Longer days and warmer weather mean summer is just around the corner and being Angelenos, we can’t wait! With over 3,000 miles of coastline, the Golden State just can’t help but be influenced by the waves. The beach days, the relaxed attitude and fashion with an “I didn’t try too hard” look all come together to epitomize the California surf culture. Even if you don’t live in California or there isn’t a beach in sight for days, you too can embrace your inner West Coaster. Getting the look and style is easy but a laid-back attitude is key. So relax, we’ll show you how and where to get your surf-style (if you aren’t a real surfer already) and show you how it can move from the beach to the red carpet effortlessly.
Rockers Who Surf
While we can’t say that we always understand everything that Anthony Keidis of the Red Hot Chili Peppers is singing about, one thing we know for sure is that he loves California. The state has been an inspiration for many RHCP songs (and at least one blog post). 😉 Both RHCP band members Anthony and Flea can be found surfing the California coastline when not touring the world, as well as Incubus lead singer Brandon Boyd and Foo Fighters lead guitarist Chris Shiffelt to name a few.
Supermodels Who (really do) Surf!
TIP: Where there are rock stars, there are almost always supermodels and vice versa…the ocean is no exception.
Let’s start from the top, wavy and messy is what beach hair is all about. Add in some facial scruff (men only please) and the look is almost complete. Without question, salt water gives even the thinnest hair a thicker, messier, surfer-sexy look.
While pro surfers do it effortlessly, the rest of us can follow suit with a little help from a few tried (by us) and trusted products. Long gone are the days of stiff, crunchy beach waves and with so many new and improved hair products on the market crispy hair is a thing of beach days past. We love Kevin Murphy’s eco-friendly hair products. Kevin uses organic products and makes his packaging recyclable and biodegradable whenever possible. He also makes some of our favorite hair products for both men and women to capture that après beach look.
For long-haired beach waves we love a combination of Kevin Murphy’s Hair Resort and Motion Lotion mixed together. It may require some tweaking to figure out which ratio of each works best for you but once you get it down, you will wonder what you ever did without it. Simply mix them together, distribute throughout the hair and scrunch from the bottom up and air dry. You may need to follow-up, once dry, with a wide barrel curling iron to polish off the look. To finish, Oribe Beach Wave and Shine Spray is amazing for the wavy look without the stiffness and with plenty of shine.
For the guys, unless you are like Kelly Slater (and really, there is only one) you are going to need a little boost in the hair department. Kevin Murphy Undressed and Easy Rider are great pastes with flexible hold. Just rub a small amount of paste between your palms, run through damp hair and voila. Surf Emulsion, by Bumble and Bumble, is a less stiff version of Surf Spray (their cult favorite) and works well for any length hair, making it ideal for both men and women,
That Golden Glow
We love the look of a healthy glow and a little tan (not a George Hamilton one) always makes us feel happy. While we do admit to getting a little of the real sun every now and then, we always proceed with caution and sun safety should be of the utmost importance to everyone, surfers included 😉
Fortunately, nowadays there are products out there that are nearly fool-proof in faking a believable, streak-free tan sans the orange skin. We have tested many self-tanners but always come back to use our favorite L’Oréal Sublime products. We love both the spray and the lotion and use a combination of both. The color is natural and we put it on after exfoliating in the shower before bed and wake up with a vacation-worthy, natural looking tan.
TIP: Being the huge fans of Tom Ford makeup that we are, it only makes sense to polish off the look with Tom Ford Bronzer. The compact is pricey at $90 but we have been using one for a year and still have half of it left, making it easier to justify that hefty price tag.
TIP: Once we have our base tans, we like to moisturize with Ligne St Barth Dry Coconut Oil. This unisex oil is virtually grease free, makes your body feel silky smooth and smells like a little slice of paradise. Bobbi Brown Beach Cologne is another favorite summer scent and will take you back to the classic smell of Coppertone.
TIP: Estee Lauder Passion Fruit lip gloss is a universally flattering color and looks pretty without looking too overdone both on the beach and off. If you are able to find it, you may want to pick up two as it is often out of stock.
TIP: While you may get some laughs, we think it’s best not to use Jeff Spicoli (of Fast Times at Ridgemont High fame) as your surf-style role model. As festive as it may seem, you should especially resist the urge to sport a Hawaiian shirt.
What to Wear
Bikinis are a staple in every beach girl’s wardrobe and the bikinis by Eres are our personal favorites. Although you may pay a little more, it is well worth the investment for the quality, fit and the beautiful styles and colors. The best part is that you can break up the sizes to ensure the perfect fit because with so little fabric there is really no way to hide an ill-fitting bikini. We toss on a sarong and a hat and we are beach ready in a flash.
TIP: We get our bikinis at the Eres store right here in Los Angeles. Peggy, the store manager really knows her bikinis. With one look at you, Peggy can find the perfect bikini for your body type and in the most flattering color. Eres has huge markdowns in July and Peggy always lets us know well in advance about the sale. Stop by and Peggy will put you on her list too.
For guys, board shorts are a necessity when hitting the beach. The good news is that the options are plentiful these days. Whether you want a classic surf trunk or a pair in a groovy pattern, there is something out there for everyone. Our advice, is to keep them on the longer side. Old standbys like Quicksilver and O’Neill make trunks in fun plaids and stripes. Newcomer and California-based surf company Katin makes fun tees and great classic surf trunks. We especially love their Golden State tee;)
We are big fans of feminine, bohemian-style clothing year round but we especially love it during the summer months. A dress that doubles as a bikini cover-up and then goes out on the town after is our kind of dress! Two of our favorite designers are Los Angeles based designer Natalie Martin and NYC based designer Ulla Johnson. Their clothes are polished, yet comfy and they carry an elegant, beach vibe wherever you take them. Both Ulla and Natalie use the finest materials in all of their lovely creations and you will feel special wearing all of them.
TIP: Ulla and Natalie both started their businesses out small. Now, their designs can be found around the globe but in very limited quantities both online and in stores such as Barneys New York. They have a very loyal following, meaning sizes and styles sell out very quickly. Our advice to you is if you see it, grab it!
Born, raised and based in Los Angeles, designer James Perse is synonymous with surf-style and his label is practically a California institution. James (a surfer himself) draws his inspiration and understated style from the beach. His minimalist clothes are extremely comfortable yet stylish and a guy can never go wrong wearing any of his designs. While he designs everything from clothing to furniture, it is his luxe tees in high quality cotton and muted colors that both men and women cannot get enough of. We love the James Perse store in the Malibu Lumber yard and with the swanky JP designed ping-pong table right in front and surf boards inside, we know you will love it too!
TIP: James Perse has some of the best sample sales known to man a few times a year. We scored tees and dresses for $15 at past sales. Get on their mailing list and you too will be notified of their upcoming sample sales. We have been to JP sample sales in both Los Angeles and New York City and have yet to be disappointed.
All that beach time can really do a number on our appetites. Luckily for all involved, Malibu’s Cafe Habana is right across the street from Malibu Surfrider Beach. You won’t even need to get in your car after all that surfing! Cafe Habana Malibu (owned by entrepreneur and Cindy Crawford’s husband Rande Gerber) is a spin-off restaurant of the Cafe Habanas in NYC and Brooklyn. All three locations were created and influenced by La Habana in downtown Mexico City and we feel like we are on vacation here despite being in our own backyard. Always keeping the healthy California lifestyle in mind, Cafe Habana uses all organic produce, hormone-free meats and all of their food is free of GMOs. We can’t think of any reasons not to eat here! The fish tacos are favorites with the locals and we love the Brown Rice Bowl and Spicy Shrimp Salad. While we remain true to our rosé, the Prickly Pear Mojito is also quite a crowd pleaser.
As if all the healthy food and location aren’t enough, every Wednesday night is Karaoke Night at Cafe Habana. We know first hand and can almost guarantee that fun times will be had. Although we admit that we have been microphone-shy and have never actually sung at Karaoke night, we do dance all night to every and any song that our fellow Cafe Habana patrons are singing. The DJ keeps things lively and will sing himself to get the night started. It’s always a mystery just who might bust out in song. Malibu locals Sean Penn, Nikki Sixx, Tommy Lee, Sting and John McEnroe have all been known to get up and karaoke with the rest of the locals. We think a little liquid confidence (a few Prickly Pear Mojitos) would be in order for us to follow up those acts!
TIP: If you have ever experienced a weekend Malibu beach day in the summer, you know bumper to bumper post-beach traffic on Pacific Coast Highway is inevitable. All the more reason to stop by for a late lunch or early dinner. Why wait in traffic when Cafe Habana is calling your name? Traffic will be much lighter after a few fish tacos but hold off on the rosé and the mojitos until Wednesday karaoke night. 😉
It makes perfect sense to us that the World Surf League headquarters is located right here in Santa Monica, California. The World Surf League keeps you up to the minute with all the latest surf contests around the world and everything else you need to know about professional surfers.
We’ll see you at the beach!!!
3939 Cross Creek Rd. Malibu, CA 90265
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