Focused on the intersection between individuality and community—a driving force behind the ethos of the city’s millennials
Los Angeles is more than sunshine, palm trees, and the Hollywood hills; it’s a state of mind that extends beyond geography while remaining firmly anchored to its trailblazer origins. It’s a city with a zeitgeist that inspires its residents to embrace what makes them authentic individuals. But, by giving them the freedom to pursue their dreams on their own terms, it has indelibly created a thriving culture populated with, and driven by, like-minded millennials.
Home to Baxter of Califonia since 1965, Los Angeles is living, breathing example that identity need not be prescribed or limited by categories of race, religion or gender. It isn’t about who or how to be—it’s about following your own internal compass and embracing a “Life Lived True.”
Through the continuation of its “Life Lived True” campaign that launched last year, Baxter of California is now delving even deeper into its exploration of modern masculinity—one that is inclusive of all expressions of masculinity. Next up, the brand turns its lens towards what defines, inspires and motivates a cross section of the many unique subcultures that together create the millennial ethos of LA: skate, surf, art, music and indie.
Beginning with a series of portraits and videos shot around the city, from iconic local spot Jimmy’s Burgers to infamous Sunset Boulevard to revitalized Downtown LA, this year’s exploration of “Life Lived True” shines a light on the aesthetics of these ambitious subcultures through five of the city’s real-life creatives. With the expertise of 16-year barbering veteran and industry-innovator Julius “Julius Caesar” Arriola (@juliuscaesar) highlighting each subject’s style, Baxter of California’s core belief that grooming is an act of self-expression was clear and present.
“I took the time to really try to understand the subcultures that Baxter of California’s ‘Live Lived True’ campaign is representing,” Julius explains. “With these looks, I made sure not to alter the individuals away from their genuine ‘anything and everything goes’ lifestyles, but instead to bring their strong, unique features to the forefront. Nothing is worse than style that reads off forced—you can see the discomfort in it all. How one chooses to present themselves to the world through grooming is definitely a prominent expression of freedom and life lived true.”
Take, for instance, Rodney (@boydeus), a musician who Julius dubbed the “Sophisticated Jimi.” Even though he’s lived around the globe, his path inevitably landed him in Los Angeles, a city that’s given him the opportunity to chase his dreams in what he considers the big leagues. While staying true to his roots—which include a fashion-sense indebted to his grandfather’s closet—he’s learned to take rejection in stride—a unifying trait of LA’s aspiring music community. Even though he may be doing his own thing his own way, he also knows that when he needs help, the city’s creative community will have his back.
We will continue to explore the campaign sub-communities of Los Angeles through a series of pop ups beginning June 2018 that will feature complimentary barbering and skincare services for men and women.