With a third season on the air, a skincare line, and a unique handbag collection Real Housewife of Miami’s Lea is “in the black”. For those watching the show, you also know she is in the drama, this is Miami after all. Very composed and professional she’s not the easiest Bravoleb to get the dish from, but she kindly answered our questions about Season 3, her falling out with Adriana, her businesses, and her charity work. Take a look…”Bienvenido a Miami!”
TBB: Congratulations on the new season! You’ve been a Miami Housewife since the beginning, however your franchise has the highest turnover with cast even going out and coming back. Why is that?
LB: Some of it is circumstances amongst the girls within their lives. I also feel that Bravo wants to showcase the diversity of Miami and they are established enough to pick and choose who they want to be on the show.
TBB: You look a little different this season. What has changed about your look?
LB: (laughs) Oh I don’t know, I think I probably look the same. Most of the clothes I’ve had for years. I did shorten and straighten my hair a bit but it did grow back out again.
TBB: The big storyline right now is the fallout between you and Adriana (DeMoura). Do you feel she took advantage of you?
LB: I think that she wasn’t completely honest with me. Underneath all that is more than just the marriage – it was the backstabbing that went on right after she had the confrontation with Joanna (Krupa). That’s what started it all. The marriage was one more revelation about who she was and how she’d been acting.
TBB: In the third episode Frederic (Marq) said he was going to send you a threatening text. Did that text ever materialize?
LB: No (laughs) That’s funny.
TBB: Right now it appears the cast is split into two camps, yours being with Lisa (Hochstein) and Joanna. What is it about these two ladies that has bonded you with them?
LB: I just find they are refreshing and just want to have fun. They aren’t strategizing anything or trying to hurt anybody. I just want to have fun.
TBB: We haven’t seen Elaine Lancaster (aka James Davis) yet this season. Will she be back?
LB: James is in it a few times and I believe Elaine was at the fashion show in the beginning – and of course you will see Elaine at the Gala!
TBB: Speaking of that, you are in charge of one of the biggest fundraiser galas on the Miami Social Scene (The Blacks’ Annual Gala). For anyone who doesn’t know tell us about your charity.
LB: We raise money to help keep kids in school and out of jail. We have been able to help thousands by working with after-school programs. It is cheaper to keep these children in school rather than send them to jail. If one kid goes to jail there will be a whole aftermath that will affect the course of his life, and if he stays in school there will be a better outcome. If we can change the world one kid at a time – well what better thing than that to put our time into?
TBB: Have any of the children you have helped come back to tell you about the difference you made in their lives?
LB: Yes they often do. We’ve had some of them speak at The Gala. Some have gone on to graduate college.
TBB: Outside of Housewives you have a couple of business ventures. One is a skincare line, Lea Black Beauty. How did that develop?
LB: I developed my skincare line in the 80’s. During the last couple of years new technology has developed and I’ve added new products. The line includes moisturizer, a serum and face wash and it’s all available at theworldofleablack.com and leablackbeauty.com. I’m really focused on online distribution because I want to make it affordable and available to everyone. However, if stores contact us we can make it available to them, the ones that have sold it have done really well with it.
TBB: Can you tell us about some of the products?
LB: The facial kit is something you can use once or twice a week to lift and tighten. The moisture cream increases the moisture in your skin 400%. I have the clinical studies to support that. Everyone needs a really good face wash which we have as well as an exfoliant that helps slough off dead skin cells. The products will be showcased on the show, so stay tuned!
TBB: You also have a handbag line, Lea Black Handbags. The purse business is a very difficult one to break into as many of the designers have been established for decades and beyond. Other Housewives have tried to break in. What makes your bags different?
LB: My bags are glamourous, timeless “after hours” bags – they’re multi-functional and many women use them in the daytime too. They really are show stoppers and are very affordable in the – $100 to $500 range. I started designing them for myself because I found that it’s hard to find a bag that everything fits into that won’t be out of style in a year or two. I created timeless pieces that you can wear with a pair of jeans or an evening gown. Everyone wants to invest in a bag that won’t become outdated.
TBB: There are so many more questions we’d like to ask you and we hope you will come back and speak with us after Season 3 wraps. Is there anything else you would like people to know about you?
LB: Follow me on twitter @LeaBlackMiami and visit theworldofleablack.com to check out the beauty and handbag lines, as well as my pillows and cuffs! I hope you all enjoy the season and that we keep you entertained and wanting more!