1. The Hustle is REAL!
Reality TV stars may get a bad rep for being “famous for no reason” but some of the most notable faces of America’s modern-day soap operas have parlayed their time on TV into big business opportunities.
From launching fashion efforts to writing books, see some of the most common side hustles in reality TV-land and who’s working overtime!
2. STYLE: Tami Roman, “Basketball Wives”
Tami signed an endorsement deal with Crème de la Crème Hair boutique in October of 2011. But the arrangement turned sour when the company realized that Tami wasn’t keeping up her end of the bargain by promoting the brand on the show. Instead, she decided to push her *own* weave line. The company got their PR when they ended up suing Tami and making headlines; both parties have since settled privately out of court.
3. STYLE & FITNESS: Jennifer Williams, “Basketball Wives”
Jennifer may have dipped out of “Basketball Wives” but not without shouting out her cosmetics line first! The former reality star debuted “Lucid” in November of 2011 with only five lip-gloss shades and has now expanded to eight different colors (shop it here: http://bit.ly/1hy9s90). And, who could forget her fitness company that includes clothing, DVDs and studio classes? http://bit.ly/HLRPme!
4. STYLE: Tasha Marbury, “Basketball Wives”
Tasha opened her extensions bar, “Celebrity Sew Ins,” in Brooklyn this summer with fellow VH1 star and hairstylist Elgin Charles (“Beverly Hills Fabulous”). But she quickly had to defend the salon’s practices after her televised grand opening turned into a disaster! When castmates criticized the business (Evelyn called it “a mess”), Tasha issued an apology on Instagram and said she’s worked out the kinks.
5. STYLE: Draya Michele, “Basketball Wives: LA”
After launching a sexy bikini line, Draya set her sights on more clothing options for baddies. She launched, “Fine Ass Girls,” a line of sweatshirts, tees and beanies that carry the company’s name on them. “It’s like a confidence booster,” she said of the brand, which sold out the day after it launched! Find out more here: http://bit.ly/17XMtyi and shop: http://bit.ly/1eByDp1!
6. STYLE: Yandy Smith, “Love & Hip Hop”
Most of the reality stars on this list are known for their big, blinged-out earrings, so it’s no surprise that one of them is trying to capitalize on it. Yandy came out with her own jewelry line that pretty much has all of the blinged-out jewelry you can think of, but she didn’t stop there! “Everything Girls Love” has expanded into a clothing line and digital magazine too: http://bit.ly/16TX7oU.
7. STYLE: Emily Bustamante, “Love & Hip Hop”
After exiting stage left on LAHH, Emily gave Instagram followers a sneak peak this summer of her shoe collection, “Emily B,” (pictured) that she said would launch in the Fall. No news about the official release date, but in September she told NicoleBitchie.com that her partnership with ZigiNY was still on the way and that she was planning a Spring/Summer ’14 shoe collection along with bags.
8. STYLE: Sheree Whitfield, “The Real Housewives of Atlanta”
It seemed like it took years for Sheree to debut her fashion line “She by Sheree” but at least when she finally put it out, it was presented during New York Fashion Week in September 2009. While the clothes got less than stellar reviews (we still think she should’ve run with “Who ‘Gon Check Me Boo!?” shirts!), you can still purchase pieces from her affordable jewelry line here: http://bit.ly/1eBqcdn.
9. STYLE & HOSTING: La La Anthony, “La La’s Full Court Life”
La La allowed cameras to follow her this season as she prepared to launch a mineral-based makeup line, “Motives for La La” that’s still going strong with a Fall/Winter collection (shop it here: http://bit.ly/1eBAdr0). In August, she launched a clothing collection for ShopBop.com called “5th & Mercer” that’s been spotted on some of her celeb pals. The former MTV VJ also picks up red carpet and TV reunion gigs.
10. HOSTING: Toccara Jones, “America’s Next Top Model,” “The Ultimate Merger”
At this point, Toccara really has outgrown her notoriety as an ANTM finalist because she’s been a steady host on BET’s ward show red carpets for some time. She had another shot at reality TV fame with “The Ultimate Merger,” but even in the headlines covering that show, she was referenced as a BET correspondent.
11. STYLE & HOSTING: Angela Simmons, “Run’s House” “Daddy’s Girls”
We first saw this Simmons sister get her entrepreneurship on with the “Pastry” shoe line she started with her sister, Vanessa, and she’s still at it! This summer, she launched an e-commerce line, “AngelaIAm,” featuring up-and-coming designers and previewed her own upcoming Angela By Angela Simmons collection: http://bit.ly/1deu7n. Angela also did a hosting stint on BET’s “106 & Park” from July to September.
12. FITNESS: Phaedra Parks, “The Real Housewives of Atlanta”
RHOA season 5 was a battle of the booties when Phaedra and Kenya fell out after trying to release a DVD effort together. When financial negotiations weren’t settled—or agreed upon—Kenya decided to release a solo effort, while Phaedra continued on with her “Donkey Booty” series (that was later remixed to be called “Phine Body”) alongside her husband Apollo. Shop the DVDs here: http://bit.ly/1cdoOsz
13. FITNESS: Kenya Moore, “The Real Housewives of Atlanta”
Kenya released her own workout DVD in March after her agreement with RHOA co-star Phaedra turned sour. To add more insult to injury, Kenya’s effort ended up selling more copies on Amazon.com within the first week of its release (shop it here: http://amzn.to/1cMLg0C). Unfortunately, the women still haven’t been able to work out their beef.
14. LIQUOR: Somaya Reece, “Love & Hip Hop”
OK, new liquor brands are usually more common amongst bigger musical, TV and movie stars, but we have to give Somaya an honorable mention for trying it. This original member of Love & Hip Hop NY made a bold venture outside of her rap career to launch her own tequila brand, LA Jefa, last year. But while she did make a publicity push on Twitter and Facebook, the brand still hasn’t made it off the cutting room floor.
15. BOOKS: Phaedra Parks, “The Real Housewives of Atlanta”
As if juggling two kids, a husband, lawyer duties, a funeral home and random business ventures, like her workout DVD series, weren’t enough, Phaedra released a book this month! In “Secrets of a Southern Belle” this hilarious “Housewife” offers advice on fashion, dating, etiquette and matters of the workplace. Keep the checks coming, honey! Buy it here: http://bit.ly/17NsJzf
16. BOOKS & STYLE: Cynthia Bailey, “The Real Housewives of Atlanta”
The former model tapped into her expertise to launch “The Bailey Agency School of Fashion” which we’ve seen expand into one of her husband Peter’s new properties this season. In October, she and Peter also released a memoir, “Carry-On Baggage: Our Nonstop Flight,” that chronicles their journey of raising a blended family, running a mini-empire and keeping marriage sexy after 40: http://amzn.to/1blzHK.
17. BOOKS: Erica Mena, “Love & Hip Hop”
Just when you thought Erica was airing out all her drama on screen, the LAHH star released a memoir, “Underneath it All,” in April that details her childhood with a drug dealer father and hustling mother. Check it out here: http://amzn.to/1cMNLAa.
18. BOOKS: Frankie Lyons, “Keyshia Cole: The Way It Is”
Keyshia Cole’s mama is definitely a character, so we weren’t surprised when she decided to pen her own book, “The Best Years I Never Had.” Frankie has said that while the book is all about her drug addiction and chaotic life, she wants others to read it to avoid her mistakes. Get it here: http://amzn.to/17XYljR