Author Archives: Stef McDonald

Happy Holidays from the Surf Like a Girl Team

Wishing you waves of love and good tidings this season and always!


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Loss of a Surfing Legend: Doc Paskowitz

Dorian “Doc” Paskowitz, who passed away today at 93, was a surfing legend with an amazing outlook on life. Watch this Inertia video below to hear him share some wise and inspiring reflections; read this Surfer mag tribute by Matt Warshaw; check out Kelly Slater’s personal goodbye on Instagram; and scroll through the Paskowitz Family’s Facebook page. Moving.

HEADSPACE: Doc Paskowitz from The Inertia on Vimeo.

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Filed under Advice, Surfing, Videos

Everybody’s Gone Surfing, Surfing USC….

Screen Shot 2014-10-01 at 12.41.25 PMHow cool is this? I got to talk to students on the USC surf team, as well as the instructor for the surfing class (yes, surfing class!), for the USC Trojan Family magazine‘s Fall edition (online now).

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Like a Girl: What Does It Mean?

I just saw this fantastic ad by Always on the meaning of doing things “like a girl.” You can only say so much in a three-minute video, but it touches on sexist stereotypes and the socialization of kids—and reminds us that we all start out fierce and full of power. As a grown-up girl, I am proud to say I do everything “like a girl” and wouldn’t want to do it any other way. (Only wish they would have added “surf like a girl” to their list of examples!) Watch.

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Covering Up for Sun Protection: Safe Sunscreen Picks


Cross-posted on my Sideshow by the Seashore blog

There’s so much to love about being in the great outdoors—paddling out for a surf or swimming in the ocean, relaxing on a sandy beach, hiking in a park or strolling along the shore, eating al fresco, reading a book in the front yard. For all of these activities, the warmth and light from the sun can seem magical.

So here’s the “but.” The sun can warm you, give you light, and provide good-for-you vitamin D, but too much exposure can be damaging and cause skin cancer.

Happily, you can still enjoy the sun while protecting yourself with non-toxic products that block the damaging rays. The best way to start is by consulting the Environmental Working Group’s guide to safe sunscreens, which includes recommendations for safe products that contain zinc oxide and other better-for-you ingredients. My safe sunscreen favorites:

Face: The Organic Wear line from Physicians Formula makes a lightweight tinted moisturizer with SPF 15. For more coverage, I use the Supergoop! CC Cream with SPF 35 or Jane Iredale’s PurePressed Base Mineral Foundation with SPF 20. Tip: after applying product to your face, wipe excess on the tops of your hands.

Lips: Badger has a lip balm stick with SPF 15 that I use alone or blended with a lip color product. My favorite tinted lip balms with SPF: Alba Botanica’s Terratints with SPF 15 and the All Good Lips line with SPF 18 from Elemental Herbs.

Body: I like sunscreens from Badger, California Baby, and Alba Botanica’s Very Emollient sunscreen line, which is especially gentle and effective.

For protection that doesn’t come in a bottle, compact, or tube, you can count on hats, sunglasses, and clothing—sarongs and thin cotton tunics are great for covering up at the beach, even when it’s hot.

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Filed under Advice, Beach

Fences in the Sand





I love the wood fences you encounter at beaches.

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Filed under Beach, Photos

Protecting Our Water and Waves


Earth Day should be every day (it is for us!), but we’re always down with taking a day to celebrate our amazing planet. We’re especially grateful for the sea and all that it gives us—and thankful for organizations that work tirelessly to protect our oceans, including Surfrider, Heal the Bay, and Oceana.

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Filed under Beach, Environment