Brian Michael Firkus, better known as Trixie Mattel, was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on August 23, 1989. She has become a renowned drag queen thanks to winning the third season of “RuPaul’s Drag Race: All-Stars.” The exposure has been worth her while because, unlike before, when Mattel could barely afford lipstick and tights, she has made enough money to start a makeup line. From music to starting a lucrative web series, the sky is the limit for this entrepreneurial drag queen. Let’s tell you more about how Trixie Mattel’s net worth rose to $10 million.
When Mattel was young, she lived with her mother, brother, and lots of her mother’s boyfriends. According to Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, her mother, Val, married Mattel’s stepfather, an emotionally and physically abusive alcoholic. He was so hard on Mattel that whenever he saw her being emotional or acting feminine, he would call her “Trixie,” a name that would later lay the foundation for her drag queen performances. The abuse became too much for Mattel. Her stepfather threatened to kill her, which prompted a counselor to advise her to get out of the house. She was only 15 then and found solace in music. Her grandfather had taught her how to play the guitar at 13, and she was inspired to become a songwriter. Therefore, when she went to the University of Milwaukee, she studied musical theater at the Peck School of the Arts. Unfortunately, her musical career did not take off as she had hoped; her auditions never panned out, and the open mic sessions were not attracting audiences. Luckily, she stumbled into something else that would forever change her life: drag queen performance.
She confessed that she saw the most beautiful woman in the world one day as she looked at herself in the mirror wearing fishnet stockings, heels, and a mop-top of hair. She started doing drag, and according to Milwaukee Magazine, her drag role performance at the Oriental Theater helped Mattel come up with her drag queen name. She was only 19 and remembered the name her stepfather used to call her: Trixie. She added that she had always loved dolls, and since manufacturers are like the parents of the dolls, Mattel, a toy company, was an appropriate surname; hence Trixie Mattel was born. She would make at least $50, and it was paying the bills, and that was all that mattered because it also helped improve her self-image.
When Mattel joined “RuPaul’s Drag Race” in its seventh season, she was eliminated twice, making history as the first contestant to last more than an episode after returning to the competition. She does not give up easily and returned to “RuPaul’s Drag Race: All-Stars” in its third season and won. According to Cheatsheet, contestants are paid $400 per episode, and if they return for another season, they get a 5% rise. Since she won, besides making the few hundreds of dollars per episode, Mattel also got the cash prize of $100,000 and a year supply of Anastasia Beverly Hills Cosmetics. The show opened doors for the drag queen whose drag performances usually sell out. Considering that a drag queen can make up to $10,000 and sometimes six figures per appearance, it is safe to say someone as famous as Mattel is laughing all the way to the bank.
Television and Social Media
Besides enabling her to rake in more money for her drag queen shows, appearing in the “Drag Race” also boosted her television and social media career. According to Vice, World of Wonder, the production company behind ‘” Drag Race” asked Mattel to be a guest on “Fashion Photo review.”
She was with fellow contestant Katya, and since they bonded, they started their own web talk show, “UNHhhh.” So far, it has over 140 episodes and considering that each episode has over 1 million views, the series has been lucrative for the duo. Usually, a million views on YouTube can get you as much as $40,000, and when you multiply that with the number of episodes, Mattel and Katya are making a fortune. Besides, she has a documentary on Netflix, “Moving Parts,” that documented her drag queen career. There are also three seasons of a web series, “I Like to Watch,” which have all been making Mattel and Katya a significant chunk of money. As if that is not enough, there are the sponsored ads on Instagram. According to The Gay UK, Mattel is the second highest-earning RuPaul’s Drag queen with an estimated amount of $7,055 per post. So far, she has 2.3 million followers and 4682 posts, so once you do the math, you will be in awe of how much she has managed to make since her rise to fame.
Other Sources of Income
Mattel dabbles in almost everything she can get her hands on; therefore, she has tried her hand at music. After a painful breakup, she once again found solace in music and wrote sad songs which she would perform during her drag performances; her audience loved them. The realization that she would make her audience laugh and cry simultaneously led her to record her first album, “Two Birds,” which was released on May 2, 2017. Before long, she had recorded two other albums, and finally, Mattel was living her teenage dream of being a musician.
Of course, drag queen life comes with the need for makeup, and Mattel materialized this into a company. She explained to Fast Company that before venturing into drag, she worked in cosmetics for five years. Mattel, therefore, become an expert at knowing which ingredients went into each product and understanding why specific products were not selling. With that knowledge, she launched Trixie Cosmetics, which she flaunts as providing pro-level products packaged in vibrant and fun childhood toys. Mattel also has her merchandise available on drag queen merchandise with items such as throw pillows going for $28.99, a TV hoodie for $49.99, and a T-shirt for $29.99. The drag queen has proven she is not stopping, and with the entrepreneurial spirit already bearing fruits, the net worth is on an upward trajectory.