Yoga style with Vanesa Lorenzo
Sun kissed and smiling is the easiest way to recognize Vanesa Lorenzo. Her face has graced the covers and pages of countless international publications from Vogue, ELLE, Harper's Bazaar, and Marie Claire, to GQ and Sports Illustrated Swimsuit, and she has worked with some of the most esteemed photographers in the fashion industry, including the legendary Helmut Newton.
Since graduating in Fashion Design from the European Institute of Design (IED), she has created a multifaceted career, currently combining modeling and design, with health and fitness writing. We spoke to Vanesa about her wellness blog, Yoga book, and plans for the future.
LM: You have had such an illustrious career as a model in the fashion industry. How did that come about and can you share with us some of your fondest memories?
VL: Since I was a kid, I felt comfortable in front of a camera, and I asked my parents to help me be in those TV commercials that I used to watch, and loved. At first, they hesitated, but then they saw that it was such a professional industry. One thing [led] to another, and I started from doing Barbie, milk and, ice-cream commercials to my first international fashion campaign (Pepe Jeans) when I was 18 [on my first day] in Paris. Paris was a difficult and not very welcoming city to be young, and on your own. Thank God it was close to Barcelona. At the beginning, I used to spend all my money on flights back home every weekend. At 20, I decided to try New York, and it was love at first sight. Loved the city since the beginning and that became my second home.
LM: Throughout the years, you have always been able to combine glamor with laid-back beauty. Tell us a bit about your style.
VL: I was always very [aware] that being a model was being a kind of a tool used to represent the idea for a marketing team. So I would always try to model without caring about how I looked but caring about the spirit and mood that I was asked to represent. I felt -and still feel- very comfortable with a [laid-back] style modeling. I think this is one of the reasons why I was so happy to work in the US market that appreciates this kind of style.
VL: I felt the desire to share. I wanted to have my window open to the world through which I could go deeper and tell my experiences about the healthy lifestyle in which I firmly believe, rather than only sharing a façade. A lifestyle is driven by curiosity. I share a lifestyle driven by curiosity, the search for wellness, aesthetics, health, harmony, balance… everything that makes me feel good.
LM: Has health and fitness always been important to you?
VL: It was New York [that] opened up a new world to me. I discovered yoga, organic food, healthy eating habits… such a contradiction as, in my mind, NY offered the opposite. The most important benefit is to carry a healthy body, as that’s our real home. It has been in crescendo since I was 20, although I’ve been brought up in a family with a healthy Mediterranean diet and being conscious of food has always been by my side. Now, being a mom, carrying on healthy habits in our every day is a priority, not only in diet but also to try to balance the stress, excessive use of technology, etc
It connects me with myself in a global way, learning what the needs of my body and mind are.
LM: You recently published a book on yoga. How did the project for the book come about?
VL: I discovered it in Jivamukti Center in Manhattan, more than fifteen years ago, during the time I lived there while working as a model. By then, this discipline was already well established in New York, and I was astonished by mature yogi bodies: fit, healthy, stretchy and with a great body posture. I first approached this practice determined to achieve a physical goal, strength, and definition, but as I deepened in the whole philosophy, I understood that yoga is much more than a physical practice, it’s a lifestyle.
Yoga connects me with myself in a global way, learning what the needs of my body and mind are. This learning expands beyond the mat, helping me to manage my emotions better, to use my breathing, to cultivate discipline, to be more benevolent with myself and consequently with others. It helps me feel stronger.
It got to the point that I wanted to share my experience and create the book that I would have liked to stumble across when I was starting out in yoga; a book with a kind, honest and straightforward approach to this fantastic philosophy.
LM: With a degree in Fashion Design from IED, do you see yourself designing within the health and fitness space?
VL: I would love to find a partner to make that desire come true.
LM: Your husband, Carles Puyol, was a professional soccer player for many years. Is sharing a passion for health and fitness something you have in common?
VL: We share the same philosophy regarding carrying a healthy life as a priority. While he was an active player, he added pilates practice throughout 19 years, so it wasn’t difficult for me to introduce him into yoga practice, although he’s not that much into it as I am.
LM: As a busy mom and career woman, do you have any secrets to share on how do you stay fit and healthy?
VL: I look out for balance, and that means keeping a healthy diet, positive thoughts and practicing gratitude, but I don’t regret a bit when I lose my discipline in my yoga practice or when I enjoy a nice cold beer or a serving of home French fries… Everything is part of enjoying life.
Interview by Linda Mateljan