Melanie Elkin

Courtesy Photo

Melanie Elkin

Interview with Melanie Elkin of Occupy Beauty

Yoga’licious Founder Helps Women Find Self-Love and Express Themselves

On the first Saturday of June, nearly 60 women of all ages came together for the second annual Occupy Beauty event at Pacifica Graduate Institute, where they embarked on day of community, playful exploration, and yoga. (See here for a report.) The event was designed by Melanie Elkin, founder of Yoga’licious (, who helps women discover their own unique beauty by giving them the tools to practice self-love in a world that often encourages the opposite. “Occupy Beauty is a model for the way women can come together and be in such sweet and delicious support of each other,” explained Elkin, who offered these thoughts during and after the event.

What beauty means to her: Beauty to me is a feeling, and living from my essential self and expressing her to the world and to myself. It’s also lovability and knowing that all parts of me are lovable.

What to change about culture’s perception of beauty: Less focus on beauty being only one physical way of looking. If I could put it on a billboard, it would read, “It’s beautiful to have feelings and express yourself.”

One piece of beauty advice: When it comes to your own beauty and care for yourself, it doesn’t have to look a certain way. It can be as simple as enhancing what you’re already doing. It can be the way you rub soap on your body in the shower.

On her teenage fight with anorexia: I thought if I looked the part, I would be beautiful. I got a lot of attention for my beauty in a physical way, but I wasn’t happy. I hid who I was; I was afraid to be seen.

On being a woman today: In this day and age, there’s an idea that you have to be a good daughter, sister, mother, partner, friend — and we often put ourselves last.

To submit a comment on this article, email or visit our Facebook page. To submit information to a reporter, email

Be succinct, constructive, and relevant to the story. Leaving a comment means you agree to our Discussion Guidelines. We like civilized discourse. We don't like spam, lying, profanity, harassment or personal attacks.

comments powered by Disqus
event calendar sponsored by:

Animal-Free Circus Vargas in Town

Dreaming of Pirates! is this year's theme.

Morning Train Runs On Time and Roomy

Twelve weeks after start of commuter service, train is less than half full.

Alleged Butane Honey Oil Dealer Arrested

Dylan Sulit-Swalley was paroled from Pelican Bay State Prison last year.

Crying Children Audibly Illustrate Border Crisis

[Update] AP reporters learn infants are among the incarcerated. Inhumane separation of families protested by everyone from ...

Two Injured in Alleged DUI Collision

Pedestrians, age 91 and 50, were walking near Linden Avenue at Ninth Street in Carpinteria.