What Tamra Judge was like before she became a real housewife

Tamra Judge was once one of the longest-running cast members on The Real Housewives of Orange County. Along with Vicki Gunvalson, she was one of the OGs of the OC and became a fan favorite. According to her IMDb page, Judge first appeared on the show in 2007. At the time, she was married to Simon Barney, and fans saw their rollercoaster relationship play out on the show. Fans also saw her on-screen romance blossom with her now-husband Eddie Judge. And who could forget her crazy antics with BFF Gunvalson?

Unfortunately, like many members of various Housewives franchises, Judge’s time on the show didn’t last forever. In February 2020, she explained to People that several factors contributed to her not returning to the series, including her ex-husband Simon Barney’s battle with throat cancer. She said Barney’s cancer diagnosis made her “reevaluate” her life. “The reality is, after Eddie’s heart disease and now Simon with cancer, I have a really hard time going on a show where people are screaming and yelling and arguing about things that don’t even matter,” she told the Drain.

Luckily, fans of Judge can still catch a glimpse of her in reruns from time to time, and seeing her on the show brings with it nostalgia. But believe it or not, before she started as a series regular on RHOC, Judge had a very different gig that might surprise many.

Tamra Judge has nailed her first career

Before she found fame with The Real Housewives of Orange County, Tamra Judge worked in the beauty industry. According to BravoTV, Judge conducted an “Ask Me Anything” question-and-answer session on Instagram, and a fan asked her to share the details of how she gives herself top-notch manicures. “I was a licensed manicurist when I was 20,” she informed her followers. “I worked in a salon in Covina for years.” Who would have thought?

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BravoTV also shared a since-deleted Instagram post that included a few more details about her manicure past. “I got my manicure license when I was 19. Who would have thought it [it] would come in handy,” she said, making sure to include a few hashtags to get her point across. In 2014, Judge also shared a photo from her past rocking her signature ’80s hair and oversized hoop earrings. Once again, she reminded her followers that she came from humble beginnings as she gave another nod to the beginning of her career as a manicurist. “It’s never too early for TBT… when it’s that bad! My graduation picture from Covina Beauty College,” she wrote in the post. She also added the hashtag “manicure” and the year of her graduation, which was 1986.

As fans know, Judge has also dabbled in real estate throughout her career, and according to Agent Inc., she appears to still be selling some California homes. But her time as a reality star isn’t over yet.

Tamra Judge returns to reality TV

With a fun personality like Tamra Judge, it would be a shame to keep her off TV for long. Luckily, the star appears in housewife spin-off Ultimate Girls Trip with several other former housewives. According to IMDb, the series consists of seven episodes, and in true housewife fashion, there’s likely to be plenty of drama. Judge will also have her partner-in-crime Vicki Gunvalson on the show, and we can only imagine the two have plans to “howl” as much as possible.

Judge has spoken about appearing on the show on a number of occasions, and she gave E! an exclusive interview. News about the show and how she felt about performing because of her past feuds with The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills alum Brandi Glanville. “We work things out pretty quickly. “In the first episode, we talk and we sit and we discuss it and we decide we like each other,” she told the outlet. “We have some bumps that are moving forward, but for the most part we get through it and we end up having a lot of fun together.” Sounds like must-see TV to us.

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Judge also promoted the show on her Instagram feed. “2 weeks left until the new season of #RHUGT! Who’s excited?!” She wrote on June 9th. From manicure to reality star, Judge has proven she can do it all.