The model entrepreneur is an occurence we're seeing more and more of in this multi-hyphenate culture, but in my opinion, no one does it as authentically and seamlessly as Danielle Copperman. She launched her Quinoa based granola brand Qnola out of real life #ModelProblems and a demand for nutrition at Fashion Week, and I distinctly remember insta snaps of first-name-basis labelled pots being dished out backstage. Four years later, she's stocked worldwide including Selfridges, Harvey Nichols and Whole Foods, is on the menu at dreamy eateries such as Malibu Kitchen at The Ned, and has just released her first book Wellbeing. We chat all about growing up, which skin-love essentials she swears by (trust me her skin is DREAMY) and her upcoming luxury retreat in St Lucia.
(ON WHAT SHE DOES)
I am a full time model, nutritionist, holistic chef, entrepreneur (founder of quinoa based breakfast goods, Qnola) and first-time author of recently released book, Well Being. During my career as model, I have become more and more in tune with how our lifestyle choices could powerfully influence the way we look and, most importantly, feel. Trained in Strala yoga and holistic massage, I have a hands-on understanding of the physical, emotional and energetic body and mind, and much of my work is focussed around reducing stress, enhancing creativity, enhancing confidence and positivity, soothing digestive issues, increasing energy flow of the body and mind.
(ON HER MISSION)
My main intention is to help people reduce the feeling of being stuck or lost, reduce the side effects of modern stress and burnout and to enhance their potential for living a higher, fuller life, through natural food and simple ancient rituals.
(ON HER HEALTH JOURNEY)
I grew up seriously skinny and struggled to gain weight (looking back, what a nice struggle to have!?). I used to eat all the food and junk in the world because I wanted to be a little meatier like all of my friends. As a kid this didn’t effect me but as I grew up, I had really low energy, grey skin, and often irritations or rashes, especially in the Winter. I never once stopped and thought it could have been from what I was eating. Of course, stress from school work and puberty didn’t help.
It wasn’t until I left home and moved to London to model full time that I became more conscious of how I looked, and felt. On set for long hours, I would have such low energy and so, when I turned to fitness to keep in shape, I also became really intrigued by how food could help me on a deeper level than weight management and size. I did a lot of research initially then studied biology and nutrition, and when I cut out all processed foodstuffs, eating only natural, unrefined foods (and no dairy or sugar), I noticed virtually in one week I had more energy, my skin was brighter, and I felt happier and more comfortable – no bloating or inflammation, no headaches.
My skin has never been too bad, but learning about foods that contain skin boosting nutrients has been one of the most inspirational steps in my journey. Many people don’t realise that what we eat is not just a way to satisfy hunger; our food is absorbed into the body and delivered to where it is needed, included our skin cells, and whatever is going on internally is usually presented externally on our skin – either through rashes and blemishes, or cleanliness, softness and glowing complexion. I know what I’d rather!?
(ON HER NEW BOOK - WELL BEING)
The book is about well being in the modern world, and contains natural recipes and ancient rituals intended to ease the side effects of modern life. It focuses particularly on recipes and rituals to reduce stress, anxiety, depression, poor digestion and lethargy, and increase positivity, calmness and relaxation, energy levels, focus, concentration and general wellbeing, both inside and out. It contains over 200 recipes for food and natural beauty remedies, as well as over 50 rituals. Each section is broken down into familiar times of the day; Morntime, Daytime, In Between Time, Evening Time and Nighttime. The book is intended to serve at all times of the day. So whether you need a quick nutritious breakfast as you run out of the door in the morning, a quick meditation practice to take a breather from a stressful day, a functional pick me up snack for long, lagging afternoons at work, a healthful evening meal for one or for a crowd of friends or family, or a restorative bedtime drink to help slow down a busy mind and encourage sounder sleep, it's in there!
(ON HER INTENTIONS FOR THE READER)
My hope is that readers will be able to use the book anytime during their day and ultimately their lives. There are no specific rules or do's or don'ts, it is more a flexible account of what works for me, and the most important factors of wellbeing that you should be aware of when changing your habits for the better. Whilst most books focus on just one area (i.e. self help, fitness or healthy diet), Well Being explores and discusses the many ever-changing factors of our lives and how they influence the way we feel and function. I hope that readers will feel educated, inspired and empowered to adopt habits and new, simple tools that work for them, and feel confident to make wholesome choices in all areas of their being, and to retain control over their lives - which has been so lost in the modern age with the noise of media and advertising leading us to think we need other people and 'things' in order to feel good, and losing touch with our true essence, instinct and intuition.
(ON HER FOOD PHILOSOPHY)
The book contains a fuller picture of this but basically, eat only natural, unprocessed foods. Whole and fresh foods that grow naturally from the Earth, rather than products and what I’d call non-foods. This has changed a lot from when I was younger, as I used to crave sweets and artificial snacks, and ate all kinds of junk whenever my parents would let me. My philosophy changed when I became more educated. If you don’t know the power of food, and how your body uses or responds to what you’re putting into it, you aren’t aware of how much damage can be done or, on the other hand, how good you can feel. Its so inspiring, but you need to understand a bit of context in order to make really sustainable and authentic lifestyle changes.
(ON HER UPCOMING RETREAT)
Set in the St Lucia, this week is all about letting go and tuning in to your purpose. It is about positive thinking and reprogramming how we have come to be conditioned in the modern world. Get excited for adaptogenic food workshops (eating to aid digestion and reduce stress and fatigue), Wake Up Well energy workshops, Strala yoga, Sunrise walks, sunset yoga nidra and meditation, power and purpose workshops and private consultations based around the content of her debut book, Well Being.
(ON DEFINING A SUPER-HIGH VIBE LIFE)
Living life to the full. Thinking and vibrating positively in order to attract things of the same vibrations. Not holding grudges or cutting ties with anyone – not even exes. Holding on to this kind of bad energy is so toxic! Also, eating from the Earth fuels you with high vibe energy, so that is a non-negotiable for me. A super-high vibe life also means community to me; having friends around you and meeting new people constantly. Travelling too - to explore this amazing place in which we live, does so much for the heart, mind and soul.
(ON WHAT SHE'S MANIFESTING FOR 2018)
Such a variety of things. More positivity and more confidence in myself. Less comparison and the ability to let go of certain fears and hindrances. A few specifics in my modelling career and above all, travel. Lots of travelling, writing and some events and retreats along the way.
FOODS SHE CAN'T LIVE WITHOUT... Avocado, coconut oil, water, ginger, lemon, activated charcoal, spirulina, walnuts
SKIN-LOVE ESSENTIALS... HOLISTICA rose face spritz, Dr Haushcka rose day cream, ESPA fitness body oil, ESPA 24-hour replenishing cream, RMS make up, Liz Earle exfoliator and hot cloth cleanser, Glossier super serums, Galinée microbiome moisturiser, Liha idan oil, Weleda skin food, pink or epsom salt crystals, homemade coffee body scrub with essential oils, dry body brush, sisal body scrubber, jojoba oil, pure shea butter.
WELLNESS MUST-HAVES... yoga, meditation, regular exercise that you enjoy, walking whenever possible, getting out in nature and fresh air, saunas, steam rooms, ice cold showers, natural products in and around the home whenever possible (ive recently changed all of my clothes hangers to wooden ones, have natural linen bedding, etc), living plants around the house, holidays wherever possible!
ANY WORDS OF WELLNESS WISDOM... For dietary wellbeing: listen to widespread advice, but fine-tune them to suit you. Don’t take things too seriously; what works for someone else might not work for you. For mental wellbeing: don’t compare yourself to others. And speak to yourself as you would to a friend. Be kind to yourself, and change the conversations you have with yourself, like telling yourself you’re not good enough or you can’t do something. If your mind is acting and thinking well, everything else will follow.
MORNING ROUTINES... Lots of liquids, sometimes just water, sometimes hot water with ginger, lemon and turmeric or fresh herbs, sometimes an adaptogenic powder stirred through hot water. If I have time, I then spend 20 minutes meditation and a minimum or 10 minutes stretching or practising yoga and do-in.
SELF-CARE SUNDAY... Whenever possible, it consists of a visit to the sauce and steam room, and if not, then a long hot bath or shower at home. I follow this with all kinds of body oils, dry brushing, and general cleansing, and also spent time cleansing and refreshing my living space, clearing clutter etc etc.
WHERE CAN WE FIND OUT MORE?