Diary of a Ralph Lauren Model
Chances are, you’ve seen Chris Collins. The veteran model has been a regular in Ralph Lauren advertisements for more than seventeen years. So when it comes to staying camera-ready, you can consider him nothing short of a master. The former college basketball player adheres to a vegan diet and is a hot yoga devotee, and a tastemaker, too, currently curating the Chris Collins Report, an online lifestyle magazine covering food, health, travel and more. And lest you think his beauty goes but skin deep, his daily routine usually includes a hefty dose of philanthropy (and hot water with lemon — he’ll explain). Here, Collins gives us the play-by-play of three picture-perfect days-in-the-life.
Monday 4:30 am "Half-awake, I make myself hot water and lemon, like I do every morning, before I head to the 6 am Hot Power Yoga at Pure Yoga on the Upper West Side. No time to eat, but I should be fine.”
8:00 am "Had a great class this morning. I shave and shower, and head to the studio for the Polo.com spring wear shoot. I stop at Equinox’s cafe for an acai and berry smoothie with soy milk.”
1:30 pm "When I shoot with Polo.com, we always order lunch from Blossom Du Jour, a delicious vegan spot in Chelsea. I have apple-carrot-ginger juice, and avocado and tempeh on a gluten-free wrap.”
3:15 pm "It’s a wrap! I head to a 4 pm roundtable forum held by Sustania and Fashion 4 Development to discuss ways to educate fashion industry leaders in sustainability.”
6:00 pm "Great discussions at the roundtable tonight. Now time to head downtown to the Soho House to hear a Q&A discussion about the philanthropic work of Ethiopian supermodel Liya Kebede, who creates awareness of maternal and child health care in her country. We philanthropic models need to stick together.”
9:00 pm "I sit at the bar at the Soho House and order a vegan bean farmer’s soup, some Brussels sprouts, sweet potato fries and a glass of red wine. That hit the spot. Early night to bed."
Tuesday 8:00 am "I fire up the kettle for my ritualistic hot water with lemon. I have time to make my own smoothie, so I mix strawberry, blueberry, banana, spinach, flax, agave and almond milk with my Vitamix blender. I make my own almond milk, by the way — just dates, almonds and water. Easy!”
12:30 pm "Blossom for lunch again today. I get a soy burger with French fries. Hey, vegans can eat unhealthy, too."
2:00 pm "Finished shooting early today — I guess I brought the thunder, ha! I call my doctor and he can fit me in for my yearly check-up and blood work. Got to make sure all the parts are working to keep the machine going."
3:30 pm "I stop at home and grab my gear for the 4:30 pm Hot Power Yoga at Pure Yoga. Looking forward to sweating."
6:00 pm "I head over to La Bottega at the Maritime Hotel to meet the crew from Polo for a glass of wine and some bites. After 17 years of shooting for Polo, everyone there feels like family.”
9:00 pm "Going to head over to Provocateur for the Major Model Management fashion week party. This has been my agency in New York for about eight years now, so it’s great to get together with the agents outside of work. And hanging out in a lounge full of some of the most beautiful female models in the world isn’t too bad either."
Midnight "Bedtime. Going to sleep like baby."
Wednesday 8:00 am "I guess I should explain why I have hot lemon water every morning. It helps with digestion in the morning, it helps break up some of the mucous that your body builds overnight when you’re sleeping and it helps in balancing your body’s PH level, which aids in weight loss. I call it the magic potion. To hold me over until lunch, I have Laughing Giraffe organic raw vegan granola with my homemade almond milk.”
12:30 pm "I see a raw food truck outside the building of the studio, so I’m going to give Blossom a break and try this today. It ends up being very good — a juice press, and great organic salads."
3:30 pm "Done for the day and for this shoot. It’s been a great three days of work. I head directly to Pure for the 4:30 Hot Power Yoga."
6:00 pm "Wow — today was a tough class. After a long three days, my body feels a little fatigued. I go to Whole Foods and pick up some groceries for dinner. I’m in the mood for some cheese. Even though I am vegan I do allow myself to eat to cheese once in a while, but only raw goat cheese, which is easier to digest.”
8:30 pm "I’m relaxing on the couch, after eating a raw goat cheese, avocado, and tomato salad, and watching a little NBA basketball — the Miami Heat are playing Oklahoma City Thunder. I played college basketball at the University of Maine, and I’m still a fanatic. I have some green tea before bedtime. I’m excited for what tomorrow will bring. I’m sure nothing short of exciting."