Carson Kressley

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Carson Kressley
Kressley in 2005
Born (1969-11-11) November 11, 1969 (age 54)
Alma materGettysburg College
  • Television host
  • actor
  • writer
  • producer
Years active2003–present
Height5 ft 10 in (178 cm)
Board member ofThe True Colors Fund
The American Saddlebred Museum
Thomas Jefferson University
AwardsOutstanding Reality Program (Primetime Emmy - 2004) for Queer Eye for the Straight Guy

Carson Kressley (born November 11, 1969)[1] is an American television personality, actor, and designer. Beginning in 2003, he appeared in the Bravo series Queer Eye for the Straight Guy. He was also the motivational host of the TV show How to Look Good Naked and OWN's Carson Nation and a contestant on season 13 of Dancing with the Stars.

Since 2015, Kressley has been a judge on RuPaul's Drag Race. Beginning in October 2018, he teamed up with former Queer Eye colleague Thom Filicia for a new series called Get a Room with Carson & Thom on Bravo. The series followed the two as Thom mentored Carson in the interior design business, and featured two clients in each episode. The show lasted one ten-episode season on Bravo, with the final episode broadcast on December 22, 2018.[2]

Early life and education[edit]

Kressley was born in Allentown, Pennsylvania,[1] and raised in nearby Claussville, Pennsylvania.[3] His family raised ponies. He competed in equestrian events from an early age and was a member of the U.S. World Cup Saddle Seat equitation team in 1999. He won a world championship in 2009.[4]

He graduated from Northwestern Lehigh High School in New Tripoli, Pennsylvania in 1987. Kressley earned a bachelor's degree from Gettysburg College in 1991, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and was a member of Alpha Phi Omega, a service fraternity.[3]


Kressley began his career as an independent stylist, then worked for Ralph Lauren from 1994 until 2002, working in menswear and corporate advertising. In 2003, Kressley gained exposure as the fashion savant on Queer Eye when the show debuted on the Bravo cable television network. Kressley appears on Good Morning America, the E! Network, and others. Furthermore, he has critiqued red carpet fashions at the Oscars and the Golden Globes. In 2005, he acted as a judge for the Miss Universe pageant, which aired from Bangkok, Thailand. In 2006, he returned to the Miss Universe pageant as commentator and was a commentator for the 2006 Miss USA pageant.

In February 2007, he was the host of a new Lifetime makeover show, How to Look Good Naked, a U.S. version of a British series.[5] The show's premiere episode on January 4, 2008, drew a record 1.6 million viewers, included significant viewership among adults 18-49 and adults 18-34 as well as the network's target demographic of women aged 18–34. In January 2008, the debut episode of How to Look Good Naked was Lifetime's highest-rated premiere in those three demographics.[6]

Kressley appeared as Master of Ceremonies on Cyndi Lauper's True Colors Tour 2008. He was a host on the ABC series True Beauty, along with Vanessa Minnillo and Beth Stern. In 2011, Kressley began a show on the Oprah Winfrey Network titled Carson Nation.[7]

In 2018, Kressley joined with his former Queer Eye teammate Thom Filicia for Get a Room with Carson & Thom on Bravo. The program lasted one season, covering ten episodes that were broadcast from October through December 2018.





In 2005, Kressley made his film debut in The Perfect Man starring Heather Locklear and Hilary Duff, playing Lance, a bartender. He starred in The Year Without a Santa Claus with John Goodman as Santa, which aired December 11, 2006, on NBC. He had a cameo role in his third movie, the independent comedy 16 to Life. The feature film It's Christmas, Carol! premiered December 2012. In 2021, he had a supporting role in holiday film The Bitch Who Stole Christmas, which aired on VH1.[17]

Fashion design[edit]

In November 2006, Kressley debuted Perfect, his clothing for men and women, on QVC.[18] He cites his experience as a stylist with Ralph Lauren and on Queer Eye as inspiration for the line, saying he "...realized a lot of people are missing great basics in their wardrobe. I consider my perfect collection for QVC to be 'basics with a twist.'"[19] He debuted a new women's collection for Shop NBC in April 2012. The collection, called "Love, Carson", is built on transformative pieces that provide women with affordable glamour.[20]


  • 2004: author of the 2004 book Off The Cuff: The essential style guide for men and the women who love them (ISBN 0-525-94836-8)
  • 2004: co-author, Queer Eye for the Straight Guy: The Fab Five's Guide to Looking Better, Cooking Better, Dressing Better, Behaving Better, and Living Better (Clarkson Potter), with the four other cast members
  • 2005: author of You're Different and That's Super, a children's story deriving inspiration from the classic tale "The Ugly Duckling," featuring a unicorn who grows up among a herd of horses from foalhood to maturity[21]
  • 2016: author (with Riann Smith) of Does This Book Make My Butt Look Big?: A Cheeky Guide to Feeling Sexier in Your Own Skin and Unleashing Your Personal Style

Other activities[edit]

In April 2006, Kressley became ordained over the Internet as a minister of the Universal Life Church, in order to be able to perform a wedding ceremony during an episode of Queer Eye.[22]

Kressley is also an owner of American Saddlebred horses and is horse show exhibitor.[23] He won a world title in 2009.[4] Kressley's interest in horses combined with his interest in promoting respect for diversity resulted in his authorship of 'You're Different and That's Super!', illustrated by cartoonist Jared Lee.

Kressley was an ambassador for the Melbourne Cup in 2007, playing a part in the "Fashion On The Field".[24]

Honors, awards, distinctions[edit]

  • In 2004 Queer Eye won an Emmy Award for "Outstanding Reality Program". It was nominated again for that category in 2005.
  • After interviewing him on WMAL-FM's "Mornings on the Mall", co-host Mary Walter was "shocked to find out that Carson is crazy smart — I'm talking Mensa smart!"[25]



Year Title Role Notes
2003-2007 Queer Eye Himself 100 episodes
2004-2021 Live with Kelly and Ryan Himself Guest (36 episodes)
2005-2021 Good Morning America Himself Guest (10 episodes)
2006 Jeopardy! Contestant 2nd place (1 episode)
2007-2008 Crowned: The Mother of All Pageants Judge 8 episodes
2008-2021 The Wendy Williams Show Himself Guest (13 episodes)
2008 Big Brother Australia Himself Season 8, Guest, (1 episode)[26]
2011-2022 Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen Himself Guest (7 episodes)
2011 Dancing with the Stars Contestant Season 13; Eliminated, 8th place (13 episodes)
2015-present RuPaul's Drag Race Judge Season 7 - present
2016–present RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars Judge Season 2 - present
2017 The New Celebrity Apprentice Contestant Season 15; Eliminated, 5th place (5 episodes)
2017 Worst Cooks in America Contestant Season 11: Celebrity Edition 3; Eliminated, 7th place (3 episodes)
2018 Get a Room with Carson & Thom Himself 10 episodes
2018 Real Housewives of Potomac Himself Guest (Season 3, Episode 11)
2019 Wrap Battle Judge Season 1 (6 episodes)
2020–present RuPaul's Secret Celebrity Drag Race Judge Season 1 - present
2021 BBQ Brawl Judge Season 2 (10 episodes)
2022 Celebrity Big Brother Contestant Season 3; Eliminated, 6th place & America's Favorite HouseGuest (13 episodes)
2022 Beat Bobby Flay Himself Guest host (1 episode)
2023 25 Words or Less (game show) Contestant Celebrity contestant
2023 Celebrity Name That Tune Contestant Season 3, Episode 6

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Carson Kressley". TV Guide. Retrieved January 28, 2016.
  2. ^ "Episode Guide: Get a Room with Carson & Thom". IMDb. Retrieved December 30, 2022.
  3. ^ a b ""Queer Eye" star and Gettysburg College graduate Carson Kressley to speak on campus" (Press release). Gettysburg College. November 17, 2004. Archived from the original on January 28, 2016. Retrieved January 28, 2016.
  4. ^ a b Cascerceri, Dorothy (August 20, 2012). "Carson Kressley Keeps His Eye on Success". Philadelphia Style. Archived from the original on 2015-06-19. Retrieved 2017-09-17.
  5. ^ Dempsey, John (February 13, 2007). "Lifetime's got 'Naked' ambition". Variety. Retrieved 2017-08-16.
  6. ^ Crupi, Anthony. "Kressley's 'Naked' Nabs Lifetime Numbers". Adweek. Retrieved January 7, 2008.[dead link]
  7. ^ Lauer-Williams, Kathy (June 27, 2011). "TV WATCHERS: Carson Nation 'best show' on OWN". The Morning Call. Allentown, Pennsylvania. Archived from the original on 2017-09-16. Retrieved 2017-08-16.
  8. ^ "Celebrity Jeopardy". TV Guide. Archived from the original on 2008-10-12.
  9. ^ Barrett, Annie (October 18, 2011). "'Dancing With the Stars': Eliminated contestant is..." Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2017-08-16.
  10. ^ "I'm A Celebrity Australia 2017: Intruder Carson Kressley replaces Jay Laga'aia". The Sydney Morning Herald. February 19, 2017. Retrieved February 19, 2017.
  11. ^ Moran, Jonathan (19 February 2017). "I'm a Celebrity: Carson Kressley brings camp to intruder". Retrieved 19 February 2017.
  12. ^ "The Chase". GSNTV. Retrieved 4 December 2017.
  13. ^ "Celebrity Big Brother Season 3 Cast Revealed: Meet the New Famous Houseguests". January 26, 2022. Retrieved January 26, 2022.
  14. ^ Lowry, Brian (December 7, 2007). "Review: 'Crowned: The Mother of All Pageants'". Variety. Retrieved September 17, 2017.
  15. ^ Avery, Dan (January 28, 2015). "The "RuPaul's Drag Race" Season 7 Premiere Date—And Judges—Finally Revealed!" (Press release). Logo TV. Retrieved 2017-08-17.
  16. ^ Dilip, Mangala (May 13, 2016). "Watch Eurovision 2016 live: Countdown begins; how you can make your favourite contestant win". International Business Times. Retrieved 2017-08-16.
  17. ^ Joey Nolfi (October 29, 2021). "RuPaul's new Christmas movie unites the largest Drag Race cast in history". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on October 29, 2021. Retrieved October 29, 2021.
  18. ^ "PERFECT by Carson Kressley". Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved September 16, 2017.
  19. ^ "Carson Kressley Official Website". Retrieved September 16, 2017.
  20. ^ "Fashion Guru Carson Kressley to Launch New Exclusive Fashion Collection on ShopNBC April 26" (Press release). Marketwired. April 24, 2012. Retrieved September 16, 2017.
  21. ^ Kressley, Carson; Lee, Jared (November 1, 2005). You're Different and That's Super. Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing. ISBN 978-1416900702.
  22. ^ ""Queer Eye" episode 4.2, "Marriage, Vegas Style: Asher and Tsiliana"". 2006-06-13. Archived from the original on 2007-07-11.
  23. ^ "ASHA Individual Award winners announced; Aikman, Stonecroft Farm, Rowland, Kressley, Durant, Courts and Harris to receive honors at American Saddlebred Ball in February" (Press release). American Saddlebred Horse Association. Archived from the original on October 8, 2007. Retrieved June 22, 2007.
  24. ^ "Carson Kressley spruiks Cup". The Sydney Morning Herald. April 19, 2007. Retrieved 2013-12-04.
  25. ^ "10 Questions with ... Mary Walter". All Access. Retrieved 2020-07-26.
  26. ^ "Big Brother Australia Series 8/2008-Carson (Special House guest) - YouTube". YouTube.

External links[edit]