It's wild to think about how Addison Rae's celebrity status has skyrocketed in less than one year. The Los Angeles-based 19-year-old (originally from Louisiana) is best known for her dance videos on TikTok, which boast tens of millions of views from her nearly 52 million followers. She joined the online platform in July 2019, and she's already launched merch (and a beauty brand coming soon), a podcast with her mom Sheri Easterling, landed a voiceover role in a film, and got her first major fashion gig with American Eagle.
After joining the teen clothing brand to promote its first-ever virtual prom earlier this year, Addison Rae fronts the #AExME Back To School Campaign, joining fellow creators and dancers Donyea Martin, Hannah Hawkins, Irene Luna, Jevohn Gentry, Makayla London, and Sumi Oshima.
"The past 12 months have been everything but ordinary for me," she tells NYLON during a Zoom chat. "It's been such an exciting journey, and from the beginning, I'm so grateful for the opportunities I've been given. Everything that happened to get here is something that I'm extremely happy about."
As for what's next, there's plenty of projects in the works, though she can't share any details just yet. "Hopefully some more exciting stuff is coming soon with makeup and my family," she says. "And hopefully everything just goes well."
Below, we spoke to Addison Rae about her latest campaign with American Eagle, getting dressed for TikTok, and how she manages constantly being online. Read on for more, along with an exclusive behind-the-scenes video from the #AExME Back To School Campaign.
What was it like to shoot the #AExME Back To School Campaign?
The American Eagle Back To School Campaign is super exciting. I'm so very fortunate that I was chosen to be an ambassador for American Eagle. The process was really just organic and natural, and everything we filmed for the campaign was all shot in the comfort of our own homes, so it was really, really fun to navigate our way through that.
A lot of people are attending school or working remotely, what tips do you have for looking your best on-screen?
I feel like being comfortable and confidence is key for so many things. Just be yourself.
How do you approach your own style and outfits for TikTok?
I always try my best to be comfortable so I'm able to move and dance. That's why the American Eagle Dream Jeans are perfect for TikToks because they're stretchy and comfortable and don't sever my style.
What has been your favorite outfit to wear this summer so far?
My go-to style is a pair of super comfy mom jeans or boyfriend jeans, and a black, white, or gray tank.
What are you looking forward to wearing in the fall?
In the fall, normally I'm one to grab a pair of loose-fitting jeans and a sweater. I love a good sweater and I think American Eagle has a lot of sweater options to offer that are always super cute and still comfortable.
You're constantly making content for so many different platforms. How do you manage everything?
I keep myself on a schedule just for my own sake and to kind of organize my mind. I wake up in the morning, take a shower, get ready, eat some breakfast, and then I start my day by going on TikTok, seeing if any sounds or trends interest me for the day. Then once I make content for fun, it kind of just goes throughout the day like that. I'll randomly be like, 'Oh, I want to do one.' Or I'll hear a sound in the moment and do one. But other than that, I have a lot of scheduled time for myself and my brands and projects. I'll have time to talk to my team and really sort things out for the day. Then I have time to really engage with my American Eagle family, and then also engage with my family for a podcast and everything else that I'm working on.
What are some TikTok sounds that you love right now?
TikTok sounds that I'm loving are normally the dancey ones. I like any that are super upbeat and fun.
Is there a TikTok video or dance that you're still trying to nail down?
I don't do a lot of drafts. I'll just find one in the moment and post it. There aren't any that I'm working on now but they're probably coming because it kind of just comes about in the day.
For being known so much online, do you ever take the time to unplug?
Of course. I think it's super important to focus on your mental health and take the time you need away from social media and unplug. Stick into reality and just realize that you're here, your family or loved ones are near, and putting a lot of energy into that.