It’s official: the reality TV show Shahs of Sunset will be returning for a third season and cast member Mike Shouhed couldn’t be any happier. Along with his contract renewal, the 34-year-old has plenty to share. He is madly in love with his girlfriend. His favorite Persian restaurants are hooking him up with free tahdig and the red carpet treatment. And most recently, he posed for PlayGirl.com. What more could a guy that loves manscaping and Louis Vuitton’s ask for?
Jana: Tell me, do you bare it all for the PlayGirl.com shoot?
Mike: I don’t kiss and tell. [Laughs] You’re going to have to check it out for yourself.
Well then. What kind of manscape artist are you?
I’m a great manscape artist. And I manscape all the time. It shouldn’t be something done just once. A man should take care of himself from head to toe—manicure, pedicure, manscaping. I like to keep everything tight and clean.
Now that Season 2 of Shahs has ended, what’s next?
It was just announced today [April 2] that there is going to be a Season 3. So I’m excited to come back, and hopefully make it happen. This season I think my story is going to unfold, get a bit deeper. Right now is the best time of my life. I have a lot of things happening, like the show and real estate and hanging with the elite. I’m definitely on the upswing of things.
Are you engaged or at least living with your girlfriend yet?
Jessie and I are still dating. We’re not engaged yet, but I love her very much. I’m hoping to take the relationship to the next level. We’re at least talking about it.
How does she feel about the Play Girl shoot?
She loves it! She’s been there—with me—since day one, and they even asked her to be a part of it. We’re both very honored.
So which job brings in the most money? Shahs or real estate?
Real estate is my bread and butter, for sure.
Which job is the most fun?
Shahs! Are you kidding me? I get to hang out with my friends, act crazy, have cameras follow me. I feel like a celebrity, quote unquote. I’m walking through Manhattan now, talking to you, and all these people are taking pictures of me. It’s crazy.
Of all the cast members on Shahs, you seem to be the most real in regards to telling people how it is and understanding your role in friendships. Has that always been your demeanor? Or does the show bring out a different side of you?
Have you ever heard of the movie True Romance? Well, there’s this scene with Christian Slater and Patricia Arquette. He asks her, ‘What’s your biggest turn off?’ She says, ‘Persian Men.’ Do you remember that? Well, anyways, as a kid I was like, WHAT? My whole life I’ve tried to be the dominant man, the type of guy that women will fall in love with, either as a friend or a lover or as a husband. I just try to be the best me I can be. And I don’t think being on TV has changed me.
Do you feel pressures to break the stereotype of Persian men?
Absolutely. The pressure is on. Although, the show has humanized the Iranian culture. And as cocky as it sounds, I feel like I’ve made the Persian man a sex symbol. To be asked to be on the cover of PlayGirl.com for its 40th Birthday is a huge deal. Brad Pitt has done it. It’s just amazing.
People want to know: Have MJ and Reza kissed a made up yet?
Um… it’s a work in progress. Any friendship that has lasted for twenty-plus years has its ups and downs. But they’re working through it.
Can you seriously call Asa a Persian Pop Priestess without laughing?
[Laughs] She’s so eccentric. She doesn’t care if you don’t like it, she’s just like, ‘I’m coming out with Diamond Water. I’m the Persian Pop Priestess. Deal with it.’ I like that about her.
What’s the best Persian restaurant in Los Angeles?
The best Persian restaurant in Los Angeles would have to be Darya in Santa Monica.
Do you really go there? Or are you just giving me names?
I go there! Another favorite and where I get the most love is Aram in Beverly Hills. Every time I go there they roll out the red carpet. It’s nice. [Laughs]
In order to be an honorary Shah, what’s the first thing one should purchase?
You have to rock some awesome gear, get yourself a nice pair of Louis Vuitton’s, and have a nice car. Also, you have to use cologne responsibly.
Or else it’s just too much.