As part of our will to empower women entrepreneurs, we decided to launch a new series of posts on our blog: Girl Boss Portraits.
To introduce this new series, we thought about Lolita (what a cute name!), creator of the blog Surf Madame but also owner of the digital communication agency Vague Digitale. As we work in the same building we took the opportunity to talk about her activity and her life.
First of all, the series is called "Girl Boss". Can you tell us more about your work and how it all came about?
I started my blog Surf Madame 4 years ago, while I was an intern at Billabong
Europe. At first, I created it because I couldn’t find blogs for girls who surf. What kept me going is the good feedback I received from the interactions with other girls reading my blog.
Professionally speaking, I have graduated from a business school and I have now been working freelance for 3 years. I have created Vague Digitale, a digital communication agency.
You definitely fit the boss part of "Girl Boss"! What advice would you give to others who want to start a blog?
I think you should find your very own angle to avoid the cliché of starting a blog for the sake of having one. Write your blog without expecting anything in return: don’t do it to get invited to events or to receive free products. You should also be consistent and post regularly.
Let's talk more about yourself now. Tell us what little Lolita wanted to be as a a grown up.
At the beginning, I was more attracted to artistic jobs like dancer. Then, I wanted to be a doctor but it all changed when I met new people.
Do you have something that holds a special place in your heart? Like an object you brought back from one of your trips?
It's probably a limited edition Cynthia Rowley for Roxy wetsuit. Never have I seen someone with another one. I have worn it countless times and it is washed-out now, but I can’t seem to get rid of it. It's like a trophy!
Speaking of favorites, what is the best surf you've ever had?
Probably in Encinitas, California. It was just an spontaneous session with some friends but the waves were great, and the vibe in the water was perfect.
And where would your dreams take you surfing?
I would say Hawaii... not only because of the world famous waves but also for the stunning surroundings and the great history of the surf-culture.
The Basque Coast is known as the epicenter of surfing in Europe. What do you love about living here?
Maybe how diverse the population is. There is a real paradox between the very luxurious and high class mansions and the multicultural surf-town vibe. Typically, when leaving the beach, your board tucked under you arm, you can walk past Russian billionaires as well as surfers travelling in their vans.
Any recommandations on the best place to hang out on the Basque Coast after a good session?
Definitely Etxola Bibi above the Côte des Basques beach, and Frozen Palm for an afternoon snack.
Do you have any tips for a more eco-friendly surf?
Choosing better quality gear to change it less often is a first step. Wetsuits, for instance, can’t be recycled. It is better to pay a higher price and change it every 5 or 6 years than buying a cheaper wetsuit and change it every couple years. Also, wear biodegradable sunscreen that doesn’t harm the coral and the ocean and use non-toxic surf wax. Other good ideas are to do carpool, pick up waste on the beach - even if it’s not yours! - and raise awareness.
Which spots on the Basque Coast and in the Landes would you recommend?
On the Basque Coast, I would say Guethary because it is a reef break which makes it rather constant. For the Landes Coast, I would say Les Bourdaines.
Do you have any rituals before or after a surf?
Before I go in, I usually drink a lot of water to prevent dehydration at the middle of a session… and this is one of my only rituals as most of the time, surfs are pretty spontaneous. When I get out of the water, I like to have a big coffee and chill for a couple hours - as surfing makes me so relaxed.
Any tips for girls who would like to get into surfing?
I think you should find someone who surfs to start, mainly for safety reasons but also for helping you and giving you tips as I don’t think surf lessons are that great… Also, you should start with small conditions so you will get used to the waves and be comfortable in the ocean.
If you could surf with someone today (dead or living), who would it be?
Stephanie Gilmore. Because she is always smiling and seems like a very nice person.
You can discover Lolita's blog or Instagram, and learn more about her job at Vague Digitale here.