did I was hooked. Others that have come here under my recommendation also love the soup. Just get it as an appetizer. All the food I’ve had here is good and the seafood is fresh so you can’t go wrong. I enjoyed my cocktails too. The bartenders and servers are very friendly.¬†If you want to eat at the actual restaurant (George’s) it is on a lower level and more of an upscale vibe and the views will not disappoint!

Terrace views:

George's at the Cove La Jolla

George's at the Cove Terrace

Restaurant view:

George's at the Cove view
This area is a little ritsy (as you will notice if you walk around the shops. This is totally off subject but check out my friends National Geographic fine art gallery while you are there in La Jolla. They have beautiful blown up art (national geographic images) from around the world. This is one of several of their locations and the concept is totally new.

It doesn’t get too cold in Southern California (average of 70 degrees year round) so you can pretty much visit these spots any time. That is one of the reasons why I don’t ever think I could move away. I used to live in between LA and San Diego (Mission Beach). Now I’m just in LA but I may be doing both again here soon. ūüôā I just love the beach life and in San Diego it is much more of a laid back friendlier vibe than LA beaches. Don’t get me wrong, I like the fancy places and dressing up too.. once in a while. ūüėČ

I hope you have enjoyed this post and that you get to visit some of these lovely places while visiting SoCal.

xo,

Natalie

 

Minimal Bathing suits in Venice Beach

There are so many bathing suit lines these days and we are seeing the “minimal” bathing suit becoming more of a trend. Minimal bikinis are¬†barely there thinner tops and bottoms with no padding or lining. Although I wasn’t sure at first how I’d feel in such a “barely there” bathing suit, I actually love it. They are more natural looking and sexier in my opinion. They show a lot more skin.

I had the pleasure of meeting one of the founders of this bathing suit line I’m wearing in Venice Beach. She was visiting from Canada and was very sweet. I opted for the black two piece. The suit is quite comfy and if you like, you can bring the sides higher up on your waist.

Do like those Brazilians do and show off those cheeks! LOL

Tommy Cuellar shot these photos in Venice Beach, a cool place near Santa Monica Beach, California if you’ve never been. There is lots of¬†funky street art, souvenirs and performances on the boardwalk. You can stroll over to Main St. shops and restaurants¬†or Abbot Kinney Blvd. for the same thing but more trendy.


Ciao for now!

Photography by Tommy Cuellar

What I wore:

Bathing suit: 437 Swimwear / IG

Desert vibes

This has to be the most beautiful shoot and location we have shot yet. In the (Mojave) desert. If you haven’t visited.. you must. Its beauty is indescribable and the sunsets, well see for yourself by scrolling down. We are¬†in Pioneer town¬†right near¬†Joshua Tree National Park. This look was shot on the way out of Boulder Gardens just after my last fitness shoot.



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The bathing suit I am wearing is L Space by Monica Wise and my sandals are L Space by Cocobelle. If you want your swimsuit to be comfy yet sexy and accentuate your curves, check out Monica Wise’s¬†line.
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Who doesn’t like skateboarding through the desert?

These sandals are also gorg, a little glam with the gold in front and black in back. The black and white kimono is a nice cover up for a bathing suit. You can also wear it on its own with a half top, bra top or tank along with matching shorts (not pictured in this photo).



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This one above is my favorite shot. The overall photo is so beautiful. Isn’t nature amazing? Gods work.

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Now this sunset..

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Unreal, no?? This photo was not brightened or edited.¬†I’m in love with the joshua trees.

For more amazing photos and to get an idea of the beauty here,¬†click here. You can pass through like I did, or you can camp here but the pictures don’t do this place justice. I saw beautiful places to rent there where you can be totally submerged in nature away from it all, nice place to disconnect and recharge. Take a look, these places are super cool.

Tommy Cuellar Photography


What I wore:

Bikini Top: L Space by Monica Wise / color: seaglass

Bikini Bottoms: L Space by Monica Wise / color: seaglass

Sandals: L Space by Cocobelle and on sale here also available in nude & gold

Kimono: L Space by Monica Wise / also here

Alternate Kimono/dress options: Talulah | Mikoh | Tiare

Fitness in Pioneer Town

I have been obsessed lately with fitness gear and working out a lot. From circuit training at the park with my boyfriend, to pilates, to yoga, to bootcamps, to lifting at the gym with my trainer friend Sirem, to bar class, to hiking, to you name it. I buy a lot of fitness clothes and love trying new brands and practically live in them. I recently visited Pioneer Town which wasn’t on the agenda but was on the way to Joshua Tree, our destination. ¬†Pioneer Town is in Yucca Valley which is in the Morongo Basin (East of the San Bernadino Mountains and north of Coachella Valley). It is located within the Mojave Desert and in the High Desert region of Southern California. It was a little over a 2 hour drive from Los Angeles. After we got off of the exit, it was a 4 mile scenic drive down Pioneer Town Rd. full of joshua trees, shrubs and the little mountains made of the largest rocks I’ve ever seen.


The town was a live-in Old West motion picture set built in the 1940’s and was a place for actors to live and film. When we arrived it was a ghost town and there was literally no one there.¬†It definitely felt like I was in another time period or in one of the¬†old western movies I grew up watching with my dad. It was an interesting experience. Walking down Main Street you will see a jail, bathhouse, an old bank, a pen with real live chickens inside (you can put a quarter in a machine to get corn kernels to feed them with), livery stables, a saloon and many other western places. It was pretty cool to see. So we decided, why not take some shots here?

Hello chickeeeen!

It was super windy and¬†not hot as I imagined (in fact it was freezing oddly enough, not warm like LA and definitely not 10 degrees warmer as I thought it would be. It¬†totally messed up my blow out, LOL). My hair was a mangled tangly mess but I was like well, it’s a fitness shoot so it will work.

I wore sporty black leggings and a work out bra top. I wear these as regular leggings a lot in addition to working out because they are super comfy. I believe mine are the low rise version. If you purchase these, make sure you wash on the delicate cycle and do not put them in the dryer, it is best to hang dry these (as I do with all my work out gear so they last longer).

My shoes I purchased from my favorite shoe store and I wish they had more. I am obsessed with bright sneaks and completely solid colored ones. These are mens shoes, believe it or not. They also had some bright yellow ones I wish I had bought but it looks like they are still available! Click the link I listed at the bottom of this post.

When you get a chance, you must visit Pioneer Town. I believe the whole set is open on weekends (and the stores / adjacent bar). Right next door¬†is a little Pioneer Town motel which looks super neat. Also within the lot is Pappy & Harriet’s¬†which is should also be on your list to visit. It’s a large BBQ restaurant & bar¬†that was really¬†packed once it opened at night (otherwise I wouldn’t have thought a single soul existed in this town) and it was such a fun place!!! Live music from locals (kind of like a mini concert) and oddly, they feature other singers from around the world and all types of music! When we were there, there was a rapper from China and singers from Sweden, kid singers, adults, you name it. Luckily we got a table right in front, facing the performers. It was an interesting mix of tourists, trendy hipsters and western / southern looking folks. I went the weekend after Coachella so I’m not sure if it is a busy time but they have amazing reviews on yelp and it definitely felt like a popular place.

Welp, that’s it for this post. I hope I have inspired you to work out and also to visit Pioneer Town with friends or your significant other. It will definitely be fun and like nothing you’ve experienced. I plan to go back with my boyfriend. Sadly, I won’t be working out for a while since I am recovering from a complex foot surgery I had a week ago, but luckily I still have some content to post. I will get back at it once I am on my feet.

Y’all have a good day and make sure y’all¬†come back now, ya hear?

Photography by Tommy Cuellar 

xx, Natalie

 

 


What I wore: 

VS Bra Top

VS Leggings: Low-Rise & High Rise

Shoes: Asics Tiger Gel Kayano Trainer

Sunnies: Ray-Ban