Charleston Resident Has a Lot Going on Outside the Popular Bravo TV Series
By: Jeff Walker, Entertainment Writer
Born and raised in Greenville, South Carolina, 31-year-old Madison LeCroy has called Charleston her home long before her personal profile heightened due to a reality show series filmed in the Holy City. “I’ve lived in Charleston for 13 years. I moved here when I was 18, just before I turned 19. I got a job as a hair assistant, kind of a shampoo girl. I started off there and eventually worked my way up.”
After more than a decade in the beauty business LeCroy admits it’s been a normal progression. “I followed my older sisters in the field of cosmetology. It was just something I was naturally good at, so I kind of went with it. I thought that I had the art outlet in me to become creative. I didn’t really consider a backup plan. I’ve always had a passion for making people beautiful and doing hair and makeup.”
The co-owner of Maven on Society, LeCroy is a much sought-after hair, beauty and makeup consultant. “My business partner Meg Workman and I have owned it since December 16th, 2021. Prior to that I owned my own salon off Broad Street which was more of a studio space and freelanced for five or six years.”
However, her notoriety was taken to another level when she first appeared on Bravo TV’s highly rated ‘Southern Charm’ which in turn raised her celebrity status. “I was actually the hairstylist for the show from the beginning. I worked with the people, and built a relationship, mostly through all the women there. I did some of the men’s hair as well. Eventually I started to date one of the guys from the show, and it all kind of all took off from there.”
Apparently LeCroy was topic of conversation on the reality show long before she became a cast member. “The first time I appeared on the show, I didn’t know I was being talked about on the show, because I was. Then the next year they offered me to be a full time cast member. That was season seven.”
How she became a regular on the series is rather unique. “One of the guys on Southern Charm didn’t agree with my relationship so I became conversation on the show. I had no idea this guy had such an opinion of me. I guess Bravo thought it was interesting storyline, enough to ask me to join the show.”
‘Southern Charm’ debuted in the spring of 2014. The series chronicles the personal and professional lives of several socialites who reside in Charleston, South Carolina. The show focuses on the Southern culture and political history of the area, among other hot button topics surrounding the Holy City, and has featured local historical places like Lewisfield Plantation and the Mikell House.
It’s reality television and much to the astonishment of naysayers, LeCroy says Southern Charm is not scripted. “Pretty much what you see is what you get. They give us a talking point. They tell us, ‘These are the people we’re going to throw you in the room with and kind of let it happen.” Much of the conversation never makes it in the final cut. “You have to understand we film for hours, and then only five minutes of dialogue might make it on a particular episode.”
Does filming require many hours on set. “Some days are long, but not really. I’d say it’s more stressful sometimes than anything else.” LeCroy says there is an upside to ‘Southern Charm’. “I do feel they make the city look beautiful.”
LeCroy joined the popular reality series at the beginning of season seven, after being a talking point in previous seasons. Season eight of ‘Southern Charm’ wrapped up filming back in December and airs in spring or summer of 2022. With one full-time season under her belt LeCroy admits being on the show has been beneficial to her overall career.
“It is hectic in the best way possible. Business has been great. It’s certainly afforded me opportunities that may have not come my way. I had no idea I’d be getting the jobs that are being offered to me, and I know that wouldn’t have happened if I hadn’t appeared on the show, giving me a bigger platform and national exposure.”
One of the windfalls presented to her came by way of Amazon Live. LeCroy now has her own show on the live streaming service. “Yes, I’m partially a social influencer in a way. Think of it as the modern day HSN or QVC. This is now an outlet for young people in my generation and who aren’t up at 2am to say ‘hey I like how her kitchen looks or what she’s wearing”.
The popular online format made the first call. “They reached out to my agent, and he crunched all the numbers so to speak, and got the logistics right. I’m actually contracted out by Amazon, and I’m very proud to have a presence on their site.”
The twice monthly segment fits her schedule and personality. “It’s every other week, and I go on for an hour and talk to viewers that way. They can type in questions and hopefully I’ll address as many as possible.” It’s much different than the reality TV show. “I do it all. I set up the camera, make sure the angle is right. But honestly, I love it. It’s just me doling out advice and talking about my life on topics that have real meaning to me.” LeCroy offers advice on beauty, health, fitness, travel, and home decor among other things.
For those who may not be aware of LeCroy from Southern Charm or her Amazon Live segments she describes what she does in the best way possible. “When people ask what do I do for a living, that’s a loaded question. I say I do a lot of things. I’m on a reality TV show. I own a business. I’m a beauty consultant.” LeCroy is also a mom to a nine year old son who she shares custody with her ex-husband. “I wear a lot of hats, and I stay busy, but I manage it pretty well.”
Although ‘Southern Charm’ has allowed her a bit of notoriety, she admits she’s not a celebrity. “No I do not consider myself a celebrity. If anything, I’m just a southern girl who just happen to get caught up in the mix of the reality world. Reality TV brought a different element to my life. I’m thankful, but hopefully it hasn’t gone to my head.”
LeCroy says she doesn’t solicit all the attention afforded her, it just happens. “If the media wants you to be in the media they will do whatever it takes to get you there. A lot of times I’ll just roll with it. You can’t let all the negative stuff that has no merit effect you.”
Financial perks keep rolling in. “I recently did a deal with ‘Got Milk’.” She says it’s not a TV commercial. “It’s kind of an influencing thing. To start getting these bigger brands. For example, one of the women on the show said I deserve a Budweiser. Not long after Budweiser contacts me. So to have these outlets, I feel privileged.”
Many who follow the show and LeCroy on social media platforms know she’s engaged and planning to marry later this year. However it’s not the guy she dated from the show. “Brett is opposite of me, and I couldn’t be more thankful of that. Could you imagine someone who is high strung around me. He’s just a really nice guy, laid back, and not really drawn to the spotlight.”
Whether destiny or divine intervention, there’s was a chance meeting. “We met in Scottsdale Arizona. I was on a girls trip, and he was out for a friends birthday. That was in April of last year.” They became engaged in October of 2021.
Like LeCroy, Brett has several opportunities he can pursue. “He actually wears several hats as well. Not only is he a firefighter, he works for SWAT, and is a paramedic. He’s a few years older than me, so he’ll have a retirement coming up.”
Will Brett move from his home in California and call Charleston home. “It’s up in the air. He may go back and forth until he retires from firefighting.” And where will the newlywed couple call home. “We actually bought a house out on Daniel Island. It’s an existing house but it’s been newly renovated.”
According to LeCroy, being a mother is one of her greatest rewards, even though it’s challenging with her schedule. “I give a lot of credit to stay at home moms. That takes a lot of hard work. Those times that people see me travelling or somewhere outside of Charleston, I’m not just leaving my kid. That’s scheduled time he has with his dad.”
The upcoming season of ‘Southern Charm’ will have a new look for LeCroy. “Season eight is a little different for me. My son didn’t want to have any exposure on the show, and I respect that. Also, my fiance has no desire to be in the show, so it reduced my exposure.” Whether she’ll be featured on every episode she has no idea. “I don’t believe any of us do. I see each episode the same time the viewing audience sees it.”
One thing she knows for certain. “The show thrives on drama. I don’t feel I’m in a lot of that.” She adds, “You’re damned if you do, and damned if you don’t. With my fiance being on the show, they would be saying that is the only way he wanted to date me because he’s on the show. On the flip side, if he doesn’t do the show they’re still going to have something to talk about. So they can say mean things, because the show runs on drama.”
When it comes to her fiancé, she’s somewhat guarded. “He’s actually very conservative. He doesn’t mind if I post a picture of us on social media.” LeCroy admits to being somewhere in the middle. “I’m mildly conservative. It’s partly due to the way I was raised. I’m certainly conservative when it comes to finances and running my business. I wouldn’t be where I am now if I didn’t have some conservative values. But my life is out there, so I do have this liberal side to me.”
For those who have not tuned in to ‘Southern Charm’ how would LeCroy describe it in simple terms. “The show is based off high society. It’s based off of those who came from a lot of money. I don’t need to name names, but there have been several over the years that are what we say have ‘mailbox money’. That’s the opposite of me. I’m self made. I made my success on my own. Obviously I give credit to show for helping me along that path, but I was successful before ‘Southern Charm’.”
When LeCroy was first offered a full time role on the show, did she consider any back-lash. “Yes. I thought if they portrayed me in the wrong light it might cost me business. What if women didn’t want to come to me, because they thought I was a certain sort of way. I was nervous. But I just kind of got thrown in and it took off. Thankfully it didn’t effect my business at all. In many ways it enhanced it.”
She adds, “The show doesn’t care about you, or what you’re trying to protect. It’s reality television and they are more about promoting the show and making money.” She says it’s the opposite for the cast. “We don’t make a ton of our income thru the show. It’s more about how you’re going to use the platform outside of the show.”
While season eight has finished filming, LeCroy knows very little about a ninth season or if she’d be a part of it. “It’s up to the producers. And for me it’s where I’m at in my life. When the show airs it’s sometimes a year behind.”
After several months of filming the show wrapped season eight in December. “If and when they decide to film another season, who knows what I’ll be up to. Depends on the ratings as well. Producers pull shows with bad ratings. So, I don’t know and don’t focus on what is out of my control.” Nonetheless, fan polling indicates LeCroy has been a welcome addition to the cast. “I’m happy viewers like what I bring to the show.”
Being on a reality show dealing with drama, there might be some who have misconceptions about LeCroy. “I think there are people out there that think I’m not very welcoming, that I’m harsh. But in reality I’m not. I’m a do no harm take no shit kind of girl. I was raised in the upstate. I come from a good family. For the most part I’m a good girl.”
Does that carry over into the Holy City. “Especially for people who live here in Charleston. They either love the show or they hate it. People think because my life is on this show, they have the right to say whatever they want, or be judgmental about me, and sometimes I’ll say something snarky back, but most of the time I just ignore it.”
Although she was raised in the upstate, LeCroy absolutely loves the low country of South Carolina. “My favorite thing about Charleston is the water. I can captain my own boat. Love being out on the water. I love the weather here. I prefer the summer. I’m not a winter girl.”
LeCroy has spent of majority of her 11 years in Charleston downtown. “I’ve lived on the peninsula for a long time. I really love the historic part of downtown. I love how easy it is to get around downtown.” Relocating has been challenging. “Daniel Island has a lot to offer. It’s a great small island town, very picturesque.”
LeCroy does enjoy a few favorite Holy City haunts. “I love a good steak house, so I’m going to go with Hall’s. I also love a good wine bar, so Vintage makes my list. In reality it’s hard to single several out because Charleston is such an incredible food and beverage town. I’m a restaurant kind of gal. So that’s what I do for any sort of social life.”
Other than embracing the great food & beverage establishments we have in Charleston, LeCroy focuses her attention on her son. “I try to spend as much time with him as possible. That’s where the bulk of my free time goes. I love hanging out with him.” LeCroy admits she recently bought him a new bike. “We had to special order it. So look forward to riding with him. He loves to play soccer. He’s a typical nine year old boy.”
LeCroy admits to being athletic as a young girl, but switched gears later. “I played softball, basketball, and volleyball in middle school. When I got to high school, I found out cheerleading was cool so I did that.”
She may enjoy a nice steak and glass of wine, but make no mistake she cares about her overall fitness. “I try to commit to a healthy lifestyle. Once you leave that, it’s hard to come back.”
LeCroy will be getting married later this year. She’s busy planning that. “It’s a destination wedding. This time around, I’m going into it with forever in mind, especially given our respective faiths. We complement each other well. It’s crazy because I can’t find anything about him I don’t like.”
With her exposure from the reality show and LeCroy’s online presence, oddly Brett had no clue who she was when they met. “He operates in a different world than I do. There was an immediate attraction.” But jokingly she had Brett looked into. “I had him checked out. What if he was a serial killer.”
Young, beautiful, and successful, has LeCroy ever had issues with fans or followers. “You get some emails that are weird. I’m fortunate in that regard. It’s social media. People can look me up and find stuff about me. Where I work and information like that.”
She adds, residing in the Holy City provides somewhat of a safety net. Charleston is a great place to live, because you can do things like be on ‘Southern Charm’ and still fly under the radar somewhat. I really love that.”
However, her local spotlight may shine brighter due to TBT Magazine. LeCroy is currently the Charleston editions inaugural issue’s cover girl. As they have in South Florida TBT Magazine is a free quarterly focusing on community business, lifestyle, health, sports, fashion, food, and area destinations wrapped around interesting content.
“I’m honored to be the cover of TBT Magazine. It means so much to be recognized and I really appreciate them thinking of me. We had such a great time shooting the images and interviewing with the team.” She adds, “Super excited to celebrate their beautiful magazine’s first edition here in Charleston. Again, such and honor to be on the cover.”
While Madison LeCroy is in charge of her own social media presence, other outlets continue to push articles and images of her to interested followers, keeping her media buzz alive. “It all comes with the territory. Southern Charm has made household names out of several people from Charleston. As long as the show is on the air it will continue to happen.”
She adds, “Again I’m thankful for all the opportunities the show has brought my way. As for the other stuff, as long as I’m portrayed in a positive way, I’m okay with it, but personally I don’t get caught up in it.” For fans of LeCroy you can follow her on the upcoming eighth season of Southern Charm or on her Instagram page at https://www.instagram.com/madison.lecroy/?hl=en
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