Meet Los Angeles based model, travel addict, and social media superstar Helen Owen our #FrankiesGirl of the month! She’s recently graduated design school and taken to life as a digital nomad. She’s been taking spontaneous trips adventuring around the world with boyfriend, Zack Kalter, famously known for his appearances in The Bachelorette and The Bachelor in Paradise, and is now preparing to jet-set to Miami to catch the Frankies Bikini Swim Week Fashion show! Get to know Helen and read our exclusive interview below.
Click on the photos to shop her looks!
Describe yourself in 3 words:
Inspired, Thoughtful, Engaged (PS this was the hardest question of the entire interview for me to answer!! Haha)
Favorite Frankies Swimsuit?
My favorite Frankies set is the Marley Top/Bottom in Mango because you are guaranteed to look FIRE from behind - plus the color pops amazingly well on tanned skin
What's in your beach bag?
I cannot venture to the beach without a ginormous towel to sprawl out on with space for my bag and other belongings, some type of snack preferably a chipotle bowl, and chapstick is non-negotiable.
Favorite beach activity?
If I’m at the beach I’m either being a vegetable on my kindle / phone / listening to music/a podcast OR I’m with a group of friends playing volleyball / BBQing
How did you get into being a professional influencer/socialite?
It wasn’t something that happened overnight but it also kind of crept up on me in a way. I was blogging in high school which transitioned into instagramming in college and from there the platforms that I had built up overtime had attracted some sort of following. In college I began putting more effort into my content and began working with brands both on modeling gigs and on social media content. The rest is history!
Walk us through a typical day in the life of Helen Owen?
Any given day is typically pretty different, especially if I’m traveling. Our latest trend seems to be last minute travel excursions that are dangerously spontaneous but always turn out to be the most exciting. (I.e. booking one-way flights to Thailand 2 days in advance with only a few nights booked, etc. etc.) When I’m in-between travels I’m back and forth from Hollywood to Santa Monica and try to keep each day different but with a few things in common, namely some type of fitness related activity and some dedicated time for emailing, phone-calls, meetings and all the necessary work related boring stuff.
We love your natural look. What is your beauty routine?
Thank you! I’ve recently devoted a lot more time and effort to keeping my skin clear and taken care of, and I notice that my makeup routine becomes a lot more simple as an afterthought to my skin care. I try to keep makeup as minimal as possible and use products that aren’t pore clogging
When you're not in a bikini what is your go-to outfit?
If I’m not in a bikini, I’m probably in some type of activewear. If I’m not in activewear I’m in a tee-shirt and denim cutoffs.
You're quite the globetrotter, what has been your favorite destination?
My favorite destination to date is probably Mykonos, Greece. I’ve been twice, and it is pure magic. The Maldives comes in close second.
What is your dream destination?
This question should be simple but honestly I don’t have one single place I am dying to see more than any other. There are certain places I have seen photos of on social media that look breathtaking, i.e. The Provence of Salerno coast of Italy, Turkey, Japan - but my real dream is to visit as many amazing places as I can and see them for myself.
What is your secret for staying fit while traveling?
Zack helps keep me in check a lot with this one (I don’t think I would have the willpower to do it alone!) We try and stay active by doing little exercises we can do anywhere we are if we aren’t already walking / swimming / hiking a lot. On top of that we try our hardest to make clean food choices, with a few treats to stay sane. Italy could be a tricky one, but so far with where we’ve traveled we’ve been able to find a balance of tasting the cultural specialties and also keeping our diet as close as possible to what we try to eat daily: clean proteins, veggies, and slow acting carbs!
It must be amazing sharing your travel adventures with boyfriend Zack Kalter. What is it like traveling to such amazing destinations with your beau and how often do you get to travel together?
It’s been a dream, and it all happened so spontaneously! We met in Cabo for the first time last year both filming the same commercial, and I think that set the stage for the travel bug in both of us that followed. Since then Zack and I have been to a handful of places all in under a year such as Greece, Hawaii, Bali, Costa Rica, Thailand, and the Maldives! It’s not so much that we are taking trips and vacations every now and then to get away for a while, it’s that we are returning home every now and then to take a breather ;)
You have the most amazing Instagram photos, what's your secret to taking the perfect shot?
There’s definitley a happy medium between creating great content (important) but also having genuine moments and sharing your authentic story.
I like to work with a handful of photographers who are good friends, but a lot of my feed while traveling is comprised of iPhone shots, usually taken by Zack. We laugh at the instagram husband joke because it’s definitely relatable, but if that’s the case I am just as much of an “instagram wife” ;)
I will say though - when you are focusing too much on getting epic shots you can sometimes remove yourself from the moment too much and your beautiful photos will be more contradictions than real memories. Find a balance that lets you experience the moments you are sharing (something I am working on at all times and I think everyone wrapped up in social media should be!)
Being a pro traveler, do you have any travel tips?
Jet lag is a tricky one. I usually try to calculate the time difference and determine whether or not it is in my best interest to sleep on the plane, or to stay awake and sleep as soon as we land. This all depends on your flight time and where you are going. I’ve had really good luck with long haul red-eye flights - sleeping the entire time has led to less aggressive jet lag in my experience! Also: ALWAYS fly with makeup wipes / body wipes and dry shampoo. These items alone have made the difference in me landing feeling like a homeless person versus someone with decent hygiene.
What did you go to school for and how has it helped you in your current role?
I went to UCLA and studied Design Media Arts, and graduated with that major last year. It’s had a staggering effect on what I do everyday - I’ve been able to meet so many amazing contacts through social worlds and I’ve had the opportunity to delve into design projects that aligned well with my social media endeavors. I honestly didn’t think they would have supported each other so well, but having a sense for design and knowledge in so many of the design tools and programs that go into the visuals so many people consume everyday on social media is a great skill set to have a handle on.
What song do you have on repeat right now?
Kanye West - “Fade” has been getting me pumped this week!
What’s next for you?
Miami Swim Week is on our immediate horizon, and we have one way tickets to Europe booked right after that :)
Keep up with Helen!
Photos: Clint Padilla