What happens to our Real Housewives once they've left a franchise? Each week, we're looking into the lives of past cast members after their exits. This week, former The Real Housewives of New York City star Cindy Barshop.
She was the tough-talking businesswoman-turned-single mom who was meant to fill Bethenny Frankel's high heels when she made her debut on The Real Housewives of New York City in 2011. But after just one season, Cindy Barshop was gone—along with Housewives Jill Zarin, Alex McCord and Kelly Bensimon following Season 4.
"Following the reunion it was clear that the women genuinely didn’t like each other anymore," Cindy admitted to ABC. But it may have all been for the best. "It's a lot of work," she told E! after she'd finished filming her single season. "I didn't realize how difficult it was going to be. It's like being on Survivor!"
Still, Cindy—who's the founder and owner of Completely Bare, a chain of upscale spas that specialize in laser and wax-based hair removal—is glad she gave it a go. "I went on the show for business reasons. I realized reality TV would give me more national exposure than the beauty-focused TV I had been doing," she told Go Girl Finance in 2012. "When I started in business, you had to be in magazines, then you had to go on all the talk shows. Now it’s reality TV."
Since her RHONY exit, Cindy, who's still friendly with client and former costar Jill, has been focused on growing Completely Bare's business and was even honored as one of the "100 Most Intriguing Entrepreneurs of Our Time" by the Goldman Sachs Builders & Innovators Summit. Her posh spas are also credited with popularizing the "vajeweling" and "vatoo" trends (yes, we're talking about blinging out your business and adding temporary tattoos down there).
But while Cindy has been working hard to expand her business—Completely Bare now sells at-home waxing kits and skincare products at drugstores across the nation and offers eyebrow-grooming expert Joey Healy's browlab services in house—the single mom has also taken a step back in other ways so that she can spend more time with her 4-year-old twin girls Jesse and Zoe. "I brought in a CEO and partner...so I have more time for my kids. I mostly handle brand management instead of every single thing in the universe for the company," she told Go Girl Finance. "I had to delegate and give up a lot of control."
These days, her daughters are the inspiration behind everything she does. "It's so cliché," Cindy added, but "they inspire me to work out and eat healthy and make more money. I've become," she admitted, "such a mush."
What do you think of Cindy's post-RHONY life? Tell us in the comments.