Amanda Chantal Bacon, Owner, Moon Juice - Into The Gloss

Amanda Chantal Bacon, Owner, Moon Juice

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"I grew up in downtown New York, but I’ve been in LA for seven years, since I came to work in food, first with chef Suzanne Goin. Suzanne’s mentor was Alice Waters, so I got an education in farm-to-table food, spending time with Alice, cooking for her and with her. It was incredible. After that I worked with the Los Angeles Times magazine as the assistant food and wine editor, which was a dream come true. I learned so many culinary secrets and stories, but when it came down to it, I just needed to get my hands back on food.

I'd always been juicing, especially when I was working in a kitchen where there’s so much wine, salt, and fat. It was definitely not cool to drink juice in the kitchen, so I did it secretly to keep me going. [Laughs] I made them myself, because at the time, there weren’t cold-pressed juice places. And I could make sure they were all organic, so I wasn’t taking in GMOs, pesticides, or toxins. Green juice changed my life. You can have one green juice a day and keep drinking caffeine, keep smoking cigarettes, keep eating hamburgers, but that one juice will feel so good in your body that eventually you’ll be like, ‘Mm, I kind of feel like two green juices a day.’ You’ll accidentally maybe stop drinking so much coffee, and maybe the cigarettes will go. It’s a snowball effect. When your body gets those live enzymes and minerals, it just turns something on, and then being healthy becomes effortless. I drink juice all day long, and I wanted to share how good it made me feel with other people.

I opened Moon Juice [in Venice, CA] in January of 2012 by God’s grace. I signed the lease on the place knowing it was crazy, but I did it anyway, with the hope that someone would drink juice with me. [Laughs] And then, four days later, I found out I was pregnant! I didn’t know what was going on! Everything was homespun, and I’d say that most of it involved sitting on the ground in my underwear, in tears, looking at my phone’s calculator. [Laughs] But I’m still there, day and night, because it’s a passion project. That’s a kind of success. I love it so much, which I think inspires good people to work with me, and they have great ideas and can carry out the dream with me, because at this point, it’s beyond me. We just opened up another shop in Silver Lake, and we have raw snacks coming out, too.

You're going to think it sounds silly, but I rely on green juice for beauty. It’s great for staying calm, staying sane, and for getting glowing skin. Among other things, green juice alkalizes your body and gets your intestines working properly... You get great skin because your liver and your guts are working properly, and you stay slim because all of your bodily functions are in line, and your hormones are balanced—your skin is a direct reflection of what's happening in your guts. When you clog them with dairy, for example, it can be terrible for your skin. But if you flush out the mucus and get rid of dairy, the whites of your eyes will sparkle more. And with juices, the neurotic, anxious chitter-chatter in your mind will start to mellow out. One juice a day and then watch what happens.

That’s usually enough for me—I don’t wear makeup, and honestly, don’t really know how to do my own makeup. I have friends who are musicians, models, and actresses, and they always have to do their makeup for things. So when I have something to go to that requires me to wear it, I have a lot of people within a five-mile radius that I can reach out to who will just do it for me.

My routine basically involves using natural products to take care of my skin. I wash my face with this really gentle Dead Sea Mineral Warehouse Soap for Combination Skin. It’s made with minerals from the Dead Sea and clay. And once or twice a week, I’ll use Earth Tu Face Face Wash, which smells like roses. I also travel with the Earth Tu Face, because traveling with bar soap is a pain in the ass. [Laughs] To exfoliate, I like the Dead Sea Warehouse Amazing Minerals Mud Mask. It only takes three minutes, so I’ll put that one while I’m getting into the shower. I love being in my shower—the water is oxygenated, re-mineralized, pH-balanced water, and all of the tiles were made by Heath Ceramics to make it feel really grounded, like you’re in earth. It's intense. [Laughs]

To moisturize my face, I found an Ayurvedic, organic face cream called EcoBotanica Damask Rose Creme. This woman sources everything from India, makes products in super small batches in a traditional, Ayurvedic way, and even chants mantras into them. When I don’t use that, I like to put raw organic coconut oil all over my face and body. Sometimes I’ll even put it in my hair before I get in the shower.

I don’t have anything special for my hair—I buy everything at the co-op. John Masters Evening Primrose Shampoo for Dry Hair is great and so is Home Health Oliva Conditioner, even though it has some of the worst and creepiest packaging in the world. When I take showers at a friend’s place and they have some salon product, I’m like, ‘Cool. This is my secret moment where I’ll throw some fancy stuff in my hair to get that super shiny, lustrous Pantene hair,’ and it doesn’t really work for me. My hair just gets dry the next day. I think something’s happened to it after using weirdo health store stuff for so many years. I have my own natural oils in my hair, and it's not used to being stripped down.

I usually wash my body with a loofah, but I use a dry brush when I’m juice cleansing. It feels weird, like it’s not doing anything, but it actually activates your lymphatic system. As you're brushing everything up toward your heart, it gives your body a jump-start for the detox.

When I have a muscle ache, I moisturize with Olive Gold Skin Care Lotion. The scent of it is just olive oil that's been oxygenated, which smells amazing, like you can smell the ions or something. I use Weleda deodorant, and the one non-natural thing I use is my fragrance. I wear a men’s cologne—Penhaligon’s Blenheim Bouquet—but it makes me feel so clean. It’s my signature scent.

Here’s my dirty little secret—living in Southern California, I’m in the sun everyday and I don’t wear sunscreen. I don’t know why I don’t wear it, It’s not like I’m unaware of the dangers; I’m a fanatic about my son wearing it. But it just feels so good to be in the sun. And it’s supposedly actually good to have fifteen minutes of sun for vitamin D. I don’t know. Hey, I hope by the time I’m 52 I’m surrounded by people that will love me and my weird wrinkly face.

That being said, since I've been drinking green juice, I haven’t been sick. I haven’t even had a need for over-the-counter pills. There was a time when I always had a headache, or a pain, or really bad cramps, and I needed an Advil. I've found if you just start cleaning up your act in a very true, honest way, the rest will follow. Every time I feel tired or worn out, I remind myself that this is my dream coming true, and it always puts a smile back on my face. I’m a total believer that if you have enough focus and clarity, you can have anything you want."

—as told to ITG

Amanda Chantal Bacon photographed by Emily Weiss in Venice, CA on July 5, 2013.

Let’s Talk About It! JOIN IN
  • Sara

    Beautiful and so inspiring. Such a lovely face and beautiful skin with no makeup! On top of that, Amanda is smart, too. Incredible!

  • Christie

    This is so awesome! I'm so into your hippie top shelfs. LOL! I stopped in Moon Juice in Venice to check out the organic juices and fell in love with turmeric juice which sounds weird but was incredibly tasty. Tried making my own version when I got home and failed. I like Amanda's approach to simple products and those Earth to Face products look good. I do think that sunscreen is the best antiaging product anyone can try and I would recommend that if Amanda hates sunscreen on her face she at least try a face oil. I used a heavy duty antioxidant face oil all summer that I feel helped my skin look amazing all season long and with all the good oils in it I feel it provides a natural spf factor too. Shea butter also provides natural spf so maybe give that a try Amanda as a moisturizer. Going bare in Cali is not an option for me.

    http://labellafigurabeauty.com/collections/all/products/daily-elements-defense-face-oil

    http://www.alaffia.com/store/pc/Rooibos-Shea-Butter-Antioxidant-Face-Cream-10p105.htm

  • Vicki

    I love this Top Shelf! I love reading about natural products and getting ideas of what to try. That being said, I also love makeup and sometimes get a little tired of reading about women who wash their face with organic dirt and go, I want to see some products! I nomiate Emily Eddington or Kristen Gehm from Youtube for Top Shelves! :)

    • Sarita

      Bwah! I love "...wome who wash their face with organic dirt and go..."! I hear you. I mean, I don't have a complicated routine, but really? Not even a bit of eyeliner or tinted lip stain?

      • Vicki

        That's what I'm sayin'! :)

    • Kimberly

      Kristen Gehm would be an awesome choice! She's totally different from any of the other women ITG has featured. I would love to see her on here.

      • Vicki

        @Kimberly and Jen, I agree with you both. I really enjoy her videos and her personality! I like that she's a real person with a job and a family and that she's not, like, 20, lol

    • Jen

      Yes, Kristen Gehm! Love her, and would love to see her featured.

    • Sabrina

      YESSSS for Emily! Wow, that would be a cool TS. She's gorgeous!

  • lucinda veen

    All right, this woman's glowing skin has convinced me: I'm going to make my first green juice. (I'm a total newbie at this, so if anyone can point me toward a good recipe, I'd be very grateful!)

    • Cat

      Here is a pretty standard one I put together a few times a week, I think it works well for newbies because it really doesn't taste strange at all!
      - a big (I do huge) handfull of spinach
      -a tiny piece of banana (about1/6 or maybe less of a banana, does a great job at not making it taste like salad :)
      -a cup of mixed frozen berries
      -a cup of unsweetened vanilla almond milk
      -1/2 to 1 teaspoon of chia seeds
      -1/2 to 1 teaspoon of ground flax seeds
      -2 ice cubes
      Optional: a few drops of Stevia for sweetness. Sometimes I also add a tiny bit of peanut/almond butter, gives a nice nutty flavour.

      • lucinda veen

        Thanks so much for this!

  • Sarita

    Honestly, I'm always curious about juicing. It just seems...I don't know. The skin of these fruits and vegetables are ripped off in juicing, leaving just the pulp. The skin provides need fiber so why discard it? Plus, what you're left with is juice that can spike blood sugar levels (in the case of juicing primarily with fruits). Also, why eliminate chewing? ;)

  • Loveclassy

    Was so inspiring for me, cheerz!
    Blog: loveclassy.com

  • http://www.barksandbrew.blogspot.com/ kaleiv

    I'm fascinated with Amanda and can't wait to try the juices and foods in her shops! I'm not sure I agree with not wearing sunscreen, but I love her simple, clean, elegant style that shines (without makeup!)

  • AltE

    I love this hippie-dippie approach. It wouldn't work for me, as I'm allergic to olive oil but I wish I could be this zen about beauty. Her house is AMAZing.

  • hollygoeslightly22

    Coconut oil is magic. It's like $15 or less, lasts forever, and has endless possibilities.
    May we have a few juice recipes? I would be interested in her green juice since it sounds like it has many benefits.

  • http://thefatandtheskinny.tumblr.com Maya

    I love this!

  • Chantel

    Awesome article.

  • Androbel

    Love this!!

    Beautiful face, I want to do juicing!

    XO,

    Belen

    New post on my blog: http://www.androbelinsider.blogspot.com

  • Nicole B.

    From what I understand, juicing is beneficial because it allows your body to process the live enzymes and nutrients from juice without making your digestive system do much hard work. I always alternate between green juices and green smoothies because they each give me something different :) here's a quick infographic that explains the difference between the two: http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-10183/juicing-vs-blending-infographic.html

    • Sarita

      Thanks for the infographic! I looked at it, and I wonder about the last item under juicing that says that juicing allows you to pack more veggies. Are people using a lot of veggies, though, or are they using more fruits to sweeten up the juice? I can't know the answer to that, and I don't expect you to, either. :) But as I said in my first post, I do wonder about that.

      I wanted to try juicing last year. Then this year I wanted to try smoothies, but I feel like I'd be the person to put in more fruits to make it sweet. I love vegetables (I really do); I made ratatouille last week that I had for several days in a row, but there's no way that I'd ever convert that into a juice or smoothie. I don't think I could drink down eggplant, tomatoes, bell peppers, and zucchinis.

  • Archie

    While I do agree with all natural skincare and eating healthily, lines like "clog your pores with dairy" and saying things like drinking a juice is a cure-all... it's borderline ridiculous. Here, lady with breast cancer, drink this juice, you'll be fine.

    There's a line with healthy living and being over the top. It's okay to have a chocolate bar here and there. It's alright to have a cheeseburger if it's in moderation. Life is short, whether you drink green juice or not, so have a little fun now and then.

    • Tunie

      It's not really nonsense - eliminate all dairy for two weeks and your skin will show an immediate difference for the better. Add raw greens to that and you *will* glow. Try it and see.

  • Aubrey Green

    I have hypothyroidism as well, my doctor never mentioned this to me, do you avoid green juice altogether then, or do you still eat/drink healthy things while taking your medicine? Are you taking levothyroxine? Thanks for any information.

    • therealblonde

      Hi, here's a link with some very brief info about food and supplements (but then you know what to google for if you want extra info). I love spinach and kale, and it's okay to eat them, and other foods (almond milk, etc) on the list, but in moderation - about twice a week. So no daily green juices for me! The thing I really do avoid is soy. If you want to eat/drink it, make sure to limit it as much as possible, and to take it at least 4 hours after your meds (I would make smoothies in the morning with soy milk, and then have a latte with soy milk later in the day, and my TSH levels got higher and higher. As soon as I heard about the bad effects of soy, I stopped taking it, and within 2 months, my levels were back to normal.) There are still plenty of other good foods to enjoy (like berries and other antioxidants) http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/condition/hypothyroidism

  • Fleur

    A beautiful lady, and very inspiring post health-wise - although being that she is such a health fanatic, it was surprising to read that the only consequence of going sans sunscreen she mentioned was getting a wrinkly face at 52. Sadly, I don't think green juices offer protection from melanomas, but very interesting to read about all the other benefits :)

    • Bella

      They don't provide protection against lung cancer either, so the statement about cigarettes is very silly to say the least.

  • Cay

    Thank you, I completely agree. You absolutely, positively need to take care of yourself and make sure that your body gets good food and nutrients. The positive versus negative effects for human consumption of dairy are definitely up for debate. But there is a fine line between being healthy and going around the bend and being unhealthily obsessed with being healthy. Juicers, in my experience, tend to be the latter. Call me a science nerd, but until there is cold, hard fact behind the positive effects of juicing (and there really isn't, right now), I'm just not buying it.

    Also, the idea that green juice could cure a cigarette problem makes me think she's never come face to face with actual addiction.

  • fakefighter

    Good god, bless her pseudoscientific heart.

  • beeswaxnoneofyour

    I don't think that's what she was saying, I think she was more agreeing with me saying that that particular attitude exists (I keep pointing to The Chalkboard site - while they do have some good common sense eating advice, they also have people basically swearing cancer cures - I think it was someone who ran an alkaline diet camp/retreat or something, and people like the woman who wrote Skinny B*tch saying it's not about weight but then does a 3 day juice detox and starves herself) out there, and I personally see it more and more (and in comments where some people are like, if you eat one piece of pie, you don't respect your body at all - which makes me sad that some people are so militant and judgmental (although I get that on the internet, people vent more than they would in real life). And to add perspective, I do green smoothies as a breakfast supplement (I don't skip or replace meals with them and don't believe in detoxing) just because I think you're getting rid of tons of good stuff if you juice (fiber!).

  • Kate

    great and inspiring!! of course i'm repeating that after others, but i wanna thank from myself. Juices -> choices -> dreams that become lifestyle + passion with great design and pics. Pitty i'm soooo far away to try juices by myself.

  • Britt

    love her! great interview.. she looks incredible.

  • denisa7

    She says she's been working as a cook for many years at posh restaurant so I guess she is not just another lady who leaves off her husband's money. I enjoy that ITG features people with different tastes and points of view because we, the readers, are also quite diverse.

  • janet

    It looks like it might be a waterbed covered in sheepskin.

  • Tary

    She is gorgeous and so is her house! But I really don't understand: what is JUICING after all? Does it just means "drink a glass of juice"? Or is it a whole new thing that I'm not getting, like, drinking juice instead of eating lunch, etc?

    I never really get the whole "juicing lifestyle". I mean, I'm brazilian, I drink natural juices often and think they are great, but I eat, just normal food. Like someone pointed out: why eliminate chewing? And when did our bodies (and guts) became so sensitive to food? I get that greens are good for you, they are! But why not EAT broccoli, kale and evertyhing else? They have the fibers and everything... Isnt that better? Why is "juicing" better? (This word is SO weird, can't get used to it...)

    xoxo

    (I'm not being ironic, I really have all these doubts)

    • EMR

      I 100% agree with you. I have a friend who is always raving about juicing, but I have serious concerns about the lack of fiber. You aren't going to stay full, but are usually ingesting the more calories and sugars to make the juice palatable. I'll take a big green salad over a green juice any day!

    • Janet Lee

      I laughed at the part where you couldn't get used to the word 'juicing'. You're right about eating the veggies, not just drinking it. You do end up eating a lot more when you make them into juices. If you squeezed oranges yourself, you would need about 3 oranges to fill up a regular-sized glass, but it's not often that you would sit down and eat three oranges in a row.

  • Cat

    Sorry, you are right! My apologies ladies and gents.
    On the positive side... "my" recipe has tons of fiber!
    To paraphrase some commenters above: lower your juice's glycemic index yo!

  • Cat

    My theory is that it's a sandbox. I know it's probably not, but now I want a sandbox in my apartment.

  • Nicole

    andddd she forgot to mention the fact that by the time she opened moon juice the juice craze in LA had already hit full blown madness. there were already several pressed juiceries, beverly hills juice, one life market and a dozen other places around venice and santa monica. cafe gratitude was opened across the street as well so i don't think she had to worry about finding someone to drink juice with!

  • Nina

    Ha ha ha, my thoughts exactly! And OMG she looks stunning, what a glow.

  • V

    ... But can we talk about that gauzy gauzy white nightgown, please?

  • Katherine

    It is a anfibio couch :)

    • Maggi

      Thank you!! Now I can obsess about it properly :)

  • Sara

    All of this is bogus, as someone who has a degree in this stuff. "Juicing" is great, I love buying a great juice every once in a while, but a juicer is crazy expensive and you waste a lot of nutrients (like fiber, hello!) when you just extract the juice and dump everything else. The smoothie Cat outlined is a great thing for anyone to try! I use a Nutribullet (made by MagicBullet) and make something very similar. It's fast, easy, and super healthy - so just what everyone needs!

  • Kristy

    It all sounds good, I mean drink your green juice and dry brush away, massage is always a good thing to improve circulation. But it makes me wary when people spout a bunch of hoopla that, while some parts may be true, but explain it in a scientifically inaccurate manner because when they say healthy they just mean SKINNY! YOU'LL LOOK SKINNY!

  • Valerie

    Dream Top Shelves: Jaime King, Kate Upton and Lana Del Rey. Would absolutely love to see any one of them. Love the site.

  • lorraine

    this. house. is. amazing.

  • Malimalu

    I always thought John Masters Organics was super fancy...

  • weewilly517

    Wow, well said...i've incorporated cold pressed green juice into my diet for months now; I have chronic Lyme Disease and have been sick for 15 years. And I've never been sicker. Go figure.

  • Liz

    I'm in love with her bedroom carpet!

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