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Juice Cleansing En Masse: A Fashion Industry Rite of Passage

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You know Frank—he's been writing about menswear, sales, television, new shops, the recession, Lisa Loeb, the Golden Girls and getting blasted for Racked for over two years. Well, we think it's time you got to know him and his quirky-irreverent views on life and fashion even better with his column: Love, Frank. Taking the form of an open letter and always signed with love, Frank will rant about whatever style-related conundrum he encounters in a given week. So buckle your two-toned leather Moschino belts, folks, it's going to be ? Something.

Image via Gourmande in the Kitchen

Dear Potential Fasters and Cleansers,

I recently partook in a three day juice fast—a fashion industry rite of passage. Signing on, along with a fairly large group of coworkers, for three days and three nights without solid food, caffeine, or wine.

Why? Because everyone's doing them and they come in such chic little bottles! Also, health and stuff.

You might think a group fast in an office environment would be a mistake. And that multiple despondent, starving, unbalanced lunatics embarking on a detox would cause, to say the very least, friction at the office. Think about it: The bitchiness! The bathroom lines! And, it's worth mentioning, what about refrigerator space?

The issues were certainly addressed. It was determined that having "everyone act bitchy but looking fabulous" would be a nice change—that it "would be like working at Vogue!" Also, Office Services cleaned out the refrigerator.

The experience was, for me at least, extremely positive.

We went with the Cooler Cleanse, rather than the more ubiquitous Blueprint Cleanse, for a couple of reasons. One, there is a bit more juice variety—ten or so rather than only six. Also, it's a few bucks cheaper and they offer a group discount. Money talks.

Finally, Salma Hayek co-founded the Cooler Cleanse. And she's married to Francois-Henri Pinault, the chief executive of PPR. So, in a way, the Cooler Cleanse is like the Balenciaga of juice fasts.

(Go with it.)

Anyway, we embarked upon our journey towards dewy, enlightened health on a Monday.

Most of us laid off meat and dairy and carbs and caffeine and booze the preceding Wednesday or Thursday; a few of us did not. One of those who did not? They took ill and had a car service drive them home—to central Jersey. A few other individuals had some issues with the green juices, some discomfort, some major yuck moments. But, let's be real—if you don't like eating kale you're not going to like drinking it (especially on day three—once the juices start separating and tasting flat). This, to be sure, is not for everybody.

Each day you start off with a sweet green juice—kale and stuff, sweetened with apple and lemon. You're not going to love it at first sip—but it is quite tasty. Sweet greens are followed, two hours later, by your fun juice of the day: Pineapple ginger (so sweet) or grapefruit and mint (delightfully tart) or watermelon and mint (I feel like this would have been the favorite if watermelon were in season. In February it just tasted kind of gray.) The third juice is hardcore—it's a chunky green mess of dandelion, parsley, kale, cucumber, spinach and watercress. With just a hint of pear to keep you from gagging. It was fine. And it sort of tasted like aloe.

Two hours after the green monster there's a nice break: Spicy lemonade (amazing) or coconut water (almost decadent). Dinner is a beet-based blend with apples and carrots. It's very, very beety. And, finally, about two hours before bed, you get your "steak and champagne:" The nut milks. There are two options, a cashew milk or a Brazilian nut milk—sweetened with dates and vanilla bean. The Brazilian nut milk is good; the cashew nut milk is life-changing. Like eye-rolling in the back of your head life-changing. Like, who-needs-real-food life-changing.

Each has over 800 calories and more than 75 grams of fat (how many effing nuts do they pack into those bottles?)

In between you're welcome to have as much green and herbal tea and water you can stomach.

It's not as bad as it sounds—yes, I was hungry. But not in a gnawing, horrible way. Waking up was a breeze; energy was abundant; almost all of us lost a few pounds. My skin stayed exactly the same.

There were no screaming matches at the office. There was, however, some over-sharing in terms of, uh, elimination. And, considering we acted all high and mighty for three days, and took over the entire refrigerator and the entire recycling bin and talked of little else, the non-fasters were mostly supportive (some snickering happened—which is totally fair).

One sort-of disappointment: Many people who partake in these things report being enlightened. They report changing their lives for the better. They report long term lifestyle changes ? I'm still waiting for that bit of change inspiration (changepiration?).

Yes, I certainly took my time in terms of going back to eating normally. In fact, the first day or two I couldn't finish even a modest meal. But, that feeling is fleeting—unfortunately very, very fleeting. I'll leave it there.

· Love, Frank [Racked]