I was born in Adelaide, Australia, in a salty corner of the city. I followed the ocean air to Sydney, where I now live as a model and creative.
I suppose what shapes us most starts with blood. My mum infused me with a woody strength only a mother can give, and a stubbornness too; my father, an impetuousness; my sister, humor that can see above disaster. But I always felt the ease in which I can sink into myself, revel in my aloneness, was mine from the beginning.
I often start my day restless, even if I have nothing to do but make breakfast. I relish my slow breakfasts which, after years of rushing out the door with burnt toast dangling from my lips, still feels like a luxury. My morning ritual isn’t defined but I always land a lazy kiss on my love, move my body, and apply my skincare—even if it’s just SPF that day. I find it amusing to think skin health is now a pillar of my self-care when, less than five years ago, I was heinously oblivious. Now it feels like an intimate gift to apply my potions with a scented candle burning and record spinning. Reading is another pillar of my self-care; whether escaping or squirreling away knowledge, I always feel revived by it.
Being a model isn’t central to my life, but a piece that sits comfortably alongside other interests and dreams. I see it simultaneously as a path and a destination. It’s an outlet to create and a means to visibility that can help spark conversations bigger than myself.
I find beauty in others when they are outside of themselves. Real beauty is unaware. It’s a belly laugh with a snort. The quiet luminance of eyes after a good cry. The furrow of a brow when deep in something you love. I personally feel most beautiful when I have purpose. When I accomplish something I didn’t think I could do. When I’m infused with sun and salt.
I believe the vastness of nature screams you’re alive the loudest. In being close to something greater than myself, the ego is obliterated and gratitude flows as easily as breathing.
"My leading hope for my life is to live without regret, and for mankind to remember compassion. As Mother Earth goes down, it may be all we have left to remind us of our humanity."
An experience that changed my course was leaving Adelaide at age 11, caved in with possessions on the backseat, singing songs to keep my mother awake as we drove through the rain-soaked night.
I’ve worked on letting go of guilt the last few years. I’ve wrestled with the idea of forgiveness and the harrowing inaccuracies of memory. In forgiving myself for real — and perceived — mistakes, I have finally released a lot of trapped energy.
All I can really ask for is that, in five years’ time, I am still in possession of this newfound self-belief and that I remain fueled with a sense of purpose. A house and a scaleable business would also be nice. And now, I wish I had known sooner that consistency is more important than talent. I don’t think there is anything more endorphin-inducing than seeing the fruits of your labor dancing in front of you.
My leading hope for my life is to live without regret, and for mankind to remember compassion. As Mother Earth goes down, it may be all we have left to remind us of our humanity. In light of which, my best advice: if you think you can, you can.
Nat Buchanan photographed by Claudia Smith. Nat uses the Refining Cleanser, Bioactive Face Masque and Ritual Serum.