Krystal Versace: “I Was Obviously Meant to Take That Crown”

"I really, truly believe it was meant to happen," says the "Drag Race U.K." Season 3 winner.

Spoilers ahead for RuPaul’s Drag Race U.K. Season 3

RuPaul’s Drag Race herstory has been made yet again.

The latest season of Drag Race U.K. saw Krystal Versace take the crown, and at 20 years old, she became the youngest winner in the franchise’s history. From the moment she marched into the workroom announcing that “sex on legs has arrived,” the London queen was the one to beat — but viewers wondered, would Ru crown such a young performer?

Turns out Krystal had the same thought herself. However, after snatching two RuPeter badges and leaving the judges gagged with her fashion week after week, it was hard to deny that even at the beginning of her drag journey, she was already a legend.

Krystal spoke with Logo about what it was like to film Drag Race U.K., her reaction to winning the crown, and if she would take Violet Chachki on in a lip-sync.
 

I watched your crowning reaction video. You looked nervous. What was going through your head?

I was definitely nervous, I think because obviously the whole season’s led up to that one moment, and we’ve been preparing for that for so long. So when we’re finally sitting there — the three of us and waiting for whoever’s going to be the winner of the whole competition — it was a very intense few minutes of waiting in silence. I was very shocked, as you could tell.

Ella and Kitty hugged you, and then your mom hugged you. What was that like?

My mom just grabbed me and we just held each other for so long, and she was just sobbing. It was just an incredible experience to have my mom sitting there watching the last episode with me, it was just amazing. ’Cause that’s a once-in-a-lifetime thing. It was a moment that we had together and it was just the best day.

What did you do afterward? What was the weekend like?

It’s been madness. I literally haven’t stopped. I’ve had work to do, I’ve had shoots to do afterward. I actually was booked for Porn Idol at [London club] Heaven. So it was an iconic night, and we definitely celebrated.

What was the crowd at Heaven like?

Insane. I just walked out, and the energy was crazy.

I felt like you were the one to beat from the beginning, but you’re so young, I thought Ru wouldn’t give you the crown. Were you also thinking that?

I did think that because obviously Ru’s seen so much drag and she knows what’s worthy of the crown. I knew that we really got on. So I knew that she really respected my drag and she really wanted me to go far. I thought that would be a tipping point between, does she think I can take on the reign for Drag Race U.K., or does she think, you know, I’m not going to give it to her? I really didn’t know. But after getting the wins, Ru obviously thought, you know, she would be fine with taking on the reign.

When Ru said, “You were born to do drag,” what was it like hearing that from the world’s most famous drag queen?

I mean, that was crazy in itself. Also, we just finished Snatch Game and I was like — I bombed it. So I was even more shocked to hear that she came up with such a good compliment after a not-so-great performance, you know what I mean? I would have expected it, maybe, if I had excelled and killed it. And she would have been like, “Oh, you’re born for drag.” Do you know what I mean? But to even say that, when, you know, I didn’t do great was… it was incredible. It was such a genuine moment. And she said that wasn’t the first time she said that. There were a few times in the competition where she would take me aside and speak to me. It was really incredible.

Do you have a favorite challenge or a memorable day from set that sticks out to you?

It was all so fun. It really was. I remember the first day, even thinking about it makes me so happy, ’cause it was just such a new chapter. It was mental — after walking into the workroom, I remember going out for a cigarette with Victoria and we were just like sitting there and it was just like, we’ve just walked into the workroom. We’re on Drag Race. But I think also towards the end was definitely where it really picked up and got better because we all were just enjoying it. Top Four onwards, really. At that point, we relaxed. We knew what was coming to a certain extent, but we just got more relaxed in the competition, and we just started to really have fun and forget the cameras were there.

You seemed like a close group, but was there one queen who you became really good friends with?

We are all so close, we really are. We’re always talking [in a] group chat, so that’s the one thing I’m just so thrilled that we’ve had is that we’ve all got on so well. And we all got each other’s backs. Um, definitely Top Four I was really close with because we spent the most time in the competition… but I’m also really close to Anubis. Anubis is probably the closest I am with someone from the season, which is, you know, she was the first out. So you wouldn’t think that, but she’s incredible. We started talking afterward, and we just clicked and now we see each other every week. She comes over and stays at my gaff.

Have [previous Drag Race U.K. winners] The Vivienne or Lawrence Chaney reached out to you?

Yeah. They messaged me on the night and congratulated me and just said, “Welcome. If you need anything…” they gave me their numbers and stuff. It was really nice. It’s such a sisterhood in the U.K. Everyone just has each other’s backs, it’s lovely.

Winning Drag Race is what a drag queen aspires to for years and years.

Yeah.

But this is the beginning of your drag journey. Have you thought about where you go from here?

Definitely. But I think I’m at a really good advantage right now because I have just started, and I’m at this place where I am really polished, I’m really good. And I’ve got the crown, so now I’m going to just keep evolving and showing everyone how my drag’s going to change, because it always will change. It’s going to be a very exciting journey for everyone to see both where I end up and how I evolve.

Your win is inspiring because it proves that age or years of experience doesn’t matter. If you have the magic, you can win Drag Race.

Exactly. You know, Ru saw something in me. I was obviously meant to take that crown. You know, there’s a lot of signs when I started drag, so many full-circle moments, I really, truly believe it was meant to happen.

Do you have any advice for younger drag artists who are looking to get into drag?

I’d say definitely follow your gut, follow your heart. If it’s something you really want to do and you have a passion for it, then do it, go for it, work hard. When you get old enough to start, you know, gigging and doing live work, then go for it — show your face, make sure you’re determined to be professional and be kind. It’s those small things that matter. I think people just think you have to be the best, but simple kindness and professionalism really gets you a long way.

Speaking of Drag Race, who’s in your drag coven?

I really get on with queens like Bimini, Tayce, all them lot. I always see them back in London. London’s quite a small world. So we just know each other, but yeah, I love all the girls and the U.S. girls obviously, I’ve looked up to them for so long. Violet, Aquaria, and Plastique have been such standouts for me to look up to.

Would you lip-sync against Aquaria or Violet?

Yeah. Bring it on!

You won a series from the producers of Drag Race with World of Wonder. Can you tease what fans can expect from that?

We haven’t yet because it’s such early days, but I’ll have to have a good think about that and bring out something that I really am passionate about. Maybe something to do with makeup, something different, something me, you know, so expect that very soon.

RuPaul’s Drag Race U.K. is available on WOW Presents+.

I write about drag queens. Dolly Parton once ruffled my hair and said I was "just the cutest thing ever."
@chrisreindeer