Karrueche Tran Opens Up About Sustainable Style and Her Favorite Going-Out Look
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It's been quite the year for Karrueche Tran. The 34-year-old actor, model, and influencer has been balancing everything from her own eponymous jewelry line called Kae to starring roles on "Claws" and "Bel-Air." But her multihyphenate evolution is far from over. Tran's most recent venture has taken her into new territory as executive producer and host of "Upcycle Nation," a fashion competition series on Fuse TV.
Though she's never played the role of reality TV host before, the opportunity was too good to pass up because of the competition's sustainability focus.
"I was intrigued because I felt it was different than any other fashion competition show," Tran tells POPSUGAR. "It's fun and creative, yet it's informative and shows the viewers how we can be mindful of how we waste our clothing and household items to help save our planet."
The series stitches together the world of fashion and the culture of upcycling by featuring aspiring designers and upcyclers from around the country. Their task is to transform previously discarded items into reimagined articles of clothing. Joining Tran as judges are upcycling innovator Peder Cho and fashion designer Jérôme LaMaar.
In each episode, three contestants rip, tear, staple, burn, hammer, and sew their way through two challenges to win a cash prize. From taking discarded denim jeans and making them into a new functional jacket to repurposing old Oreo bags into a couture handbag, they use their raw talent to make something stylishly spectacular out of nothing.
"I really enjoyed being able to watch these designers create in real time," Tran says. "They all took each challenge seriously and did their best. I was very surprised at what the designers created."
"There are so many different ways we can upcycle and reuse old clothing and household items into cool and innovative pieces."
One memorable — and slightly stressful — moment for Tran? When she and the other judges, Cho and LaMaar, were simply stumped and couldn't decide on a winner.
"The talent was strong that episode, and we went back and forth for a while," she recalls. "It was a true moment that showed we really care about our roles."
With all eight episodes of the first season of "Upcycle Nation" now streaming on Fuse+, Tran hopes the show inspires viewers to get creative and start upcycling their own wardrobe. "There are so many different ways we can upcycle and reuse old clothing and household items into cool and innovative pieces," she says.
Ahead, Tran shares some of the sustainable fashion brands she's shopping right now, plus the going-out look she swears by for any dressy occasion.