The Edge Podcast: How To End Your Struggle With Chronic Disease & Reach Optimal Health With Jesse Golden

The Edge Podcast: How To End Your Struggle With Chronic Disease & Reach Optimal Health With Jesse Golden

Is your chronic disease holding you back from unlocking your full potential? 

Are you an ambitious leader that seeks to optimize your health and knock your goals out of the park? 

Do you want to get to the bottom of your health issues and thrive on your entrepreneurial journey?

Here’s a story of hope and optimal health for you.

We had a special guest on The Edge Podcast who we think you will gain valuable knowledge from. Meet Jesse Golden - she’s a devoted mother, model, Hatha yoga teacher, holistic health practitioner, author of The Golden Secrets to Optimal Health, and founder of The Golden Secrets, an organic skincare line.

We’re proud to have Jesse on our podcast with Swanwick co-founder, James Swanwick. They chat about her struggle with Rheumatoid Arthritis, how she started her own business, being a mompreneur, health hacks, and so much more. 

In essence, she’s a superhuman that’s been there and wants to empower women to realize that their well-being is their biggest asset. And she believes that every challenge we encounter is an opportunity for us to radiate more light into our lives - for ourselves and for the world.

So, jump on board the golden boat to a golden life. Watch the video interview below.

Connect with Jesse:


Key topics and timestamps:

00:00 - Introduction

01:02 - Less is more to achieve beautiful skin

03:11 - Aromatherapy and skin

06:12 - Perfume - the new second-hand smoke

07:27 - The beauty industry is changing

10:12 - Out with the superficial and in with the ancient formulas

13:57 - The Golden Secret empowers women

18:21 - How to treat sunspots

21:21 - Sun exposure tips

23:58 - The impact of Swannies Blue Light Blocking Glasses

26:22 - How Jesse manages a work-life-balance for chief optimization

Full audio transcript:

Download transcript

James Swanwick: James Swanwick here and welcome to another show. We've got Jesse Golden on the show today who is a devoted mother, a model, yoga teacher, and a skincare expert with her own skincare line. We're gonna be talking about skincare health, which is a favorite topic of mine. Mostly because I help people to quit drinking alongside obviously having my sleep business. I always tell people, if you want to improve your skin, you can go a long way to doing that by just stopping drinking attractively packaged poison, which is what we call alcohol. There are plenty of other amazing things we can do to improve our skin. Jessie, great to have you here. Welcome.

Jesse Golden: Thank you for having me.

James Swanwick: I can already tell you have wonderful skin. I hope you can tell me that I have magical skin as well.

Jesse Golden: You do have magical skin.

James Swanwick: So what do you do? What's your skincare regimen, just to kick things off?

Jesse Golden: The face tells what's really going on on the inside, kind of like you were talking about. Being healthy, not drinking, and doing all those basic things. What I put on my skin topically is all my skincare is organic and currently I handcraft everything still to this day. And I think less is more, I think you guys are really lucky because you really haven't been hit by the skincare industry as much as women have. For years, women have been told that they need 10 different products to achieve beautiful skin. I'm really an advocate of one great organic skincare line that works for you or product and just being consistent with it. Less is more you know, especially with the microbiome of our skin, like using soaps and harsh chemicals can really strip the skin and actually cause more harm than good. 

James Swanwick: Skin is our body's largest organ. Yes.

James Swanwick: If we're not taking care of it, we're not taking care of our body's largest organ that's going to show up externally, like you said aesthetically in our face. I love what you said there, like how we look on the outside as an extension of how we feel I think on the inside and how we're taking care of ourselves. You mentioned organic or word organic a few times. Someone once said to me, never put on your body what you wouldn't put in your mouth. I see these products like Neutrogena and L'Oreal and all this kind of stuff and I read the ingredients and I go, what the heck is that? I'm not putting that in my mouth and I can't even pronounce these names. So what are your views on that?

Jesse Golden: I haven't used any kind of skincare products like that in years. My story, I started using essential oils in high school and I've always been fascinated with aromatherapy and skin. As you mentioned in the beginning I made a living as a model for most of my life and people were putting all these different products on my skin, horrible products. I really didn't have a say in that when I was on set so when I was home I was really conscious of what I was putting on my largest organ because it absorbs into the bloodstream so quickly. My company was an accidental business so I started making all these skincare products for myself. I had a blog where I was just sharing yoga stuff, holistic health stuff, parenting spirituality, and eventually, that transferred into what are you putting on your skin? Everybody would always ask me what are you wearing, your skin looks so great. I was just kind of like it's my Golden Secret which is the name of my company, my last name is Golden. So all these products I was making for myself so it was really an organic process where everybody just started wanting them. To answer your question, thank goodness the market is shifting and becoming more transparent so customers are wanting the organic and more natural products and realizing that I always say that toxins keep products on the shelf longer not your skin. That's the benefit of when you buy from someone like me, I'm a small batch, it's kept very fresh, just minimal preservatives, vitamins and stuff like that.

James Swanwick: What are some of the common mistakes? Like if you go over to someone's house for their dinner party or something, or you're a guest, and you go into their bathroom, a bathroom, that's not your own? What are some of the things you see in someone else's bathroom that you're like, oh, man, this is horrendous.

Jesse Golden: You know, even beyond skincare, which I think there's a lot of great marketing out there. I don't know if I would say it's great but you know, with the influencer stuff going on, there's a lot of celebrities that just put their name on something and they have no idea. They've never actually used the product that you know and there's a lot of perfume companies that do this. Perfume is now being called secondhand smoke, it's so like the new secondhand smoke. I don't use perfumes, I don't use anything with chemicals or toxins or anything that's going to disrupt my hormones or anybody else's. I think that's why they're calling it “the secondhand smoke”, because you're not only affecting yourself, but anybody that has to deal with the scent that you're wearing is also being affected.

James Swanwick: Yeah. It's crazy. Someone said to me the other day, if it's advertised on TV, then it's not for me.

Jesse Golden: Wow, that's interesting.

James Swanwick: I like that because you think about what is advertised and marketed on free to air TV these days. If you really break it down, it's all terrible for you based on what we now know about the human body and health, right? I mentioned before that L'Oreal and Neutrogena like they're just full of parabens and toxins and chemicals and yet we have Jennifer Aniston or Cameron Diaz. I don't know, whatever the latest Hollywood celebrity is advertising these things. I was in Brisbane Airport in Australia a little while ago. And I saw one of those big digital billboards with Keira Knightley, the English actress and she was promoting one of the perfumes. I'm not sure which one it was and it's very glamorous, man. She looks glamorous and it's a glamorous setting.

Jesse Golden: Oh, it might be Chanel. I feel like its Chanel

James Swanwick: Yeah, may have been Chanel. I was thinking, man, this is just like the greatest marketing machine ever but essentially, they're promoting something that's very bad for you. 

Jesse Golden: Yeah. Not only that, most of the people have never actually used it. I was on the other side of marketing for so long as a model, they hand you the perfume, you've never smelled it, you never tried it. I was never as lucky as Keira Knightley but they're getting paid millions of dollars to be the face of these companies and they have no idea what goes, how it's made, or what's in it. But the industry is changing. There are more companies like me coming about I think also because of social media. There's more transparency in how we get to share and that's the good side of marketing. I try and be as genuine and as authentic as I can, I think that that really translates to a customer, just being honest.

James Swanwick: Yeah. Well, even with us being honest, and being transparent, the level of knowledge is frighteningly low, isn't it? Like in terms of education around these things, you and I seem to know how bad these things that we were all putting on our skin are? What most people are? Why don't more people know about this? Why aren't they aware of it, do you think?

Jesse Golden: Well, I think you hit the nail on the head. I mean, most people are home watching TV watching these commercials. As we were talking before we hopped on here, you used to live in California, and a lot of people are dreaming of this California dream where these celebrities are using these products and living this life and they associate it, you know, hand in hand and it's just not true. Lack of education, like you said, a lot of people just don't know. The people that do have the money to spend on marketing they show up more. They're able to get the word out on their products more and kind of tinker away a lot of these products that companies are starting to use the word natural or like jojoba oil. These little words that get people to think that it's more natural and a lot of them are starting to transfer over a little bit but there's still a lot of work to do.

James Swanwick: For sure. So your line is  The Golden Secrets. Tell us a little bit about what products you create and why they are so good for you, as opposed to what we traditionally know as those kinds of similar products on the mainstream market at the moment.

Jesse Golden: Yeah, so all of my formulas are based on ancient formulas so I'm not reinventing the wheel. These are ingredients that have stood the test of time that date back to Cleopatra, with Helio Christen, which is the immortal flower, Rosehip seed oil, some of the best ingredients on the planet. I have face oils, body oils, powders, essential oils, most products are multipurpose. That's one of the great things when you use natural products, you can use it on your face, your body, your hair, your nails.  A big part of just the products in themselves for me when I was creating my line is having been on the other side of the industry, and having everything be more of a superficial level, I really wanted to bring it beyond the skin. So every product comes with an affirmation card with specific affirmations, to encourage people to take a moment to tune in with themselves and give themselves a little moment of self-love. And women more than men, although I know your skin looks pretty good. So you might spend a lot of time taking care of it, but looks really good, by the way. We are doing all these things all the time, we're brushing our teeth, or washing our face we're putting products on. So why not bring some mindfulness into it and turn it into a little ritual of self-love, that's really what I love encouraging. The products in themselves are some of the best in the world, the ingredients you can't get any better, the formulations are insane, but also on top of it encouraging you to create these rituals of self-love. I believe self-love is the foundation for everything thereafter, that's kind of what sets me apart from other companies.

James Swanwick: I'm in alignment with you, they're on self-love and self-care, self-care is another way of saying. I have two health and wellness businesses, a sleep company, and I help people quit drinking. One of the things that I have my quit drinking clients do to reduce and ultimately eliminate their cravings is something that I've named the daily 20. In the morning, I want them to write down 20 things that they're grateful for in their life. Not three, not five, that's cute, that's nice, 20 and 20 activates the reticular activating system, which makes us then go about our day. We tend to see more things to be grateful for, simply because we did those 20 that list of 20 gratitudes, listed earlier in the morning. Because when you reduce your stress and anxiety reduces your cravings for alcohol or sugary foods or for you know, any addiction, quite frankly, it could be like TV or porn or it could be like love addiction. It could be anything out of a desire to seek refuge or to numb ourselves from whatever pain we feel tends to subside when we are living a life of appreciation versus expectation. So when you say you know, self-love is the greatest thing that you can do  I am in total alignment with you there and then things like your products, a great wonderful supplement to that as well, right? We're taking care of ourselves inside and then we're literally, like, on top of that building this beautiful supplemental kind of process to make us just feel better overall. Is that kind of where we're at?

Jesse Golden: Yeah, I mean, the products kind of become the tool to do the practice I think, especially for women and younger women. It's amazing to me, I was the same way years ago, I noticed that I had a negative dialogue internally, whether I was because of modeling, I grew up as a ballerina, so I had this inner critic, where instead of pointing out my positives, I would always point out my flaws. I can tell that you're with me on this, like whatever we put out into the world like we create. So it's so fascinating to me when women start using my products and they're like I couldn't even utter the affirmations because the affirmations are things like I love and approve of myself. My body is beautiful and safe and I'm worthy and you know, very beautiful empowering words and a lot of women can't even say that to themselves in the mirror, it’s a sure sign that you need to start saying it. It's so amazing when you use the product, it works hand in hand with this practice, kind of like your gratitude practice. The shift that happens because we all know, yes, topical treatments are amazing, but they can only go so far. You have to do the inner work and you can tell the people that do the inner work because they have an inner glow that just shines despite what they're putting on the skin. I kind of do like a back end process where I use the product to do it but it's working and it's amazing. I had a meeting today with one of my girls that works with me and it's just I feel like everything is coming together. We're just starting to get so many reviews a day, five-star reviews and DMS, and before and after pictures and just women like coming to life. We have more women than men that use our products so I keep referring to women, but we do have some men. I love getting these DMS and messages where people are like oh my gosh, I've created this ritual and my life has changed because of this little ritual of skincare.

James Swanwick: I love it. I'm sending you a DM right now, Golden secrets Instagram account. If you're listening, Instagram is @thegoldensecrets and the message is “I love the good you’re putting out in the world”. There we go,  Golden Secrets onInstagram. I wanted to ask you a skincare question, which maybe some of your women clients or customers experienced. I think I have pretty damn good skin because I haven't drunk since 2010 and I've always been putting natural products on my face. Sticking by the mantra that if I wouldn't put it in my mouth that I'm not going to put it on my face. Having said that, I went to a dermatologist recently. We want to do this check that a couple of sunspots that I had weren't cancerous. Thankfully they were not, however, I still have sunspots. Nevertheless, if I go really close here, there's one that's right there, that's kind of coming up a little bit, thankfully, there's no cancer in it, which is fantastic. I grew up in a very harsh Australian climate where the sun you know, the ozone layer is not as protective as it is in the Northern Hemisphere. Most of the damage to our skin I was told by the dermatologist is done from birth until age 20 then thereafter you're playing catch up, of course. Still wear a hat and all of that kind of stuff to protect yourself but most of the damage that's been done to my skin by the sun happened before I turned 21 essentially. I guess my question to you is two-fold, one,  what should I do for a sunspot, what do you advise your clients to do? And two,  what can people who are watching or listening now do to protect themselves from damage from the sun ongoing if they're an adult, obviously?

Jesse Golden: This is an interesting topic for me because I have always been in the sun, I'm kind of a sun worshiper. I grew up in the opposite climate that you grew up in. I grew up in Chicago where we rarely saw the sun so I kind of worshiped the sun like when it came out, we were laying out with tanning oil and I did this you know any chance that I got. Then I moved to Florida, the same thing, I was in the sun all the time, never wore sunscreen, I have a lot of melanin in my skin, so I never was one to burn. When I was modeling all through my 20s, skincare, makeup artists, my agents would say you're gonna look horrible in your 40s if you continue to do this, and you don't wear sunscreen and, and stuff like that. I'm 41 I'm about to be 42 and I think I still look pretty good so I have this theory about the sun. I think everybody is different obviously and that your climate also depends on it like in Australia, you have to be very careful. Depending on the melanin in your skin, that determines how long you can stay in the sun. I think that sunscreen has really given a lot of people a false sense of security because it completely blocks our body's own signals of telling us we've had enough sun. Our body's telling us we have had enough sun and we have gotten an efficient vitamin D which is going to help you not only look younger, but decrease cancer risk and everything else is when you get slightly pink. When you get slightly pink, a little sun glow, that's when you should seek shade, put a hat on, put some clothes on. Sunscreen, I feel like should be more of a last resort instead of a first resort. I don't think we were created to have to lather anything on our body every single day, I think that's the first thing and foremost. Also with the sun and sunspots, a lot of it has to do with diet. I've read studies and I'm not an expert in this, I've just read a lot about it, it could be an over intake of protein. Taking things like extensive thin, microalgae, tons of antioxidants, different fruits, and vegetables as you possibly can also help you not get burned, not get sunspots. Topically, I think you're doing the right thing as far as using natural products because when you use like, let's say chemical retinoids or anything that has like acid in it, that could make your skin more sensitive to the sun, and then you do go on the sun, you're gonna get sunspots, you know, melasma, you're gonna get all these kinds of issues. So I think you're on the right path.

James Swanwick: Thank you. I hope that was helpful as well to anyone who might be experiencing a little concerned about that. I get a lot of pushback from especially my parents who were from an earlier generation and also from other people when I don't put some cream on especially in December when we tend to go to an island called Stradbroke island off the east coast of Australia for Christmas because the sun is harsh in Australia in December, really hot. 

Jesse Golden: I know, I've been there. I do remember it was like I had to get out and I mean, I couldn't stay in the sun nearly as long as I would here.

James Swanwick: No. What I do is I go out for 15-minute blocks. What that means is that, I won't put some cream on and I'll be in the sun for 10 or 15 minutes, I might go in the ocean and have a swim for 10 minutes and then I'll come back and I'll put a shirt on and I'll put my hat on, and glasses and I'll cover myself upright and I've got a long sleeve shirt. I cover myself up and then maybe 45 minutes an hour later depending on how long we're gonna stay at the beach I'll just remove it and I'll expose myself to the sun again. So for me, whether it's a placebo effect or something different I just feel like my body was designed to get the sun I want to give it the sun. Even though it's particularly harsh, I'm just gonna limit my time, I'm gonna cut it off so I'm not getting sunburned, I'm not doing damage. The problem is if you know if, especially with my bald head if I was to go out with no sun cream, no hat, no protection and stay up there for even an hour, I would be like a red lobster.

Jesse Golden: My son is a surfer. So like there are times where he does have to use sunscreen. When we do we try to find the most natural organic non-nanoparticle coral reef-safe sunscreen. There's this amazing book by this woman, Elizabeth Florida, it’s called sunscreen, biohazard waste or something. It's really a fascinating book because he talks about if sunscreen actually worked, then skin cancer rates would have gone down in the last 30 years and they've actually skyrocketed. I think a part of it is not only our diet, of course, but not getting efficient vitamin D because we're constantly blocking ourselves. So I think exactly what you're doing intuitively is a smart thing. Just not getting burned and listening to your body like everything else we do that we're told to ignore.

James Swanwick: I want to ask you about sleep. Obviously, I have a sleep company, Swanwick Sleep and I wear the Swannies, blue light blocking glasses, and I've helped lots of people and especially entrepreneurs. I got my glasses. You got yours. You got your Swannies rocking there, yeah, there we go. Oh, nice. Rocking them. How have you found them? And how have they impacted you in wearing them?

Jesse Golden: Well, I mean, because I have my own company. I'm on the computer way more than I like, I'm on social media way more than I like. This is a great way to make me feel less guilty of how much time I actually spend on these things. I think it's amazing. I think it's great. I always tell everybody that they should get them.

James Swanwick: Have you noticed? I mean you're a mother and you're a business owner, right? You're running a big business, so you're an entrepreneur, you've got to be on your game. Obviously, fogginess and irritability are just a destroyer of business effectiveness. Wearing the glasses certainly, you know, predominantly if you wear these glasses at nighttime when you're on the screens is going to improve your sleep and the next day that's going to improve focus and clarity and productivity and efficiency. So what's been the benefit that you felt maybe as an entrepreneur and or a mother from wearing the glasses, sleeping better, performing better?

Jesse Golden: Yeah, I mean, thank goodness, I've always slept really well. I think I think more than, you know, even the sleep issue, it's like an eye strain. Like, whenever I feel like my eyes are straining just from looking at the screen too much. I'll just that's what will remind me to put them on more than, like, the blue block and the melatonin and all that stuff.

James Swanwick: Yeah, yeah. Wonderful. Tell us, how do you organize your workday, in conjunction with whatever it is that you'd like to do in terms of your, your personal life, or hobbies and interests and being a mom as well. What's a typical day for Jesse look like and how is it structured?  Purposefully you know, for chief optimization, and overall health and wellness, I guess.

Jesse Golden: I kind of break it up in sections, I've been going through different phases, since this whole quarantine thing. I'm working from home but I try and get most of my work done in the morning, that's when I'm most productive. Get my emails done, any kind of work things, and then I'll work out. I always work out in a fasted state, so I'll usually work out and then I'll eat at lunchtime and then probably, I'll usually work some more. I kind of do like little increments and I'll take a break, I'll go for a walk, I live close to the beach. I'll either go for a beach walk, or I'll go for a little walk in the canals just to kind of switch up the day so I'm not sitting too long, so I'm not looking at the screen too long. Then the nighttime family dinner, and I have my sauna that I like to do and it's pretty chill. It's a pretty chill, chill day, but like I break it up between family and work and health. It's those three things.

James Swanwick: And you feel like you have a nice balance there.

Jesse Golden: Yeah, I mean, I think seeking balance is constantly the balance within itself. You know, some days are better than others where I feel like work kind of takes over. But then other days, I'll just, okay, I'm done. My son gets done at school at 2:30 and we'll just go to Malibu and take him surfing and I'll just take the rest of the day off. So I'm able to like, shut things off, and really appreciate my life and I'm so grateful to be able to do that.

James Swanwick: Yeah, wonderful. Jesse, tell us where our listeners and viewers can find out more about you and the golden secrets.

Jesse Golden: Yeah, I'm most active on my Instagram, Jesse Golden, @jessegolden, and then The Golden Secrets also has an Instagram and our website is

James Swanwick: I love it. So now you're getting two stalking messages from me where I love the good that you are putting out in the world. There we go, I love it. Jesse, thank you so much for your guidance on all things skincare and self-care and self-love, I think. I appreciate that and keep up the great work and all the good that you're putting out in the world. So thank you so much for your time.

Jesse Golden: You too. Thank you so much.


Don’t let your busy schedule and chronic disease prevent you from unlocking your full potential. Click below to listen to this episode on the go.

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Celesté Polley


Celesté is a writer, creative photographer, bookworm, pianist, minimalist, environmentalist at heart, professional napper, and Earth wanderer from South Africa, operating in the wellness industry. She is obsessed with books, plants, the moon, and the misunderstood wild Baboon Spiders (a.k.a Tarantulas) of the arachnid world. Her curious nature has her on an unstoppable journey to work with like-minded humans, but also to help people overcome their health and mental struggles.

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