Openly gay? Check. Handsome? Check. Talented? Check. Madly in love? Check, check, check, check! Television personality and all-around stud Jaymes Vaughan has developed quite the career for himself in a short amount of time.
Jaymes, 36, has conquered many aspects of the entertainment industry that revolve around being a successful television host (Celebrity Page TV), reality star (The Amazing Race) and much more.
Sky appears to be the limit for him as his presence in the world continues to grow. He and his equally as cute boyfriend Jonathan Bennett also happens to be one of Hollywood’s biggest gay power couples. So yeah… he’s got it going on.
Jaymes chatted with me about everything from love to career to even the possibility of him and Jonathan, 38, adopting a baby at some point. Take a look.
You have developed a huge career for yourself that has successfully hit many different avenues. What has been the driving force behind it all?
You get one life. One single solitary life. So I’m all for having the most experiences possible. That’s why I’ve strived to have so many different types of highlights in my career. Yes, I get to talk to some of the biggest stars in the world hosting an entertainment news show now, but I’d like to think I’ve had a pretty fun road to get here.
I’ve done a lot from television news to singing in shows all over the world. I got to headline in Vegas. I mean I even hosted Chippendales at one point and used it to go on The Amazing Race. I’m all for doing as many different things as possible and not just being locked into one singular career path. I love it.
I’ve been able to do some pretty wild stuff, mainly because I’m very stubborn at taking no for an answer. Seize every opportunity in this one life ya know? If you fall flat on your face (see my attempted recording artist career) at least you had the experience and didn’t miss out.
Do you have a favorite moment or interview with a celeb that sticks out more than others?
There’s honestly so many. It’s funny people always want to know “who’s the worst celebrity to interview?” And while I know that answer (there’s two, but I’m not telling), surprisingly most stars are fun to deal with. So, thank you for asking the positive question instead. And my highlights list is long.
Dolly Parton is exactly who you want her to be. That glammed up Auntie who looks you straight in the eyes and legitimately cares about you getting a good interview. In fact, when we finished, she said “Did you get everything you need Darlin?” I mean, that’s class.
Pitbull is amazing to be in the presence of because his heart is so huge. He told me “it should be an obligation” for those of means to help others and he 1000% means that. Spend two minutes on Google and you will see all he does for other people. And you can’t leave an interview with him and not be inspired.
Ciara is the nicest and probably the prettiest human being I’ve ever encountered on a red carpet.
Honestly the list goes on and on. Just know that in my experience most celebs are cool to deal with. And no matter who you are the minute Janet Jackson approaches you on a red carpet you will be speechless.
Is there someone you’re dying to do a one on one with?
RuPaul. In drag. Me in drag I mean. But her too obviously. I’ve never done drag. So if you’re gonna do it, she’s the one to do it with.
I got to sit in on a set where Ru was working and honestly it is a master class in hosting. Ru’s control of the room, the cameras, and the control of the talent in the room was so seamless. I was like “and that is why you get the Emmys.” We would have much to talk about. And I’d be taking copious notes.
Let’s chat about you and Jonathan. You guys are freaking adorable one, but two… how did y’all meet?
Speaking of favorite celeb interviews, that’s actually how we met. He was on our show to promote one of his Food Network programs, Halloween Wars (which by the way is presently airing Sundays at 9), and literally the rest is history.
I know you recently adopted a dog together called Yasss. You were hesitant to do this even though Jonathan has been gung-ho for a while. What changed your mind?
It sounds cliche but when you love someone you want to do things that make their heart sing. Jonathan loves dogs. Like more than a normal amount. He would literally leap over our patio wall onto the boardwalk as people walked by with their dogs so he could go pet them. That’s a level of love for fur babies that I finally just gave in to. Did I want dog piss all over our house? No. But did I want to see his face light up every time our dog runs in the room? Absolutely. And of course the dog that I was so hesitant to get I’m now pretty in love with myself too. Isn’t that how it usually works out?
What is your favorite thing about your super cute doodle dog?
His personality. All he wants to do is either play with you or love on you. Plus he’s got great hair just like his dad.
Are you guys planning on adopting a baby at some point to expand on the family?
I grew up in a family with four of us kids and it is honestly the perfect number. I’m still super close with my siblings today because of how we grew up together and I want to give that to my kids. So kids yes, I absolutely love kids. But I gotta get this dog to stop trying to eat all our socks first before we move on to that.
Rapid fire question time: Who is your biggest celebrity crush?
You mean besides Jonathan Bennett? Will Smith. Growing up watching him on Fresh Prince, yeah, he’s pretty much how I knew.
Favorite snack to devour?
Chipotle. I eat it three times a day sometimes.
Britney or Christina?
If I had to choose one player in a battle to save the world? 2001 Britney. But if I must choose one to kick it with? Christina. She’s always been a blast with me in interviews.
Best album you’ve ever listened to?
I love music. As a singer I listen to everything and have such eclectic taste. I grew up on country, got paid to mostly sing pop, and I like to listen to classical when I work out.
So rather than try and sound super artsy and cool here I’m just going to say Todrick Hall’s Hause Party albums are huge in our house right now. You can’t be in anything but a good mood when his music on. Plus he’s part of our LGBTQ+ fam and entirely too talented to not be the biggest thing in the world right now. So, go support him. Buy everything. Then also support a lesser known artist too. Cause balance.
What was the most nervous moment of your career?
So the running gag on my show is that you can’t mess me up. The building could be on fire and I’d keep going like everything is fine. But I kid you not, the day Jonathan showed up on set for me to interview him on my show. Now mind you I didn’t really know Mean Girls so I didn’t really know a lot about him or really have a thing for him. But right before we were about to start rolling his shoulder accidentally brushed mine and bam! Instant butterflies. I couldn’t even form proper sentences for the interview. He was just as fumbly too by the way. But I thought I might lose my job that day over how uncool I was on camera. But I didn’t even care, because I knew even if I lost my job, I had found my husband. Turns out I got to keep both.
What else do you have in store moving forward that our readers should know?
So I’ve been working with Vacaya, a new vacation company for LGBTQ+ travelers. Why? Because I love doing different things. I just guest cruise directed their inaugural cruise and it was everything which is funny cause I was so hesitant at first to do it. I assumed it would be a party cruise and party cruises aren’t really my thing at this point in life. If they are yours great, go, live your life, slay, twirl, werk, do what you love. I just didn’t really want to do one.
But Vacaya made a promise that they were doing this to create a vacation space where everyone could feel included, regardless of age, race, body type, ability, gender, sexual orientation, etc. Environments like that are much more my vibe. Spaces where everyone, literally everyone in our community can feel safe to be themselves, express themselves, and love themselves and others, and it ended up being just that. I met so many amazing elders in our community too. Check out my Instagram for a feature on two of them. It was just beautiful.
So look for me to be doing more stuff with them. In fact, we are heading to Mexico with them for Day Of The Dead at the end of the month. There’s a Christmas river cruise through Europe, and a cruise around Iceland next year.
You can also catch me hosting Celebrity Page TV nightly on Reelz Channel and in syndication on about 200 local stations in America (which is gay own and operated by the way. Very proud of that.) Those of you in the UK keep your eye out for me on ITV’s Lorraine where I do Hollywood news there.
And I’m on a bunch of daytime talk shows here in the states like Wendy Williams, The Talk and more. Honestly your support anytime I’m on screen or just remembering to be kinder on social media is always greatly appreciated. Go spread some love.
Learn more about Jaymes by following him here.