“There’s such a joy to being present and being outdoors,” says Nichole Powell, founder of outdoor essentials brand Kinfield. “If it’s a beautiful day, it totally changes your body chemistry to wake up and see that it’s gorgeous out.” Although she now spends a lot of her time jet setting between major cities doing business for her company, the Minnesota-native still seeks out any opportunity she can to get people into nature.
A quintessential outdoors enthusiast, Powell’s early years were defined by family camping trips—the memories of which still influence her work today. Armed with the desire to get people back outside, Powell founded Kinfield as a way to help ease city rats into country mice mentalities (or at least to ward off the mosquitos and post-holiday sunburns that put a damper on warm summer weekends).
Powell has mastered the art of creating comfort wherever she goes; whether it be the forests of Minnesota, where she learned to love the outdoors, or the fields of Indonesia, where Kinfield collects essential oils for their Waterbalm moisturizer and Golden Hour bug repellent.
“Change is going to happen whether you ask it to or not,” says Powell. “So I think that by being in a new place, you put yourself into the driver’s seat of what that change will look like.”
for the outdoorsy, we’re here for the outdoors-ish."
CAMPING VS. GLAMPING
We always say within our team that we’re not just here for the outdoorsy, we’re here for the outdoors-ish. A lot of people say, “Oh, I wish I could go camping, but I’m not super outdoorsy.” But that’s fine, go glamping! Honestly, there are so many beautiful boutique hotels where you can have creature comforts but can still get outside in whatever way that moves you. If that’s hiking or if that’s just having lunch outside, you can find ways to celebrate the joy of being outdoors without it having to be what many people think of as a “miserable experience.” People are like, “unless I haven’t showered in three days, I must not be camping.” And I’m like, “No, no, no, you can do whatever you want!”
I’m all about comfort camping. I’m like, let’s bring the camp chairs in, get the campfire going, I always bring little marshmallow skewers so you can do s’mores right. I really think that being able to solve for those kinds of magic moments—for me, it’s all about being able to be present and be comfortable.
TIPS FOR NEWBIE CAMPERS
Honestly, you have to solve for everything that’s going to be the most problematic first. So bug repellent, SPF, after sun spray—those are the things that are really gonna make you miserable. You cannot sit out and look at the stars if all you can think about is how you’re getting eaten alive by the bugs.
and really be able to celebrate it in this really joyful, almost childlike way."
Outdoor Voices in some capacity or some sweatshirts."
help keep Powell's complexion bright on the road.
I will always make sure that I have reusable straws. It’s a really easy swap because they’re super small, and I got this really cute set at Alfred Coffee in L.A. and they say, “But first, coffee,” which is a fun little thing. I always travel in comfort clothing, so I usually do Outdoor Voices in some capacity or some sweatshirts.
I have our Golden Hour bug repellent packed. And I really try to be good with SPF. I love JuiceBeauty and BeautyCounter’s SPF, and so I have both of those. But I definitely appreciate Sunday Spray afterward, which we actually named because when you spend a weekend away, you tend to have a great Saturday and wake up the next morning and realize you were not as good at your SPF application as you thought you were!
For when I’m actually traveling and in the air, I really love this Josh Rosebrook hydrating accelerator face mist, so I’ll put that on my face while I’m actually in transit.
FAVORITE CAMPING DESTINATIONS
I absolutely adore camping in the Boundary Waters in Norwoods, Minnesota. It is truly some of the most magical spaces. And also near Lutsen in Minnesota. Other than that, I’ve absolutely adored the Bay Area or up in Yosemite.
My quintessential, favorite camping experience in the world is to be able to take people to Big Sur. Big Sur has always been one of the most magical places in the world.
INTERNATIONAL CAMPING GOALS
I really am eager to get down to the Bolivian salt flats this year—I hear that you can kind of camp through that, which I think would be amazing. And going camping in Patagonia is another place I’m dying to get to but I haven’t been able to yet.
HOW TO BE FEARLESS
Recognize that bad things can happen anywhere. I don’t think that’s necessarily indicative of anything other than the fact that there are just good and bad people in the world. I think most people are inherently good. You could very easily have something terrible happen to you tomorrow right down the street from where you live, so you might as well make the most of the world and allow people the opportunity to surprise you.
- 1Away Weekender in Natural Canvas, $245
- 2Kinfield Waterbalm moisturizer, $18
- 3Kinfield Sunday Spray, $22
- 4Kinfield Golden Hour bug repellent, $22
- 5Kinfield Out of Office Hat, $28
- 6Outdoor Voices Warmup Leggings, $75
- 7Outdoor Voices Sweatee Tank Top, $25
- 8Kinfield Water Bottle, $14
- 9Josh Rosebrook Hydrating Accelerator, $30
- 10Juice Beauty SPF 30 Oil-Free Moisturizer, $30
- 11Owa Haircare Moondust Collection Hair Wash, $29
- 12Tatcha Indigo Cream, $85
- 13Kari Gran Jeannie Lip Whip, $24
- 14Amazon Kindle E-Reader, $90
- 15Saje Essential Oil Brainstorm Blend, $20
- 16Saje Essential Oil Stress Release Blend, $25