Karrueche was once so shy that she swore she’d never be an actress

Karrueche Tran was once so shy that she swore she’d never be an actress. 

Guess what she does for a living now?

If you guessed actress, you got it spot on. Karrueche is no longer the shy girl she once was – she has blossomed into a brilliant actress who has no qualms about being in the limelight. She currently stars on TNT’s “Claws,” and she is just getting started.

The actress and Galore Covergirl, is apart of our Summer Bombshell Issue for a reason. Karrueche’s acting career may just be taking off, but because of her obvious talents, it’s clear she has a bright future ahead of her. We sat down with Karrueche to discuss skincare, her aspirations, “Claws,” and more. Check out the exclusive cover shoot and interview below!

Leotard: Galore x NAKD, Suit: Maison The Faux, Bra: Matte Brand, Kneck Tie: Uncuffed, Sunglasses: Vintage, Earrings: 8 Other Reasons, Gloves: Stylist’s Own, Rings and cuffs: Larucci. Belts: Vintage, Shoes: Ruthie Davis

You recently starred on the TNT show “Claws,” as the character, Virginia. What was something you really enjoyed about filming Season 1?

I’m still growing as an actress and this was the biggest production that I’ve ever been a part of. To add that to my resume, to be able to work alongside other great talent – I was so excited. It was the feeling of being a part of this production that was the best thing.

You said once that you never wanted to act because you were so shy. What changed?

I hit a point in my life where I had to figure things out. At that point, I had a following on social media, so I was able to use my platform to make money. But, I wanted something with longevity. I had been asked to do reality shows like “Love and Hip Hop.”

At the time, I wasn’t really interested and my manager asked if I ever acted before. I said no but I’ll at least give it a try. If it works, it works, if it doesn’t, then it doesn’t. I did a very small role called, “Fright Night Files,” about five years ago. I had one line that I was nervous about all day.

It sparked interest for me.

What was something you learned about yourself as an actress?

I felt like in acting, I was figuring out who Karreuche was. It was another stepping stone for me – maturing, growing, and becoming a woman. Realizing what I want and don’t want. I can’t rely on my followers. I made sure I worked with a personal acting coach and I started working out. I just found different ways to better myself.

Jacket: Namilia, Skirt: Matte Brand, Bralette: I.AM.GIA., Sunglasses: Poppy Lissiman, Earrings: House Of Emmanuel, Sock: Topshop, Shoes: Ruthie Davis

What was the coolest thing about living in NOLA?

The food is off the chain. It’s hard to eat and be healthy. The people have that southern hospitality, they’re so nice. Even to this day, they are very traditional. My very first Mardi Gras, me and my girls got dressed up and went out.

At first I didn’t really understand it, but being in the crowd with the people and seeing how happy they were and just the energy. I really enjoyed it. It wasn’t like an event in LA, where it’s overwhelming with a lot of people. They stick to their traditions, regardless of everything else. I really enjoy that.

What sort of roles do you want to tackle in your career?

Because I’m a growing actress, I want to try everything. All types of movies. But, I definitely want to do something where I’m kicking some ass. Like “Tomb Raiders” or “The Fast & The Furious,” where I’m a badass girl. Something very powerful. I just want to be kicking some butt.

What’s next for you acting wise?

We wrap up “Claws” around June, and I’m supposed to be filming a movie in New York after that. I’m really excited about it. I’ve always wanted to shoot in New York. Nothing is set in stone. You know how the business is, something comes up last minute. I just want to keep this journey of growing and continuing to work hard and expand myself as an actor.

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What issues have you run into as a woman of color in the industry?

Personally, no, I haven’t. It is unfortunate that a lot of woman do run into situations and certain problems because of the color of their skin. With a lot of movement happening this year, with woman of color, I think we are definitely pushing towards a new day. We’re getting out there, we are doing more. It’s a great year.

Top & Shorts: The Blonds, Hat: Vintage, Earrings: House Of Emmanuel, Choker: Go Go Phillip, Body Chain: Stylist Own, Boots: House Of CB

How do you deal with someone trolling you on social media?

At this point, I don’t even respond or pay attention to it. A couple years ago, it used to be hard. I was constantly in the media for a lot of bullshit. A lot of people had their opinions and comments. It was very hard to not read them and not indulge, becoming consumed by it. I had to slowly throw my phone away. You definitely have to create a tough outer skin.

Unfortunately, people are going to say what they are going to say regardless – whether it’s negative or positive. Especially with social media, our lives are so public. We open up that door, allowing those people to come in. They say what they want. You have to look at the bigger picture. You have to realize half these people aren’t doing shit but sitting on their phones saying nasty comments. They usually just want a reaction from you.

Are you one to keep your relationships more private when you exist on such a public platform? If so, why?

Romantically, I definitely try to keep as private as possible – just for my own sake. I don’t want that headache. When it comes to my friends, I’m very open and vocal about their presence on my Instagram. My family sometimes, I’m a little bit weary of posting them, because I don’t want to expose them to that world.

Especially if they’re older. They don’t necessarily understand social media and comments. It’s too much. When it comes to family and romantic relationships, I try to keep it private.

How do you think that we can all get away from the “someone’s girl” trope?

It’s disrespectful to refer to somebody through somebody else as their material object. We have a name; we have our own identities. I’ve dealt with that for a while. Slowly I’d like to just do my own thing and work hard and focus on myself. Slowly that’ll change.

Jacket: The Blonds, Bikini Top & Bottom: Galore x NAKD, Pants: Vex, Belt: Chanel, Earrings: House Of Emmanuel, Sunglasses: Gigi x Vogue, Shoes: Ruthie Davis

What are your relationship deal breakers?

Has to be clean, has to have nice teeth, has to smell good. Teeth are big thing for me. I’m affectionate. Also, respect. How they treat the woman in their life – their mothers and sisters. If I feel comfortable around them or not. With some guys, I feel like I’m in a shell. Other guys, I feel like I can be myself and comfortable. It’s all about vibes. Good vibes that connect with one another.

You’ve said you’d be into dating women. Who is your female celebrity crush and why?

It used to be Ruby Rose. Now it’s Emily Ratajkowski. She just got married, but she is so gorgeous and hot. I’m always looking at her Instagram liking all her pictures. She is goals.

How do you cut through the negativity?

The same as dealing with haters – you have to look on the brighter side. It is looking at the bigger picture. I don’t let it consume my brain. I’m the type of person if I let it in a little bit and I keep overthinking, then suddenly I’m the negative person.

Now, I have all these negative vibes and energy exuding from me. I don’t want that. I try as much as possible to not let it affect me. It took some time to do, it’s not easy at all. When you’re 30 years old, you have to just deal with it.

Who grounds you and how so?

My family and friends. They’re the people closest to me. Especially times like this when I’m far and not living in LA. When I am able to see and talk to them, it brings me back to reality. Through all the work and the madness that I usually have to go through. I really enjoy family time. Time with my friends as well. That is something I’ve been trying to work on – maintaining those relationships and strengthening them.

Bikini Top & Bottom: Galore x NAKD

What are your skincare secrets? Because…

I’m really into taking care of my skin. It’s important – the basics. When I’m on set or at a photoshoot, I have makeup on for long hours. Water has been my best friend. I drink water all day. I invested in a facial steamer. I use it once a week, maybe.

I use plenty of masks. A night time cream is very important. I use Mario Badescu seaweed night cream. Making sure you clean your face at night, washing it or using wipes, is necessary. I recently invested in a serum. I purchased Chanel hydro beauty micro serum. It’s a little bit pricey, but I feel like ever since then, I’ve gotten so many compliments on my skin. I’ve seen a difference.

I know you also currently love yoga. Have you tried it stoned?

No, never. I think it could maybe be fun if I got all my girls together and we got high and took a class.

You have a great trainer right now. Do you train every day, and if so, what does it consist of?

When I’m in LA, I work with Mario. When I’m in New Orleans, I work with Jude. It’s tough balancing with my work schedule. One day I’m working and the next I’m not. I try to balance it out. Actually, I’ve been doing hot yoga in New Orleans.

I started doing private sessions because I wanted to learn how to connect my breath with my body. I also started doing Pilates, which is really great for stretching the back while focusing on breathing. It’s a balance of everything.

Best post-workout snack?

The best is a smoothie. My body is interesting, because I’m petite, but I’m trying to build up to it at the same time. I like a little bit of meat on my bones. Half of the time I’m eating good but not too heavy.

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FMK: Michael B. Jordan, Odell Beckham Junior, Dave East?

GIIIIRRRLLL. Kill Dave East. Fuck Odell. Marry Michael Jordan.

Favorite tattoo shop in LA?

I don’t have one. The last tattoo I got was on my hand of the Chinese dragon. That was at a tattoo shop on Melrose. I don’t remember the name of the shop.

Favorite kind of food?

That’s hard. I literally love everything.

What beauty items do you have in your daily bag?

I definitely need chapstick, serum, moisturizer, mascara, and eyebrow pen. I can survive off of that.

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You have done three collections with ColourPop now. Any plans to collab with them in the future?

Potentially. That could be in the works. I would love to stay within the beauty world. There’s just so much to do. I’m definitely thinking about my next collection.

Any plans to do your own makeup line?

Maybe down the line. It would take a long process because I would really nurture and care about the products. I wouldn’t want to rush something out just to have something on my name on it. I would really want quality products.

Photographer: Jakob Dekat

Stylist: Joey Thao

Hair: Yuichi

Makeup: Mila Thomas

Set Design: Jacqueline Kulla

Cover Art: Lisa Yoo

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