Trixie Mattel was a fan favourite when she competed on Season 7 of the Logo hit TV series RuPauls Drag Race, and her (Two!) eliminations from the show caused controversy online. Her signature look is unusual and distinctive, even for a Drag Queen, and, combined with her Charisma, Uniqueness, Nerve and Talent – the four most important things RuPaul is looking for in his quest to discover and crown America’s Next Drag Superstar – it helped her become a standout contestant on her series, and one of its most loved alumni.
Tell us a bit about how you first got in to Drag?
I got in drag for the first time because another drag queen in a show I was in was unavailable. I filled in quickly and I looked rotted. But i just kept doing it and now I’m a wealthy legend.
Where do you find inspiration for your looks and make up?
I always look for the skin/structure of Barbie, the eyes of My Little Pony, and the proportions of Polly Pocket. I like to look like the girl toys I wasn’t allowed to play with as a kid.
Your style of drag, particularly your make up, is quite an unusual, over the top form of drag – what was the initial response to that when you appeared on drag race , and how did you feel about criticisms that came your way as a result of it…we seen on Season 8 even fellow Queens like Acid Betty could be quite shady about it.
My makeup is heavily inspired by the way dolls were painted in the 1960s. It’s a conceptual mask. If drag queens exaggerate women, my look sort of exaggerates drag queens. I think artists should make strong choices. I think I’m the most beautiful thing in the world.
Many people ask me why I decided to do my makeup different than every other queen.
I always respond ‘why do all drag queens do their makeup the same?’
Is there a particular look of yours that stands out in your memory as the best, most iconic Trixie Mattel look?
My season 7 finale look was this giant, magical pink barbie fantasy. It was equal parts glamorous and ignorant.
You were a hugely popular Queen on your season…how does all that love from fans feel, and have you ever had any strange fan encounters?
I have never felt surprised by the way people connect with Trixie. The look resonates with the toys that people had in their childhoods, so its fun and comforting. And the comedy dives to a deeper, more dark part of the human experience. It’s sort of like feeding a dog medicine by burying the pill in yummy dog food.
Every fan experience is a little weird because I didn’t start doing drag for Meet and Greets, etc. I never know how to respond to the love because I am always more grateful for the fan than they could possibly be for my drag.
As a standout contestant from season 7 and a fan favourite, we where surprised you didn’t return for All Stars 2. Why do you think that was and, if there was a third series, would you be up for it?
I love All-Stars 2! I am literally snatched bald watching it in my Katya shirt. I am living for Tatianna as well. My version of the All-Stars 2 cast would be a little different- I would have included Milk and BenDelaCreme. And Ongina ! Kim Chi and I are more focused on doing The Amazing Race together anyway. WE COULD WIN.
How has RuPauls Drag Race changed your life, and your experience as a working Drag Queen?
Every time I see Ru, I thank her for changing my whole life forever. I am living the life I have always imagined for myself. I have become a better man.
Through competing on Drag Race and going the subsequent tours, you’ve got to spend a lot of time with a lot of Drag Queens. Are there any you’re friends with away from the stage (we know from our interview with Courtney Act you recently hung out with her and Katya!), and who are some of your favourite fellow Queens to watch perform?
Katya is my ride or die. Meaning I will ride her all-stars coattails until I die. But I also remain close with Kim Chi. Major Scales, Jinkx Monsoon’s stage partner, is another close friend of mine!
UNHhhh is a hugely popular Webseries; how do you and Katya come up with the topics you discuss every week, and is it as much fun to make as it looks?
It’s insane! UNHhhh has gotten insane viewership and we LIVE for filming it. We just bring looks and laugh ourselves to death. Katya kills me dead with her warped mind. We never have a shortage of topics because we find each other endlessly hilarious and insightful. We are opposite, but we compliment each other. Like an ornate Sunday hat being worn by dead dog.
Do you have any upcoming projects you can tell us about, or any plans to tour anytime soon?
You have no idea. I’m touring with my stand-up show “Ages 3 and Up” for the next few months! See it- you’ll die. It’s like watching UNHhhh but with no Katya- WIN WIN ! Even better!
Speaking of tours – what are your on the road travel essentials?
I require my Snuggie for the flight, my guitar for downtime in my hotel room, and my black eyeshadow- Bulletproof by Sugarpill.
If you were to host a dinner party in which you could invite 5 people, living or dead, to dine with you, who would they be?
Maria Bamford, Parker Posey, Loretta Lynn, Jeffree Star, and my Grandpa Ed.
You made a surprise early exit from Season 7 of Drag Race, before making a return in Episode 8. As great as it was to see you back, it unfortunately meant you missed fan favourite the Snatch Game – can you tell us a bit about what you would’ve done for that if you where there?
Originally I was going to do Anne Frank, but it was a discouraged choice. So i was going to do my RuPaul. I am fascinated by her “on” TV voice and the way she can deliver lame puns with a high-brow sophistication that makes them golden and hilarious.
How do you feel about the fact you’re probably influencing some up and coming Drag Queens in the making, and probably even some future Drag Race contestants, and what advice would you give them?
The real race begins after drag race. Winning drag race doesn’t mean you’ll work and losing doesn’t mean you won’t become a legend, icon, and star. I lost twice and I have worked nonstop since.
On RuPauls Drag Race you already gained some experience with Lip Syncing (For your life!), but if you were invited to be a contestant on Lip Sync Battle, which TWO songs would you chose to Lip Sync to?
I would like to do “The Great Gig In the Sky” by Pink Floyd and “Til I Can Make It On My Own” by Tammy Wynette.