ONE TO WATCH – LUKE STOREY
“Every man should have self love, acceptance, and respect. And one classic leather jacket“. For more than 15 years Luke Storey made sure that members of Aerosmith, No Doubt, or Marilyn Manson himself wore that perfect jacket, but his celebrity stylist days are over. His focus shifted from styling the outer shell to finding inner beauty…
Meet an outstanding personality, who not only knows how to pull off a velvet jacket, but who went through enough physical pain (he calls himself his own human research lab – just think self-inflicted kambo frog venom poisoning as one of his experiments) to really know how to tame inner demons, addictions and negative habits.
Read all about Luke’s career, his stylist talent pool, School Of Style, and most importantly, read about how to live life the right way.
With his School Of Style, Luke has helped to shape the styling industry, offering an unparalleled training program based on real life experience. Luke’s new venture as a Life Stylist is a natural progression – and he just got started!
WTL: How would you describe yourself in three words?
LS: Creative. Spontaneous. Extroverted.
WTL: When you were a child you dreamed you would grow up to be…?
LS: In order: Luke Skywalker > karate master > rock star/professional stoner.
WTL: What were some early challenges you faced when starting your career as a Hollywood Celebrity Stylist?
LS: I was challenged at first by the sheer shock and pressure of knowing very little about fashion, yet having Aerosmith my first assistant stylist client. God only knows how the key stylist (Keki Mingus ) put up with my incompetence for that first year. I loved rock n roll, and had a good eye. I guess that’s what helped me make the cut in the beginning. Later on the challenge was learning how to style women. Not sure that I ever perfected that, but I can throw together one hell of a sexy menswear inspired look on the right woman.
WTL: Do you remember the moment that was a real breakthrough for you in your career?
LS: Absolutely. My moment was when stylist (now designer for ALC) Andrea Lieberman asked me to style the band (including all background dancers) on the No Doubt music video for “it’s my life “, directed by David LaChapelle.
WTL: Looking back, what was your most amazing experience?
LS: I have so many surreal and fond memories of my life as a stylist. In a general way, working with Marilyn Manson for a couple years was really fun, as I was allowed so much creative freedom.
WTL: My life as a stylist was…
LS: …chaotic, unpredictable, extremely diversified, exciting, fulfilling.
WTL: You have founded School Of Style seven years ago and work together with industry heavyweights such as Carlyne Cerf de Dudzeele or Monica Rose on a regular basis to train the next generation of stylists. Can you tell us a bit about your program and how to participate?
LS: I founded SOS as a result of industry supply and demand. There was a lack of supply in terms of qualified, trained assistants and interns on the industry side. On the consumer side, there was a demand for a fast, affordable, “real” training program for stylists. In 2008 it was still a very hidden, closed-door industry, so it was very hard for young people to find a way in, without ‘knowing someone”. Well, we became that someone.
What we do at SOS is teach people a very specific skill set around being either a personal or fashion stylist. We teach one thing, and one thing only. The business, art, and hands-on practical work needed to enter into, and become successful as a stylist. Once our students are trained, and have graduated, we connect them with over 600 stylists, editors, brands, and photographers – and essentially hand them a career. There is no other fashion school in the world that so directly and thoroughly continues to support graduates long after they complete courses.
We have both online and in-person classes going all year. Our live classes are held in world-class studio locations in NYC and LA, while our online classes are of course available world wide.
WTL: What key advice would you give to all aspiring stylists?
LS: Find mentor stylists and work under them as an intern and/or assistant. This is the most secure, and durable way to insure your long-lasting success. The long way is the short way in this business. Nothing gets you to the top faster than to support an industry veteran who is already there stay there.
WTL: And what was the best advice someone ever gave you?
LS: First, it was Monica Rose telling me to stop assisting stylists, and to go out on my own. The second was a friend, who kept bugging me to host my first SOS class, as I kept putting it off due to self-doubt and fear of failure. Thankfully he bugged me enough that I finally took the leap. And I landed safely, much to my surprise.
WTL: Today, you work as a Life Stylist – can you explain your approach to a healthy lifestyle?
LS: After working on people’s outer beauty for 15+ years, I decided last year to go full time as a life stylist, so that I can work on inner beauty through healthy eating, living, and spirituality. My approach starts with the mindset. Divorce any all and forms of negativity. Then I go into the home living environment and remove anything that is not supportive to a humans well –being, and health. That includes creating a “green” home, and a natural human diet based on foods that have proved to be the most health supportive throughout human history. My lifestyle approach is about getting closer to nature, even though we live in totally artificial environments. So, it’s about taking advantage of our technology, but using meditation, herbs, and supplements to balance out the negative effects of modern living.
WTL: What are the milestones in life that have led you to this point in your career?
LS: Overcoming so many addictions, compulsions, negative habits, ill health, unhappiness, and general neurosis within myself. Once I found a way out of the jungle, I was inspired to go back in and help others to escape a life of illness and unhappiness. It’s my passion, and my greatest gift.
WTL: Who has inspired you on your journey?
LS: Dave Asprey, David Wolfe, Dr David R Hawkins, Stuart Wilde, Ram Das, Daniel Vitalis, David Icke, Jeff Kober, Marianne Williamson, and John Gray. I dig people into enlightenment and looking at the world in an unconventional way. This is the premise of my podcast, the life stylist, on which so many great leaders have appeared, including many of my teachers, as listed above.
WTL: You describe yourself as being your own human research lab – what were your most extreme measures of obtaining optimal health?
LS: Well, this runs pretty deep. No pun intended. Coffee enemas, isolation chambers, self-inflicted kambo frog venom poisoning, extreme neurofeedback training, psychedelics, swimming in frozen lakes, and rivers. Taking every pill, powder, or potion ever suspected of making you healthier. 3 – week silent retreats in India. It literally goes on and on. I’ve been into working on myself for 20 years.
WTL: What are your top 5 rules of being healthy and sane inside and outside?
2. Drink only real, natural spring water.
3. Do not eat processed foods.
4. Get powerful, restful sleep.
5. Move your body in natural ways – ways in which an ape would move. Because that is what you actually are. Find a movement practice that is holistic and involves the outdoors. Kill your gym. Nature is the original gym.
WTL: How do you consult clients and what can they expect from you?
LS: I do hourly skype consultations and in-home work in LA. My approach involves all aspects of one’s life. Mental, emotional, physical, spiritual. I work primarily with men.
WTL: What is the best lesson life has taught you?
LS: The universe knows much more about what’s best for me than my ego. Trust god, whatever god means to you- that thing that makes your heart beat without your permission.
WTL: Any advice about life in general?
LS: Your mind controls your entire existence on the planet. “There is no such thing as good or bad, only thinking makes it so.” – Shakespeare
WTL: What are the consolations of getting older?
LS: My greatest fear is that I will regret not fully surrendering to the ultimate intelligence of the universe, and will have missed out on my full evolutionary potential due to petty attachments, and a narrow scope of vision. To prevent this, I practice radical self-honesty and open-mindedness.
WTL: What is your ultimate guilty pleasure?
LS: Duh. Sweets!
WTL: How would you describe your personal style?
LS: When no one is looking; yoga shit, tracksuits. Old man shit. Comfort. When I need to look presentable to the world: edgy business. Rock and roll in a blazer.
WTL: Every man should have…
LS: …self love, acceptance, and respect. And one classic leather jacket.
WTL: You live in Los Angeles. What does this city mean to you and what do you love the most?
LS: The diverse range of people. Its changed so much for the better since I landed in 1989. It used to be all yellow Lamborghinis and boob jobs. Now it’s a bunch of tree hugging hipsters. I love the energy here. And I must have sun. sun. sun. sun.
WTL: What are your top restaurants in LA?
LS: Gracias Madre, Blossom, Bel Campo and Animal.
WTL: What is your favorite gallery in LA?
WTL: Which local star in any field should the world outside of LA know about?
LS: Cody Storey. Literally a genius of human movement. storeyfitness.com
WTL: What living heroes or heroines do you have?
LS: Keith Richards, for making the best rock n roll in history, and just surviving that shit. But mostly all my courageous friends, who are relentlessly committed to growing spiritually – no matter what.
WTL: Is there a song you associate with your youth?
LS: Sweet leaf by Black Sabbath.
WTL: What music are you listening to right now and what are the top 5 songs on your playlist?
LS: All I really listen to all day every day are kundalini yoga mantras, on repeat, over and over. So my spotify playlist is on as I type on my laptop. But desert island albums?
1. exile on main st – The Rolling Stones
2. the white album – The Beatles
3. dark side of the moon – Pink Floyd
4. sticky fingers – The Rolling Stones
5. workingmans dead – The Grateful Dead
WTL: What are the three items you couldn’t live without?
LS: My bed. My vitamix blender. My loaded imac.
WTL: What do you like to do when you are not working?
LS: Working with recovering alcoholics and drug addicts, Kundalini yoga, meditation, hot springs, cold plunges…
WTL: If you could leave us with one thought, what would it be?
LS: There is nothing, has never been anything, and never will be anything as important as love. Not as a romantic, sentimental emotion – but as a way of life. Love is the answer to all questions. God is love, and love is god.