Angela White is done hiding behind Blac Chyna. She couldn't love herself more

Marissa Evans, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Entertainment News

LOS ANGELES — Angela White is radiant.

When shes walks up to our table at a cafe in Calabasas, there are no cameras and no filters. She is petite with a big personality and laugh. Her face is flawless and exudes warmth when she smiles. She is happy. Really, truly happy with the Angela she is now.

She is honest that media interviews are not always her favorite thing. Not when she has been burned before. Not when her openness hasn’t always been met with graciousness or kindness. But she has slowly but surely aimed to open up more. After all, she has nothing to hide and nothing to be ashamed of.

The price of White’s beauty over the years could be best summed up in needles, injections, fillers, burning sensations and judgment. When White was in the thick of getting cosmetic procedures, they didn’t hurt. But when she videotaped herself getting her cheek fillers removed last March, the reality TV star said it stung and burned.

The needle pricks and breast and butt reduction surgeries within the last year are the cost of change that White was determined to undergo physically, emotionally and spiritually in a less than kind or forgiving media environment. But whatever you call this phase of her life — a transformation or metamorphosis, or whatever you decide to call her — Blac Chyna, Chyna or Angela will do — White is eager to see who she will become.

She initially considered this to be her soft girl era but has changed her mind about that. She is calmer, more patient and focused on herself. Hell, she’s even taken up running in an effort to do the things she’s long hated. She will look you in the eye and tell you without a doubt, this is not a trend, this is who she is now.

“I was hiding Angela, because I had just been hurt so much throughout the years,” White said when we first met with her last September. “I feel like as a woman in this industry, people will try you, they will try to walk all over you and make you seem less than or that you’re not capable of doing certain things, and that’s just other people’s insecurities. And when their insecurities rub off on you, then you kind of start looking at yourself different.”

White first hit the celebrity scene more than a decade ago as a 19-year-old exotic dancer who became Nicki Minaj’s music video stunt double; she eventually became a video vixen after rapper Drake saw her working in a Miami club and shouted her out in the song “Miss Me.”

She then became a reality television star, making headlines in 2016 when she started dating Kardashian brother Rob and became pregnant. That led to the couple’s E! reality show “Rob and Chyna,” which documented their relationship, which went from promising to rocky during production, and they later split up. She has also been part of the cast for the BET reality show “The Black Hamptons.”

White was also at one point on the subscription site OnlyFans when the pandemic hit in 2020; there, she posted adult-only content. White told Forbes in a previous interview that she made $2 million in a two-year time span on the platform. She deleted her account in 2022 as part of her personal journey and out of concern for her children. In addition to her daughter with Rob Kardashian, White has a son, Cairo, with her ex, rapper Tyga.

Amid the changes she’s making in her life, White appeared as a cast member in the latest season of the Fox show “Special Forces.” She was also part of the cast of the Tubi platform movie “Vicious Affairs” and “Forever Us.”

Blac Chyna is the brand, but more than that, White’s protection since “Blac Chyna is not having it with nobody, like if it’s bad business, she’s not having it. Disrespect, she’s not having it,” she says referring to her alter ego in third person. White said she can also be no-nonsense but Blac Chyna wasn’t always very soft.

“I’m soft to the people that I need to be soft with, that give me respect, and I give that respect back,” White said. “If people want to be nasty and rude, I’m still not going to give that back, but I’m going to guard myself. I don’t want people to think that, ‘Oh, I’m soft. Because I’m not.’ I’m a soft person, I’m a gentle person, but I’m not soft.... This is not an era for me.”

White, who grew up in Washington, D.C., always felt beautiful as a child. She remembers being made fun of sometimes for the size of her forehead — ”I have a big forehead,” she laughs — but overall liked how she looked.

For beauty and style icons, White looked up to her mother, Shalana Hunter, known as Tokyo Toni, for being a true “glam girl” with “the big hair, makeup, lipstick, 6-inch pumps, belly chains and the two-seater fast cars and the cash.” She also loved Jennifer Lopez. When White looked at a photo of herself from when she was 12, she realized that she had already developed physically — a small waist and bottom heavy like her mom — but she was flat-chested.

“I couldn’t wait to turn 18, get me some boobs ... like going bra shopping was so much fun, you couldn’t tell me nothing,” White said with a laugh. “I wanted to look like a woman before my time, in which all of that stuff is going to come with age. You start to fill out, and then you start to thin out and I feel like I’m starting to thin out.”

But White became more determined to get cosmetic work done while she was working as an exotic dancer. She started with butt injections, then got breast implants and then started getting face and lip fillers. The women she saw making the most money were the ones who had all of those things.

“You’re looking around and seeing fully developed women like that, you’re like ‘I want to look like that,’ how am I going to make some money when they got big old booties and I got this little rump?” White recalled. “I needed a big rump, so that’s what I went and I got. Video vixens at the time had the breasts and the body and all of that and it was really just to appease the male species, to collect money from them.”

After she had cosmetic work, White said her money and opportunities increased. She was known to the public as the beauty with the blond hair, the face piercings, the dimples and tattoos all over her body. She said that she loved the results and that she felt beautiful and, more important, that it aligned with her vision “to look like something out of this world.... I wanted to look nonreal.

“I wanted that Hollywood look, like the Angelina Jolie carved out symmetrical face. I just wanted everything to be perfect and structured, because most of the magazines and the models, they have very symmetrical faces, and the lips needed to be a certain way, but for me, I kind of started to go overboard.”


The decision to change her life came after she was baptized in the pool at her home last year. White posted a video on Instagram in 2022 of a minister holding her head and back before pushing her underwater. White said she wasn’t thinking about anything at the time. After she was baptized, two of her friends decided to get into the baptismal pool too, a moment that makes White smile.

White said that she has always had a strong relationship with God but that she “just needed to come back so that he could really show me some cool stuff.”

Nowadays, in between comments on her Instagram posts from fans — and some haters and doubters — there are comments from more religious-inclined followers offering prayers and Bible Scriptures.

White says the warm welcome that’s come as she’s been more open about her Christian faith has included people sending her customized Bibles, books for her kids and other books senders say have helped them. She also received a doctorate of liberal arts from the Sacramento Theological Seminary and Bible College this year.

“I never needed anyone’s welcome into faith, because I’m not doing it for them,” White said. “As long as God knows my heart, that’s all that matters. Now, if we’re in a community, then we will be in a community together, but I’m not doing it to get somebody’s welcoming.”

Thinking about her faith in bigger ways is also one of the reasons she became sober in 2022. White said that although she wasn’t drinking every day, she would binge drink every couple of days. In speaking about being sober for more than a year, White says “the blessing with that is that nothing happened for me to want to change.” She added that she’s glad she stopped drinking on her own terms and without a DUI, hurting someone or possibly even having her children being legally taken from her. She realized how alcoholism could eventually catch up to her in her personal life.

“I was drinking, I just had to open up my eyes and realize it,” White said. “And then not even just in front of people, even in private. A lot of times, we do things in private, or try to hide things from people, but once you start being real with yourself, that’s when you start to really see or realize certain things and your life is just going to get better.”

But White had also started taking a more intense look in the mirror and realized that she no longer loved the woman she saw. She had been working out but felt like her lips were too big, her breasts were too big and her butt was starting to feel heavy. Something had to change, so she called her doctor. White had her butt reduced. She also had breast reduction surgery and was under anesthesia for 8½ hours. Initially, her doctors thought she would need a breast lift but White was concerned about scarring. Doctors had to remove her nipples, pull in her skin and then sew around the nipples again. During a follow-up a week later, her doctors told her she was healing quickly.

Although White had never been one to document her life by video, she said something compelled her to film herself — while still on pain medication — talking about her surgery, which she posted on Instagram. She then went to sleep. She woke up at 4:30 a.m. with her phone blowing up with notifications and assumed something had happened. Instead, she found many supportive comments across her social media. The reception on social media gave White the courage to be open and honest about her experience.

“So many women have died from surgery, you know, and what I’ve learned is [that] most of the time, we do it for ourselves, but [that] nine times out of 10, we do it for other people or men,” White said. “It’s so crazy to me because some men might not like big boobs or they don’t love big booties and you went and got a big booty.”

Not long after that, White posted video of herself getting her fillers removed on her social media. The six-minute video is not for the needle phobic, as White films herself lying down calmly with her eyes closed as a doctor inserts a needle into her cheeks and her lips and even jiggles it around to dissolve the fillers. Viewers can slowly see White’s face turning back to its natural state. White has had to go back several times for additional treatments to remove the fillers.

The key things a woman considering surgeries to remove enhancements need to think about, White says, include finding a reputable doctor, not going abroad for cheaper rates and realizing that complications might not crop up until later. She pointed out that not every doctor she’s consulted with is willing to help repair complications.

White said the videos have had an effect, with some women simply walking up to her and giving her hugs. Many have expressed appreciation that she‘s talked about her own surgeries. White said she has no regrets about her cosmetic procedures but believes she got lucky. The most complications she had were with her butt shots, when she would sometimes become ill with flu-like symptoms. She said that years ago, she was in a hospital for a week due to surgery complications. Some of her face fillers migrated.

“I’ve had like a lot of women come up to me and say I was literally two weeks out, like I was about to get this surgery and I was like, ‘Nah. I’m good,’” White said. “It’s just sad that the girls, even after I posted my surgery, I physically went on my Instagram, on my socials, and I’ve seen women pass away from it and I’m like, ‘Yo, how many times are surgeons not going to be careful in their work?’”

White went back in late December for additional breast reduction surgery. But she posted on Instagram that there were complications with her left breast becoming encapsulated, with the muscle contracting around her implant. White said she had to keep an implant. Otherwise, her breast would not be properly shaped.

She said months before she wanted them to be smaller as she hopes for more acting roles. Within the next few years she plans to get out of the reality television world. She couldn’t get the size she wanted initially during her first breast reduction surgery because the skin had to heal after the surgery. She emphasizes that she wanted them “just a little bit smaller” and slightly lower. It was never about being a specific size.

But she hopes this is the last time she has to do any procedures.

“If I remove anything else, I’m gonna remove myself,” White joked.

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