Ariana Madix isn’t the only Vanderpump Rules star with a shiny new gig. In an unexpected turn of events, Rachel Leviss (f.k.a. Raquel) just made her NYFW modeling debut.
The former pageant queen left her sashes and tiaras behind as she walked the runway in two sparkling evening gowns for Glaudi by Johana Hernandez. The 29-year-old went from VPR side character to America’s villain in March 2023 when her longterm affair with co-star Tom Sandoval was discovered by his then-partner of nine years, Madix. The rest is reality TV history.
Nearly one year later, Leviss spoke to People about her latest career move ahead of the Art Hearts Fashion show on February 9. “It was a very difficult time for me,” she said of Scandoval. “I felt like I wasn’t going to get through it at some moments. And so I’m just so happy that I’m able to see the light at the end of the tunnel and finally reintegrate into the real world.”
She continued, “I’m proud of how far I’ve come, I’ve been working really hard on making sure I’m putting my mental health first and really putting myself first.”
Following the show, she reconnected with the publication again, saying she was still feeling the “adrenaline” and that “it was a job well done.”
For all the controversy that still surrounds Rachel Leviss and Tom Sandoval, the comments section on People’s social media accounts were surprisingly divided. For some, Leviss has earned a second chance. “I hope the best for her! She’s young and beautiful and has so much life left ahead of her! Glad she’s healing and growing,” one fan commented on TikTok, while another shared clapping emojis and wrote, “Love to see her happy & doing well.”
Of course, there were some who don’t feel the reality star deserves her redemption arc just yet. “She’s been putting herself first all along,” one user pointed out, while another said, “Let’s not forget she was getting with her best friends man for months. That’s who she is at her core.”