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Talking story with Jasmine Smith

Where are you from and what's the female surf community like there? 

I'm from Gisborne, NZ, and the female surf community there is so great.  We have a bunch of older lady legends and a cool group of up and coming girls who are all pretty much like my little sisters. Growing up there were only a handful of girls out in the water but now there's a whole squad of them terrorising the line up. There's some really good girls doing well in comps nationally and internationally like my two sisters, Hannah King, Daizee Rawls, Jay Ryan and Saffi Vette who is killing it overseas in the pro juniors and QS events. I pretty much watched those girls grow up so it's so cool going home and seeing how good they are now.

You used to compete in surfing, and more recently ocean paddling across Hawaiian waters! How do you think competitive sport has shaped your surf ability & confidence in the ocean?

Surf Lifesaving is probably what contributed to my confidence in the ocean the most. We spent so much time in the water in all conditions. It was so fun. When the surf was too big to take our fibreglass boards out we would all take the nippers foam boards and play demolition derby where everyone would catch the biggest waves and try to knock each other off then we would have to tandem or swim back to shore in the sketchiest conditions.

In terms of surfing, Gisborne is not short of good surfers and I looked up to all the older Wainui guys growing up. Surfing amongst them pushed my own surfing so much.

I've always been a very competitive person so once I started competing I was hooked and I would say it was the time spent in the ocean that gave me confidence and made me a better surfer.

You're currently earning your crust as a professional lifeguard on the Gold Coast. What are your top tips for feeling confident and safe in and around the ocean?

My top tip would be to swim between the flags and read the info sign. 

Any goals or dreams for the future?

I have a few little personal goals...not sure, I'm keen to do Molokai or something like that again. My friend and I are thinking about doing it in a team next year so that might be a new sporting goal to look forward to.

Style us out for the line up Jasmine, what would you have us wearing...

Any of the Salt Gypsy Turtleneck rashguard tops and Drifter bottoms. I'm all about looking good but keeping UV protected at the same time. Don't want to end up as a wrinkly leather bag when I'm older.

Favourite surf spot or destination: 

Home in NZ is both my favourite surf spot and destination. Best place in the world.

Words you live by:

Treat yourself

Top 10 essential (surf) travel items:

• sunscreen

• zinc

• drink bottle

• UV protection swimwear

• hat

• first aid kit

• snacks

•  surfboards  (relatively essential for a surf trip)

•  portable speaker

•  more sunscreen


For our Flax print shoot, Jasmine wears the new Luna surf crop, Drifter bottoms in Flax and Turtleneck rashguard in Olive.