Meet a quartet of entrepreneurial LA women—two slinging high-level activewear and the others, cult-quality fitness crazes—who are causing celebs to forget all about Lululemon and SoulCycle.
KATIE WARNER JOHNSON CARBON38 CO-FOUNDER
Celeb fans: Gwyneth Paltrow, Jessica Alba, Emmy Rossum Recent news: Launched Carbon38-branded monthly collections—“because there is so much to say”—alongside its boutique of 85 percent female-founded activewear labels. Credentials: “A little ballet, a lot of grit and a healthy dose of cockeyed optimism.” Mission in life: “To eat Oreos and not gain an ounce.” What’s coming next? “Ruffles! So many ruffles!” Carbon38 women feel... ”beautiful, strong, capable.” How do you sweat it out? “When I am being purposeful, it’s a combo of Barry’s Bootcamp, Tracy Anderson, Kayla Itsines, Pilates Platinum, Speir Pilates, Gloveworx, CorePower, modelFIT. And when I am lazy, the red sauna at Pause!” Healthy craving: “Kelly LeVeque’s freezer fudge. I carry vats of the stuff around with me in all sorts of refrigerated apparatus.” Best lesson learned: “There’s no such thing as luck. Those stars aligned because you put them there.”
Celeb fans: Meghan Markle, Kendall Jenner, 50 Cent Recent news: Opened second LA location in Silver Lake, published We Flow Hard book and launched Y7 merchandise. Points of differentiation: “There are no mirrors; the studio is candlelit; we time our breath to the beat of the music and use infrared heating for intense detox.” Fave body part to show off: “Chest and collarbone—not my boobs, but the general chest area.” Go-to yoga pose: “Half moon.” Top track for getting into a flow: “‘Beware,’ by Big Sean.” Best tush in Tinseltown: “Blake Lively.” Post Y7 feel? “Empowered and light—like you’ve let something go.” Source of fitspo: “I love transformation photos.” Pinch-me moment: “Signing the lease for our 10th location!” Dream client: “Kevin Hart.” Healthy craving: “Any of the pizzas at Crossroads.” 2018 encouragement: “It’s really great to have acknowledgment from society in general that you don’t have to be a 40-year-old man with a Harvard business degree to be successful.”
Celeb fans: Busy Philipps, Emmy Rossum, Alia Shawkat, Lindsay Price Recent news: Opening her flagship studio in Hollywood, and expanding subscription-based On Demand and streaming classes. Credentials: “Classically trained dancer, trained yogi.” Why mini trampolines? “Rebounders have incredible benefits; plus, it’s literally impossible not to smile when you’re jumping on one.” Best lesson: “Detatch from anyone or anything that doesn’t serve you.” LEKfit’s M.O. in three words: “Enjoy. Your. Sweat.” Fave body part to show off: “My derriere.” Top track for getting sweaty: “Super obsessed with anything by Gallant.” Best arms in Hollywood? “Busy Philipps.” Your activewear signature: “Ultracor or Varley, all black. Love a bodysuit.” Never be caught dead in: “A weighted vest, running around the block.” Dream clients: “Oprah and Michelle Obama.” Fave healthy craving: “M Café.” Guilty pleasure: “I feel guilty about nothing.” Post-class feels: “Accomplished, energized, happy... and sweaty!”
Celeb fans: The Kardashians, Whitney Port, Alessandra Ambrosio, Ashley Greene Recent news: Expanded her line to include more athleisure, launched Skin by Varley skincare line and opened Platform LA pop-up (May-July). Point of differentiation: “Performance first.” Athleisure isn’t going away because… ”who’s stopping working out?” Most flattering summer style: “A healthy body.” Lesson learned: “Don’t compare yourself.” Varley makes women feel… “supported, confident, ready for action.” Fave body part to show off: “Ankles. I have good ankles.” Top fitness move: “Burpees—quickest way to get a burn.” Skin by Varley is… “high-performing, science-led, tackling the modern-day aggressors for active women.” Signature color: “Ivory.” Next trend prediction: “Being understated and effortless. However, I do love how ’80s and ’90s trends are back in style.” Dream client: “Jennifer Lawrence.” Guilty pleasure: “Erewhon—very LA of me, I know.” Source of fitspo: “LA inspires me to get moving. I come from London, so the weather here is heaven!”