In Bed With... Rachael of Little Viking Van 🚐

Moonlit's In Bed With... Series is a collection of intimate interviews with tastemakers, core-shakers, and the people we love. We explore what keeps them up at night, in addition to their sleep secrets.  

This week, we're excited to be chatting with Rachael Schmitt, co-creator of Little Viking Van. She is a traveler, model, creative, and helps her husband run his illustration/design business and until recently, embraced micro-living in a van. 
 

Rachael Schmitt in colorful dress leaning against wall

Image by Emma Low

-------------------

Hi Rachael! First off, scrolling through your Little Viking Van adventures makes us want to head on a road trip ASAP. Can you share a bit about your journey hitting the road in your self-converted van?

Rachael: My husband and I talked about micro living for years while he was in school so when he graduated we found a van in our price range and started tearing it up. We built the inside to our liking, got rid of most of our stuff, put the rest in storage, and moved into the van! 🚐

Side view of van against a desert landscape

We began our journey on the road two years ago and since then we’ve traveled all over the country for road trips and art shows. It’s been an amazing time. We’ve actually recently started transitioning out of the van life and into a house though because this past winter was just too cold for us!  🚐

Rachael Schmitt and her husband in their van

Image by Emma Low

Q: What have been some of the highlights of life on the road?

Rachael: We were asked to go on several sponsored road trips which was so cool! We were also able to travel more than we would have been able to AND being in the van really helped us to start our business with low overhead.

 

Rear view of van on a forest path
 

Q: What have been some challenges of living life on the road?

Rachael: I think the thing we had the most trouble with was the weather; the winter was unbearably cold and in summer it got so hot we couldn’t breathe in the van.


Rachael Schmitt sitting in her van
Image by Emma Low

Q: Any favorite stories from your travels?

Rachael: The roadtrips were amazing, especially seeing the coast in California. The water was so blue!


Q: When you’re traveling, what is your morning skincare routine?

Rachael: A lot of times I would do my morning routine in a rest-stop bathroom so I tried to make it quick and easy. I typically wash my face with Glossier Milky Jelly, spray on a rosewater toner, and moisturize with Glossier Priming Moisturizer in the summer and Moonlit's Midnight Shift in the winter. I use Burt’s Bees Pomegranate chapstick all day, every day.  

  Rachael Schmitt holding a mug inside her van

Q: What does your evening skincare routine look like on the road?

Rachael: I have super sensitive skin and I don’t like to provoke it with tons of products so my night routine is the same as my morning routine other than removing my makeup with Micellar Water.

 Q: Best place you've woken up in?

Rachael: Other than my favorite place on earth (my family’s camp in the middle of the woods in West Virginia), I would say Utah!

On our trip out west, we spent the night at a rest stop near Crescent Junction. It was the only stop we found for hundreds of miles and we were so, so tired. When we awoke the next morning, it was clear and beautiful so we could see the landscape it had been too dark to see the night before. We hiked up gorgeous rock hills where we saw prairie dogs, lizards, and so many plants. It was awesome!  🏜


Q: What keeps you up at night?

Rachael: Luckily, I usually fall asleep pretty easily but sometimes I wake up a few hours later for no reason.

I think that’s natural, I’ve read that an 8hr straight night sleep is a relatively new thing and before the 1920's, humans used to sleep in two separate blocks of time. Interesting, eh? When this happens to me I just like to read until I fall back to sleep. 📚

Rachael Schmitt by the beach looking at the sea


Q: What keeps you energized during the day?

Rachael: Coffee always! But lately it’s been this amazing weather! Just going outside, even just for a little bit makes me feel recharged.

Q: I get the best sleep when…

Rachael: I’ve ran around outside a lot that day. If I go on a hike, I’ll pass out and sleep like a baby at night!

Black van against picturesque mountain landscape


Q: Nighttime beauty greatest hits?

Rachael: I’ll use a dermaroller and do a sheet mask. I really love making a turmeric/honey face mask and relaxing with that on in the tub for 20 mins. Heaven!

 

Rachael Schmitt relaxing in her van
 

Q: Fun fact?

Rachael: I moved 16 times before I was 12 years old. Maybe that’s why I like to travel so much haha!

 

🔥QUICKFIRE 🔥

My ideal # of hours of sleep is: 8 or 9

But in reality, I actually get: usually 8

Sleep season for me is: I sleep waaaay more in winter. In the summer I wake up early naturally.

How many pillows: 2 (Cloud 9 Silk Pillowcases can be great for multi beauty benefits!) 

AM or PM?: PM

Nightcap?: Hot toddy in winter, Kentucky mule in the summer

Bad sleep habit: Playing on my phone before bed. Also, we almost always fall asleep to cartoons playing in the background but I don’t know if that's bad or not.

Good sleep habit: I drink a ton of water before I go to sleep and after I wake up.

Can't sleep with: Lights on

Side/back/stomach sleeper: Side mostly sometimes stomach.

Mantra: Work hard and be nice to people.

IG Beauty Community crushes: @hudabeauty, @namvo, @badgalriri, @ssssamanthaa, @violette_fr 😍

---

For more resources on vanliving- check out The Vanual