When we caught up with Lauren Conrad, the sunny California starlet was relaxing in her home we all know so well from The Hills. Lauren was friendly and down to earth, which was just what we expected from the everyday girl gone famous who we've watched grow up over the past five years. She stopped mid-sentence to ask Lo what music they've been listening to and walked over to her fridge — around boxes from her basement flooding that morning! — to look in and tell us what was inside. With a hit show, fashion collection, and growing resume, this girl from the small town of Laguna Beach has grown up, landing her at the number 25 spot on the 2008 PopSugar 100. We talked about the highlights of this year and other fun things like fashion, food, fitness, friends, and cute Chloe.
PopSugar: Can you describe some of the highlights of your past year?
Lauren Conrad: I would say the biggest highlight is the launch of my line. I also bought my own house, which was exciting. The show is going really well, that’s nothing new but that’s been kind of exciting.
PS: We just read recently that you thought Laguna Beach was going to be a one-time documentary?
LC: Yeah when they originally asked us to do it it was called the “Unrestricted High School Project” and I thought it was just one episode. They said they were really interested in the fact that we had all grown up together in a small town and we were all really a close-knit group of people, and they wanted to do a small documentary on a group of friends, so that was kind of what we signed up for. It’s funny, you see the little pilots that they showed us initially and it looks nothing like the end of the show.
PS: Wow really? And when did they say, "We are going to make this a full-blown TV series"?
LC: We all signed up to do this little pilot that no one has ever seen except for us — I don’t even know what they did with it. They showed it to us and we were like, "Oh this looks great" and then they said, "It got picked up" so that is when they started shooting and it kind of became what it has and no one really realized what it was until we all got sent the first episode, right before it aired!
PS: What has it been like for the show to have become so successful?
LC: I think I have been pretty lucky that it happened gradually because the mood kind of started out pretty small and then it slowly got bigger, I mean none of us were really expecting it, it was crazy for us then, and since then it slowly escalated, but since it has been slowly it has been kind of nice. It allowed us time to process it.
PS: Was there ever a time when you woke up and were like, "Whoa, this is all happening to me?"
LC: Yeah, I think we had just graduated and the first season had just began airing and I was at a game with a couple of my guy friends and a little girl saw my friend Stephen and pulled out her inhaler. I think it was at that moment — it really freaked me out too, I was like I think we might have signed up for something bigger than we thought!
PS: [Laughs] Did she recover?
LC: Yeah she did she was fine, but I mean it was weird to see someone have that sort of reaction to someone you have known your whole life.
PS: So going back through this past year do you think there are any lessons you have learned or something that you’re going to take away?
LC: I think that in the past year I have really gotten a chance to see who my true friends are and who is going to be there for me, you know, no matter what? Like Lo is one of my best friends from high school, and Audrina obviously has always been there for me, and I think that when it gets to a point when it's almost too much that’s when those people are there for you.
PS: If you could go back to a year ago and tell yourself some advice, what would it be?
LC: It would be that I’m never going to please everybody so I should just give up now [laughs]. I mean you can waste so much energy trying to make everyone happy, but at the end of the day it's impossible to please everyone, so you just need to focus on what makes you happy.
PS: What does sort of a typical day look like for you?
LC: They are all kind of different, this week is crazy because we have a photo shoot every single day. Except Wednesday I am not the model, I’m shooting my resort lookbook and I have to be there all day, so those are actually even longer, it's almost more work when you are not the model — it's like an 11 or 12 hour day. I mean normally we film a few days out of the week and other days we are kind of doing other stuff, just the other things we work on in our lives, we keep pretty busy.
PS: So the interview we talked about with Laguna Beach being a documentary, because of the editing, you also said you are actually a lot happier than the show makes you look? So we are wondering what are the things we are missing out on as viewers that make you happy?
LC: It’s not like the Real World, in that show they put a bunch of people in a house with tons of booze and see what happens. In The Hills, if one of us has too much to drink, they drive us home. So that’s the difference, they don’t want us to get smashed on camera, they don’t want us to be train wreaks, they focus on the parts of our lives that are actually more interesting.
PS: Have you ever come across anyone in all of your nights out that made you really starstruck? Any fun celebrities?
LC: Actually yeah, I met Marc Jacobs when we were filming and I got so nervous when I saw him that I didn’t really know what to do, but I was trying to act cool, but I didn’t even stand up to shake his hand, I actually came off a little bit too cold, like I didn’t really care and I felt kind of bad. I get really starstruck over really random people and designers.
PS: George Clooney or Brad Pitt?
LC: Better with age.
PS: Matt Damon or Ben Affleck?
LC: I don’t know! I like Matt Damon more I think.
PS: Katie Holmes or Victoria Beckham?
LC: Frowns! You don’t see them smile!
PS: Dawson’s Creek, The OC or Gossip Girl?
LC: Gossip Girl! I love it.
PS: Do you prefer bags or shoes?
LC: Oh, shoes!
PS: Are you a Mac girl or a PC girl?
LC: Both actually, mostly PC but I like Mac to edit photos or art
PS: Sit-ups or push-ups?
LC: I hate them both! But probably sit-ups
Project Runway or America’s Next Top Model?
LC: Project Runway.
PS: Heels or flats?
PS: Karl or Mark?
PS: Frozen yogurt or ice cream?
LC: Ice cream — if you’re going to do it go all the way!
PS: Real tan or fake tan?
LC: Fake tan — but a good one, not orange. It's better for your skin since everyone is going to get skin cancer
PS: High fashion or low fashion?
LC: High fashion
PS: Lip gloss or lipstick?
LC: Lip gloss
PS: What do you have on your iPod right now?
LC: I love MGMT, the Kooks, M.I.A. "Paper Planes", The Orion Experience "Obsessed With You".
PS: What is the last book you read?
LC: I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell. Have you read it?
PS: No, I haven’t
LC: It’s really vulgar but a lot of my guy friends were frat guys so I get the humor.
PS: What is your favorite TV show?
LC: Gossip Girl.
PS: What are some of your guilty pleasures TV wise?
LC: I don’t really watch that much TV, but I will wait until whole seasons are over and then download the whole thing on iTunes because I’m really impatient. I just started watching Greek and I used to be obsessed with Grey's Anatomy, but it’s kind of dying for me. I mostly end up watching Sex and the City reruns actually.
PS: Do you ever Google your dates?
LC: Yeah, all of them! But I don’t believe everything I read though. I Google pictures to see ex-girlfriends and stuff [laughs].
PS: Do you have any dating advice?
LC: Probably just have fun with it, I never take dates too seriously. Oh and I don’t kiss on a first date.
PS: What is your favorite cocktail?
LC: Depends where, I have a favorite cocktail at every place.
PS: Do you go with the specialty drinks at every bar?
LC: Yeah, I like to try a lot of different things everywhere we go. I’ll usually order whatever their specialty drink is with vodka, but for an everyday drink I usually just drink vodka and soda water.
PS: If we opened your fridge right now what would we find?
LC: I can actually tell you, I’m just wandering around my house right now. It’s filled with boxes because my basement flooded this morning. There's leftover grilled vegetables, berries, and vitamins… yeah that is pretty much it! We don’t have too much in there because it goes bad. We have berries and such to snack on, but if we are really hungry there are tons of restaurants all around us.
PS: How’s Chloe?
LC: Chloe actually just got back from puppy boot camp because she wasn’t learning anything, but now she is. She still eats everything but she is good!
PS: Do you enjoy having a puppy?
LC: Yeah, she is great. She just eats my shoes. She has eaten a couple pairs literally out of the box too! I never even got to wear them.
PS: What is your favorite perfume?
LC: I have a lot of different perfumes, but I really like Dior Miss Cherie, or Marc Jacobs. I also wear Michael Kors and for everyday I wear Kai, which is a sort of gardenia scent.
PS: Do you have any interest in doing your own perfume?
LC: Not really. I think it’s kind of weird to want to smell like someone, but I don’t know — it could be fun to do like a line of them, not just a personal scent.
PS: Do you ever look back on a hair or makeup style and think, “What was I thinking?”
LC: Most of them, yeah! I used to have bleached blonde hair — Lo and I both — and we burned all of the pictures. They were really bad!
PS: So they won’t end up online?
LC: I think a few of are, but all the personal ones we got rid of.
PS: Do you have any Summer must have items?
LC: Sunscreen. I use a lot less of everything during the Summer — less makeup and almost no hair products. Summer is a little more natural I feel like. I think good bikinis because it's summer!
PS: We've seen you going to the gym a lot lately.
LC: Yeah I started again, its really hurting me!
PS: What is your routine at the gym?
LC: I just started doing more kickboxing which is really fun, and the way [my trainer] does it it's like a full body workout. Like squat, lunge, squat, lunge, or lower punches. It’s really like a full body workout, but I do a half hour of kickboxing and then he has me just do weights. We also do running most days and Chloe likes it.
PS: If you could finish this sentence, “I can’t live without my…..”
LC: I can’t live without my friends.
PS: Do you have the premiere date of The Hills?
LC: Yeah, it’s in August sometime, they haven’t told me. A Monday in mid-August!
PS: Our readers are dying to know what happens this season!
LC: I haven’t seen any of it yet, but I kind of know what happens because I was there [laughs]. There is actually a lot of good stuff coming up which, luckily, has not been reported on. We are making a big effort to hide it — it's kind of weird, we can’t really talk about things that are happening on the show. Normally everyone already knows what happens, but this season most of it has stayed pretty quiet. Obviously some of the stuff has been reported on, but a lot of it is only half the story, so the show kind of clarifies things sometimes.
PS: Are you going to be at New York Fashion Week in September? Working or for fun?
LC: Yeah, right now I am planning on it, but I never know for sure. Kelly [Cutrone] hasn’t told us whether we are working yet or not. I will either have to go out with Kelly or I will just go out to see some of the shows.
Lauren also told us about her fun 4th of July and how busy life has been after returning from her recent break. She sounds happy and excited to have the opportunity to be living out her dreams all while trying to keep her newfound fame in perspective. After talking to the starlet, we're happy to report she still seems like that sweet girl from Laguna Beach High School, but certainly a bit wiser.