‘I’m not that snotty teenager I was back in the day'. How Kristin Cavallari reinvented herself for TV.


At just 16 years old Kristin Cavallari became one of the original reality TV ‘villains’.

During her junior year of high school she was one of a handful of students plucked from obscurity and propelled to global fame on the hit series Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County, where her love triangle with co-stars Stephen Colletti and Lauren Conrad, and her on-screen feud with Conrad, provided the majority of the show’s drama.

In 2009, she took over the leading role in the even more successful Laguna spin-off series The Hills, replacing Lauren Conrad and seemingly accelerating the character she’d first become famous for as a teenager, with the tagline ‘the bitch is back’ splashed across her face during every commercial.

Now, at 33 years old, Kristin Cavallari has had somewhat of a professional makeover.

She’s still in the reality TV Game and her series Very Cavallari has just launched into its third season, chronicling her entrepreneurial life as the founder of jewellery label Uncommon James.

Instead of bar fights or teenage gossip, the show follows her marriage to former football player Jay Cutler with whom she shares sons Camden, 7, and Jaxon, 5 and daughter Saylor, 4, and this time around she’s got a lot more power on her hands when it comes to how she comes across on screen.

Speaking on Mamamia’s daily entertainment podcast The Spill, Kristin said her decision to allow cameras back into her life was purely based on the needs of her business and while she’s not proud of the way she’s behaved on screen in the past, she stressed that she’s a different person to that teenage girl we first glimpsed on TV.


Listen to Kristin Cavallari talk to hosts Laura Brodnik and Kee Reece about the new season of Very Cavallari. Post continues after audio.

“On Laguna Beach and The Hills I was there to play a certain type of person,” she said on The Spill. “I was a lot younger and I was willing to do a lot of things on camera, but this time around I am an Executive Producer and I have grown up tremendously.

“My decision to go back to reality TV was purely about business and I will be honest about that. Now people are now getting to see all of me, rather than that snotty teenager I was back in the day. Also, with becoming a mum and settling down people can now see me in a different light.  I will say that being involved in some of these creative conversations on Very Cavallari I can now only imagine the things people were saying about me back in the day. Editing can really play a huge role and it’s fascinating for me now.

“Of course there are moments from the past I am not proud of and things I wish I would have done differently. But as cheesy as it is, it was my journey and it’s led me to where I am now.”

Despite her desire to be seen as more of a businesswoman and mother and less of a villain, Kristin still knows how to draw in ratings, especially in a world now packed with reality TV offering, and so there was no shortage of dramatic conflict on the first two seasons of Very Cavallari with many explosive moments between the Uncommon James staff aired on the show.


But even though it might make for compelling reality TV, Kristin told The Spill that the culture in her office became so toxic she began to fear that her best employees would all quit.

“This new season is way more focussed on me and my personal life, my friendship group and obviously on J and I, ” she said. “I worked really hard in-between seasons one and two to get my company to a really great place because filming a reality show does not make for a great workplace culture when you’re running a company.

“It’s always a relief for us when the cameras stop rolling. Once we finished filming I worked really hard to change the culture we had because all that catty drama was ruining our offices, I was in danger of losing my really great employees.

“I almost lost a woman who is now my Vice President of Merchandise. I almost lost her because of it and then I thought ‘this is crazy, I have to do something’. I couldn’t lose my key players because of stupid drama. I had to make some big girl decisions and let some people go.”

In season three of Very Cavallari there may be less drama taking place within the walls of her business, but Kristin said she’s still willing to show the cracks that have formed in her personal life.

In the very first episode of season three Kristin says on camera that she’s had a “major falling out” with her best friend Kelly Henderson and that the two have not spoken in months.


“The most scandalous thing you’ll see in season three is that I have a fallout with a girlfriend in the first few episodes,” she said. “It’s heartbreaking, even now because I’ve watched the first few episodes and it was hard to relive it all.

“But doing a reality show, I just figured if I’m doing it I have to be 100 per cent in and that was a really massive thing that I was going through at the time. The friend is Kelly and it still kills me.”

What you won’t see on Very Cavallari at any point during the show’s run are Kristin and Jay’s three young children. After being exposed to the cameras as a teenager, the former Hills star has decided that’s not a life she would choose for her own kids.

“We made that decision but I don’t judge other people for doing it,” Kristin said on The Spill. “We don’t want to rob our children of the decision to be on social media and have their lives plastered all over the place.

“They are so young, they may want no part in social media when they’re older, we just don’t know yet. We want to give them the chance to make that decision about their own lives. I would be upset if I didn’t have that choice.”

You can watch Very Cavallari season three on hayu or watch on E!, every Friday from January 10, the same day as the U.S.

Feature image: Supplied.