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"RuPaul's Drag Race" star Naysha Lopez-"Drag Is An Art Form To Me"

The Huffington Post The Huffington Post 7/03/2016 Michael Cook

On this season of "RuPaul's Drag Race", Naysha Lopez is delivering her signature Puerto Rican sass and more, definitely giving the other ladies a run for their money. This sassy queen sat down with us to chat about being a member of the colorful cast of "RuPaul's Drag Race" Season Eight, her favorite diva, and what she considers her absolute drag essential. 2016-03-05-1457213731-7201106-0UiyPCrL_400x400.jpg © Provided by The Huffington Post 2016-03-05-1457213731-7201106-0UiyPCrL_400x400.jpg How was your premiere party in New York City?
It was absolutely surreal! Between all of the press and everyone looking so beautiful, it was a really good time. I performed "How Deep Is Your Love" for the crowd!
You're a pageant girl, and Miss Continental is a pageant you have participated in. How is it conveying pageant mentality onto a competition television show like "RuPaul's Drag Race"?
You know, it's definitely different, but it's the same at times. You come into a pageant and you are being judged; they are looking at you from head to toe. In turn, you want to be polished from head to toe. Coming into "Drag Race" I wanted to look polished fro head to toe as well. It's kind of a good thing to break the rules a little bit with "Drag Race" though, since you definitely want to stand out and show your true self. With pageants like Miss Continental you definitely have to stay, for lack of a better term "politically correct".
2016-03-05-1457213781-9989647-635900121532766903fullcast.jpg © Provided by The Huffington Post 2016-03-05-1457213781-9989647-635900121532766903fullcast.jpg Now that the "Drag Race" experience is about to kick off publicly for you, what do you think has been your favorite part so far?
It's definitely been the relationships we've built with each other, without a doubt. Everyone is so different and talented in their own right. It's really refreshing to see someone else's drag aesthetic, embrace it, and learn from it. With drag, you learn new things every day. If someone pretends they know it all in terms of drag, guess what, they're doing it wrong. You learn something new every single day.
So there has to be a part that you have not enjoyed as much right?
You know, it has to be the waiting! You of course can't say anything, and then when everyone finds out and asks where you were during filming, you have to just say you were on vacation or something.
Where did you tell everyone you were during filming?
Well it was pretty easy for me, since my family lives in Puerto Rico. It's pretty easy for me to get away sometimes and tell people I am going to visit my family or my grandmother and all that. It wasn't too hard to get away without anyone suspecting.
When you are in drag, what inspires you to do your absolute best and keep evolving as a performer?
To me personally, drag is an art form. Because it's an art form, that makes us artists. Art is subjective and it really only has to make sense to the artist. For me personally, I always want to express myself how I am and how I feel. It allows me to let it all out and do my style of drag. I want to be able to do the kind of drag I want to do, without someone telling me that something is right or something is wrong, like in the pageant world. As for real inspiration, my mother is the funniest thing on the face of the earth and she totally inspires me all the time. Jennifer Lopez and Rihanna are two absolute fashion icons for me since I love fashion. Many things inspire me to get into my best drag.
So J-Lo is your diva of choice it seems?
Oh my God yes, I love her! I haven't gotten to meet her yet, but as soon as she's back in Vegas, I am going to get tickets for her Vegas show.
I always say that if you don't have nails on, you're not doing drag. What is an absolute must-wear for you to consider your drag complete?
Lashes. You have to have some lashes on. You can beat that mug all you want, but the second you throw those lashes on it really changes everything. You have to have lashes on!
Where does Naysha Lopez see her career in five years?
In five years, I would love for my career to even be at a half of what RuPaul's career has become. I love that drag as become so mainstream and I really want to use this as a stepping stone and further my career in the entertainment industry. As a kid, my mom and dad worked for the company that puts on The Academy Awards, and I have pictures of me as a child holding as Oscar. When people used to ask me what I wanted to do when I grew up, I always said "I want to win an Oscar". In five years, I want to get closer to that goal.

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