Season 2 of The Real Housewives of Dallas may just be getting started, but new housewife D’Andra Simmons has already established herself as having one of the best wardrobes of any Real Housewife in history (OK, maybe tied with Lisa Vanderpump). From her closet full of high-end designer gowns to her blinding collection of jewelry, the Dallas native’s style follows the age old saying, “everything’s bigger in Texas.”
Turns out, her impeccable wardrobe is thanks to flawless taste and her background in fashion — before transitioning into a business woman with her own beauty empire, she worked at Saks Fifth Avenue under Rose Marie Bravo (who later ran Burberry). During our conversation with Bravo’s breakout star, we learned so many fascinating fashion tidbits like this, that we’re sharing all the secrets to her stellar style, below.
She had a personal connection to Oscar de la Renta.
In the episode where D’Andra cleaned out her closet, eagle-eye viewers may have noticed the shocking number of Oscar de la Renta pieces she owned. “Before my husband, I was engaged to Oscar de la Renta’s godson and so I have a ton of Oscar de la Renta in my closet,” she tells PeopleStyle. “I’m not getting rid of the things before he passed away.”
Her closet is the size of a small home.
Since she owns so many designer pieces, her closet is massive. “Literally I can probably have a 10 person slumber party in there,” she says about the size of her closet. “What happened was when we moved into this house, which I built for myself as a single woman from the ground up, this person who designed my closet was a giant. She’s 6’2″ and I’m tiny so I’m always on a step stool and I can’t get to anything.”
As a result, she’s currently planning a complete overhaul of the space. “It’s going to be more functional because right now it is not at all functional. It’s very big but it’s not functional.”
She already has a fashion regret on the show.
Even with a closet full of designer clothes, it took her a minute to find her groove when it came to getting dressed for filming. She says the outfit she wore during the “Walking in Memphis” episode was her least favorite. “I was wearing my sweater inside out from Anthropologie. I had a bandana on my head. I’m like what the hell was I thinking? I think it was my first week of filming. I learned after that.”
She’s handling her haters like a pro.
Between Twitter feuds with castmates to hurtful comments from viewers on social media, she’s learning to take her new fame in stride. “It’s mean and at first I was upset.” she shared. “But now I’m thinking this is actually kind of funny. I’m just getting used to how this world works. And now I found the mute button so that’s fabulous. I would never block anyone because I want them to see what I’m doing and how fabulous my life is. I am not stupid enough to block them.”
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Shopping in Dallas is a serious sport.
To prep for shooting days, she shopped at a store called Tootsies in Dallas once a week for new pieces. “I go every week to pull clothes and most of the time I end up buying to be honest with you,” she says. “They have Carolina Herrera and Oscar . The Dallas store is more hip with trendy designers and more mainstream so you’ll see a lot of Alice + Olivia.”
Before her days on the show, she frequented the flagship Neiman Marcus store downtown. “If you shop downtown you’re old money socialite, if you shop other places you’re not necessarily,” she explains. “So I shop downtown with a private shopper and she would bring all the Oscar de la Renta, the Caroline Herrera, the lines I have worn for years and years. And we’d pick things to wear for my season.”
And the red carpet during Dallas’ society season is as cut-throat as Hollywood’s award circuit. “They keep a list of all the women who are socialites and what they’re going to wear so nobody overlaps,” D’Andra explains.
Her jewelry collection is massive.
Simmons’ mother, Dee Simmons, lets her have free rein of her jewelry collection. “I never need to buy jewelry. My dad said if my mother got up all night long every two minutes and changed jewelry she wouldn’t get through it all for the whole night.”
On the show, the ring she wears most often is a 24 karat yellow diamond. She has a second yellow diamond that checks in at 18 karats with smaller diamonds surrounding it. Also in her rotation? An 8-karat, 10-karat, and 16-karat ring, which she rotates between.
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D’Andra is following in her mom’s footsteps with her own beauty line, Hard Night Rough Morning.
Dee launched her own skincare line, Ultimate Living in 1996 as a way to provide the highest quality nutritional supplements and skin care products available. And in 2008 D’Andra launched her own skincare line, Hard Night Good Morning, with products that are also naturally derived. “We have certified organic aloe now as our main ingredient because aloe is much better, much more efficacious to carry the actives to the cellular level versus of water,” D’Andra says about her line. “If you have water as a first ingredient water evaporates, aloe penetrates.”
A lot of her ingredients come from sub-Saharan Africa because she studied the skincare routines of local women in Nairobi when she was living there. Out of her entire line, one of the best-selling products is the eye cream. “Everyone who tries the eye cream just loves it because it’s good for dark circles, puffiness, and anti aging, crow’s feet, wrinkles, elasticity, everything.”
There’s no word yet if D’Andra finally gets to take over the family business (a major plot of her story line on the show) but she has big plans for the company once she does. She recently moved the office to a newer, more contemporary building. And, yes, her mom brought all her ’90s relics with her.
The Real Housewives of Dallas airs Mondays (10 p.m. ET) on Bravo.
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