Nick Mascardo on the birds & the bees, West Hollywood and why you should vote Nov. 6

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You may know his face (and body) from the raunchy and surprisingly funny Andrew Christian underwear videos such as “Nick Mascardo’s Bottom Basics,” and “Underwear Sniffing Challenge with Nick Mascarado.”

But Nick Masc, as he has come to be known, is more than a pretty face. Seriously. So we tracked him down in Las Angeles to answer a few questions via email about where he likes to hang out in WeHo, his journey from closeted small-town Pensacola to international underwear model, and why LGBTQ should get their asses to the polls on Nov. 6.

The conversation took place shortly after photographer Tyson Vick released new shots featuring both Nick and real-life boyfriend Murray Swanby, the model and club promoter from E’s reality program What Happens at the Abbey. The images feature Andrew Christian, Marco Marco, and Aronik underwear. (Sorry we can’t share the nudes)!

What’s on your bedside table right now?

My bedside table has all the normal things a 25-year-old guys table should have: my wallet, keys, phone charger, sex shackles, Snapback’s and cologne.

What are you streaming/reading?

Currently not much of a reader, so the TV is my go to! I’m currently obsessed with Riverdale and Insatiable.

Sometimes it seems like once you became an Andrew Christian Trophy Boy a few years back, you were everywhere almost overnight.

Since becoming a Trophy Boy my life has done a complete 180-degree turn in the right direction! I have always been a small town guy and thought I would end up at a desk job working 9-5. Within a month of the award, I left my hometown of 20 years, moved to Las Angeles with only 3 bags. Now I get paid to travel internationally and drink in my underwear! Working for Andrew Christian, as cheesy as this sounds, has given me a real life. Before AC I was closeted and wasn’t really living for myself but rather for the opinions of others about me. AC gave me that necessary push I needed to not only join an amazing community but be somewhat of a figurehead in that community.

You grew up in Florida. How is West Hollywood/LA different?

My hometown of Pensacola vs. West Hollywood has no comparison. It would be like comparing iPhones and Androids haha. In Pensacola, everyone knew your business because everyone knew each other, in West Hollywood everyone knows your life because people love to talk ha. In Pensacola, the LGBTQ community is so small that you always feel like an outsider. When I moved to California, it was the first time I felt like I really fit in and could be myself–plus the guys are way sexier here. 😜

You must get recognized when you are out. How does that feel?

Getting recognized in public is always so flattering! Never would I have ever thought I would have fans in my life!

What are your favorite places to hang out in West Hollywood?

My favorite place to eat in West Hollywood has to be Matrix cafe–nothing like some good natural lighting and queso. As far as bars go every Thursday Night you’ll find me living it up at The Chapel and at The Abbey for Touch Thursdays. When it comes to cafes I am not much of a coffee drinker but every 10 feet I can find a Starbucks if I need one.

All time fave gay bar not in LA?

My favorite gay bar outside of LA, without a doubt, is a hidden gem called Garden Nightclub in Des Moines, Iowa. As random as that sounds, Garden nightclub is such a breath of gay fresh air.

What are your favorite beaches in the world?

#TakeMeBack to Hawaii. My favorite beaches are definitely Hawaii’s beaches. I go to Hawaii about 2-3 times a year and always like to tan my buns out there.

Where do you like to shop?

Melrose Ave is my jam when it comes to shopping! There’s a store called Moist (Pun intended) that makes me moist haha.

Where do you work out?

I have multiple gym memberships, this year I’ve been traveling a lot so always on that workout grind.

What are your favorite travel destinations and where do you want to go that you have not been?

This year I’ve shaken my butt in clubs in South Korea, Thailand, Mexico, and Israel. I really want to hit the UK this following year. My bucket list consists of spending time making money to travel and not writing a list haha.

How does your mom feel about your new profession as a male model?

My mom supports me in whatever I do. I just advise her not to google my name…

Are you and Murray Swanby an item? We see you pictured all the time together.

Yup! Murray and I are dating! He’s my best friend and boyfriend.

Related: Murray Swanby on the ins & outs of West Hollywood and Los Angeles Pride

Are you self-conscious in front of the camera?

I am never nervous in front of the camera. It’s the mirror that really gets me. Sometimes you just feel blah, but the moment that camera flashes I feel like a new person.

What advice would you give to guys who don’t believe in themselves and their bodies, who feel alienated by the media image of sexy West Hollywood guys that is so hard to live up to?

I would ask them: Who defines what’s sexy and what’s not? My advice is you should never walk into a room and compare yourself to others. Sexiness can’t be defined by only outer appearance, it has a lot to do with confidence and self-appreciation.

Are you a role model? How do you try to convey your values to your audience?

Honestly, I grew up working hard to always achieve the best I can and build a promising future. I was always taught to be kind to others and show everyone respect. Since growing up I haven’t changed much. I convey my values by just being an example. Am I a role model? Maybe, guess that’s more of the audience’s decision.

What did you think of AC’s decision to suspend Topher DiMaggio over the allegations of sexual abuse?

It’s not my place to talk about. Xo

How do you feel about PrEP and safer sex and where do you like to meet guys: dating apps or bars?

Safe sex is good sex to me. You can never be too prepared. I used Tinder when I was single for a bit and met some amazing guys but honestly this year I’ve met a lot of guys at work haha.

Where do you see yourself in a decade?

Where do I see myself next week? I don’t know! Life is unpredictable but I swear I better have a man and at least one dog.

What is your ethnic background? It is sometimes said gay men of color don’t enough attention in the queer media.

My ethnic background is half Filipino and half Italian (AKA the best foods). I believe the LGBTQ community has always supported and fought for equal rights as a whole, not just for sexual preference but for race, economic status and so on. As I’ve worked in this field of media for the last few years I’ve met plenty of diverse individuals ranging from many cultural backgrounds. So I can happily say from an insider’s point of view I’ve never encountered this issue.

You have lots of tats to show the world.

I currently have 12 tattoos, each one has its own meaning or experience it helps represent. If I had to list them all this would be a 4-page interview haha. But the 2 most significant tattoos have to be my forearm and my neck tattoos. My forearm tattoo is a tattoo I got with a friend, it’s Hindu for Evolution, meaning that some things change over time but don’t completely lose touch of where they started. My newest neck tattoo is of a Bee. Bees have hit the endangered list this year and it’s said our life expectancy relays somewhat on their existence. This tattoo reminds me that no matter how big or small something may be, the impact can be great and that we all have to work together in order to survive.

In some of your AC model shots, you are wearing “gay vote counts” stickers.

I usually don’t speak about politics, but I believe everyone should exercise their ability to vote. If I’ve learned anything from this year it’s that everyone needs to be heard. Last years election our community specifically went thru a difficult time but I believe that’s exactly what we needed. Yes we struggled in the last election period, but I believe it brought us closer as a community, but not just a gay community but one that included more of our allies. They say it takes a little rain to get a rainbow. Well, we just had a hurricane.

So I encourage us not to stand by and let others voices count as ours but let our voices be heard.

Photos courtesy of Nick Mascardo