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    I Went To Gwyneth Paltrow's Goop Summit And Lived My Best Life

    Here's what it's really like inside Gwyneth Paltrow's day of wellness.

    Hannah Wong / BuzzFeed

    Let it be known that I'm a big fan of what Gwyneth Paltrow is doing with Goop. I feel like I need to disclose this before you go any further, just so you're aware of exactly who the person writing about going to the Goop Summit actually is. As for my ~personal interests~ IRL, they pretty much revolve around self-care, plant-based living, energy work, and learning about as many ancient healing practices (Ayurvedic and otherwise) as I can. I'm as much of a "wellness hoe" (haaaate that term) as one can be who is still very skeptical and goes to the doctor to get my blood tested twice per year just to make sure all of the self-experimenting I do hasn't actually caused any harm. So yeah, that's me in a nutshell! Moving along.

    The Goop summit is a twice-yearly event that takes place in Los Angeles and New York City once per year. It's open to anyone who buys a ticket, which run $650 for regular access and $2,000 for VIP tickets. This is the event's second year, and I was told on-site that the LA event was their biggest yet.

    To prepare for the summit, I went out and bought some new yoga pants. I don't know why, I just felt like everyone would be clad in cute yoga clothes there (which they were) and that my yoga clothes were old and NOT Gwyneth-approved. But then I realized that was stupid and I just went in clothes I already had (sooo #authentic). Other than that, the only other "prep" I did was to sign up for the activations before I arrived. Goop sends out a link to sign up for activations about a week before the summit and you have to log on to register and create your day's schedule. I had researched all of the instructors and had a "short list" of who I wanted to see, so when the sign-ups arrived I knew exactly who to sign up for. The bigger question was when, as there were panels almost all day long, so I had to make some tough choices between talks that seemed cool and getting, say, my palms read. Never fear, dear reader: it all worked out in the end and I fully enjoyed the day. Read on to see why!

    6:10a.m. β€” Time to wake up, it's Goop o'clock

    Check-in begins at 8a.m. and I don't want to be late for the early morning activations that I signed up for. So I left pretty early and arrived to the event's locale – 3Labs in Culver City, CA β€” at 7:50a.m. to a line of about 15 people ahead of me. My Lyft driver remarks that everyone in line is wearing a combination of white and black, and suddenly I regret the brown jacket I've brought along with me. You could say it looked a little cult-like, but in a "yoga retreat" way, not, say, Wild Wild Country.

    8:12a.m. β€” Shoe swappin'


    Upon arrival I was directed to the Native Shoes "Shoe Swap" area where I was asked for my size. What I was handed back you can see in the photo above, which I snarkily laughed at for a brief moment before I put them on. They were comfy as heck and looking around at the sea of women who also chose to wear a pair, it felt coven-like (in the most clean, spa-way possible). At this point I notice that the line is filled entirely with women, and throughout the day I only counted two men that weren't employed by Goop at the event.

    8:14a.m.β€” Goop Glow


    Standing outside of Goop Hall was a fleet of servers holding trays of Goop Glow. "It has everything you need to start your day off right," I'm told as I take a sip without having any idea whatsoever was in the drink I was about to imbibe. It tasted good, actually, kind of like an Emergen-C.

    8:16a.m. β€” Entering Goop Hall


    After I made my way past the outdoor activations and food vendors, I finally arrived inside Goop Hall. In my head it was going to look like a big academic building or feature Gwyneth lecturing us all, but instead the 3Labs space was modern and had beautiful wood ceilings. What you see above is approximately 1/4th of the room, so you can imagine how much was going on in here at all times. Lots of women in white and black everywhere!!

    It's hard to explain the layout of the event with words, so here's a photo of the day's map.


    The Chat Room held all of the panels, and Goop Hall and The Yard were filled with different vendors and activations.

    8:18a.m. β€” Moon Juice


    Once inside Goop Hall, my first stop along the perimeter of food options was my personal LA favorite, Moon Juice. Upon telling the staff that I'd brought along my own Brain Dust for the day β€” a blend of adaptogenic herbs I used to help ween myself off coffee and drink every day since β€” they recommended one of the blue juices above because it already had that blend in there. I'll try anything once, so on I went with my blue juice (made from coconut water and blue algae β€” it actually ended up tasting great!) and I smiled to myself at the fact that I was truly among ~my kind of people~.

    8:20a.m. β€” Human Garage

    My first session for the day was a "biomechanic assessment" from Human Garage. It sounds cool, right? Well, after getting it done I'm still not totally sure what it is. From what it was described to me as, it's a bunch of different healing modalities that all focus on getting "torqued." I was told that my body was out of wack (which, sure!) and needed to be put back into "torque," so I was immediately told to stand up. The facilitator took two different balls and put pressure on each hip and I felt some vague relief. Then he said my jaw was out of alignment (also true) so he put pressure on the right side of my jaw...and then he put his finger deep into my ear and pushed down. Now I'm all about activating pressure points for relief or acupunture, but this just felt absurd. Plus, it hurt (and continued to ache for a few hours afterward).

    I found the whole thing pretty invasive (especially given the time of day) UNTIL I found a video on their Instagram page that shows a woman having a finger put into her mouth (above). So now I'm thinking I might have gotten off lucky that a finger was placed inside my ear and not my mouth. No shade, but this one was not for me. Gotta be honest!

    8:28a.m. β€” Breakfast goodies

    One thing I don't think I've yet made clear just yet is how much free food was around us AT ALL TIMES. And it was truly the crème de la crème of Los Angeles eateries that hit the trifecta of healthy, delicious, and utterly instagrammable. I was in heaven.

    8:45a.m. β€” Akashic Records Reading with Amor Luz

    Instagram: @goop, BuzzFeed

    For those not familiar, the Akashic Records are said to be a spiritual storehouse of all events, feelings, thoughts, and intentions that have ever happened in the past, present, and future. So you might be thinking that 8:45 in the morning is a little early to go on such a deeply personal and spiritual journey, which, sure. But when I saw the option for an Akashic Records reading among the metaphysical offerings during Goop sign-ups, I knew I had to go and first thing in the morning was fine by me.

    Have you ever sat down with a healer and immediately felt an extreme connection and level of comfort as if it was...meant to be? I felt that way with Amor Luz as soon as I sat down with her for my session. Her energy was wise and radiant, and I immediately knew she'd be a channel for some deep learnings for my soul's journey.

    The session began with a discussion of what my expectations were for our session and how familiar I was with the process (I'd read into it at length) and I then granted her permission to access my records. I shut my eyes and she began to play a singing bowl with I focused in on as I breathed deeply, in-and-out, in-and-out. I felt calm and serene, and what I didn't know at the time was that she was also using tuning forks for even more sound healing action. I would have never known if my session didn't end up on the Goop Instagram Story, which my friend Katie immediately texted me to let me know. (You can see the photo from Goop's story above.)

    After the meditation, Amor asked me to connect with my heart chakra and focus on a question to ask. I did, and from there she filled me in on what can only be described as an incredibly accurate take on my life's journey so far and all of the struggles I've had. She explained why certain roadblocks have been placed in my life to overcome based on events that happened to me in previous lives. I won't share all of the details here, but among the information she received was that I was a Magi in a former life, which is pretty damn cool if I say so myself!

    10:00a.m. β€” Breathwork with Ashley Neese

    Matt Winkelmeyer / Getty Images

    The day's first event that included everyone at the Camp Goop was a grounding meditation with breathwork teacher Ashley Neese. She lead a 15-ish minute long session that had us breathing deeply as we imagined the earth's energy bring pulled from the ground and up through the top of our heads. A lot of times in a group meditation you can hear people stirring around or not paying attention, and I was surprised at how fully into this everyone was. You could feel it. Overall, it was a pretty blissful way to kick off the day's festivities.

    10:20a.m. β€” Gwyneth's opening remarks

    Neilson Barnard / Getty Images

    Next up was the Queen G herself. At this point the room was totally chilled out after the grounding meditation but when the voice from above sweetly said, "And now, please welcome for her opening remarks..." the room turned ELECTRIC. By the time she said "Gwyneth Paltrow" I was halfway out of my seat applauding as if Oprah had just told me I'd been given a new car. The Goop indoctrination was complete. I am a Goop stan now.

    10:30a.m. β€” Connecting to Spirit Guides with Laura Lynne Jackson

    Matt Winkelmeyer / Getty Images

    What you see here is the Mind Body Sprit room, which served as the home for meditations, reiki treatments, and other ~quiet~ spiritual classes throughout the day. My class choice was Connecting To Your Spirit Guides with Laura Lynne Jackson, a school teacher-turned-psychic medium. I read about her story and was intrigued.

    The session included a quick Spirit Guides 101 class of sorts before she guided us in a calming guided meditation to meet one of our guides. She told stories from her own life and explained that loved ones who have passed on are constantly trying to connect with us all of the time β€” if we'd only pay more attention we would notice it. According to her, birds, butterflies, and deer all have an electromagnetic system for tracking and movement, which is why our friends on the other side can manipulate them easily to send us messages.

    After the low-down on how it all worked, it was time to try and meet our guides. She explained that in order to meet your spirit guides, all you needed to do was be open to it and ask. That said, it did not work for me. Not that I expected to be able to connect on that deep of a level in a room filled with strangers and in only a few minutes β€” which Laura acknowledged herself. But I did leave there with information I did not know, and a new desire to try and make this happen on my own.

    10:50a.m. β€” Charcoal freakin' pizza


    Anyone who knows me knows that I hopped on the charcoal train a few years back and consumed charcoal everything: juices, smoothies, alcoholic drinks, and even charcoal tablets in pill form, too. So when I came upon Jewel's charcoal PIZZA I slightly lost my mind. It didn't taste like charcoal at all but the crust was definitely black β€” and it didn't taste vegan, despite being made with cashew ricotta cheese. Overall this was one of the most delicious finds of the day and the only thing that I couldn't help going back for seconds for. Yum!

    11:15a.m. β€” Tantra and Polarity panel

    Matt Winkelmeyer / Getty Images

    The first panel of the day was with intimacy teacher Michaela Boehm, someone Gwyneth introduced as having worked together before. And FYI, this panel was more educational than it was pornographic, so if you're here for the latter keep scrolling!

    Michaela's focus on the conversation was about the polarity between two people in a relationship and how tantra works within that dynamic. Most of her tips were about getting back to basics with your partner and putting technology away. For example, she claimed that looking at your partner directly in the eye and just kind of receiving their gaze can apparently do wonders for the libido. Sign me up! The conversation between these two women went by so quickly I was surprised when it ended. I walked away with a few new tips & tricks and a better understanding of what tantric energy actually is, so I consider this one a win!

    11:45a.m. β€” Longevity and Healthspan panel

    Neilson Barnard / Getty Images

    Well-known Yoga instructor Baron Baptiste moderated a fascinating discussion on career health with Dominique Fradin-Read, M.D., Dr. Lisa Mosconi, and Dr. Roberta Brinton. They talked about the types of things you need to do for your body to prevent premature aging and how to keep your brain healthy for as long as possible. One of their tips was to exercise and to feed your brain the food it actually needs.

    Eventually, I had to stop by the Goop Sex Shop.


    When in Goop... OK, so I simply had to see what the yoni eggs looked like in real life β€” so sue me! It was also cool to see what a lot of the stuff in the Goop online store looked like IRL because I can admit that I've made more than one purchase from the online retailerΒ β€” so sue me again!

    12:35p.m. β€” Lunchtime!


    As if they hadn't given us a million options for food and snacks throughout the event, I got to have a fancy lunch as well! It was executed by Sqirl, one of LA's most cherished local spots. It was served family-style, giving a table full of strangers a reason to talk to each other β€” which I was grateful for. The menu was mostly vegetarian with a few gluten-free, vegan, and dairy-free options for everyone.

    The best part about lunch? I somehow sat one table away from Goop herself.


    When I walked outside I realized immediately the mistake I'd made earlier that morning β€” forgetting to put sunscreen on my whole body, not just my face β€” and chose a seat based upon the few that were directly under an umbrella. Imagine my surprise when I looked beyond the beautiful floral arrangement to see who was sitting across from me! I could hardly believe it, so I took a two-second video for you all that I turned into a GIF. (And GP, if you're reading this, I'm sorry for the creep-shot. I did it in the name of a BuzzFeed post.)

    1:20p.m. β€” Career Health panel

    Matt Winkelmeyer / Getty Images

    Post-lunch I headed to a panel about career health moderated by Goop CMO Blair Lawson. The panel featured Suzy Batiz (of Poo-Pourri fame), Suze Yalof Schwartz (of UnPlug), Nyakio Kamoche Grieco, (of Nyakio). I immediately recognized Suze but I couldn't put my finger on where until she spoke about her past life as Fashion Editor at Large at Glamour β€” a role that had her giving women makeovers weekly on Good Morning America and Today. I was fascinated by her story of doing meditation just once before decided to switch careers and open up a meditation studio in Los Angeles. The women discussed how to balance work and motherhood, as well as the impostor syndrome and ways to be a better boss.

    1:50p.m. β€” Liquid Chlorophyll shots


    Here's the honest truth about these literal wellness shots: they're not great tasting! (Sorry Kreation Juice, you're still THE premiere juicery of LA). Liquid chlorophyll tastes kind of like wheatgrass, kind of like the regular kind of grass you'd put in your mouth as a kid because you didn't know any better. I don't know why I expected this to taste any different, but tasted as plant-like as ever (as you can see in my face above).

    2:05p.m. β€” Mena Suvari moderates a panel on plant nutrition

    Matt Winkelmeyer / Getty Images

    This panel was cute because it was moderated by Mena Suvari who announced that she was a "baby vegan" at the beginning (aka vegan for 11 months). She spoke with nutritionists Kelly LaVeque and Keri Glassman, M.S., R.D. about plant-based eating and how to eat right for your gut health. One of the main take-aways I got from this is that sugar is bad for your health pretty much any way you slice it.

    (Oh! And Mena looked glow-y and not a year older than I'd last seen her, btw.)

    2:50p.m. β€” Afternoon pick-me-up with mushroom coffee


    While I'm a big fan of adaptogenic herbs, one thing I don't love is mushrooms. Lots of my friends have gotten into Four Sigmatic's line of mushroom coffee but to me, it still tastes like, well, shroom-like. Regardless of that fact, I figured the Goop summit was a good a place as any to try again and went for an iced reishi cacao drink. It was still a little shroom-y but it really hit the spot (and woke me up). If you're curious what the drink on the right is, it's an iced lion’s mane matcha.

    At this point, I also want to mention how cool it was to see all of these giant wellness names walking around IRL.


    I was pleased as punch to discover Lauren Roxburgh waiting in line a few people ahead of me, whose foam roller and video workout I use daily. I saw Shiva Rose, Queen of Natural Beauty, looking glowy AF. Kelsey Patel, a reiki master featured on the latest season of Vanderpump Rules performed group reiki sessions that were super popular (I assume because of her brand new reality TV fame). A lot of the panelists spent the rest of their day enjoying the summit, so it was cool to see them getting into the spirit of it all, too.

    I also saw Whitney Port from The Hills, who I almost walked into. It would have been the cutest Whitney x Whitney "meet cute" of all time. Or not...

    3:00p.m. β€” Aerial Yoga

    Emma Mcintyre / Getty Images

    One of the activities I was most excited for was aerial yoga. I've been wanting to do it for so, so long but always find myself worrying too much about being the newbie in class and never have actually signed up. It just so happened that my session was later on in the day, after most people had already tried it. So my session was just me and another person with three incredibly helpful and nurturing teachers from Up Flying Yoga helping us β€” could there be an easier way into trying something for the first time?

    Turns out I was a natural, by the way. The yoga poses were pretty easy and the feeling of stretching inside of a suspended a cloth cocoon was really something. As I laid upside down in a loop of white stretchy cloth my entire back cracked in a way no foam roller or gyrotonic exercises have ever made it crack before. By the time I was back-flipping out at the end of the class, I realized that I've found a new hobby for myself. As I got back into my sneakers after the class I found myself promising to visit their studio in California even though I live in New York.

    3:30p.m. β€” B12 shots


    I take sublingual B12 supplements every day but have always wanted to try a B12 shot ever since I first caught wind of it being a thing. So after aerial yoga I walked over to the Hydration Room station and asked for my shot. There were two options: get it in your arm or your butt, and when I asked what the difference was I was told "it's better in the butt." Normally I'd be too shy to expose my glutes in public, but at the Goop summit and surrounded by 95% women, I pulled my yoga pants down and said "stick it to me."

    Now I'll be honest, I still don't know exactly what the perks of having B12 shot directly into your ass is. But I'm glad that I did it here, out of anywhere, and for free. Again, sue me!

    3:40p.m. β€” The Future of Cannabis panel moderated by Lake Bell


    Lake Bell β€” aka one the funniest actresses aroundβ€” was tapped to moderate a panel all about weed and it was one of my favorite panels of the day. The panel included Kimberly Dillion (Papa & Barkley), Cindy Capobianco (Lord Jones), Samantha Miller (Pure Analytics Lab) and Jeff Chen, M.D. The discussion was fascinating. Topics ranged from how rapidly the business of marijuana has grown to explaining the difference between Indica and Sativa for someone in the audience who asked (Sativa is more social and energetic, Indica is "In Da Couch"). The panel was scheduled to end right at 4:20, perhaps by design? Bravo if so.

    I didn't happen to sign up for any spa treatments, but there were plenty of people who did.


    Among the treatments offered were light therapy, reflexology, gua sha facials, shoulder massages, cryofacials, and ayruvedic cranial massages. While this was happening, I was stuffing myself with food. Oh well!

    4:30p.m. β€” Fireside talk with Janet Mock

    Emma Mcintyre / Getty Images

    The end of the day finished off with two ~celebrity interviews~ aka Fireside Talks with GP (though I'm here to report that there was no fire, just some flowers and bottles of water between them both). First up was Janet Mock, who gave some kind-but-necessary real talk to Gwyenth Paltrow, who asked honest questions like "So... am I cis?" She gave a run-down of her life's story and spoke about what it's like to grow up to actually BE the role model she wished to see in the world one day.

    If you're curious to the connection between these two (like I was), it was revealed mid-way through the interview when Gwyneth brought up the TV series Pose, which Mock writes for and GP's fiancΓ© Brad Falchuk writes on and executive produces. Janet made a joke about the shirtless photo Gwyneth posted of Janet's now work-colleague, which made her say "Damn! That's been hiding under there?"

    5:00p.m. β€” Fireside talk with Meg Ryan

    BuzzFeed, Matt Winkelmeyer / Getty Images

    The last fire-less fireside talk of the day was with Meg Ryan, an elusive interview to get in today's world! Meg has left the world of acting and is now focusing on directing movies and raising her 13-year-old daughter as a single mom. (Her daughter, she says, is a "science geek" who is going to go on to change the world one day.) She spoke about how she didn't really have a #MeToo experience in Hollywood due to her early labeling of being "America's Sweetheart" by Nora Ephron in the early nineties, of which she said "I didn't even know what that meant."

    5:30p.m. β€” Cocktail hour

    Emma Mcintyre / Getty Images

    Yes, booze can be Goop-approved β€” and in this case it was non-GMO Ketel One botanical vodka drinks with cucumbers and mint. Very refreshing, and very needed after this whirlwind of a day!

    6:15p.m. β€” The End!


    Here I am at the end of the day about to peace on out of Goop HQ. After being too shy to ask anyone to take my picture in front of this wall of imperfect produce, I saw a woman by herself taking photos of the wall and asked her if she wanted to be IN the photo. We ended up taking pictures of each other, so now I have the above proof that I went to this thing forever.

    Overall, I loved every minute of this event. But that said, it's probably not for everyone. If you aren't as open to the ~spiritual~ or woo-woo things in life, you probably aren't reading Goop and might not enjoy all that the Goop Summit has to offer. But if you ARE like me, or are even just a truly open-minded person, I really can't recommend it enough. I went to the Goop Summit and came back an even Goop-ier version of myself and I would 100% do it again.