Lauren Conrad: A Reality Star Who Embraced The ‘Business’ Side Of Show

Lauren Conrad

She is one of pop culture’s most recognizable faces. She was catapulted to fame while still in High School on the MTV show Laguna Hills, became a huge household name in the follow-up reality TV show ‘The Hills’ and is now a well-established designer.

Her label LC is sold in Kohl’s but it is her unique back story and reason for fame which caught our eye. She was interviewed for the July issue of Marie Claire which also features her on the cover.

The thing about Lauren Conrad is that you never see her in the tabloid headlines or gossip pages. Why? Because she is focused on her job and doesn’t live for fame. When she was young she was never the best student, she admits to the Mag, but used the reality TV opportunity to turn her creative interests into a career.

“Lauren wasn’t a great student — she wasn’t that interested,” says her father Jim Conrad, an architect. “We figured out along the way that she was an artist and her real love was fashion.”

They were meticulously involved every step of the way in her TV career and what you didn’t see on screen was that during the MTV stint, she was meeting with agents and using that opportunity to forge a name for herself to launch her own fashion business.

Her goal was never to stay in TV, which is why she left and never came back. Instead, she left at a time when her clothing line was starting to get established and when she knew that she didn’t need to grasp onto fame and get sucked into the lifestyle like Spencer and Heidi, Audrina, Jason Wahler etc.

As for partying like a rock star? “It feels done for me. I’m OK with it being done…”

lafw lauren conrad backstage

We love that she is a determined, focused, and successful young woman who despite not having the most stellar academic repertoire, knew that she still possessed a great talent and learned how to work toward an achievable goal.

But that doesn’t mean she didn’t have her share of negativity that comes part and parcel of being a celebrity. The carefully edited version of Lauren which MTV portrayed didn’t do her justice, which was part of the reason she also wrote a book called Infamous. The fictional prose was her way of telling the public how manipulated her persona was, courtesy of MTV and this was her chance to set the record straight and move on from it all.

“I only ever got to tell half my story,” she says on why she started writing. “People are very quick to judge these days, especially behind the anonymity of a screen name. It’s very easy to say, ‘I hate her, I hate what she wore, she seems mean.’ But you’re only seeing a small fraction of [my] life.”

And moving on is certainly what she has managed to do. Aside from her own line, she is also the sole investor in another line, the contemporary Paper Crown, and her next venture is an e-commerce site called The Little Market, launching in September, which will sell artisanal crafts made by women from around the world, providing them with opportunities to support their families. She’s doing it with friend Hannah Taylor Skvarla (Bali, El Salvador, Africa, India and Nepal), an advocate for Human Rights Watch. Conrad says “Hannah is good about educating me about not just the beautiful places we go to but also the issues people there face.”

And her advice for dealing with negativity can apply to anyone, at any time. You can’t control others, but you can control how you react. “There is always gonna be a little bit of … negativity, which just comes with the territory,” she says. “You realize it doesn’t matter. It’s so simple, but it’s a very hard lesson to learn. At the end of the day, it doesn’t really affect you in any way.”

Most of all, she is using her opportunities to pay it forward, which makes her the cherry on our ice cream this week. “I think when you’ve been fortunate, you have a moral obligation to do things for others.”

We love you LC!

LC, Marie Claire July 2013

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