'Real Housewives of Beverly Hills' Star Kyle Richards dishes on her costar Lisa Vanderpump, her family and her love for the RHONJ cast
by Whitney Ullman
For many years, the tabloids loved to follow Hollywood socialite Paris Hilton. Her fun demeanor, free spirit and heavy partying, eventually launched her stardom and she became one of the most talked about reality celebrities. Fast forward a few years later, and now the spotlight is off of Paris and onto her beautiful Beverly Hills aunt, Kyle Richards. Kyle is one of the seven cast members on Bravo's reality hit, 'The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.'
Kyle is a mother of four, wife to a loving husband, former child actor, and an entrepreneur. She is a fan favorite because of her unique ability to stay out of drama and maintain a great balance between her family and friends. As you'll see in our interview, she is a lot like you and me.
Kyle recently visited Resorts Casino in Atlantic City and sat down with NJ.com to discuss her family and life as a reality star.
NJ.com: Have you been to Atlantic City Before? What was your favorite part?
Kyle Richards: I remember as a little girl, my sister Kathy and her husband Rick [Paris's parents], used to take Paris and me to the boardwalk when she was a baby.
Are you close to your nieces, Paris and Nicki? As well as your other family?
Richards: Yes, I am, and I have always been. I was a little girl when they were born, so it's more like a sister relationship. They are the little sisters I never had. It's a lot of fun, we are all very close.
How does it feel to be a part of the 'Real Housewives' franchise?
Richards: Well, initially going into it, I never thought I wanted to do a reality show. I thought, this is going to be an adventure and a lot of fun. It would be like having professional home videos of my life. I had no idea what I was going in to. It is now very challenging and anxiety provoking, which is embarrassing for me to say.
Many people want to know, how real is the show?
Richards: Oh, it's definitely real. It's not scripted or set up. However there are times when people don't know the whole story, which can be very difficult at times. [She recapped the recent story of how it seemed that Taylor didn't know where her daughter Kennedy was, but in reality, all had been worked out, and Kyle and her sister Kim both defended Taylor, but that didn't air either]...So it can be really frustrating at times when you don't get the full story, but it's all real.
They say that being on a reality show can ruin a family, but you seem to have it all together, how do you manage to do that?
Richards: I really just try to separate my life from the show. My husband and kids come first and when I am shooting they work around my schedule with my kids. When i'm not, I just really remove myself. I watch my episodes so I can see what's happening so I can write by blog [laughs]....my life is pretty normal outside of the fact that it's documented on television.
Are you still friends with Lisa Vanderpump?
Richards: Yes. We've had our ups and downs. We're not as close as we were, but it's kind of a work in progress type of thing, but we are still friends.
Where do you get your clothes? Are they from a stylist or your own personal wardrobe?
Richards: NO! We don't have a stylist or makeup or hair person, we are on our own. All of my clothes are from my store, Kyle by Alene Too. We just opened in Beverly Hills and carry everything from jeans, t-shirts and sweatpants to black tie and everything in between. We are a few doors down from Lisa's restaurant Villa Blanca, so it's like 'Housewives' row.
Do your friends/family have any fun nicknames for you?
Richards: They call me Ky. I don't know why. However, when I was little, this is so embarrassing and no one ever asked me that, but when I was born, Kathy called me Doogie. I'm like why do you call me that? So as I got older I said, quit calling me that, I don't like that name and now they call me Ky.
What are three things people may not know about you?
1. I watch 'Real Housewives of New Jersey' and I watch [Real Housewives of] 'Atlanta' sometimes because I like Nene Leakes. Other than that, I don't really watch television.
2. I just started watching, 'The Following', because I know the creator and I like crime stuff.
3. I have really bad anxiety that I do talk about in my book. I don't think people realize how serious I am when i say that. I have a real problem with anxiety. I also have Fibromyalgia and for years I didn't know what it was. I was in so much pain and every time I get anxiety those symptoms kick in....my poor husband, in the middle of the night, i'm like honey I can't feel my arms. He's like, you're fine!
You're a big advocate for the fight against cancer, what is your motivation
Richards: I lost my mom to breast cancer, lost my father to cancer, I lost 3 half siblings and 2 uncles. So for me it's not just breast cancer, but all cancers. I'm a mother of 4 and it's very important to me to try to do as much as I can to raise money for it. Hopefully one day, my kids don't have to worry about it like I do.
Whitney is an on-air multimedia personality, and works behind the scenes helping businesses gain extra exposure, through her WIN Promotions video production services.