It’d be easy to underestimate Steph Claire Smith. Yep, her Instagram is full of selfies and wish-we-had-that-tan bikini shots (she’s the face of Bondi Sands, after all). But she’s also smart, self-aware and savvy as hell. The proof: ambassadorships for adidas and Clinique, and her own venture Keep It Cleaner (KIC) with bestie and business partner Laura Henshaw.
We phoned her in London to talk about her whirlwind year, the art of self-acceptance and much more.
What’s your average day on a plate like?
Breakfast is usually an acai bowl, or buckwheat porridge with yoghurt, cacao nibs, some peanut butter and blueberries. For lunch, I’m a sucker for smashed avocado on gluten-free toast with goat’s cheese and chilli, spinach on the side and poached eggs. My go-to cafe is Short Straw in Melbourne – the smashed avo there is life! Peppermint tea helps me get through sweet cravings, then I generally have an apple with peanut butter, a green smoothie ora few rice cakes with something on top. I love cooking, so dinner will be anything that’s got a lot of veggies and protein – like chicken, steak, a stir-fry or zoodle pasta.
What energises you?
Exercising most days, and being mindful that I’m very lucky to do what I do. If I ever have one of those mornings where I don’t want to go to work, I laugh to myself because I’m like, “You love what you do, and you’re crazy to not want to get up!” Food-wise, I need quite a bit of protein. If I’m running low on energy, it’s probably because I haven’t had my eggs or whatever. I think that’s different for everyone – you’ve just got to listen to your body.
What’s your approach to exercise when you're not travelling?
It depends how much I’m working, but an awesome week would include six workouts. So, that’s four one-on-one boxing sessions with Will [Tomlinson] at Tribute Boxing & Fitness in Melbourne. Boxing’s addictive because not only do you feel amazing afterwards and it does amazing things to your body, but if you’ve got something to think about or you are a little bit angry about, it’s a way to get it out of your system. You feel your punches getting stronger and more accurate, too. I love pilates, whether it’s a reformer class or just on my own at home. It’s changed my body, because you switch on such small muscle groups doing it. Then also power walks and walking my dog – it’s like my own daily meditation.
How do you handle all the negativity on social media?
I’ve learnt you really can’t listen to comments like that. My partner Josh [Miller] keeps me grounded. He is also like, “Don’t give them any energy”. When the majority of the comments are positive and lovely, I can’t just focus on the negative ones. It’s taken me a long time, though. That’s why when younger girls ask about making it big on Instagram, one of the first things I talk about is being able to accept some negative feedback, because that comes with it.
Read more of our chat with Steph Claire Smith – including her struggles with body image and finding her soulmate – in this month's Women's Health, on sale Monday October 2.