Ladies and Gents, the Ubiquitous Carson Kressley Strikes Again

Queer Eye for the Straight Guy ended its run this year, but that doesn’t mean Carson Kressley is relaxing. The tiny blonde fashionista has been a red-carpet presence for years, but now he is popping up all over the rest of television, as well. He’s one of the judges on Crowned; he’s got his own fashion line on QVC; and this Friday, his own makeover show, How to Look Good Naked debuts on Lifetime.

According to the show’s opening sequence, four out of five women say they hate their bodies. I have no problem buying that statistic. Kressley’s goal is to get women to love their bodies and accept the way they look good naked. The opening tactic is a little bit horrifying; he projects a giant (headless, so the identity is protected) picture of the woman of the week in her underwear on the side of a building and asks strangers what they think. All of the comments shown are complementary. (Although a lot of the compliments from men were of the “nice rack” variety.)

Despite the title of the show, there is a foundation component. Carson shows the ladies how clothes and the confidence with which they wear them can project a different image to the world. The lingerie-shopping portion included the perfunctory staggering statistics about bras (85% of women are wearing the wrong size, only 10% of the support should come from the straps). Then it’s off to shop for clothes (wide belts are a curvy girl’s friend).

Carson does the spa treatments with the makeover subject. Oh my god, if I didn’t have to be in my undies, this show looks kind of fun. After the makeover is complete, Carson suggests doing the final photo shoot nude. The final photo is projected on the building again, this time showing her face. She asks strangers if she looks good naked: she gets positive feedback from all the people she asks on the street.

How to Look Good Naked is a reality check for real women. The focus is on beauty over perfection. It’s a little more light-hearted and naughty than other makeover shows (I can’t picture Tim Gunn picking up a woman wearing a black lacy bra and panties, then dragging her out into the store to show her off to other shoppers). I actually liked it much better than I expected to. A lot of these makeover shows are a little too hokey for me, but Carson’s silly tone is just the thing that is needed to deliver a good message without being too preachy or serious about it. The premiere episode will be at 9:00 (ET) this Friday on Lifetime. If you can’t wait to check it out, it's currently available for free on iTunes.

In addition to being everywhere on television, Carson has also written a book on fashion and a children’s book called You’re Different and That’s Super about a sassy little colt named Trumpet who doesn’t quite fit in. In short, possibly the gayest book ever written. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that!) I might check out some more of his stuff, though. I wasn’t a huge fan before, but How to Look Good Naked showed me a new, likeable side of Carson Kressley. (Also, one of my friends has a coat from his QVC collection, and it’s really pretty cute!)

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Amy Kane spends as much quality time with her television as possible, when she's not busy at her day job as a cube dweller.