The real reason we don't hear about Paris Hilton anymore

Paris Hilton was once the toast of the town and perhaps one of Hollywood's most famous socialites. In fact, she invented the concept of being famous for being famous long before Kim Kardashian ever dreamed of such a career. Whether you loved her or hated her, you'd see her face everywhere, from TV to movies to commercials to red carpet events.  

She waged epic feuds with fellow socialites Nicole Richie and Lindsay Lohan, and enjoyed a five-season run with her breakout reality TV show, The Simple Life. Even her leaked sex tape seemed to kick off a plethora of other celebrity sex tapes, practically setting a precedent that the scandalous footage was somehow en vogue. 

Hilton has also been a best-selling author, actress, model, brand ambassador, DJ, and a veritable household name, so how is it that we don't hear from her anymore? Here's a few reasons why she may be skirting the spotlight. 

The internet is forever

In a 2011 interview with Piers Morgan (via CNN), Hilton said she still grapples with the fallout from her 2004 sex tape, 1 Night in Paris. "When people look at me they think that I'm something I'm not just because of one incident one night with someone who I was in love with," she said. "People assume, 'Oh, she's a slut,' because of one thing that happened to me, and it's hard because I'll have to live with that for the rest of my life and explain it to my children. It's something that's changed my life forever and I'll never be able to erase it."

Hilton blames her ex-boyfriend, poker player Rick Salomon, for the debacle. "It was devastating because that was someone I was with for a few years," she told The Telegraph in 2015. "I don't think I'll ever be able to fully trust any man again after that. It was just the most hurtful and awful thing that anyone could do to a little girl. I was very young, it wasn't my fault."

Hilton was 19 years old when the tape was filmed, according to New York Magazine.

President Paris?

Though Hilton's public image has been more muted in recent years, that will certainly change if she decides to run for office. After the U.S. presidential election in November 2016, an Australian talk show asked the longtime Trump friend and supporter if she'd consider campaigning on her town ticket? "That sounds good, I like the ring to that," she said, smiling. "'President Paris,' I like that."

Hilton certainly has an in. She's known Trump since childhood, and he even weighed in on her infamous sex tape, telling Howard Stern (via Us Weekly), "I think it's probably unfortunate and it made Paris hotter in terms of the world because the world is so screwed up." Speaking of screwed up, Trump also said he watched 1 Night in Paris with his wife, Melania.

Taxicab Confessions

In a recording obtained by Radar Online, the "Stars Are Blind" singer was accused of going on a homophobic diatribe in 2012. The audio, reportedly recorded by a cab driver, revealed Hilton saying that "most [gay men] probably have AIDS," followed by, "Gay guys are the horniest people in the world. They're disgusting. I would be so scared if I was a gay guy. [You'd], like, die of AIDS."

When the scandal went public, Hilton's camp released a statement deflecting the criticism. A rep for the starlet said (via Radar Online), "Paris Hilton's comments were to express that it is dangerous for anyone to have unprotected sex that could lead to a life threatening disease. The conversation became heated, after a close gay friend told her in a cab ride, a story about a gay man who has AIDS, and is knowingly having unprotected sex. He also discussed a website that encourages random sex by gay men with strangers. As she was being shown the website her comments were in reference to those people promoting themselves on the site. The cab driver who recorded this, only provided a portion of the conversation. It was not her intent to make any derogatory comments about all gays. Paris Hilton is a huge supporter of the gay community and would never purposefully make any negative statements about anyone's sexual orientation."

Though that controversial conversation wasn't a career-ender, Hilton's language certainly could have dinged her celebrity status.

She definitely has a type

In a 1999 interview with journalist Neil Strauss, an 18-year-old Hilton reportedly expressed disgust at the mere idea of dating a black man. In an excerpt of the interview, which was published in Strauss' book, Everyone Loves You When You're Dead (via LA Weekly), Hilton says she went on a date with a celebrity who starred in Saving Private Ryan, but after making out with him, they went somewhere with better lighting and she realized "he was black," so she "made an excuse and left."

"I can't stand black guys," she says in the excerpt. "I would never touch one. It's gross."

Who was this actor of color? According to Slate, multiple sites speculated Hilton was talking about multiracial star Vin Diesel, noting that during the same interview, Strauss reportedly asked the heiress "how black" a guy has to be for her to consider him off-limits. "One percent is enough for me," she replied.

Racism, Hilton? That's not hot.

She's been consumed by the smell of money

Between 2004 and 2016, Hilton released 20 different perfumes that attracted an estimated $2 billion dollars in profit.

Referencing a scent aptly named "Gold Rush," Hilton told WWD magazine, "I love how this one makes you feel. You feel really confident when you wear it. I like something that really brings attention to you, and something that people remember." She added, "My fragrances in the beginning were more girly, almost Disney fantasy-like with characters in fairy dust and me dressed as a fairy. Now, with Gold Rush, it is more mature and very sophisticated. It's a completely different scent."

"I've been in this business so long, I'm a pro at it," she said. "I know what the consumer wants, and I know what I want. I've smelled so many scents, and I basically have everything memorized. I always want to do something different from the last one."

And the Razzie goes to...

Like many people who are famous for doing nothing, Hilton attempted to legitimize her fame by appearing in a number of extremely questionable movies. Her first real starring turn was in 2005's House of Wax (screenshot above), which got a rough 25 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, and earned Hilton the annual Golden Raspberry Award for worst supporting actress. Oof. 

A year later, she followed up the effort with the direct-to-DVD Bottoms Up, co-starring Kevin Smith-favorite Jason Mewes, which only scored 22 percent with Rotten Tomatoes' audience. Her most serious offense, however, was the 2008 comedy — and we use that word lightly — The Hottie and the Nottie, which came in at an amazing 4 percent on Rotten Tomatoes. It earned Hilton another two Razzies, and spent some time on IMDb as the worst film of all time. As of this writing, it's still on the list, alongside another Hilton gem, Pledge This (2006).

She should probably stick to perfume.

She gets paid to exist

Hilton's business acumen extends beyond fragrances. She also runs her own accessory line that includes handbags, wallets, beauty cases, and jewelry. According to The LA Times, 50 stores globally were selling her products as of July 2016 with many more expansion opportunities on the horizon. "I'm a completely different person," she told People in September 2016. "I've grown so much as a person and a woman…I've been through a lot, but I've worked really hard, and I've built my empire. I run my company with 17 different product lines. I'm going nonstop, constantly traveling."

In a 2014 interview with WWD, the mogul estimated she'd spent 300 of the last 365 days on the move, insisting that her glitzy appearances, though they seem to be all fun and games, are actually part of a greater business strategy. "I think a lot of people don't realize that when I'm at all these events it is for work and I'm being paid to be there and promote a product or whatever club or restaurant has hired me to be there," she said. "People got to know me from being a New York socialite and a teenager at every party at every club since I was a kid. But I've actually turned that into a huge business. It is a part of my brand that I'm having fun and living an exciting life and being the life of the party, but it's a lot of work."

Turntables keep a girl busy

Paris Hilton's top-dollar DJ jobs keep her occupied on the regular. In September 2016, Refinery29 reported Hilton was paid $300,000 for a gig in Serbia. It's all about the Benjamins, baby!

She told People in 2016 that she transitioned into the DJ scene while booking club appearances around the world. "I was always in the DJ booth, telling the DJs what to play, so the club owners were like, 'Why don't you try it?'" Hilton said, "I was nervous to try [it] at at first because it's very technical, but I trained with the best in the business for about six hours a day for six months."

Hilton said her first performance was after a Jennifer Lopez concert—a gig that brought in 30,000 people. "I felt that energy and really fell in love with being a DJ and got really into it," she told the publication. "Now I'm starting to produce my own beats."

A Los Angeles to Ibiza commute would be rough

If she wants to be popular in the United States again, it would help if Paris Hilton actually spent the majority of her time in the USA. In 2013, she was hired as the resident DJ at Amnesia, a nightclub in Ibiza. The notorious Spanish party island became her second home, though Hilton did return to the States frequently to visit family and to DJ in Atlantic City and Las Vegas.

In 2018, after Hilton got engaged to Chris Zylka, rumors swirled that the socialite was ready to hang up her headphones and pack away her DJ playlist for good. The Daily Mail reported Hilton was considering calling it quits on her DJ residency, but she hadn't officially announced that she was bidding the gig adieu entirely. 

With Ibiza giving her the kind of attention she seemed to be lacking in America, we find it hard to believe she would walk away from the one gig that gave her a ton of relevancy.

The student becomes the master

When we were first introduced to Kim Kardashian, she was Hilton's loyal sidekick. They hit up parties and A-list events all around Tinseltown. Hilton was the leader, and Kardashian seemed happy enough to just tag along… or so we thought.

The balance in this relationship shifted when Kardashian suddenly became the big name about town. After taking a page from Hilton's playbook and creating an intimate tape of her own, Kardashian and her entire family launched Keeping up With the Kardashians, a reality show that made The Simple Life look tame and lame. 

As the Kardashian empire continues to expand and grow, it seems Hilton is well aware that she helped her pal become a somebody. In 2016, Hilton reportedly "liked" a shady Instagram post that gave Hilton credit for her friend's notoriety. According to Us Weekly, a clever online troll took a still shot from Kanye West's "Famous" music video, superimposed Hilton's face over the effigy of Taylor Swift lying in bed next to West and Kardashian, and modified a notorious line from West's song to caption the photo: "I made his b**ch famous.'"

C'mon, ladies, there's more than enough room for both of you in Hollywood. Wouldn't it be amazing if these former BFFs reunited and hit the town again like it's 2006? We're all for it!

Did her music flop?

We're not ashamed to admit we still have Hilton's 2006 song "Stars are Blind" in our iTunes playlist. Hey, she never claimed to be the best singer, dancer, or entertainer, but we give her a fist bump for attempting to break into the music scene. 

Her self-titled freshman album was released at the height of her popularity, but it didn't top the charts the way some expected. The album hit the Top 200 at No. 6, selling 77,000 units its first week, reported Billboard

Hilton's sophomore effort has been in a perpetual state of limbo, but according to a November 2017 interview with Time, the 36-year-old is recording a new album — the first in more than 10 years — with a "whole new sound" described as "deep house, techno-pop and electro-pop." 

That sounds lovely, but at this point, we'll believe it when we hear it.

Sometimes BFs aren't forever

Hilton doesn't seem to keep in touch with a lot of her former BFFs. 

Regarding Nicole Richie, her co-star on The Simple Life, Hilton simply issued a statement (via People) that said, "Nicole knows what she did, and that's all I'm ever going to say about it." And it was. 

As for Kardashian, you may remember Hilton's infamous radio interview (via Gawker) during which she uttered the words, "I would not want [Kim's butt]—it's gross! … It reminds me of cottage cheese inside a big trash bag." 

And when it came to LIndsay Lohan, we'll never forget the infamous 2006 video of Hilton giggling as Hollywood bad boy Brandon Davis called Lohan "firecrotch." 

For what it's worth, it does seem like Hilton has made an effort to mend some fences. She wished Richie a happy birthday in a touching Instagram post in September 2017.  Although we feel all warm and fuzzy knowing our favorite "it girls" are being cordial again, we suspect Hilton still has a lot of apologizing to do if she wants to reclaim her throne.

Wait, that voice was a choice?

Hilton doesn't talk, she coos…or so we thought. It was that soft and child-like voice that hypnotized us during her heyday, but when she revealed that wasn't even her real voice, some fans felt duped. 

During an interview with Vice, Hilton effortlessly, albeit accidentally, switched between her baby voice and her authentic, much deeper voice. Hilton admitted she started using the baby voice at a young age to get what she wanted. Her younger sister, Nicky Hilton Rothschild, confirmed as much saying, "Her voice octave went very high and sweet when she wanted something."

TMZ also interviewed Hilton at an airport. The heiress was a great sport about switching between her "normal" pizza-ordering voice and her I'm-so-shy "baby voice," much to the delight of TMZ's cameraman. If Hilton's voice isn't even real, what else has she been fooling us about? We, the people, need answers.

She couldn't take the heat, and fled the kitchen

When word gets around that a celeb is a pain in the you-know-what, they risk being blackballed from the industry. Hilton may have tarnished her reputation when she got snippy during a 2011 interview with ABC's Good Morning America (via Fox News).

ABC correspondent Dan Harris asked Hilton about her relevance in relation to other reality stars at the time, such as the cast of Jersey Shore and the Kardashian sisters. That's when Hilton glanced around the room with a bit of agitation on her face, stood up from her chair, and walked out. After a heated discussion with her publicist, she reportedly returned to the interview and said, "I've been in this business for 15 years now so it's been a very long time and just like any other business person or someone in the industry it's always important to reinvent yourself and come up with new projects." That's the response of a pro, but storming off the set was a rookie move all the way. 

Manhunting takes time and effort

One endeavor that can be an absolute time-suck is seeking your soulmate, and for years, Hilton was on the hunt for hers. 

According to a 2016 interview with People, Hilton spoke endearingly about her little sister, who is married to aristocrat James Rothschild and building a family of her own. "I've never seen Nicky so happy," she said. "She's got a man that's so loyal. I don't trust because I got hurt so much in my life that I don't want to put myself out there to get hurt again."

Despite two failed engagements — to model Jason Shaw and to Greek socialite Paris Latsis – it sounds like Hilton is still open to the idea of forever and always. "I would love one day to find my soulmate and someone who I could give my life to and build a life with and a family," she admitted. "Hopefully one day."

For Hilton, it seems true love was worth the wait…

True love at last

Hilton kicked off 2018 with a big announcement: actor Chris Zylka popped the question with a 20-carat stunner, and she said yes!

"I have never felt so happy, safe and loved. He is perfect for me in every way and showed me that fairy tales really do exist!" she told People on Jan. 2, 2017. "Ever since our first date I knew there was something special about him. I have never in my life met a man so loyal, dedicated, and loving. I knew right from the start that I wanted to be with him forever."

HIlton may party for a living, but her life with The Secret Circle star has been a total 180. At the time of this writing, he doesn't even have social media accounts, and she seems to be unplugging more as well. She told Galore, "For work, I have to be out and be social all the time. So in my private time, I would much rather be at home in bed watching TV with [Zylka] and puppies than out at a club."

That may be so, but with a wedding in the works, we suspect you'll be hearing a lot more from Hilton in 2018.

She's planning (and re-planning) her wedding

After Paris Hilton announced in a statement to People that she and her beau, actor and model Chris Zylka, had gotten engaged, we just knew the party girl-turned-fiancée would have an uber-expensive, glam wedding. So, we didn't mind that she was missing from the spotlight. The girl was busy planning the most special day of her life… or so we thought.

Less than seven months after her January 2017 engagement announcement, Hilton told People that she and Zylka had pushed back their Nov. 11, 2018 wedding date. "I was like yeah, but I didn't look at my schedule. Then this summer we were looking at our schedules and I was like, 'Oh my goodness we are both working nonstop until like New Year's," she said.

If she's too swamped to even plan her own wedding, no wonder she's too busy to make as many public appearances as she has in the past!

Runway princess

During her heyday, fashion designers were clamoring to have Paris Hilton model their garments on the runway. And we'll never forget how she effortlessly slayed the Heatherette catwalk season after season. Despite flying under the radar and living life away from the limelight, Hilton still does some runway modeling from time to time, including in 2018 when she appeared in the Namilia spring 2019 show. 

Paper reported Hilton "opened the show" and wore three different looks, including one that was just "enormous red puffy angel wings and slouchy cargo pants." Trés chic. She even found the time to model some designer duds in a few additional runway shows that same season, including Plain Sport and Dosso Dossi, according to a separate Paper report.

So the next time you're sitting around and wondering what happened to Hilton, try snagging some seats in the FROW of any major runway show, and you just might see Hilton sashaying down the catwalk! 

You can, like, totally meet her in an alternate universe

Paris Hilton told The Hollywood Reporter that she's obsessed with video games, describing herself as a "huge tech geek." And in order to connect with her fans on another level, as well as combining her love for gaming, she was in the process of developing an interactive and realistic game.

"I'm working with a company right now and we're about to launch a Paris Hilton virtual reality world, which is basically going to be the next social media universe where people from all around the world can come meet, can come hang out," she said.

Hilton added, "I'm taking it to the next level. I've always been ahead of my time and now that I think about it, I've always loved being a pioneer."

So, there you have it. The real reason you don't hear from Hilton anymore is because, well, you're not even in her universe.